Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Be Still

The quietness of the morning stills my soul as a woodpecker taps on the trunk of the tree. The birds chirp and the sun shines brightly. I find the more opportunities I take for this peaceful tranquility, the more I desire these intimate soul stirring moments between my Lord and I. This desire becomes a craving of sorts in which a day missed with him is empty and unfulfilled.

Recently, during these still moments, I have found myself reevaluating my life. I've been asking three of life's biggest questions...

1) Who am I? (identity)
2) Where do I belong? (security)
3) What am I suppose to do? (significance)

Chip Ingram states in his book, "Living on the Edge"...

"It is far easier to accept predigested religious answers
and dive into energizing religious activities than it is to work through
the sometimes painful and difficult process of "being still and
knowing He is God." But quietness and stillness are REQUIRED in
order for God to tell you who you are, why you are here, and what
you are suppose to do."

Let the things of this Earth grow dim in the light of his glory and grace in a quiet moment with Him.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Lay 'em Down

If you read my last post, you know for Lent I have decided to give up my desires for the sake of Christ. Let me tell you, it is not an easy thing to do by no means. It has been a constant uncomfortable struggle between my flesh and its desires and the fierce Holy Spirit who relentlessly whispers gently within my mind in a sweet melody. But even the sweetest of melodies at times have been drowning me in the undertow of fleshly desires. It has left me tired with arms flailing in a maddening sense as a gasp to keep my head above water for another breath of fresh air. I need to give up and give in and allow Jesus to hold me awhile in his arms.

My heavenly Father continues to teach me through this struggle that I cannot will myself into compliance of His desires for my life. Only God in his infinite sovereignty and my surrender to His Lordship can make my heart comply until my soul cries out unspeakable joy and glorious contentment. It is a moment by moment, hour by hour, day by day commitment to seek to “be” instead of “do”. I have come to greatly appreciate the power of quieting myself before my Lord so I might better hear him sing over me and let Him paint the canvas of my life with more vibrant colors of His grace, mercy, and love.

Dear Heavenly Father…
please continue to help me surrender myself continually to you. It is so hard to lay 'em down and I can’t do it on my own. I need you! So please be patient with me Lord and help me to be patient with myself those times I fail. Let me see the small successes that I might praise you all the days of my life!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ash Wednesday

I love this time of year; the season of Lent. But I have also boasted of Christmas as my most favorite holiday. At Christmas, we celebrate the coming of Jesus and stand in awe of the virgin birth. When Lent arrives we are reminded of the life of Christ, his ultimate sacrifice on the cross, and his resurrection. So how can I choose to look at these two events as separate? They go hand in hand…Jesus was born to die. He came into the world lowly born in a manger and left the world lowly hated by his own people. Why? Because he surrendered in the Garden of Gethsemane to his Father…to do God’s will and not his own…all because he loves me…all because he loves you!

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday. It marks the beginning of the Lent season. I usually try to give something up for Lent. Not just anything, but something I deeply desire on a regular basis. More than once I have given up Diet Coke and other years I have relented on chocolate. But this year is different. As I thought about Jesus in the Garden before the soldiers came and took him away, his ultimate surrender to God struck a chord with me. I don’t need to give up a thing for Lent. I just need to surrender myself and give up my agenda for God’s. It is the greatest gift I could give back to my King…myself for his service. So, how about you? Will you give yourself up this Lent for Jesus?

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship”

~Romans !2:1