April 15, 2008

The Sunlight of God...

The fresh, crisp, spring air fills my heart with delight and anticipation. As I look out the big glass windows that display the front of my family’s store I find myself in awe of how the beauty of sunlight can hide all the dirt, snow, and mud puddles; how just a little glimpse of green grass can make you think of the magnificent beauty of summer. The roads are raceways with kids on bikes, the baseball fields are filled with excited youngsters who can’t wait to throw and hit the ball around, and the bass boats are skimming the tops of the waves on Rainy Lake. Wow, how I love summer!

When I think about how I get when I see the bright sunshine I find myself thinking about how excited I get when someone gets the Holy Ghost or even gets a touch from God. While I was daydreaming here at work this afternoon I began to see the comparison of how my excitement and anticipation for summer is very much how I get when the spirit of God lights up someone’s life and I anticipate what great things will begin to bloom and change in their lives.

Last night I was praying and realized that when I’m not seeing brightness or hope my attitude changes compared to when I see and feel the sunshine of God’s spirit. Watching people pray with tear-filled eyes, shaking hands and trembling lips lights up my world much like a day filled with bright sunlight.

The Bible tells us that in the beginning God said “Let there be light and there was light”. In Genesis 1:4 it says “And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.” Sometimes we forget the importance of light in our lives and how important it is for us to walk in light and bring light. We should find strength in each new day and when the light of the SUN comes up we should be reminded of the light that the SON brings in our lives; we need to walk like Him, be a light to others, and be grateful from the light He brings to our lives.

I’m so happy that the joy of the Lord is my strong tower! I love to live for God and watch His Glory fall down around us like shards of light in the universe. Our churches are going to see great revival soon and very soon, but it will only happen when we allow God to do the work in us and in His church~only He can give the increase.

I’m praying that God’s people find a renewing in their spirit because God’s work is never done. But … His light is always shining and His glory is forever moving. Rejoice! My brothers and sisters it is about time that we all step up and let the glory fall down.

Look up and soak up the SON!

Faith...


Sometimes I think that we make this short, little word out to be something so out of reach. Yet, we forget it is something we live by every day. Have you ever gotten into your car in the morning and said I better get out I might get into a car accident? Have you ever gone to work and said hmm I better leave because maybe this will be my last day to live? Have you ever gone out in the boat looking for the sun to set and it never did? Have you ever thought first before you sat down in a chair assuming it wouldn’t support you? Of course, not!

Seriously, how can we forget that God is doing things, everyday and all the time! We walk in faith that we can drive to work safely and that we will be driving back at the end of our day. We stand on faith that each day is a blessing from God and we will not live in fear. We marvel at the splendor of a sunset each day and watch the magnificence of its beauty as the bright orange, pink, red, purple and yellow fills the skies, every day. When we go somewhere and sit down, we just do it, having faith we’re not going to crash to the floor. God gives us a breathe every 5 seconds and we don’t have to even remind ourselves to breathe!

I was forced to come to this realization one day when everything seemed to not be going the way I felt it should. The easiest way for us to get down is to doubt what we know is God and what He wants of us. I have stood on a promise for almost 2 years now and each day I have to remind myself that God has everything under control. It doesn’t take much for people to make you doubt what God has told you and it doesn’t take much for your heart to be weighted down by a sense of inadequacy or confusion.

Faith … the word that is so easy to spell, write, and pronounce, but so hard to apply in our lives and often times so hard to stand on. God says that there is no greater faith than faith without seeing. I know it is difficult to believe that God has everything under control when your heart is breaking or your mind is confused, but He does. We can’t see what is going on in the spiritual realm, but the Bible tells an awesome story of the battle with the Prince of Persia. Stand strong! God heard your prayers THE FIRST TIME and His will SHALL BE DONE.

It has taken me 2 years to realize that God will not let me down. He has promised me things and I will stand firm. If I wasn’t adequate enough He wouldn’t have told me in the first place. Now don’t get me wrong I don’t deserve anything from God, but I will never get anywhere doubting Him.

I never want to hear Him say to me “yea of little faith”. I will stand strong with His promises looking towards the Heavens and praying for His will to be done. If it so happens that what I believe was said doesn’t come to pass then I will still stand on His promises and walk in the magnificent light of Christ.

Believe! Trust! Stand! God is ready to pour out His blessings, but sometimes we don’t stand still long enough for Him to catch up to us. Allow yourselves to listen to what he truly wants for you … and have faith that it will happen!

April 14, 2008

Getting Old...

