Merry Christmas, dear friend! I pray you will have a blessed time with family and friends celebrating the Gift of God that was given to us over 2000 years ago! Emmanuel! May every morning be a Christmas morning!
Archive for December, 2010
Following after God requires us to strip off and to lay aside excess emotional baggage and sin (Hebrews 12:1-2). That’s obvious enough. We all know that, but we can hardly grasp what that will mean until we step out in obedience. It’s like when we agree to run with God all the sudden we become aware of the competing forces, both internal and external, that seek to impede our ability to run. And suddenly, those things that beset us become as obvious as a red boil on tip of our nose. “O that. O dear, not that.” Make up can’t cover the gnarliness of our flesh. And actually, when you think about it, God is totally into revealing these things to us so we can deal with it. That is so awesome.
Concerning revival: (of being revived to the authority and majesty and supremacy of God), requires us to peel off the weights and encumbrances that beset us. It’s like taking off layers of external and internal obstacles (the more obstinate ones are internal). And when the Spirit reveals these to us, we confess and repent, and continue following after God. As we are throwing off every weight, we are still moving forward with God. Our progress is sure because God is faithful! He is as Hebrews 12:2 says, “…the Author and Perfecter of our faith…” Glory to God!
There are four simple words, when combined together, carry a message that is foundational to our walk with the LORD… “Thy will be done.”
It was the position of our Lord’s heart in the Garden of Gethsemane. Actually, those word portrayed His entire life on earth. He did nothing out of His own ambition. He was not motivated by any other desire than to do the will of His Father who sent Him. The desire of the Father, became His desire. Doing the Father’s will, out of the Father’s supply, was the constant heart position of Jesus.
Thy will be done.
Sometimes loss is necessary. The loss of a dream, when the dream entangles us. The loss of a friendship, when the friendship is a snare to our soul. The loss of income, when income has become our security. They are necessary losses to loosen our grip on this life so we will fasten ourselves to the Lord and His Kingdom.
I’m also amazed at the clarity God gives us in the midst of loss. Perspective… Out of the thicket into a wide open place. Rest in His handiwork today, dear one.
Like many ministries and nonprofit organizations, Grace Tapestries has seen a significant decline in giving. We didn’t have a margin to begin with so currently there’s simply not enough money to meet my financial needs. So I am waiting…
God absolutely knows all about this and He’s not alarmed in the least. However, as a human being, I don’t sleep very well at night. Honestly, I feel a little bit like the disciples being tossed around on the stormy sea fearing that the boat will sink. I keep thinking there is something I should be doing or that I’m doing something I shouldn’t be doing. The truth of the matter is, a ministry cannot survive without financial support.
On the other hand, I’m learning to press in against a new tide of uncertainty and refresh my trust in God. It’s not easy, but it’s obviously the journey He’s called me to.
As I was listening to Christian radio yesterday, I heard a variety of strategies to prompt people to give. Some said, “It’s up to you!” Really? Others said, “We need to hear from you today. Please let us know you are with us.” Boy, do I get that heartfelt plea. It’s a very lonely road and at times one begins to wonder if they are alone. Is anyone out there?
All this has caused me to think about the strategies we employ to illicit a response from human beings. We can plead and hope to get a response. But where are we placing our expectation? On people’s response? Some manipulate and don’t let up until they get a response. That seems so desperate. Personally, I don’t want to be the “instigator” compelling someone to give to the ministry. If God isn’t prompting people to give then maybe it’s time to reevaluate.
Here’s the thought I want to convey this morning: God is our upstream supply. In other words, God controls the flow of all resources. He turns the nozzle that releases the supply. That all happens upstream. It seems to me that that’s where we should be placing our expectation. And if it ain’t happening upstream then we are missing the whole point.
All I ask is that you will pray with me that God will turn the nozzle upstream. If nothing is happening upstream then maybe it’s time I quit what I’m doing. Thank you for praying. It’s in God we trust.
It’s all about waiting on God.
There are no insignificant people to God…
My mother and I were traveling through a rural community yesterday and we stopped at a local café for lunch. It was snowing heavily as we pulled into the parking lot. A few inches of fresh new snow covered the walkway, so we were careful to knock the snow off our shoes as we entered through the double breezeway doors. We were the only customers at 11:15 AM. The waitress and dishwasher looked as though they were waiting just for us. After greeting us warmly, the waitress sat us in the booth next to the kitchen.
For the next hour or so, Cathy and Sherry shared their life stories with us. At one point, Cathy pulled up a chair and began to tell us a few casual details about her family – where they lived and what they do. We learned about her dogs and how she likes to work on puzzles during the winter months. She smiled at the end of every sentence, as if delighted that we were actually paying attention to her. And we did listen attentively to every word. It reminded me of the Scripture verse in 2 Corinthians that says, “…the love of Christ constrains us…” We are moved to love and show regard for others, because He moves within us to love. There are no insignificant people with God. Everyone matters to Him.
Jehovah El Roi is the God who sees. God notices you. He’s aware of all that is happening in your life. You are not insignificant to Him and you never will be. People may pass by you without noticing, but you are never out of God’s sight because He loves you. Grip it. Grip that truth!