faith

Time & Trouble

time

To write on the Book of Psalms, there isn’t enough years in a lifetime or enough pages to be printed to adequately express the intent of every author and the meaning and significance of each verse written in this beautiful piece of literature. Nevertheless, for the sake of this post, I want to focus on one chapter, 90. As it happens with many passages, I have read it several times before, but it wasn’t until this last time it clicked, and two verses specifically stood out.

It is in verse four that we gain some insight to God’s time table; a thousand years to us, is one day to Him. Hold up. That has to be one of the least rationale or explainable verses in the Bible. I mean seriously. one millennia versus one day? When I read that it reminds me of what the prophet Isaiah told the people, His ways are not our ways. You know what that means? His time is not our time, not even close. There are many Scriptures in the OT and NT that talk about the right time (Ecclesiastes 3:1; Habakkuk 2:3; Galatians 6:9; 2 Thessalonians 2:6).

Living a life of purpose, we have to understand God’s time means that what we want to happen in one year may no manifest itself until five years later. Does that mean you did something wrong? No. God’s timing is just different and it’s not until those five years or some more time after that you begin to really understand why God took that much time; maybe you weren’t ready or as ready as you thought you were and or needed to be, or the situation just wasn’t right, or God was working something else out entirely. I say all that to say something I have said before, waiting is not for the weak; patience is not easy. Nevertheless, the more we grow in Christ, the more we understand that we don’t understand and that He is sovereign and knows best. The quicker we learn that, the less worried, anxious, and frustrated we become. Now does that mean God likes to drag and string us along? Absolutely not. God is not about that life. He has a purpose in His perfect timing and the more intimate we are with Him, the more He begins to reveal those certain mysteries with us. In the same breath, if you are waiting for God, don’t ever rush Him. I did and well, I got myself in a situation I shouldn’t have been in. He can see the future, we can’t. On the flip side, don’t slow God down, which means if you are waiting on God and have been for some time now, make sure it’s not Him that’s waiting on you. I learned that too, not good. Bottom line, don’t get pushy and aggressive and don’t get passive and lazy with God’s timing. Just do what you know He want you to do when He wants you to do it and in due time…

Unfortunately, there is also verse 10 in this chapter. This verse talk more about time, but specifically our time. The average time we have on earth, give or take, is 70-80 years. The sad part, as it goes on further to say, is that life though short, is but trouble and sorrow. Job and Matthew said the same thing (Job 14:1; Matthew 6:34). You know what that says to me, after we have clarity that God is infinite and time is in His hands and understand that we are finite and time slips through our fingers, that gives the push to live a life of purpose even more. Why? Our days though short, we are promised to have trouble and sorrow and pain and disappointment, but we shouldn’t live a sheltered life that seeks to block out all the trouble. It’s impossible. We have no control. Likewise, we shouldn’t get so bent out of shape when troubles come, because we should expect them, or otherwise, ever get to the point we feel invincible as if nothing can touch us, giving the enemy a rather large foot hole, and often times God will have to humble us.

A life of purpose is living as a solution to the problems we face everyday. We can’t run from the trouble, no matter how bad it is, whether its our fault or not. Consequently, purpose-filled living means attempting to not create our own problems as much as we are able, because that only means we are adding more trouble to what was promised to us. That’s why it is imperative to be mindful of what you say, what you do, and what you think. Life is short and there is sorrow and trouble on every side, so don’t waste your time holding grudges, being angry and bitter, and not forgiving. Not only are you adding on to your trouble, wasting more time, but you are also causing trouble for other people as well, wasting their time.

Being you for a purpose, you understand that time is short and you were created to help fix the trouble we were promised. So in whatever ways God has chosen you to be a solution, don’t waste time, because after a short time, we will fly away. So I ask, what solutions have you come up with?? Have you added to the trouble or have you reduced it?? Your time will quickly pass, but there is so much you can do, after all Jesus changed the world forever in a matter of 12 hours. Even if all you have is one day left, your solution to one person’s problem, big or small can change the world forever, whether you write it, speak it, or do it.

Be Careful What You Pray For

The funny thing about this Christ race is that the individuals that fall into this category, we have our own clichés and or common phrases. However, many of the things we say or the songs we sing we fail to understand the implication of our words or even believe what we say or sing to be true, rather we just say it just because that’s the trend of the day.

