Have you ever started something and then something else comes along and you begin to focus on that thing instead of what you were originally working on?
Well that’s what happened to me this past month. God gave me projects to oversee and i started working on them. But a distraction came along and it did not look bad, nor would anyone consider it bad. On the surface level it was a beautiful thing.
But as i got deeper into this thing. It’s true nature showed its self. A distraction! Designed to get me off focus. I had to unplug from this project, because it simply was not what i should be doing! ‘You say, “I am allowed to do anything” —but not everything is good for you. You say, “I am allowed to do anything”—but not everything is beneficial. ‘1 Corinthians 10:23 NLT
‘Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.’James 1:2-4 NLT
I as write this, I am processing a life situation. I was moving full speed in a direction that my heart was set and fully involved in. BOOM! Next thing I know systems are unplugged that i didn’t unplug and the dash is lit up with all kinds of warning lights and master alarms.
Now I am reading this scripture and praying that bitterness and everything related to it does not seep into my heart. Other wise any adjustments will be contaminated. Decision making + bitterness = missed target.
Life does throw sucker punches our way and we may want to comeback with a counter punch or build a wall of defense not letting anything in or out. But you know what? Even the most devastating of hurricanes provide a greater benefit (on a side note they are the earths air conditioners). Its easy to see the devastation immediately after but look back ten years or even a year, i promise you will find benefits from the storm.
God knows who you are. Not you as you see your self now, but the full completed you that lacks nothing. The you that is unhindered by fear (false evidence appearing real), your past, or present circumstances. He resides outside of time, watching over you in your present state, but also seeing you complete walking in complete harmony with Him.
A lot of the time we tip toe through this road of life. Like a toddler at the edge of a swimming pool, we lean forward over the edge but our feet are firmly glued to the ground. God is in the pool waving us to jump but we lean back and clench our fist in hesitation. But eventually the concrete gets to hot and left with no choice we jump in. We panic at first until we realize we are floating.
Look at your life as a collapsible sidewalk. The blocks in front of you remain in place until you step off of them. Going back leads to death, stay in one spot leads to mission failure. The only way forward is the direction God is pointing you in.
Recently i was away visiting family to celebrate my uncle and aunt finally getting married. But thats not the topic of this devotion. On the morning of our second day there my father and i were jolted from our sleep by knocking on our hotel room door and my mom shouting from the bathroom for one of us to answer the door.
My dad threw his robe on and answered the door. My uncle asked “Are you guys alive?” My mom hearing my uncle replied ”oh i overslept we were supposed to meet you guys downstairs at 6:30.” My dad and I were totally oblivious to this arrangement. so my aunt and uncle leave to eat and we start getting dressed and washed up.
Normally my father will sing a classic hymn as he is getting ready and i have come to enjoy his singing in the morning. But this time he reached way back and stared singing a song called one day at a time with Jesus. These words grasped my foggy half awake mind.
“Do you remember, when you walked among men?
Well Jesus you know if you’re looking below
It’s worse now, than then.
pushing and shoving, and crowding my mind.
So for my sake, teach me to take
One day at a time.”
The moment was funny but the song was and is so very appropriate. We overload our self with planning and making the next move. we try to fix and line up nine months from now and we totally miss what needs fixing today. We may have been jolted from our sleep put in a slight rush to get ready but the song my dad sang was a reminder to slow down and flow with things as they come. Nothing wrong with planning but look at what God has in-front of us now.
We all have elders in our life. The individuals who God uses to help shape and mold us. These individuals are important to have and there is nothing wrong with going to them for advice or receiving the wisdom that they pour out to us. But at the end of the day we have to line that up with God’s plan for our life. We sometimes can receive advice or wisdom and act on it without consulting God.
I respect all the elders in my life and i am grateful for them. But i have to turn to God and say “what do you have to say about this?” And if it is in line with God’s purpose for me i move forward with it. but if its not I have to respectfully set it aside and seek God on the next steps. The people in our lives who are our advisers are people just like us we cannot honer them more than we honer God.
We may not be able to fully explain to them the direction God has directed us and they may not be able to fully understand. We cannot get caught up in that. This is why a deep personal relationship with our heavenly father is so important. With out it we may let go of something that comes around only once. and once it is let go of it may not comeback around. Only you know how God is leading you. He is the only one there with you, watching you 24/7/365.
As Christ ascended into heaven, he commanded us to “go and make disciples of all nations!” He didn’t say find the ones that we are comfortable with, that will only call us at convenient times.
As we walk out the path of life God has us on God will place people in our lives that He wants us to disciple. For some people, you are the only “Jesus” they will see. The Christ living in you needs to be deposited into them and you are that vessel. I am guilty of trying to “pick my disciples” and having expectations and plans that God didn’t set for them.
You want to draw someone closer to Christ and help them grow in the faith? forget your battle plans, drop your expectations and hear them through the filter of the Holy Spirit and hear the Holy Spirit without your filter. All of the twelve disciples followed Christ but Christ didn’t find them in the same place.
God knew you before you were born. before you were the warm glow on you mothers face. He knows ALL your strengths all of your downfalls. Knowing this why do you think that he would assign you a life that would end in defeat and leaving you unable to accomplish what he commissioned you to do?
Let me take you back to the very foundation of your life. Back way before you were even conceived, imagine you spirit sitting with God and the two of you a looking at life scenarios for you to live out. And He picks one out and you agree to live it out. Because you know that it is gonna work out and He is gonna guide you every step of the way. Deep down within our spirit we know God has us but we allow the things of this earthly realm to shake and rattle us. And we sometimes want to lay down in defeat. With God we are more than able. but sometime we forget God.
I can’t reach the people God wants you to reach, I can’t handle the test you are going through right now and i don’t want to handle it. and you can’t reach the people God called me to reach you cant handle my test. Why? Because my life is for me and your life is for you.
“If you want to be my disciple, you must, by comparison, hate everyone else—your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:26 NLT
We read scriptures like this and we nod and say “amen, yes Lord!” But what happens when it is time to apply it? Now more than ever God is looking for a return on his investment. He sacrificed his one and only son to restore us to himself. We can become so attach to or love ones that they become a idol. We may mean well by our actions but what if we were holding our self and them back from achieving what God planned. When parents send there child off to college they are letting that child go and releasing them to become successful adults. It is the same with the Church (body of Christ) Its time to be willing to lay it all on the line for Gods purpose no matter what or who it cost us.