What does it really mean to get old? Does it mean that you grow in knowledge? Does it mean that you move up the authority ladder of life when it gives you the right to boss people around that are younger than you and pity those who are many years your senior? Getting old is not just from a physical perspective …

I was brought to the realization the other day that no matter how old we get we never truly know how to grow up; I don’t mean that in a mean way, I mean it in a good way. Sometimes we can live a life so full of timelines, goals, and plans that we forget that we should be thankful for each day God gives us and remember the first breathe we received.

Throughout our lives we remember and hold onto meaningful words of advice from those we respect. My Pastor told me last year before I left for college “You know I was young once too and I know how it feels to rush life”! At the time, I was so mad at him that the words didn’t really stick. Now, don’t get me wrong I did listen to what he said, but I must admit I was a little mad at him. It pricked my flesh. The first thing that went through my mind was “I don’t rush things! ”

This “difference in opinion” recently came back to me and I realized how right on Pastor was and how badly we can be at self-evaluation. We all need to take a good long look at who we are as God sees us and not how we perceive ourselves. It’s no longer about our plans, our goals, our timelines, but walking in His will; even if His plan doesn’t fit into our plan. Self-evaluation means looking truthfully at ourselves and as Christians we need to be able to see if we are walking in the spirit or walking in our flesh. If we’re full of self we can’t see clearly or hear clearly.

I was looking at my high school yearbooks the other day and was amazed at the things people wrote to me. It brought back good memories of all the fun times I had with my friends. However, there was one quote that I didn’t remember reading before. It said, “On this day we are striving to be the person that we want to be, but truly we don’t know the person we are going to become”. What came to me is that so often we forget that along with maturity comes knowledge, but understanding often comes from learning from our experiences, whether they were a product of our good decisions or our bad decisions. We spend so much time thinking about what we want to be in the world that we forget that what we really should be focusing on is what God wants us to be. We need to stop striving so hard and actually listen, and most importantly, obey “that still small voice”, even if it doesn’t fit into our plans.

Sometimes the more we know the more we expect everyone else to understand and know what we know. In college and in the workplace I sometimes assume that what I know everyone else knows. I think the same thing applies for us as Christians. When we begin to mature and function in the spiritual world and do the work of God we can easily forget where He brought us from and that we were once where others are. Now I don’t claim to be an elder in the church, however, I’ve found myself seeing some young people following the same path that I was going down at one time, the path of self assurance instead of the guiding hand of God’s assurance.

Sometimes it is hard to know why God does certain things in our lives, but truly with each breathe we learn that it isn’t the knowledge that we need, but the trust. If we can trust that God will bring us through, we must believe that He’ll bring us to a place of understanding.
One of my favorite scriptures is Phillipians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me”. At one time I felt that my understanding and knowledge of a situation was going to be my strength, but God’s Word says that I should not lean on my own understanding. Thank God!

As I “get older” I realize one thing. God doesn’t work in our own knowledge because we know so little in life. The more mature we get in our relationship with Him we can see the pathway more clearly. The older we get the more we love to serve and not be served, the older we get the more we appreciate the work our seniors have done for us, the older we get the more we see that we actually know and understand so little!

God’s got great plans for us, but I feel I need to say that it isn’t what we know that is going to bring His gifts and blessings. We must learn to respect love and cherish one another. When one of us falls, we must lift them up in prayer, not criticize or condemn. We also must pray that the Lord will restore us, but also that He will reveal to us the lesson we must learn. We must see ourselves as God sees us and realize we will never know it all! Study His Word because He has
utlined an answer for our questions.

Isn’t it time to start trusting and believing that God will handle things and guide us in the right direction even if we don’t understand His ways or timing in our lives? Let go of the rigid timelines and your fleshly plans in life! If it’s not God’s will it will not work for good anyway!

I’m grateful for all of the Godly examples I have in my life. I’m grateful to all who have been drenched in sweat, travailed in tears, and deceased their flesh to do a work in the great Kingdom. I ask you to do the same. Thank those that work so hard for God and go unnoticed because they want it that way. Thank those that do the work of God for all the right reasons, not because they desire to be in leadership or to hear their own accolades. Most likely, those saints have no timeline and they are the Godly examples we so admire because of the hard lessons God has guided them through. They are the ones with wisdom, they are the ones that are old in the spirit, and they probably have some good advice if you just seek it. The hard part is actually getting past our pride, hearing it, listening to it, and living it.

Was I rushing my life? Oh, yeah! I had a plan and I was on a timeline … but, God’s grace and mercy brought me back where He told me to be not once, but two times. I finally feel I’m walking in His will and I also know that I don’t know everything and I don’t need to! With each breathe I take I remember it is only possible because of the first. I can finally exhale and it feels great!

Keep breathing and seeking; God will reveal and answer all of our unanswered questions someday, but it doesn’t have to be today!