Wednesday, February 25, 2009

God's Puzzle of Life

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5
As I read this well known scripture over and over again, it reminded me that life can seem so complicated for me as I try to figure things out and deal with the challenges that surround me. I don't think that is what God wants me to do. He wants me to surrender everything to Him and He will take control and will do what He needs to do. I have often had women come to me for advice and when we go into prayer, I hear the Holy Spirit saying that they need to put their hands behind their backs and let God do the work and that the women were trying to do things on their own and it was preventing God from doing His will in their lives. So often, it led the women to repent for moving ahead of God and trying to do things on their own. I too am guilty of trying to "fix" things but God wants me to trust him fully and know that I will never fully understand what is really going on in the circumstances of life. I see things from my own perspective and there are so many other pieces of the puzzle that I am not able to ever understand. You see, it is like a giant jig saw puzzle and I am trying to put the pieces together and I have only 10 pieces out of the 100 piece puzzle. I can put my small pieces together  but there are other pieces that are missing. That is "my understanding" and God is telling me, there are other pieces that you don't know about. All I have to do is trust that God knows the entire picture on the box of the jig saw puzzle and He will guide me to put my pieces together and he will pull other pieces of the puzzle from other places to make a complete God puzzle. God has the whole picture and I have only a few pieces. So, I trust in God that He will get all the puzzle pieces together and with His mighty hands, He will join them all together. When the whole puzzle is together and I can see the completed picture then I will truly be praising Him for it is God's workmanship and not my own.
Question: Are you trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together on your own? Are you willing to trust God in all situations, that He has the bigger picture?

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Pause the Refreshes

1 Corinthians 1:8-9
He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.
My daily devotions led me back to thinking about when I ran the Honolulu Marathon. The verses for today, spoke to me about staying strong till the end. It is about that "life race" that we are running. It is not just a short run but a long jogging trip that requires endurance. Recently, I had to substitute teach a second grade class. I discovered on the lesson plans that was left for me by the teacher, I was to take the class out to P.E. The plan said that I was to have the students do two laps around the playground. In preparation, I felt that I needed to teach the children about the concept of jogging vs. running. I could relate to this subject because when I ran the marathon, I knew it was not about speed but it was about endurance. When  you want to run a short distance and you need to get to the finish line quickly, you need to run and do it with speed. It is a different story when you have a long distance to run and you have to conserve your energy and not burn out in the first few miles. You have to pace yourself so you can endure the long distance and finish strong at the finish line. This is called jogging. When I explained the difference to the children, they seemed to get it and when it came time to do their laps, they were jogging for endurance and not running for speed. Everyone of them made it across the finish line. This was a good life lesson for me and my Christian race. I need to be strong to the end and what does that take? It takes discipline, it takes endurance, it takes a solid relationship with God. When I look at my relationship with God and spending quiet time with Him and in His Word, it is like on the marathon race course when you get to the various water stations. You stop and replenish your fluids so you can continue. This is no different from our daily Christian journey. As we read His Word and have our quiet devotion time, we are refreshed by His living water and it gets us through another day. I look forward to my daily water stops with God!
Question: Have you stopped today to get refreshed with God? How can you plan to have more water stops in your life daily?