For example, many times you will hear a person say that Jesus is enough, and let me be the first to tell you, that is easier said than done. In this culture we try so hard to get, get, get that when we don’t, we think we won’t survive with just Christ alone, which is a segway to another popular confession: I believe in God and have faith that He will supply all my needs. Again, in one way or another we have heard or said that a million times, but when life is anything but sunshine and daisies, do we live as if we truly believe what we said on Sunday?? There is a song called “I Don’t Mind Waiting,” which is pretty much 95% of the song’s lyrics. Do you understand how dangerous of a song that is?! Waiting is not for the weak, at all! But many will sing this from the mountain top, yet only mean it to a certain extent. As you walk with God, you will soon learn that by no means does he operate on our time table, and we will often times find ourselves waiting. The question is did you really mean what you said??

Just with in the last year, I have learned in my own experience and by others, the need to think about what we say, because what we say will be tested and furthermore, the Lord does hear our prayers and operates in ways that can make all but happy. What do I mean? Be careful what you pray for. Prayer is an integral part of this Christian race, it’s our direct communication with the God of the universe, so when you pray know that God has every ability to answer your request, many times in ways we never take notice of. For example, you pray the Lord to protect you in your travels and the Lord says “yes.” What we sometimes fail to realize is that in protecting us God will cause us to misplace our keys, have to turn around and go back home because we forgot something, or traffic puts us 30 minutes behind schedule, and of course we get upset, but we forget what we prayed and many times God is just honoring our requests through these situations. Or if you ask God to send you that perfect boo thang to marry. He says “yes, that is a part of My plan for you,” but until we meet who God has for us, He has to mold us and him or her, which means we will have to go through some other relationships, good and not so good to purge us and make us ready for the one we will spend the rest of our life with. Or if you pray for more love or more patience, and the Lord will always say yes, but it doesn’t just happen; a prayer like that will automatically initiate some awkward and or upsetting situations to test and stretch your patience and love. Even more awesome, if you pray and ask the Lord to bless you and to do in, by, though, and for you all that He can for His glory, understand that God would love to do so. The only question is, are you really ready for Him to do it? Because if you really mean it and give Him full reign to do as He pleases, I guarantee He will blow your mind and rock your world something serious.

The overall idea is not to scare you or have you walking on eggshells, but just to know that you serve and awesome and powerful God that loves and listens even to every seemingly nonchalant prayer, even when we forget. We just have to remember that His ways are not our ways, nor is His time as our time. Likewise, in everyday speech with whoever, if you speak it, be able to back it up or prove it to be true when the time comes, because your word is bond, and the actions behind those words will solidify or nullify you and what you said.

Just in Case

The story of Gideon is very interesting and to cover it all, a blogsite would not suffice, so for the sake of this entry, I want to focus on the beginning of his story, which pretty much sums up much of my relationship with God in one way or another.

If you aren’t familiar with the story of Gideon (Judges 6-9), it tells of a man full of insecurity, fear, and uncertainty so God had to prove Himself, and yes, yes He did. Nonetheless, it’s the beginning of his story that draws most of my attention. Gideon was pretty much a nobody, in that there nothing special about who he was, where he came from, or who his family was. But you know what? That is the beauty of it all. God’s standard for using someone has nothing to do with who we are or where we come from. What He has spoken over your life, the purpose He has for any of us, is not dependent on such superficial factors, rather our ability to believe what He has spoken and the choice accept it and pursue it. Sandy Smith put it this way, “God has a way of using those the world calls “nobodies.”

When God first expressed to Gideon his future as a mighty warrior (6:12), Gideon didn’t believe him for much of the reason many of us refuse to trust God today: His circumstance blinded his faith and belief and he didn’t see God working.Yet, God replied “Go in the strength you have.” One of the most remarkable things that make me love the Lord all the more, is how He is able to take the little that we have and do something incredible, if we allow Him to. Just as He told Gideon, I am telling you as He also told me, give Him all you have, even if you feel it’s very little, if anything at all, because “I knew nothing, I was nothing. For this reason God picked me out,” which is how St. Catherine Laboure explained it. Living a life of purpose is giving God the all of the little that we have to offer the God of the universe and trust that He will bless it and multiply it, like He did with the boy who only had two fish and five loaves of bread.

One of the things I grasp most in this passage is how God knows our limits and strength. Gideon asked a question that many of us do, “how can I?” We question ourselves and God doesn’t correct us, instead He promises to go with us (6:15-16). Bottom line, with the Lord, we have everything we need; we are in the majority. We are finite and however ways we are limited, He is infinite and has an unlimited amount of power and riches. We are weak but He is the Almighty God.

