Saturday, December 26, 2009

Desiring What He Desires

As this mission trip approaches, I am finding it all the more essential to spend time with Him. I'll admit that I am a little bit scared about this whole trip. I know that He is in control and that He will lead, but I still must follow. We all must follow. I just want my heart to be so finely tuned to His ways that my desires are exactly what He desires. That really is His will for us... and it makes it so easy to follow His will when my will matches His. I was reading Psalm 73 today and could identify with some of these words (verses 2-3, 23-26).
But as for me, my feet came close to stumbling, my steps had almost slipped. For I was envious of the arrogant as I saw the prosperity of the wicked... Nevertheless I am continually with You; You have taken hold of my right hand. With Your counsel You will guide me, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

If I really take the time to think about my heart, there are ways that I am jealous of people that do not "play by the rules". I do know that in the long run, His ways are always best, but I must believe and act on that for the short run too! I want to be able to say 100% that I desire nothing on earth other than Him. I love that fact that He will guide me with His perfect counsel... that He is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Please pray that I would live in the reality of being "continually with Him". I need Him, more than ever before, to continually take my hand and guide me.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Challenge of Respect

Life has been extremely busy, but I am very much excited to be done with another semester of school. It was nice to be able to take classes that I actually wanted to take rather than taking required classes. :) I think I learned a lot more this way. I am currently working full time, but looking for where He might lead next as far as my job. I am very much thankful for the job I have, but I don't feel like it is my final destination. Looking forward to seeing what He will do there.

Some of you know that I have been organizing a mission trip down to Mexico. We will be leaving on January 3rd! Believe it or not, I have never been on a mission trip before! There have been a few times that I have filled out applications for a mission trip and after praying about it, decided not to go. I am greatly looking forward to seeing His work in places other than my little view of the world. Please keep us in prayer for safety and unity. Please also pray that He would be opening the hearts of those to whom we minister to. Lastly, please pray that God would provide the necessary finances to get as much done on the house we will be working on as possible. I look forward to how He will change me through this trip.

I was reading 1 Peter 2 today and verses 13-17 really caught my attention.
Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men. Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God. Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.

I found it interesting that we submit ourselves to the authority He has placed over us for the punishment of evil and the praise of righteousness. Let's face it... we often find ourselves entertained by evil things that we ought to hate. We see movies where we hope the bad guy gets away. We are surrounded by a twisted viewpoint of what is right and wrong. By being obedient to authorities, we help untwist that. Not only that, but it is God's will! How often do we seek for His will? Well, here it is... stated directly... His will is for us to submit to authorities for His sake. We are to use our freedom to become His servant for life! Think of what the world would be like if in our free time, the first thing we wanted to do was serve Him. I truly think we would turn the earth upside down. For many (myself included), it is difficult to honor those that He has placed over us in this country. I have no excuse. It is His will for me to honor them for where God has placed them. I doesn't meant that I have to agree with everything, but I must honor them for His sake. I'd challenge you to pick one person that is in authority over you (parents, teacher, pastor, elder, police, president, etc.) every day this week to concentrate on honoring. Don't make it easy on yourself... pick those you naturally dishonor and choose, for His sake, to honor them.