Awake and Aware

Tuesday

But make sure that you don’t get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. The night is about over, dawn is about to break. Be up and awake to what God is doing! God is putting the finishing touches on the salvation work he began when we first believed.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭13:11 MSG‬‬

If you are aware of anything today – be aware of God.

If you are afraid of anything – be afraid of getting so busy making a living that you miss making a life.

If you have to make a do to list – put “recognizing God ‘s presence” in the top spot.

Take care of whatever you need to take care of today but make sure to make room for God to interrupt, intervene, and weave Himself into each thing you do with His love, His mercy, His perspective, His grace, His strength and His joy.

If you are wondering whether God is present in your life, He is and He longs to connect with you. You are one of His favorites.

What does being aware of God mean to you?

Have you been so distracted that you are oblivious to God?

May the awareness of God supersede all else as you are embraced by a Savior who loves you unconditionally and completely.

God is There With You

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“Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”

Psalm 139:7-10 NIV

No matter where you are – God is with you.

He is there in the light and joyous seasons as well as the heavy and dark ones.

He is there when everything falls apart and there when everything comes together.

He is there when everything suddenly changes and He will bring encouragement, strength, direction, and peace drawn from the unchangeable depths of grace that you will never be able to exhaust.

Wherever you are, God is with you today.

 

Prayer is…

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Prayer is a retreat.

A retreat from the world and the battles you fight in it.

The word “retreat” is a military term. It means to get off the battlefield, to quit fighting, back out and regroup.

Prayer is creating time with God to regroup, reassess, restrategize and recover.

“May God look you full in the face and make you prosper”.

Numbers 6:26 MSG

The word for “prosper” here in the original Hebrew is “shalom” and often translated as peace.  Shalom is the peace that comes after the conflict and the quietness that comes after the chaos.

At its core, “Shalom” means the type of wholeness that comes after being broken.

Fighting a battle when you’re exhausted, wounded and discouraged never works.

Are you exhausted, wounded, or discouraged? 

Then it is time to pray.

To take a step back, find a quiet place with God so He can repair what is broken, remind you of His purpose and arm you with His vision.

Jesus has given you full access to God’s presence.

Enter in and rest.

He is waiting for you.

My prayer is that you would get off the battlefield for a while and allow God to love you to wholeness. 

Stay there as long as you need to.

Focused on God

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In our multi-tasking mounting pressure culture to juggle your life AND plan your future well, there is a prayer whispered from the heart of a king that reveals to us the secret to it.

He was the former bear wrestler, lion chaser, singing sheep keeper that faced the giant and beheaded him. This king who was the warrior worshipper prayed for this:

“I’m asking GOD for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long.

I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet.

That’s the only quiet, secure place in a noisy world, The perfect getaway, far from the buzz of traffic.”

Psalm 27:4-5 MSG

It is the secret that David shouted out and the source that fueled his life.

He knew that there was ONE THING needed above all others: to live WITH God every day. To enjoy Him, learn from Him and have a safe house to escape to when the world goes nuts.

David lived in the palace but longed for the Temple.

The ONE THING thing David longed for, Jesus made a reality. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 6:19,  “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God?”

Because of the death and resurrection of Jesus, you are able to experience this kind of relationship with God every day, wherever you are and whatever you are doing.

May your day be rich and focused on this One Thing and may all the rest of life be filled by it.

Worth Having

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God doesn’t say, “it will be easy” nor does He say ” there will be no battles”.

He says:

“My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

‭‭Exodus‬ ‭33:14‬ ‭NIV‬‬

No matter what is happening around you, you are not alone and you have God’s presence within you.

Rest in His love, power, grace, peace, knowledge, goodness and faithfulness.

Your journey to freedom is not going to be easy but it is going to be worth it.

Unplug

You can’t know God’s will by looking from the world’s perspective.

You must unplug from it.

God’s will, his good, pleasing and perfect will for you isn’t difficult but it is very different.

Rest in him,

Renew your mind,

Refresh your heart.

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what Godʼs will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭12:2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

How do you unplug from the world?

How do you connect with God most: the Word, worship music, a walk, nature or being with others?

What refreshes your heart?

Do whatever you need to do to draw back from the world and draw close to God today.

Unplug from the world and plug into the presence of God.

You will be amazed how much that fixes things.

You are Not Meant to be a Spectator 

  

God will give you what you need today to thrive, not just survive.

God’s plan is that you would be an active participator in your life, not just a passive spectator to it. 

No matter how tired you are, God will give you what you need to take part in, to enjoy and to discover everything bright and beautiful that he has planned for you today. 

You may say, “there is nothing bright or beautiful about today” but I beg to differ. You may not see it, but God does. Not because the day has it within itself but because God has it within himself.  

God has inlaid gifts of joy and moments of wonder even in the most mundane of days. 

His presence alone can bring glory to the most ordinary tasks and an awareness of the beauty of life into the dullest of days. 

Whatever tasks lay before you today, ask Jesus to show you the gifts he has placed in them and ask the Father to give you the strength to participate in them. 

“It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.”
‭‭Colossians‬ ‭1:12‬ ‭MSG‬‬

May you be filled with moments of surprise beauty and the unique joy that they bring as you invite Jesus into every moment.

 

Heaven

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Earth is not our home- heaven is.

What does heaven look like? What does it feel like? I don’t know. But I do know what the Word says about the atmosphere God creates and place where he dwells:

“Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his dwelling place.” (1 Chronicles 16:27 NIV)

I may not have the details of what it looks like but I know that it is magnificent. More than that, joy and strength permeates the air and fills its rooms. Truthfully, wherever God is, he brings these attributes with him. They are a part of who he is.

Many times when I am feeling weak and heart heavy, I whisper sweet words of invitation. I ask for God’s presence to fill my space. I pray “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”

Where He is, joy abounds.

Heaven is a real place and someday you will be there.

Until then, may you experience God’s presence here on earth and be filled with such peace and deep joy that it makes you homesick for heaven.