Archive for February, 2019

Be Still . . . And KNOW

I have a standing breakfast with a rotating group of leaders in our church every Thursday. I look forward to this time each week. Quite a brotherhood has formed over the past several years of doing this each week. So my schedule begins a bit earlier on Thursday’s than on other days.

But on this day – I awoke at 4:15 and could not go back to sleep. I would like to say it was because I was so excited to spend time with some guys walking the same path. But the reason I could not return to slumber was all the concerns that began to parade across my mind. As the parade began, I began to pray.

As I thought of each of my children, I prayed for their lives and their walks with Jesus. I prayed for our church. I prayed for several church members who are experiencing struggles. The parade just seemed to go on forever. I tried to look down the street but I couldn’t see the end of it.

I began to sense anxiety from the overwhelming needs. And then something life-giving happened. God brought to my mind a simple phrase from a powerful verse. Psalm 46:10 says, Be still and know that I am God.

As I watched the parade pass by the eye of my mind, I heard these words with each passing “float” of concern – be still and know.

When I thought about the safety and health of my kids I heard, be still and know!

When I thought about the responsibilities of ministry I heard, be still and know!

When I thought about all the people I know personally who are struggling, I heard, be still and know!

Be still!

Take a breath!

Calm down!

Know that I AM!

Know that I AM GOD!

The one true God. The only God!

Whatever you face this day, BE STILL AND KNOW THAT GOD IS GOD. God is bigger than whatever might cause concern!

Be still and know!

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I was raised with faith being a major part of my life.  If there was a time the church was open for any reason, we were normally there.  While that sounds like I might be whining, let me just say that I would not trade a minute of it!  I am eternally grateful for parents who felt it important to have their kids in church.

Throughout my life, I have become more and more convinced of something I was told over and over again as a child.  That God has a plan for each of his children.  I was told that I would never be happier than when I am living in the middle of God’s will.

Unfortunately, there was little said about how to find that will.  So began a journey to seek God’s will for my life.  If you grew up involved in a church, most likely, you have experienced what I am talking about.

Yesterday, we wrapped up a series on Micah 6:8 in church.  In that one little verse, the prophet Micah did us a huge favor.  He answered for us what can be a life-long crucible to find God’s will.  He made it very plain.

I believe that God cares more about the person we become than about the things we do.  It is not that our actions are not important but he knows that if we are the people he created us to be on the inside, then the actions will take care of themselves.

So Micah tells us that God’s will for our lives will ALWAYS involve acting justly – doing what is right.  It will ALWAYS involve loving mercy – truly seeing people and showing them compassion.  And it will ALWAYS involve walking humbly with God.

In fact, the first two things are not really possible on a consistent basis if we are not walking humbly with God daily.  Given that fact, I want to leave you with the following challenge:

Begin each day with this prayer:

Father, this is your day and everything I do, I do for you. I want to do what is right in all things. Help me to see you at work around me and help me really see the people you put in my path.  Please give me strength to show them your love.  Be glorified in me this day as we walk together through it.  Amen.

I believe when we start our days with this prayer, we will live more completely in God’s will throughout the day.

I would love to hear how God guides you this day!  Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email.

Be blessed today!

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Do You See

How is your day shaping up?  Are you really busy?  I am sure most are like me and the answer to the second question is “Yes, extremely!”  We tend to fill our time – sometimes with good things and sometimes with less than the best.

While I encourage effectiveness and accomplishment, I am reminded this morning that my busyness must not prevent me from seeing – seeing God at work around me – seeing God at work in me – and especially, seeing the person right in front of me.

So often, our cordial greeting and inquiry about how someone is doing is reduced to a formality.  The question I asked our church family this past Sunday was, “Do we see people?”  Are we aware of the folks around us – truly aware?

Woman and Magnifying Glass

In order to show the love of Christ, we must see people.  And we must see them as God sees them.  There is an old rabbinic tradition that says that when we encounter another person, we should envision a processional of angels going before them shouting, “Make way, make way, make way the image and likeness of God!”

How would our world be different if we saw each and every person we meet as the the image and likeness of God?

Practice seeing today and let me know what you see!

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