Monday, August 20, 2012

Monday, Monday....

“Because of the Lord’s great love [mercy] 
we are not consumed,
For His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22,23 (NIV)

As I awoke this morning, while still lying in bed, I thought to myself, “Another Monday has come….”

Most people dread Monday. The weekend is over and they head back to work or school. Back to the same old routine they followed the week before. That monotonous schedule can sometimes be the catalyst for many of us to fall into “ruts” we call life.

But as I lay there I realized that is much to look forward to on Mondays.

It is a day of new beginnings.

It is a day to take the message we heard in church on Sunday 
...and live it out in flesh.

It is the day to reflect on things that perhaps did not work well last week,
... and determine that this week we will make changes.

It is the day to set aside those things we call “failures”
... and start fresh.

It is a day to take that first step of faith 
...and do what He has called you to do.

God's mercy is new and fresh every morning. But as you start your week today, consider that this Monday morning will be the beginning of something new and fresh God has for you.

~Begin it with hope and expectation. 
~Walk through it with determination and intentionality. 
~Finish it with thanksgiving and praise.

TGIM.... Thank God it's Monday! 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Hardest Thing...

"Come, my children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the Lord."
Psalm 34:11

The hardest thing I have ever had to do in my whole life is..... trust. 

I am a "fixer". I have always been a rather independent person and convinced that I can fix any problem or situation that arises. But invariably I myself in a situation that is beyond me and I have to let go of it and let God handle it. I do not know why I cannot just allow Him to take care of things from the start; but time and time again I run off  on my own determined to solve the problem. And there He is, waiting for me to surrender it to Him.

The very definition of the word trust means to "rely on or place confidence in someone." When it comes to the things most important to me, like family, that is very hard for me to do.

Life is changing. My children are growing up and some are beginning families of their own. When we moved here to Washington there were just four of us, in our own little corner of the world. Now,  twenty three years later, there are ten of us and we are beginning to spread out.They are making decisions on their own now and following the direction in their lives that they feel God is calling them. They are facing crises of their own and as much as I still want to be their Mommy and fix the things in their lives that they struggle with.... it's time to surrender them. 

And I don't want to let go....

I have done my best to "teach them the fear of the Lord. It is time to let them go and trust God to handle their crises as they come.  For I know that as much as I love them, He loves them  more. Their names are engraved on His hands and are ever before Him (Isaiah 49:16). He has not forgotten them; He knows them by name. 

Father, You have never failed me or forsaken me. Every time I fully surrender and place my trust in You, miracles happen. So today I am choosing to trust my children and their lives and families to you. Guard them, protect them, provide for them, lead them in the paths of righteousness for Your Name's sake. Give them wisdom to make right choices and surround them with Your love. For they were Yours before they were mine. I trust You....

"In repentance and rest is your salvation, 
in quietness and trust is your strength." 
Isaiah 30:15

Friday, August 3, 2012

Purpose & Joy...

"Make my joy complete . . . 
being in one spirit and purpose."
Philippians 2:2 (AMP)

My sister writes a blog entitled Purpose & Joy. While I do not want to steal her subject, my day today had a Purpose and it brought me Joy. So... maybe I could be a guest writer for her blog... what’cha think, Sis?

Today began as any other day... I had some errands to run, clothes to return and/or exchange, groceries to buy - nothing special. But I had a friend of mine on my heart. She had sent me a text yesterday asking me for prayer covering for a meeting she had to go to. While that was all her message said, I knew in my spirit this was no ordinary meeting. I messaged her back and told her I was praying for wisdom, favor and peace. And I encouraged her to speak only the words the Holy Spirit told her to say. 

So, this morning as I ran around, I was thinking of her and wondering how she was doing. One of my spiritual gifts is giving. I love to give little things to people I love just for no reason. While I was at the store, I picked up a little bag of  chocolates and a card, wrote a little note in it with the intent of dropping it off at her office. I felt I had a purpose and it was giving me a lot of joy. I was smiling on the inside and out because I could imagine my friend’s laugh (she has a GREAT laugh) when she opened it.

That's when the enemy tried to steal my joy...

My car key is a fob that electronically locks the doors. I always lock my doors with the fob so that I know I haven't left them in the car. Today as I got to my friends office, I jumped out of the car, slammed the door and went to "click" the key only, it wasn't in my hand. I turned around and there it sat in the car seat . . . behind the locked door. 

Are you kidding me?

I have never... I repeat NEVER in thirty-six years of driving, locked my keys in my car! 

My husband drives a transit bus and was on the road;
The spare key was at the house;
My children left at home are too young to drive, and besides...
I have the car!

I ran inside the office and asked for my friend, determined to achieve the purpose I set out to do and not lose the joy it was giving me and, I hoped, that it would give her. While I waited for her, I called my oldest son and asked him if he would mind going to my house and get the spare key and bring it to me. He graciously said yes. 

My friend only had time to come out and get the gift and a hug me before she ran back to work. I went back out to my car and waited for my son. As I stood there waiting, I thought about what my reaction to this inconvenience could have been. 

There are so many times in our lives when we let these little "hiccups" in the road ruin a perfectly good day. The Bible refers to them as "little foxes that ruin the vineyards" (Song of Solomon 2:15). It really is the enemy's way of trying to steal our joy; and the sad thing is that many times we allow him to do so.

I know, some of you are saying, "You're blaming the devil for locking your keys in the car?" Well, yes... I guess I am. You see, if the steps of a righteous man are ordered of the Lord (Psalm 37:23) then I believe anything that would prevent me from doing what He has asked me to do is from the devil. I refused to let the devil ruin my joy in fulfilling my purpose of giving my friend a gift of encouragement.

But here's my point . . .  if God has called you to out reach and love on someone, be it for encouragement, comfort, support, whatever the reason, then that is your purpose. And in fulfilling that purpose, He not only gives you joy, but it brings joy to those you are serving.

So . . . what is your purpose for today? Who do you know that needs a little joy dropped into their life today? Maybe it's you! No matter what the enemy throws your way, do not let it prevent you from fulfilling your Purpose & Joy!