Nevertheless, as we each do often times, at least I know I have about a million times and then some, when we hear God, we question if it is God in fact talking. Although, generally speaking, when we aren’t sure, for one reason or another, it is good to inquire, which emphasizes having an intimate relationship with God so that when He speaks you know His voice. Still, God is gracious and puts up with our stubbornness and doubt, and will comply and show Himself; we just have to be willing to see it. Truth be told, many times it does require God several attempts before we get it, but we build our relationship with Him, it takes less for us to believe what He says and does.

Overall, God has spoken, and His word shall come to pass and He will fulfill His purpose in your life, whether it looks like it or not. Furthermore, you have no capacity, strength or ability to do all He has purposed you to do apart from Him, but just in case you forget, as we all do, as long as you have Him, you have all you need to accomplish the greatness set before you. Oh, and if nothing else, remember that God likes to show off, so be careful when you ask Him to prove Himself ☺.

Generation

Beth Moore is someone else I have been listening to recently. One of her messages, consequently. was about purpose and why it is so crucial that we don’t give up. I have mentioned it before in prior posts, but I want to reiterate it again. Simply put, your God-given purpose was chosen for this generation AND generations to come.

As any other person, there are things that you don’t understand or know why it happened, but we serve a God of the future and your story will be one to impact generations to come. God knows what He is doing and has an amazing plan for you and men. There is a reason He chose to put you in the family He did, gave you the personality, the talents and skills, the money or lack thereof; there is a reason He chose for you to grow up in the environment in the country or city, and a reason for the time which you were born. As Mordecai explained to Esther, you are here for such a time as this to impact this generation.

You are here immediately for this generation, as was said about David (Act 13:36). David served his generation. There are people that only you can reach, only you can connect with, only you can relate to, and as you do so, your service will touch generation to come. So be encouraged and know that God is working through generation. Stay focused and keep your eyes on the cross because your purpose I can guarantee is so much greater than your life; with God working through, what you do for this generation will last even after you pass, because the purposes of His heart continues throughout the generations (Psalm 33:11).

Make your story tell of God’s greatness and faithfulness so that future generations can praise His name (Psalm 102:18). Even more on a family basis living a Christ-centered life of purpose, your descendants will be blessed (Psalm 112:2). All in all, God’s calling on your life is so much bigger than you, thus, it’s imperative we live with conviction and purpose, because our children, grandchildren, and great-grands depends on it as well as their generations.

If we can come in accordance and seek God’s face and start fulfilling the great commission in whatever manifestation He led us as individuals, that’s how we receive the favor and blessings of God (Psalm 24:6). So live a life of purpose, believing God is sovereign and has a plan, even when it makes no type of sense the things you have to go through, know He wants to do in you something great, because this generation depends on it. Don’t lost faith. Keep praying. Keep seeking. Keep pressing. Keep trusting. Keep believing.

Crazy Stuff

Recently, the women’s Bible study at my church is focused on “The Bibdavidle” television series, and may I say, I did watch it back in the spring and it was really good. Anyway, today’s lesson was focused on the story of David and Goliath and we watched that particular clip from the series. Now, David and Goliath is one of the most familiar and prominent stories in and out of the church, so it’s not as if I had never heard it before or heard it used in whatever form of analogy, quite the opposite. Still the great thing about Scripture, is that the more you read, the more God reveals to you, and tonight was no different.

As I was watching the clip where David volunteered to fight Goliath and just about everyone, the Israelites included, thought he was out of his mind, but that’s when I begin to think. Whenever God calls us to go up against our Goliath as he begins to orchestrate the purpose He has for us, we should do it with a smile and with great expectation, because the moment God uses something so small to accomplish a task so big, He must be ready to do a miracle.

On the flip side, you may not be the David in a situation, but you do begin to see God just doing crazy stuff that makes no type of sense, things that seem so small and insignificant to carry out the greatest of tasks in the midst of other more logical possibilities, anticipate that God is about to do something more than amazing. When you see him bless 5 stones, as a believer in Yahweh. we should smile understanding that God is about to move in an marvelous, miraculous. and incredible way.

As the people laughed and questioned what David was doing, remember that God enjoys proving Himself, so stay faithful and trust God even if all you have is 5 loaves and 2 fish, and watch Him multiply to feed 15,000, or if all you have is 5 stones, watch God use one to kill your giant and ultimately defeat whatever army is against you.

When you walk in purpose, God will lead you to do some crazy stuff and or will allow you to see Him doing some off the wall things. Don’t fret. God likes to show off. So let Him.