“13 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27:13-14 NIV
Wait for the Lord. What does that mean? I’m learning. I’m learning that to wait for someone, you have to be in close communication. You also have to trust their word. If I don’t ask what their plans are, I might barge ahead with my own plans. I might get in the way of the other person’s plans. It might mean that we miss our connection entirely. Sometimes I forget to pause and check in with God’s plans for me. I barge ahead without hesitation thinking I know best. Occasionally I delude myself into thinking I know a lot more than I do. I waste time and energy worrying about things He has already worked out. So waiting is an art. To wait confidently and gracefully with composure. I still struggle in this area but I am learning! Sometimes I get too wrapped up in my head and don’t rely enough on God’s voice. So I have to go back to square one and get quiet and listen.
Father God, I’m so blessed that You are always there waiting for me. You never leave without me. You never leave me stranded. Thank you Lord!
“23 Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” Colossians 3:23-24 NASB
Work looks a little different for everyone. Whether an artist, musician, attorney, welder, doctor or counselor – we all have a job to do. So, I ask myself the question, “What have I been given to do that I need to see to completion?” This goes beyond occupation. We have been given different gifts and talents that extend far beyond the workplace. I have to pause and reflect sometimes about whether or not everyone sees God in me regardless of setting: work, church, social, sports, dinner, political, etc. Am I using the gifts and talents I have been given?
It is my prayer that God will help me to conceive the vision for His work and that all things will be completed to His satisfaction. I pray that my work will be an imitation of His work – strong, beautiful, graceful and excellent. I am so very thankful for His clear instruction, divine grace and mercy. With Him all things are possible.
“Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.” Proverbs 29:25 NIV
I am so very thankful for the riches and plans that God has for me. I am thankful for the immense and powerful Love that He has for me. Somewhere along the line, I realized that I had tapes playing in my head that did not reflect the love that God has for me. It was from inside of me; an internal dialog. It was definitely not God. This internal dialog started to create issues with me loving myself. When I don’t love myself, God can’t operate in me to His fullness. It was quite an ugly snare that developed. All kinds of things were snarled in the mix: performance, pride, rejection, comparison, arrogance, criticism. I could go on and on. I do not even remember where the negative words came from. I don’t know when it started. What I do know is that it started to snowball into a fearful approach to work and relationships because they were so loaded up with negative junk.
I had to ask God to remove the obstacles in my heart that were keeping me from fully walking in His plan for me. I really had to sit prayerfully and meditate on some very loving and instructional scripture and let it sit in my heart for a long time. I still need to step away from things regularly for a heart check and just spend time with God. It’s not anything that is formulaic or legalistic. The truth is if I don’t, I miss it. I miss the quiet time with God. It helps me appreciate the way He made me a little more. It helps me dig into the well that He has placed inside of me and pull from it for inspiration, creativity, focus, clarity and strategy.
Lord, thank you for teaching me every day to love and appreciate You more and how You made me as a unique expression of You.
“20 Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He replied to them by saying, The kingdom of God does not come with signs to be observed or with visible display,21 nor will people say, Look! Here [it is]! or, See, [it is] there! For behold, the kingdom of God is within you [in your hearts] and among you [surrounding you].” Luke 17:20-21 AMP
So the kingdom of God is IN us. As I was reading this passage, it reminded me of a passage that is also in The Lord’s Prayer: “Your kingdom come.” I got caught up reading a lot of commentaries. It occurred to me that I needed to simply be quiet and listen to what God had to say about these passages. Here is what I heard: He is waiting for us all to come into a state of obedience and alignment so that we will not continue to lay fragmented and broken as a body. That when we come together, we will no longer be vulnerable to heresy and apostacy. We will no longer be plagued with malice and strife between ourselves. We will be able to stand together, resolute for our King. And then, His Kingdom will have arrived.
Lord, I pray that Your kingdom come and that Your will be done in my heart and the hearts of all Christians. I pray that we come together as one body. Make us strong in that body so that we can stand together and stand strong, united and operating as one body in Christ, a true reflection of You.
“Teach us to number our days so that we may truly live and achieve wisdom.” Psalm 90:12 NIV
Number our days. That could be interpreted as living each day like it is our last. But even then, what does that mean? For me, it means perspective. How do I live my life from the perspective of what it looks like in totality. I have had seasons of selfishness and opportunistic pursuits. As I am getting older, I am starting to consider more thoughtfully and intentionally what I want to do with the days I have left. It does not feel like retirement! I feel more of a sense of urgency in accomplishing things that make a difference. I have a desire to tuck into God more closely so that His wisdom governs how my days are spent to accomplish His desires instead of my own. I have put more selfish things aside as I focus more on Him. It’s invigorating. It’s renewing. It’s just not about me anymore. I am filled with excitement and anticipation of how God will use my days.
Father, I pray that Your will, not mine, will govern my remaining days.
“He’s the Rock, and His work is perfect; everything He does is right. He’s the God who can be trusted, who never does wrong because He’s righteous and upright.” Deuteronomy 32:4 The Voice
This is the first time that God is referred to as “the rock” in the Old Testament. It is used 6 times in this chapter. I think God is trying to make a point! So what does that mean?
God is a rock: He is an impenetrable shelter. An everlasting foundation. When we operate according to His principles, they cannot be shaken. A very safe place!
God’s works are perfect: Jesus is perfection. His life is our model.
Everything God does is right: Nothing He does can be changed. What He starts He will finish.
God can be trusted: He is faithful. We can rely on Him. He cannot lie. He keeps His promises.
Father, You and Your work are perfect. Thank you for Your grace and mercy in not holding me to those standards. Thank you for honoring my heart and my love for You. I pray others can see Your perfection through my imperfection. I place my trust in You.
“Open the eyes of their hearts, and let the light of Your truth flood in. Shine Your light on the hope You are calling them to embrace. Reveal to them the glorious riches You are preparing as their inheritance.” Ephesians 1:18 The Voice
When I brought home our new Corgi puppy 10 years ago, I did not have much experience with puppies. So in her puppy exuberance and my inexperience, I ended up with a torn cornea from a puppy claw in the eye. The net result was several days with a patch over my eye. The world looked really different, darker and distorted. It reminds me of all the patches that come into our hearts to cover them up and weigh them down. God can uncover our hearts to let in His healing Light.
Father, open the eyes of my heart and let the light of Your truth flood in. Shine Your light on the hope You are calling me to embrace. Reveal the glorious riches You are preparing as my inheritance.