The Golden Calf – doing2

God is bringing all of us to a place of rest and quite. I keep coming back to this point at the

English: Stream leading To Calf Hey reservoir

English: Stream leading To Calf Hey reservoir (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

minute 🙂

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. Psalm 23

You do not need to do because you lack nothing. You cannot persuade God by doing stuff to love you more, that you are worth his love, that your value is increased – He cannot possibly love you any more.

It is in those times of lying down, those still waters that a miracle will occur. You will come to know the truth about God’s unconditional love. Do I know this love in its fullness? – no I don’t , but I am hungry for more and open to learn where I am telling myself lies, or hiding hurts.

As a child I was born with a severe skin condition. My skin was sore, itchy, uncomfortable and the sores often got infected.  This meant my memories of childhood are full of sadness. I was called names at school – such as carrot peelings, I was picked on by teachers, I had trouble adapting as a teenager as my appearance was not beautiful and wherever I was I felt uncomfortable and embarrassed for looking like I did. God healed my skin 4/5 years ago – but inside I have a greater journey to go on. The affects of withdrawing, being picked on, feeling ashamed and rejecting myself is taking a while to work through. It is in the times of waiting before God that he shows me who I am, what I have taken on that isn’t of him, what he thinks of me, what memories still affect me today and much more.

I must admit that I was skeptical of all this heart healing stuff. Though it was for the softies, or perhaps the flaky Christians – but God has shown me how essential it is to my life in order for me to be saved – fully whole inside and out. How can I be ready to hold the presence of God in its fullness in revival if I am tender and cracked. We need to be vessels ready for Him. I want to know him more.

Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.  And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Ephesians 3:17-19 (NLT)

Advertisements

You don’t belong here

Sandwich for Tea Time

Sandwich for Tea Time (Photo credit: Johnragai)

There are so many beautiful and encouraging names Moses could have picked for his first child. I know he perhaps didn’t have an A-Z of children’s names, but I am sure he could have found something a little more positive. In Ex 18:3 we find that Moses named his child Gershon which meant ” a foreigner there” .  I don’t if his mother called him in for tea loudly – but I wonder if it got some funny looks.

“Come in for tea son – You don’t belong here!”

It is strange being a foreigner in a land. You feel different, you look different, you sound different  – I probably smell different.

Moses knew he didn’t fit into the land of Egypt. He knew that wasn’t his home land and he looked forward to a homeland where he felt he belonged. He was an alien, a foreigner in a land whose culture felt strange to him – although he had lived there all his life.

I look at our society and find that as people we do all we can to fit in. Perhaps I watch TV, read magazines, discuss the right topics, wear the right clothes and do all I can to fit in and not feel different. Perhaps I am wondering if I measure up to the standards in this land – to look great, be famous. big car, nice house, successful kids. I do know that there are days where I am jealous of those who have bigger houses or seem more successful in life. All of us are so immersed in the Western society that we have allowed it to seep into us. Being away in a poorer culture has only shown to me how much we have taken into our lives but do not notice. I am to be different: I don’t belong here – I am not to use the measurements that this land uses for success. These are not my standards of being who I am meant to be. This is not who I am. I don’t belong here.

If we look at Psalm 73 we find David is having the same issues. How come those who do not care, and are selfish seem to get the big houses and the good jobs. He says his feet nearly slip off his journey until he looks into heaven and sees God. Then he knows that

“you hold me by my right hand. 24 You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.”

God is walking with us. He is holding our hand. He is taking us somewhere glorious. We do not belong here.

Today: Fix your eyes on your home – the kingdom of heaven. Spend some time asking the Spirit how has the consumer society affected your heart?

Morning by Morning

Exodus 16:21 they gathered the food morning by morning

Cock-a-doodle-doooooo!

Cock-a-doodle-doooooo! (Photo credit: Ian A Kirk)

 Lam 3:23 great is his faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning

Was it a coincidence the manna started off like refreshing dew? I don’t think so. It was a sign of his fresh faithfulness each morning. His mercies lying on the ground. They had to go out and gather the overflow of blessing and goodness. Some would have landed around their tent but most of it they would have had to make an effort to reach out and gather

I would like to be aware of the fresh faithfulness and mercies of God falling around me all the time. Some are within arms reach – obvious blessings. My house, my health but some are further out to look for; new friendships, fresh success, new opportunities. These blessing I have to reach out and gather.

I am challenged over the number of blessings that fall around me that I miss. That sunset laid out in the sky for me, the bird outside my window singing for me, the smile from a friend made for me, the warmth of my socks, the crunch of gravel on the path, the embrace of a daughter, the lift in a piece of music, the droplet of rain hanging off a leaf, the smell of bacon in a pan. These are all an extravagant love gift from my Father that were given me fresh this morning.

Do we feast on the goodness of the Lord every day because we have gathered in his faithfulness into our heart ? We have been aware of his fresh blessing morning by morning and have taken them as precious mercies into the storehouse of our souls? To do this we have to be turned onto the overflowing gifts that fall around us all the time.

The feast we eat is set in the midst of our enemies Psalms 23 is the goodness that falls around us. He shows those who conspire against us that there is a feast of mercy and goodness for us to partake of. This abundance of love laid out for you is for you to enjoy, savour and imbibe.

The feast of manna  in Exodus 16

  • v13 Wet like dew – refreshes the soul
  • v11 Like bread – food for the soul
  • v11 You can eat all you want – satisfies
  • v31 Tastes like honey – is good and sweet

 “Great is Thy faithfulness!” “Great is Thy faithfulness!“

  Morning by morning new mercies I see;

All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—

    “Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!

Thomas Chrisholm 1923

Today; Spend time being aware of the blessing that Father God is giving you fresh morning by morning. I have even started a notebook to gather my blessings in so that everyday I am  being aware of his lavish love for me – perhaps you need to start one too 🙂

Step over the threshold

Each step we take is important. Where we place our feet and the direction we walk in matters. It is vital we don’t just drift along but we take stock of where we have been and where we are going.

There is something new coming around the corner, in fact I can already see it. (Isaiah 42:9) The question I ask myself is are we ready for what is to come? Are our hearts fully prepared?

For the next 5 months I will be writing the story of the the family adventure. As a local church these are precious months for us and I would like to write a travel log during our journey. I am hoping this will bring focus and understanding at this challenging time and  I would like my friends to come and join me. During this time I will post sermons to  listen to, music to rest in  and things I am learning on the way.

If you throw your heart and soul into the adventure you will find it will stretch you to your limits. You may find your muscles and heart may ache but you will also find glorious treasures you have never seen before.

I invite you to come walk with me 🙂