After Church yesterday, there was a celebration for a retiring couple moving away to an another area. For years the woman had been over the Music Department of our Church and had worked tirelessly to make sure the service goes smoothly. When different people thanked her for all of her work, I was amazed at what all she did each week. I just go every Sunday and enjoy our service and music and had no idea the work that was being done behind the scenes since I was not involved.
This morning, I began to ponder about all the things I take for granted. Colossians 4:2 reads, “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” From electricity in our home to shows we attend, I will become more appreciative for everything.
This morning as I was thinking about this, it seemed to be difficult at times. Then I began to ask myself, ” What do I think about that certain person?” That seemed easier for me as I know I am always at choice on what I am thinking! Catching myself as I think about faults and replacing them with spiritual Truths and qualities about that person; I can then see myself with more loving eyes.
Ephesians 2:10 reads “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” There are no exceptions; we are All God’s workmanship!
There are a dozen of us who read an inspirational book each month and discuss it the following. This month we read “The Hiding Place” by Corrie Ten Boom, which is about an elderly watchmaker and his two middle-aged spinster daughters from Holland during World War II. There home was a safe place for refugees until they were captured and sent to concentration camps. One of the sisters absolutely refused to hate the abusers and even smuggled parts of a Bible in to camp and read to all who wanted to hear. She lived by the verse from Luke 23:34 which reads “Then said Jesus, ‘Father forgive them; for they know not what they do.'” She knew that people would do better if they could.
It seems everything of late continues to point to “forgiveness”. Maybe there is more to learn about this subject and I am willing to do so.
Recently, as I was praying, a thought came to mind of someone who had hurt me many, many years ago and I hadn’t remembered this person for years. I recognized this had come up for me to address, heal and release. I was led to study the story of Joseph in the Bible who was sold into slavery by his brothers, later imprisoned for a false allegation, but ended up being second to Pharoah for interpreting a dream for him. He endured many hardships but remained loyal to God. Genesis 45:8 reads, “Now, therefore, it was not you who sent me here, but God; and He has made me a father to Pharaoh and Lord of all his household and ruler over all the land of Egypt.” That was what he told his brothers when he saw them years later.
Joseph could have been filled with such hatred and bitterness, that he would have remained stuck forever. He chose to continue to have faith and follow God and surely, this must have been difficult at times. This was an answer to a prayer that I was not aware I was praying, but it definitely needed to be handled. When we have hatred in our hearts, we are the only one harmed. Today, I will actively pray to love everyone!
This can only be done by turning wholeheartedly to God.
This morning as I read John 5:5 through 7 which reads “And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years. When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ The impotent man answered him, ‘Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.'”
As I read and reread those verses, I realized there was someone from my past that I seemed to hang on to bad qualities about him. I had refused to forgive him and had all the reasons why I shouldn’t. That was exactly what that man was doing by the pool. Rather than wanting a healing, he wanted to hang on to the reasons why he hadn’t been healed. What a revelation! Today, I will see this man though God’s eyes, which means seeing him through Love’s eyes. By the way, he was healed instantly by the Christ, Truth!
World thought inundates us with contagion of all types. Often, you cannot turn without hearing or seeing articles of a disease that appears contagious. Fear is always the basis of discomfort every time. If we would stop and address that fear head on, we could be reassured with Genesis 1: 27 and 31 which reads “So God created mankind in His own image, in the image of God He created them; male and female He created them. God saw all that He made, and it was very good.”
As I begin praying with those two verses, all fear dissipates as I realize only Good can be shared! Never error!! Contagion is always mental, but by becoming still and recognizing that we are made perfect spiritually and are always at choice as to what we want to believe. This way, we can see the same about others.
So often when we experience discomfort, whether it be financial, physical or relationship; we think it is punishment. I Kings 17:18 reads, “And she said unto Elijah, What have I to do with thee, O thou man of God? Art thou come unto me to call my sin to remembrance, and to slay my son?” Then in John 9:2,3 it reads, ” Who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus responds, “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.”
This belief is apparent today as it was in Biblical times, when actually, any challenge we experience is to learn more about God and our relationship to Him. God is not a punishing God, but a loving One. Today, I will practice seeing His Love everywhere!
This morning I have been reading and studying the third Chapter of Genesis where Eve is seduced by the serpent. In thinking about that crafty, mesmerizing thought that the snake represented, I realize Eve was not harmed, only hypnotized into believing that there was a power opposed to God. But we all know the outcome of that allegory. Genesis 3:13 reads “Then the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’ And the woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” The serpent only made a suggestion! He did not force that apple on Eve! I think about today when my thought feels mesmerized about something, I only need to still my thought, turn to God and know that He is all-powerful and always there for me and refuse to listen to error. Where is my focus and who am I believing? Today I choose God.
Recently, I was reading a spiritual article by Edward Kimball, where he said “We are not minus the supply for our needs, but simply minus understanding of its presence.” Then I was led to Psalm 119:27 which states, “Let me understand the teaching of your precepts; then I will meditate on your wonders.” God is always here and we can never be separated from Him. He will answer our every need when we get human ego and outlining out of the way! Today I will listen completely for Him to direct my path.
This afternoon after being out of state for a week, we were hoping to get to the post office by 4:30 when the doors are locked. When we were about twenty minutes away, my husband remarked we were not going to make it in time. Tomorrow is Saturday and they are only opened until noon and I really wanted to stay home and get things done.
As I was praying it was tempting to watch the clock or try to speed or run through caution lights, which we did none of the above. I prayed to know that we were following speed limits and I didn’t want to outline how I could get our mail, so I simply released the outcome to God. It was 4:30 when we arrived and they had locked the door but when I approached and saw it was locked, there was a man inside looking at me. I just smiled and through the glass told him we had just come from out of town and was hoping to pick up our mail. He returned my smile and asked my address through the glass door and told me to meet him at another door, where a few minutes later, he handed me my stack of mail.
Philippians 4:4-6 was the verse that had come to mind which reads, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” I realized I was not anxious, but gentle and the man in the post office responded to that gentleness. Thank you, Father for spiritual growth that may only be tiny steps, but they are still apparent.