Wednesday, May 28, 2014

MY Will VS.HIS WILL

Have you ever wrestled with God wanting Him to bless your plans? You wonder why He hasn't moved or helped you to accomplish your great idea? You think it is His will.  You have prayed and prayed and asked the Lord to help you achieve this good thing, but deep  down in your heart you know that something is wrong.

When all of my children were married, I began to wonder what I was going to do with my life. I started praying and asked the Lord what He wanted  me to do?  In my heart, I knew that He was drawing me closer and closer to Himself. He wanted me to take this time to study His word and to intercede, but I choose to listen to another voice. 

 My best friend and I were  empty-nesters. We were sister's in the Lord and enjoyed our friendship together. She had a great idea. She believed that the Lord was calling us to start a retail company making bible book covers to sell at craft fairs.  Her vision sounded quite exciting and something that the Lord would surely bless.  She even saw young mother's sewing for us making money so that they could stay at home. All the profit would go to feed the poor in the area.  Doesn't that sound like a Godly vision?  Only one problem, it wasn't God's will for me, but for her.  I struggled for five years praying and seeking God's peace.  It never came.  It was just a good idea. 

After struggling for God's peace for five years, I finally had to confess I was not in God's will but in my own. My dear friend was very gracious.  She completely understood my anxiety and released me.  She continued to be blessed, feeding the poor. 

Looking back I honestly have to admit, I was the stumbling block to our success.  I tried and tried to have a peace with the decision.  It was fruitless. My motives were all wrong.  I wanted to prove my ability as a entrepreneur with God's help. The problem was, God had not called me to be an entrepreneur. It was my idea and I wanted Him to bless it. It was a painful revelation.  But it became a serious turning point in my relationship with the Lord. 

Since then I am learning more and more about the will of God for my life. Recently in prayer the Lord reminded me again, "Why do you insist on your will and ask Me to bless it? Don't you  believe that My will is really the best for you?

To hear God's voice and to know His heart has become far more important to me than anything I could do for Him. All He needs of me is my availability to be used as He so wills. It is a joy to be part of His body and to wait upon Him for His will to be done of earth as it is in Heaven. 
"Man makes his plans, but God orders His steps." Proverb 16:9
"The steps of a good man are ordered by God"  psalm 37:23

Monday, May 5, 2014

LIVING MARTYR

Have you ever heard the term a living martyr?  I have heard of a martyr, dying for his faith, but the term a living martyr is like an oxymoron.

As I was reading  Romans 12:1,2, an idea came to me like a light bulb turning  on. "I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies, as a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is good and acceptable and the perfect will of God."


The expression a living martyr was beginning to make sense. As I surrendered more and more of my life to the Lord,  I was physically alive, but spiritually dying daily to this world.

The Holy Spirit continued to open my eyes with Luke 9:23. "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.  For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it." 

The expression living martyr has helped me to understand the process of taking up my cross and following Jesus--death to my old man of sin, but alive to Christ in me.

I cannot serve two Kingdoms. I will love one and hate the other. Both Kingdoms are eternal. One is eternal separation from God and the other eternal life.There is only one Kingdom that has eternal life--the Kingdom of God.  His Kingdom is worth forsaking this world and living only unto Him. He desires our whole heart. 

"I have been crucified in Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live in the flesh, I live by faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." Gal.2:20

This doesn't mean that the Lord wants us out of the world, but only out of the world's system, its mind-set, morals and unrighteousness.  When Jesus walked on the earth, He said, "The god (ruler) of this world is coming but he has nothing in Me." John 14-30 

As we are transformed more and more into His image, we too will not desire the things of this world.  Our hearts will change to be more like His.  We will be in the world, but not of it. We will testify of His resurrection life in us. Jesus will be uplifted up and draw all men unto Him.