January 1, 2011
Not so long ago, I recognized the fundamental need in my life – to have a personal relationship with God. It wasn’t enough to just believe in God – I needed to know His Will for my life! Oh wait…and just how could that be accomplished? As a friend put it so succinctly, “To know God’s Will, you must know God; to know God, you must know His Word.”
What have I discovered? God is The Authority. He longs to be our closest friend, our confidant, our mentor all rolled into one – He alone hears the whispers of our hearts, completely understands our needs, and provides us with a perfect love perspective. He’s ready and willing – He will never fail to meet us right where we are. Just like any parent, nothing gives Him more joy than when His children come to him with EVERYTHING – He wants to be on the front burner – the one fueling our lives!
It doesn’t matter what’s going on around me…as long as my focus is centered on God, whatever circumstance (pleasant or a bit more challenging) crosses my path, I can work through it…with Him. And when I view circumstances of others, if I take a moment to try and see it through God’s perspective, I just might see we have so much in common…
God made us so beautifully imperfect and unique; but at the same time, our threads of human nature are so tightly interwoven, we are very much alike – I don’t buy the theory of men and women being from different planets – a cute idea, but at our core, I believe we all want the same thing: to love and be loved – we just have to tap into the source…
A sermon a few months back painted a picture of what this past year has been for me. I can’t say it any clearer, so I’ve copied some of the sermon, Digging Our Father’s Well
Basically, I’ve been clearing debris from my “faith well” this year. The well represents the place where true spiritual life is sustained. History has a way of filling the wells of faith with debris such as false religion, abuse, family curses, etc. Just as Isaac took on the task of re-digging the wells of his father, I too have to re-dig my well if I want true spiritual life.
- Prioritize – our very survival depends upon digging deep for living water.
- Recognize – life has a way of filling our well with debris that keeps us from the sweet waters of life.
- Persist – dig past family dysfunction and cultural expectations to tap into the living water.
- Persevere – never give up and don’t get sidetracked by others who don’t want to see you succeed.
Want to see what digging looks like? Here are some excerpts from my writings this past year:
…What am I so afraid of? Revealing my doubts? My mistakes? Oh, my life? Hmmmm….it seems – no scratch that – I AM most afraid when I’m depending on me – Celeta – to work through whatever challenge (big or small) lies in front of me, rather than putting my faith, my confidence for success (whatever that picture looks like) where it belongs – in GOD!
…it’s when I start putting the “I” in things is when life gets mucky… that’s my nature…to want to help – yes, even God! It’s funny, right? But I do it…
…If God really is to reign over my life, I have to look beyond all the things I allow to get in the way (worldly expectations, fear, doubt, rejection, guilt, etc.). It’s not complicated…it’s ridiculously simple and I make it complicated…. Just let go. Let God.
…how will the messy picture I’ve been trying to fix turn out? I find comfort in knowing it’s going to be a masterpiece because it’s God’s painting, not mine – maybe the when and how depends on how willing I am to move out of the way.
…when will I believe the trick to overcoming whatever obstacle (perceived or otherwise) that lies in front of me only has to do with my willingness to believe God has a plan, He’s got it covered, and wants me to succeed? Will I stay where I am out of fear? Or will I choose to be like Peter and step out of the boat moving forward in faith?
…as I gradually give up the pieces of my life I’ve held on to so stubbornly, my heart is lighter and it feels AMAZING! It’s kind of like when you try to hold your breath and you can’t hold it any longer…that next breath? It’s incredible – such a relief, right? Well it’s the same thing when you completely give something to God …His breath fills your life and propels you forward in a way you could never imagine.
Each day we have a choice and 2011 will be no different – we can ‘one-cheek’ God and see how well we do on our own…OR we can embrace His abundant blessings – in whatever shapes and sizes He presents them. I’m choosing to declare His favor over my life, “This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”