desert place, elmer fudd, exile, first peter, gods timing, got my attention, hoarder, in spite of me, jen wilkin, listening, lives are at stake, materialism, past Christmas, past year, paying attention, pushing ahead, sojourner, stay focused, type a, waiting
“Shhh, be very quiet. I’m hunting rabbits”… – Elmer Fudd Not really, but about the next best thing; I’m going to tell on myself and show you just how much God shows up. Every day. Reaffirming and building us up so we can do His work.
I don’t even know where to begin. Let’s start with the indisputable fact that I have a huge calling on my life. It’s been affirmed and reaffirmed over and over in the last 20 or so years. And it still hasn’t come… yet. So here’s part of my delimma…
I am a total type A personality. If God shows me something in advance, I have to work to push things forward. It’s really annoying sometimes, especially when I try to push others. It’s really for a good cause, you see. I want to be doing what God has for me to do… (Ephesians 2:10 “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”) So if you’re a child of the King, then you’ve got a calling, too. He may have shown you, or may not have shown you… yet.
And then, for me, that sometimes just carries over into I want what I want and I want it now. That’s really a bad thing. And even with that, a few years ago, I thought I was ready for things to start. Little did I know…
Here’s the thing. I can’t make it happen any slower or any faster than in God’s timing. His timing is perfect. And it can’t be the making of my own hands, I want better; I want God’s making and God’s plan. It’s going to be so much better than I could ever dream or imagine. And will lead to many coming to know Jesus Christ as Lord and savior. In spite of me.
So I’m in this place of waiting, which I’m not so good at. And He’s changing so many things about me. For instance, I’m still learning to ask Him and wait on His voice to move. Period. In reflecting on this past year, God has shown me where I got off track. Oh, the things I did were great. I learned a ton about God and the Bible. BUT, it’s not the right path I needed to be on in order to get where I need to be…. to bring many to Him. And He showed me where I need to stay focused – it’s only on one things, really. And HE will accomplish the rest. Don’t get me wrong, the side tracks were good but not from God.
This humbled me greatly. I learned that, not only am I not good at waiting, apparently I am also not that great at listening to directions. And when they come from God, it’s of the utmost importance. I mean, lives are at stake! That’s something that God gave me a passion about a while ago. I am in utter grief when I see the naked and hurting people who desperately need Jesus. It’s more important than anything. That came from a time I was praying the dangerous prayers in the Bible: 1. Search me and see if there be any wicked way in me. 2. break my heart for what breaks Yours. 3. Break Me and 4. Pour Me Out – Send Me.
I also found out that some of the lessons I have blogged about, or have planned to blog about are more about changing me personally, than anyone else. Not to tell on myself, or anything, but this past Christmas I blogged about materialism. And shoot if I wasn’t buying everything in sight because “it’s on sale”. We will save a ton of money. Great excuses, and I wasn’t paying attention, until God GOT my attention.
It was from my Jen Wilkin First Peter study that I’m doing. Don’t you love it how God points you in the right direction for a study, or a sermon to listen to, or… and the list goes on. He always has a Word for me.
But anyway, Jen had us look up what it means to be a sojourner and exile in the dictionary. Exile: barred from your native country. Sojourner: one who strays from place to place temporarily. (1 Peter 2:11-12). He actually mentions us as exiles three times to that point in the book.
But this was her point. You are camping. You can’t take everything with you from place to place. Especially back then. They had to carry everything. So you just take the basic necessities. Just what you will need to move from place to place. And food will spoil. There’s no way to take your Bread from place to place. You have to stock up daily. “But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’” – Matthew 4:4
That really got me. I am a hoarder of shoes, clothes, jewelry and books. Now to be fair, the books are Bible studies and other Christian books I’m meaning to get around to reading. But the rest? And I can’t even begin to tell you how many packages came during the Christmas season that weren’t presents for others. And even the Christina books and studies – they are all on sale right at Christmas time.
Ya, not necessities. Unless you are trying to keep up with the Jonses, or trying to make yourself happy with stuff. And so here’s what I learned from that; The presence of Jesus is my present. Today and every day. And when I’m in the desert place, where I have been a few million times (ya, I exaggerate), I can only think of getting back in front of God and don’t rest until I do. It’s more important to me than anything. And not just for self-preservation, that’s the least of it. And not just to feel happy, although the joy of Jesus is important. It’s because I’m not doing the thing that I was instructed to do – to save many souls. THIS is the reason. This is what’s most important. Again, lives are at stake!
Part of my problem is that my thought life is really hard to control. The devil pushes old thought patterns into my mind and I’m not always aware that they are even beginning until I am down the proverbial garden path. And so, one the the previous things I blogged about, the helmet of salvation in particular, the armor of God as a whole, I am learning to put on daily. Sometimes even minute by minute. (Ephesians 6). And this matter because thoughts become actions… and God even tells us that if you’ve thought about it, you’ve done it. And so, I renew my mind daily with the Word and pray on that armor when I remember. That’s the kicker – when I remember.
The problem is that when I do these things I think I’ve screwed up so bad that God cannot possibly use me. Or that He’s had enough of my shenanigans. But the Bible say He will NEVER leave you nor forsake You. And in the old testament it’s says on numerous pages basically that if God said it, it will happen. Period. I’m not possibly enough to disrupt God’s plans. I’m not that important. I’m not that good. Praise His holy name! Thank God He remembers I am nothing but dust. And yet, He still chooses to use me. What an honor. What a priviledge!
And so, at this point, I think I’ve turned a corner. I feel like things are about to start moving forward in the plans God showed me. I just have to remember to listen for directions and not try to help God like I have in the past. Be ready for it – be praying for me, I surely need it!