This Mountain Stinks

“But I don’t want to go anymore!”  Ever feel that way?  You get up in the morning and you are faced with the same landscape, the same drab colors, the same feeling of, “here we go again.”

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So it’s December 24th,  The day before we celebrate the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  You may feel like your year is ending on a not so spectacular note and you wish you didn’t have to face the same view.  Nope, not even for one – more – day!

I want to give you a Christmas present.  “The Lord our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying: ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain.” Deut. 1:6.

You’ve been here much too long, my friend.  You were brought to this place for a time, not the rest of your life.  Unfortunately, we can end up staying longer than we were meant to and the once beautiful surrounding becomes a too familiar desert.

No, it’s time for a change.  “How,” you might ask?

That reminds me of a saying  I heard a long time ago: How do you eat an elephant?  One bite at a time!

Leaving this familiar place may not be easy but it’s certainly possible.  “But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”” Matt. 19:26.  You see, you’re looking at this with your own eyes.  Go to Papa and ask Him to give you His eyes, His vision for your future.

As short-sighted humans, we often end up living far longer than God ever intended in places that were only meant as a stopover.  Then, enters the enemy who will jump at any opportunity to steal your vision for the future, by enticing you to agree with faulty thinking.  The result? You end up believing a lie meant to steal your vision of your own exciting future with God.

God has been thinking about you for eons, long before you were conceived.  If He loves you that much, that He would consider you and only you, do you really think His visions for your potential might be so benign, so lifeless?  I don’t think so.

No, Papa God has something wonderful and full of life waiting for each and every one of us.  It begins with a vision He is quite eager to share with you but you must do a little work to get hold of it.  Enter the elephant!  One…step…at…a…time.

How do you get there, how do you find the vision for your future?  Here’s a few ideas.

  1.  Pray.  Ask Papa.  Simple, but effective first step.
  2. Seek, and ask for, prophetic words.  Write them down once obtained and keep them in your vision (I keep mine on 3×5 cards and carry in my wallet.  How can a prophetic word become part of your soul unless you ponder it often?).  Go to your pastor, trusted friends and mentors, conference speakers.
  3. Begin declaring out loud that which you know to be true, statements that line up with God’s Word.
  4. Consider traits you know about yourself.  Most likely your giftings and talents have something to do with your future.  God gave those gifts to you for reasons; explore them more fully.

Change.  Not a user-friendly word.  It often brings up thoughts we don’t like to think about.  But, I promise you that if you’ll embrace change and begin – one step at a time – God will meet you there with His promises to give you a future and a hope.

Our God is a God of hope, of promises, of possibilities!  The only restriction, after you invite Him into your life, is you!  Go ahead, think BIG!  I dare you.  This mountain will never look the same again.

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Turns out, there’s a rainbow on that mountain.  God’s promises.  His promises are full of life – for living!  Off you go now.  Don’t look back.  The best is yet to come.  Merry Christmas!

 

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Life Can Be…

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…busy.  Too much to do.  A plate so full there’s no wiggle room.  Clicking things off the list can become more pressing than time with people.  On and on it can go.  Let’s face it; life can become a blur.

We’re all guilty at times of this.  As Christians we can become so focused on serving and doing that we lose sight of “the most important thing,” as Jesus so pointedly stated to Martha.

This is a wonderful time of year to be reminded of this truth.  We’re on vacation with family for the Christmas holiday.  We are visiting a beautiful place we’ve never been to before and so there is a tendency to want to go, go, go and take in all there is to experience.  And yet, the reality is we are here together to not only enjoy this place but also to enjoy each other.  Truth number one.

There’s another truth to consider:

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matt. 11:28-30.

In my rush to get it done, especially at this time of year, I can so easily overlook my much needed time with my Savior.  Truth number two.

Jesus wants to replace my burdens with His love, peace, and provision.  In my race to win over the tyranny of my list, He waits patiently (perhaps sometimes not so patiently!) for me to remember Him.  I don’t know why it’s so easy to forget He wants to actually help me get through my day or even to help me realize that perhaps parts of my day are just not important!

As a Christian it is so easy to get caught up in “stuff”.  “Stuff” can be negative but it can also be positive.  I have a tendency to say yes to too many ministry opportunities.  They are all good, nothing wrong with any of them.  But, if they take me away from sitting with the One who loves me, then I’m too busy.

This Christmas holiday, I’m trying to wind down from the rapid pace of my life in order to do a couple of things that I believe my Savior wants me to do: take some time with Him, some writing and just “being” with my kids and grandkids.  It feels good!

Will you join me today in taking some time to be with the One who loves you?  He would love that.  I’m off…and then it’s time for a mean game of spoons with the family while it’s raining outside!

 

 

Life Can Be…

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…messy!  I don’t much like the days that are messy.  I received a phone call from a dear friend last night and her news was, well, messy.  Not the fact that she called but that she needed a friend to talk to about life that had suddenly turned messy.

This morning I read, “For this is God, Our God forever and ever; He will be our guide even to death.”  Psa 48:14

Sigh!  I am grateful for this particular scripture today.  When life gets messy…seek God.  He loves it when we come.  He will guide us, through the thick, the thin, the smooth and the messies.

However, the absolute best part is this:  this is our God, forever and ever!  He is here, with you, with me, always.  I suspect He is grieved by us at times but He promises to be our God, guiding us through the hard days and the sweet days.

I’m not sure what you’re facing today, but I pray God’s love and covering over you.  Remember you are not traversing this alone.  Change the way you think this day: while the trial may be difficult, you are not alone.

I’m reminded of a song I love from days past.  “Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.”

We are not alone.  Our God who loves us is here, right in the middle of our mess.  And if we keep our eyes upon Him, He will guide us through this one!

Turn your eyes upward today.  He’ll show you the way through…