Monday, September 27, 2010

Lights to guide you

I have a strong dislike of driving in the rain. That dislike is only surpassed by driving in the rain in the dark. So you can imagine my excitement when the sky opened up and began to pour as I dropped my daughter off at school at o'dark 30 for a volleyball tournament.

Prayers for safety begin flowing out of me like water. I could barely see a thing and was continuously blinded by the oncoming traffic. My hands clenched the steering wheel as I rigidly focused on the unlit road ahead of me. A large semi truck sped past, pulled into my lane and continued to cruise along. The lights on the back of that semi were all I could see and they guided me through the steady rain. When I saw the lights swerve, I knew I would soon need to swerve with the road too. Soon I was at my exit and we parted ways.

I merged into the traffic on the frontage road. Traffic consisted of one car. I once again followed the tail lights as we traveled the dark roads together. When the car reached it's destination and turned off the road the rain stopped. God had led me through the storm.

What storms are you in the midst of right now? God's word promises that He is there with you. He will not leave you! Pray that you will see a glimpse of Him in the midst of your storm and then trust His plan for you. Our God is Mighty and can conquer your storm! Until He does, allow Him to guide you home.

Be blessed,
Jennifer

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Deuteronomy 31:8

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Golden Rule

When I was a small child my family briefly lived in Tucson, Arizona. I don't remember much about it other than it was Africa hot and I became really good at catching little lizards. I also remember that there was a neighbor lady next door who always seemed to be in the middle of every childhood tiff. Her response would always be the same, “Remember the Golden Rule: 'Do onto others as you'd have them do onto you.'” I was about 6 or 7 years old at that time and had no idea what 'onto' meant. I chalked it up to 'stop doing whatever it is that you're doing and play nice.'

Fast forward about 10 years and now I'm in high school dealing with two girls that had issues with, well, everyone. As I sat in Algebra listening to the girls berate a classmate for what seemed like the hundredth time I finally reached my limit. I decided enough is enough and I started dishing back what they were dishing out. No one had ever stood up to them like that before. With a few choice words, a brief skirmish in the hallway and 3 days of detention, it was finished. The girls kept to themselves for the rest of the school year and we developed a mutual respect for one another.

As an adult I'm shocked at how self centered and thoughtless others can be. But in those times I'm usually the one being self centered and self righteous. The girls in my high school didn't want to anyone to treat them the way the treated others. They believed they could act any way they wanted and it would never come back around to them. But unfortunately, that's just not the case. It's a very simple concept – give what you want to get back. If you want people to be rude and nasty to you, be rude and nasty to them. If you want friends who are good to you, be good to them first. Do you want blessings? Be a blessing!

So, I have to ask...what have you been receiving lately?

Be blessed,
Jennifer

“A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” Galatians 6:7b-8

Monday, September 13, 2010

Waiting on God

Are you a newer believer? A seasoned spiritual veteran? Somewhere in between? Regardless of where you are on your faith journey at some point you'll find yourself waiting on God. These times can be the most frustrating but also the most fruitful. You may not have the power of choosing God's timing in the matter but you do have the opportunity of choosing how you're going to behave while you wait.

Imagine sitting in a doctor's office waiting room. There are several patients in the room of various ages each needing the doctor's help in their own way. On this day, the doctor is running behind schedule and the wait is longer than normal. A woman in her twenties scowls as she sends a continuous stream of text messages growing more and more irritated by the wait. A four year old boy wiggles and whines getting up and down out of his chair constantly asking his mom if they can just go home. An elderly gentleman sits very still as he reads his book.

When we come to God with our prayers and situations, we take our place in the waiting room. The difference is, God never runs late! He's never behind schedule, He's just not on OUR schedule. So which patient do we represent?

The twenty year old. This is the believer that does not like to be inconvenienced by God's time table. She understands that she needs God in her situation, but the longer she has to wait the more frustrated and angry she becomes. Sound familiar?

The four year old. You would assume that this represents a new believer that hasn't grown in their faith. I like to think of him as the believer who becomes uncomfortable with the position he finds himself in and wants to run. He wants to be anywhere but here. Because 'here' is too hard. 'Here' takes too much faith. 'Here' is a turning point in his faith walk.

The elderly man. This man came prepared. He allowed the time in his day and he brought a book along so he would enjoy the time . He's not concerned with his own agenda and time table because he knows that what's coming is worth the wait. We assume that wisdom comes with age. But believe me, that's not the case! Wisdom comes by learning from life lessons. It comes from remembering what God has done in your past so that you can be confident in what He'll do in your future.

To be honest, each one of us have been each one of them. We've lost all patience, we've wanted to run away from the situation and we've had times of being still and trusting God. But which one are you today? In this situation? The Great Physician will tend to your needs but how you behave while you wait on Him is entirely up to you.

Be blessed,
Jennifer

“I wait for you, O LORD; you will answer, O Lord my God.” Psalm 38:15

Monday, September 6, 2010

What am I worth?

I sitting here my head held low
trying not to let my feelings show.
I'm confused. I'm angry. I'm sad.
The rush of emotions make me even more mad.
All of these feelings makes everything dark
At the very center lies a question mark.
“How can I measure my worth?
By income? By things? By position at birth?
What must I do so that others may see
that I am an asset and make them want me?”
I asked God my question and patiently waited
then into my heart He lovingly stated:
'Your life is not measured by what you can hold.
It makes little difference if you're young or you're old.
What matters most are the things you can't see
You're valued because your life glorifies Me.'

Are you struggling with your worth today? Are you fighting the urge to give up? Where you are today matters to where you'll be tomorrow. This time is not wasted and God is your biggest fan. Keep going...there's more here than you can see!

Be blessed,
Jennifer

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8