Today is my birthday — the 56th one of these I have seen come — and I am thankful for faith, family, and friends — all of which helps keep me grounded and blessed. So many people have kindly expressed wishes and assured me of their prayers for me. Each one of these people have a place in my life and encourage me at different levels.
As I was reading Proverbs 2 this morning I was reminded again that God desires to give wisdom to those who serve Him. I am hungry for all that God has for me. I desire to receive, from His mouth,knowledge and understanding. (v6). It is obvious to be that God has more of His love, grace, mercy, gentleness, kindness, and tenderness to give to those who will receive His words. The key is in our willingness to receive His words. I pray that I will be in an attitude of reception throughout all the days of my life.
As I contemplate all that is in front of me I am aware of these things that are worth remembering …
1) God is in control — I am not. While He may assign certain aspects of life, over which I have “charge” I am never in control. I do not want to be in control, because I am not able to handle the pressure of holding it all together.
2) I am a steward, not an owner of anything. Every aspect of life is owned by God. He entrusts certain things into my care, but I must always understand that it all belongs to God. I must faithfully discharge all that He has put in my care.
3) Whatever is in the well, comes up in the bucket! Our life will constantly produce the things that we place in our heart. Our heart is a sponge and nearly immediately soaks up whatever is poured in to it. If I constantly soak up the things of the world and the flesh into my heart then I will spew forth those same things when I speak. I must be careful to pour into my heart the truth of God’s word and His character.
4) One size does not fit all. It’s okay to be me and I must know who I am! My identity is in Christ. He created me, called me, and commissioned me to be His servant. Too many people are constantly striving to be something there are not. Until we come to the place that we understand that God has placed us exactly where we are for His glory and that He really is constantly at work around us we will never be content in life. God, in His sovereignty, is working His will through me to draw people to Himself.
5) God is never caught off guard! It occurred to me the other day that nothing ever occurs to God. It is all in His plan. God never panics over me. I am not the one person that God did not plan for. He holds all things in His hands, including me. While I might be frustrated and surprised by the circumstances of life, God is fully sufficient for it all.
6) The only easy day was yesterday! Living our life for Christ is simple, but it’s not easy. Each day will have enough cares of its own. When I stop and realize that life is a battlefield rather than a playground I will be constantly living with my mind fixed on the absolute need for God’s power, provision, and protection in all areas of life.
7) Take dead aim and shoot! I am not shooting at a moving target. Jesus summed up our purpose in one single sentence — “Seek first the Kingdom of God …” Rather than constantly looking for something new to do I must be focused on this assignment from God. As I am seeking His way and His Word I will be completing His will.
8) All people need Jesus. As I travel the globe I have become for fully aware of this eternal truth. Jesus is all I have … but Jesus is all I need. There are only two kinds of people in the world — lost or saved — those in the Light and those in the dark — those who have received Jesus or those who have rejected Jesus. While I cannot save a single person I can share God’s love and grace with every person I meet.
9) Breathing is more important than blasting! Not everything has to be be said, right now! When I am confronted with a situation that seems to need immediate attention it is vitally important that I take a step back, gain proper perspective and look for the teachable moment. It is our nature to think that we have to fix things but often people do not hear us when try and over talk and over take them. Remember, take a breath!
10) Life is too short not to have JOY. Too often we confuse happiness with joy but there is a difference. Happiness is external and circumstantial where Joy is internal and constant. Joy is summed up in three words: Jesus …Others … Yourself. If I will keep these in order and perspective my life will be full of Joy. Let me seek Jesus first, then put other people’s need in front of my own, I know that God will bless me beyond measure.
I hope these truths stay planted in my life throughout all the days in front of me. Maybe they will take root in you too.