Ok, ever since I have followed Jesus I have prayed for patience. I figure that God will at some point require it from me. So I pray for patience regularly.
I had a debate with a friend of mine on this subject. He is convinced that if we ask for patience that God with require us to use it. So he refuses to pray for it. His thinking is that, if he doesn’t ask for it God won’t require it of him.
Of course I disagree!
In Galatians 5:22 says that patience is just one fruit of the Spirit. I know that God will give it if we ask. I also pray for the other fruits as well.
I have met so many Christians who are “suffering” for Jesus. Funny thing is Jesus never asked them to suffer.
My Utmost for His Highest says it best.
“Choosing to suffer means that there must be something wrong with you, but choosing God’s will— even if it means you will suffer— is something very different. No normal, healthy saint ever chooses suffering; he simply chooses God’s will, just as Jesus did, whether it means suffering or not. And no saint should ever dare to interfere with the lesson of suffering being taught in another saint’s life.”
I feel like some people use the “suffering” tag as a crutch. Maybe people won’t expect much out of me. Maybe they will have sympathy for me.
My Utmost explains further.
“The saint who satisfies the heart of Jesus will make other saints strong and mature for God. But the people used to strengthen us are never those who sympathize with us; in fact, we are hindered by those who give us their sympathy, because sympathy only serves to weaken us.”
Now I feel we need balance between sympathy and directness.
So in inclusion please do not suffer for suffering sake. This will not bless God. Seek God’s will and follow Him. If this leads to suffering then you Bless God.
Let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good…1 PETER 4:19
Do you or have you ever seen yourself as a carrier of His Kingdom? This is a weighty responsibility. Do you find yourself not thinking about it because it’s too much responsibility?
We are called to be His vessels. I love that because a vessel is not responsible for making itself or filling itself. It’s soul responsibility is to be available for use. Vessels do not even have a say in what it is filled with. It can be soup one cold winter day and then iced tea on a hot summer day.
So as a believer, it is not our responsibility to fill ourselves but to be available for the King to fill us. We also don’t have a say in how we are used, this is tough for us sometimes. I know it is tough for me.
So how can we be available? We spend time with the King through prayer, fasting and bible reading. Books by Christians are a nice side dish but should never be the main course. God’s word should always be the main course.
As God fills us then He can use us to advance His Kingdom. We need to be vessels that are over flowing.
Chris Tiegreen puts it perfectly, “ You are called to be a fount of life, love, faith, joy, peace, wisdom, and comfort for the people you know.” This is from his daily Devotional, Praying In Faith Devotional, I highly recommend it.
So, as you read and pray and it seems like Gods not there, remember this verse, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. “LUKE 11:9-10
Once we are filled then we will be carriers of His Kingdom.
So the last couple of weeks have been hard on me, both physically and spiritually.
I was supposed to go to Europe for a walk with my sister. However, I had my knee and other medical issues that kept me from the trip. The first week that I was supposed to be there was hard, my heart hurt every time I thought about it. I asked God many times why this happened.
I do not have the answer but like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, I had to say, even if I can’t go God is still God.
Trusting in God’s omniscience , all knowing, is the only thing I can do.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (Hebrew names Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah) are figures from the biblical Book of Daniel, primarily chapter 3. In the narrative, the three Hebrew men are thrown into a fiery furnace by Nebuchadnezzar II, King of Babylon for refusing to bow to the king’s image. The three are preserved from harm and the king sees four men walking in the flames, “the fourth … like a son of God”. They are first mentioned in Daniel 1, where alongside Daniel they are brought to Babylon to study Chaldean language and literature with a view to them serving at the King’s court, and their Hebrew names are replaced with Chaldean or Babylonian names.
If you are having a tough time and asking God why! I encourage you to remember God wants the best for us. Paul talks about that in Romans 8:28 .
27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
28 ¶ And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
One Saturday I am going about my business and my world gets “Rocked”. Have you had a day like that? I am in the grocery store looking for an open checkout line. I have become accustomed to the self-checkout’s. However, today there was a full service one open so I started putting my items on the belt. So far this is all mundane until I ask the store employee how she was doing.
Her very first response was “do you really want to know?”. I was a little taken back by her response but also intrigued by it. She went on to say “no you probably don’t want to know, so I am ok”. Immediately I told her I did want to know how she was doing. Mean while she is scanning my groceries and people are being me putting their groceries on the belt. If there every was a time to just go about my business today was it. God had other plans for her and me. She began to unload on me in the short amount of time we had. She was hurting in so many ways.She had recently lost her Grandparents who raised her, Covid seemed to get the best of her. She was depressed from it and no counselor was seeing Covid depression. At least that is what she said. I couldn’t do much at this l point other than to tell her I would be praying for her. I also gave her information about our church and invited her to visit. She also lamented about not being able to go to church because of Covid.
I left the store and started driving home somewhat dumbfounded. I prayed for her as soon as I sat in my car and asked God to move in her life. I also thought about the interaction I had with her. The Holy Spirit began to minister to me that we all to often go through life having “Transactions” instead of having “Interactions”.
The definition of transaction- the action of conducting business. Unfortunately this is what we do most of the time. However the Lord made me have an “interaction” with this young lady. Interaction-communication or direct involvement with someone or something. The reason we stay away from this one is it takes time and some effort.
Interaction is how Jesus lived His life. Whether it was with the woman at the well(John 4:4-28), Mary about to get stoned to death(John 8:1-11), Nicodemus in the middle of the night (John 3:1-21)or having Peter put his net on the other side of the boat(Luke 5:5-7). Jesus showed us how to do life while in earth.
Like I said, my world was rocked in a good way. We as Christians are Gods representatives here on earth. He wants to use us for His Kingdoms glory and advancement. I challenge all of us to “interact’ with this world. This gives Jesus an opportunity to minister to the people we meet.
In DecemberI was shopping at a local warehouse box store. I went in specifically for paper towels. So I went to the isle were they normally are. No paper towels, but they have TP. I look around the corner and some folks are hanging out and talking. I joined in on the conversation. They were talking about this cheap paper towel brand. I considered getting some but opted for a big pack of napkins.
Let me flashback: a month prior I was at the same store and they had plenty of paper towels. I was going to pick some up but we didn’t need any at the time. I thought I would not horde and leave some for those who needed it. So the next two times I have been there no paper towels.
Back to my current visit. Once I left the paper isle and started shopping I went to the electronic section. As I turn the corner I see a package of paper towels and not the cheap kind. I stopped and looked around to see if someone had dropped it. One of the employees told me to take it if I wanted it. I pick it up and put it in my cart. I could not believe my “luck”. I giggle as I finished my shopping. I was the envy of the store. You see as I think back this brand had to be sold out for a couple of days. There was no pallet or pricing where this came from. It’s almost like God placed it there just for me.
Later on I was taking to my Honey and told her the story. As I spoke the words I realized that this was a blessing from the Lord. I began to praise Him.
My praise was “delayed”. God will take praise anytime we want to give it.
It’s never too late to praise God for His goodness and blessings. So I encourage you to bless the lord with your praise no matter how delayed it is.