Grave Tending

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“The life you THINK you want could be stopping the life God MEANT for you to live.”
– Matthew Barnett

“So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There is nothing in it, nothing at all. The best thing to is to give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It is adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike, ‘what’s next Papa?”’.

Romans 8:12-15 MSG

Having dreams and goals are vitally important to help us make choices, take the right opportunities and say no to the wrong ones. But even “the dream” can become an idol when we refuse to surrender it to God. We can easily slip into a habit of worshipping the “what if” and “what may be” or “what I want it to be.”

When you are tending regrets and spending all your energy in the cemetery of unmet needs, goals or dreams, it is difficult to participate in a new life in Christ. The verse above is worded in the immediacy of now and is a moment by moment adventure.

When God sends you a vision of your future, it is to get you moving in the right direction. When He lays a burden on your heart it is to pull towards His purpose for you. He does not lift the call, but He will refine and redefine it constantly.

“What’s next Papa?”

I will leave this “dream” in His hands. I will live in anticipation of fulfilling it daily in any way He chooses and in the opportunities before me. I will give the past a decent burial, even the good things that never happened. Those are trickier, I think.

I don’t want anything less. I will get up and walk out of this emotional cemetery and with a skip to my step ask God, “What is next?”.

What grave have you been tending? What is the “dream” that is holding you back from being fully present in the beautiful life Jesus has for you?

 

Secure

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It is exhausting to live your life grasping for security but not ever really holding on to it.

“A grasping person stirs up trouble, but trust in GOD brings a sense of well- being.”‭‭ Proverbs‬ ‭28:25‬ ‭MSG‬‬

It can be triggered by envy, fear or sometimes a sense of personal failure. It is always triggered by focusing on “me, myself and I .

It is based on the belief that you don’t have what you need or enough of what you need to be secure, so you keep grasping for it in relationships, personal accomplishments, financial security and so on.

The original Hebrew word used for “trust” in the verse above means “secure”.

You can live your life from a place of security instead of insecurity.

That security is found in the love of God.

Put down the worry and fear that is plaguing your life and lift your hands in worship.

Spend some time in the presence of Jesus. You will find more peace in worshipping God than you ever will by focusing on yourself and what you lack.

You do not need more of you (or a better you, a better relationship or more stuff) to be more secure- you need more of God.

You are His precious child. That doesn’t mean life’s journey will be easy, it means that He will supply you with what you need to live it.

You can stop trying to feel secure in who you are and embrace the reality of whose you are.

Your identity comes from Jesus, not your family or lack thereof, not from your accomplishments or shortcomings, not from your success or failures but from Him.

My prayer for you today is that you unfurl the grasping grip of insecurity and lift them up in worship to God. May you worship Him for who He is and be reminded whose you are.

If I Can

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Sometimes your “ifs” are not because you doubt God but because you doubt yourself.

You are judging the possibilities of the future based on what you can do and God is asking you to judge the possibilities of the future based on what He can do.

God continually wants to expand your perspective and challenge the boundaries of your possibilities.

Most of the time it is because they are too limited.

“What do you mean, ‘If I can’?’ Jesus asked. ‘Anything is possible if a person believes.’”
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Mark‬ ‭9:23‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I’m asking God to blow your mind and give you a glimpse of His purposes and plans for your future.

I’m praying that He will expand the boundaries of what you think is possible and take the limits off what you think God can do in your life.

What do you need to do today to bust it wide open and begin dreaming again? 

Unsure but Secure

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You can be unsure what the future may bring but be secure in the knowledge that God knows the plans he has for you.

You can be unsure about your finances but secure that God is your provider.

You can be unsure of what life will bring your way but secure that although it feels like your flesh and heart may fail, God is the strength of your heart and your portion forever.

You can be unsure of how long your life may be but secure that you will live forever with God.

You can be unsure even in your own faithfulness but rest secure in God’s.

He is your Rock.
He is your Strength.
He is your Guide.
He is your Savior.

You do not walk alone, you are not abandoned.

You are loved and cherished by the King of kings and Lord of lords.

“It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭18:32‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Get up and do what you have to do today.

Do it in God’s strength, God’s grace and wrapped in His unquenchable love.

Trust God Today

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Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭3:5-6‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Whatever today brings, I want to remind you to trust God in it.

Trust that He has your present provided for. Jesus will give you what you need when you need it to deal with what is happening right now.

Trust that He will heal your past. There is no sin stronger than the blood of Jesus and there is no hurt His love can’t heal.

Trust that He has your future in the palm of His hand. Jesus is preparing a place for you and preparing you for the place. Stressing about it helps no one. Rest in Him and wait.

Take a deep breath and fix your eyes on Jesus.

Trust Jesus.

#reasons

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For joy.

For the restoration of mankind to God.

For the intimate relationship with you.

That is why Jesus went to the cross.

“Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever.”

‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭12:2‬ ‭MSG

He began and finished this race – this faith journey of trusting God while dealing with the reality of a broken life in a broken world.

Jesus entered this brokenness, was broken in it and then rose again to offer hope and wholeness to the world. He didn’t lose sight of God’s future, He focused on it. He focused on you.

Jesus knew that going to the cross would restore mankind to a right relationship with God. He is your Advocate, He sees your future and has the authority to give you what you need to get to it.

When you are overwhelmed and the difficulty before you begins to weigh you down – fix your eyes on Jesus.

He went through the unimaginable so that He could get you through the impossible. You were His reason so He could be yours.

 

 

Your Way

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“Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.”
Psalm 37:5  NKJV
Commit your way. 
To commit is an action, not a choice.
When I commit to a diet, I’m making a decision.
When I mail a letter, I’m taking action.
You can’t mail a letter if you hold onto to the edge of it. It will never get to where it needs to go and you are not trusting the postman or woman to do their job.
To commit your way to the Lord is the same thing- you need to give your way to Him. You are putting the direction, the journey, the destination into His care. The word for commit here means to “roll away”. 
To the Lord.
Give your future to God.
Let God have it.
Pry your fingers off the fears you have for your future and give it to Jesus.
Lay down the cherished dreams of a perfect life and roll those over to Jesus as well. Your expectation of a perfect life without pain or heartache is not reality and doesn’t help you deal with it. Those expectations actually trip you up more than your fears do.
Let go and let God.
Trust also in Him. 
Focus on your relationship with Jesus and let Jesus focus on your future.
And He shall bring it to pass.
The phrase in English “He shall bring it to pass” is actually just one word in Hebrew, asa.  It means He shall assemble, accomplish, create, produce it. He shall attend to it, bring it about and ordain it. He will bring it to pass.
“And then finally, when you’ve gotten to the place where you can commit your life and the affairs of your life into God’s hands, then you have arrived at the place of that glorious resting in the Lord. ‘God, I’m just resting in You. Whatever comes, Lord. However. It’s in Your hands.”’
Chuck Smith
It is only when I commit my journey (and re-commit it hourly) to the Lord and trust Him to bring it to pass in my life that I am truly free to rest. I am free to discover delight. I am free to focus on doing good where I am instead of carrying the weight of the uncertainty of the unseen future on my shoulders and give it all to God.
I roll it over to Jesus and say, “Here, this is yours. You can take care of it.  I’m Yours and so is my future. Thank you that I don’t have to carry it, worry about it, fret and fight to make it happen. You already have a plan and a purpose for me. Help me to discover it step by step with You.”
How do you deal with an uncertain future?