I had planned on taking a nap when the rest of my family did today but my mind won't stop turning. I've seen/heard/Read/heard God speak a lot of amazing things today.
First of all, I want to thank everyone who has seen my posts on praying for Hannah Grace Harrison and her family and took them to heart and sent prayers up to Heaven. I know a lot of people pass these opportunities up if they don't know the family or they don't live in their community but what a blessing it is to be able to stand in the gap for someone who can't stand them self. Or is so weak from standing all they can do is fall to their knee's. We should see these as opportunities to be intercessors! We ARE after all called to "bear ye one another's burdens!...." It has blessed me the number of calls I've received from my family back home wanting updates as I got them because their Church and co-workers were praying as well and asking about little Hannah every day. It blesses me to see God's people do what God called his people to do. If you are reading this and are one of those prayer warriors, please continue to pray for Hannah Grace's parents and little brother. That God will wrap His loving arms around them and give them a peace that passes all understanding!
"Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ."--Gal. 6:2.
Even before I heard the news of little Hannah's graduation day, my mind had been churning. Brother Van, you'll have to forgive me but I wasn't just taking notes from your message today, I was taking notes from God as well. Our life connection group is doing a study by Francis Chan called "Forgotten God". It's powerful. It's about the Holy Spirit's role in our life and how He is basically a forgotten part of God in our modern society. A lot of people view the Holy Spirit as an it when He's really HE! Our Father. Another entity of our loving God who longs to help His children feel comfort, here His voice, give His children direction. Most people today have tuned Him out. That's a part of God they don't discuss or recognize. Sure we read the scriptures that have the words "Holy Spirit" in them but do you stop to think about what that scripture means to you and the role the Holy Spirit is to play in YOUR life?
Take a few minutes and just SHUT UP! LOL Yes you read that right. We can't listen if our mouths are going all the time. We try to hard to over analyze trials and troubles that come our way. We are too quick to ask why instead of stopping to listen and let Him, the Holy Spirit, God explain! Just Be still! Be still and know! Know that HE IS GOD!!! Psalm 46:10 (New International Version)
10 "Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."
God Gave me 4 key commands today because I myself am VERY guilty of not being still and listening. I mean after all, how can you when you have three kids running around the house like screaming gorilla's? Who can listen to anything with all that commotion? I CAN!! YOU can!!! We ALL can!! and this is how. These are the 4 commands I heard God speaking to me today.
In our society, everything is SO fast paced! It will take a conscious effort on all of our parts to do this but in doing so, we will have more peace, joy, love, patience, long suffering....sound familiar? We will have more FRUIT!!! Fruits of the SPIRIT! AHHHH!!! Are you putting this together yet??? The word tells us in Matt. 7:16 that we will be known by our fruit
By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
I am so speaking to myself here. I'm not just stepping on my toes, I'm stomping on them and grinding them into the ground. They hurt pretty bad. So what am I going to do about it? I'm so glad you asked! As a mother, I realize that God is to be first, our partner second and our children third. I also know as a mom, that is a very hard order to follow and maintain. So often we want to put our children first. In doing so, when the order gets out of whack, chaos enters. At least in my home. When kids are first, spouse is second and God is third you know what that means? Many day's God gets forgotten ( I wonder if that's how the name of that book came about) lol When you forget God from your life, thorns start growing amongst your fruit until, before you know it, the briers and thistles have killed out your fruit.
Change in any area of ones life takes dedication and determination. So, from this day forward, I have decided that my children will be given a memory verse at the beginning of each week. (the older 2 anyway....the 2 year olds will come with time but at least this way, she will be hearing God's Word more frequently!) I will talk to my kids more about what prayer really is. We have our routine every night where one of them says the Lords prayer and the other one says the bed time prayer and the next night, we alternate but I'd like their bed time prayer to be less of something they memorized and more of something they feel in their heart. I will teach them that their prayer time is their communication with God.
How can I be still when I have to pay bills, go to work, grocery shop, clean, cook, clean again, give baths, do home work, feed the dog, go to t-ball...I mean really, that's A LOT to do in one day. Then why do you do it that way? Maybe we could try getting up just 15 minutes earlier ( which believe me, I know is very difficult! I'm so not a morning person) and starting our day off With God. Make Him our line leader. After all, if God is your daytime planner, your day is SURE to go smoother! Not to mention, it helps get our attitudes in check. Have you noticed it's not so easy to be grumpy with God? I mean are you really going to get out of bed in the morning and tell your Heavenly Father to stop talking and leave you alone? I'm sure we've all done it from time to time but for the most part, that doesn't happen and should never happen. It also wouldn't hurt us to get off the computer, our put our books down, or the news paper, or turn off the t.v. and just sit still in the absolute quietness (obviously after the kids have gone to bed) and just listen. After you've listened, you might try thanking Him for getting you safely through another day. For protecting your family. For a roof over you head and clothes on your body and food on your table.) Just like any parent likes to hear thank you from their children after doing something for them, God our Father likes to be thanked and praised as well.
While you are being still, you can't help but listen. (unless you fell asleep which I hope you didn't) It's usually in the quiet times that God speaks the loudest. With every decision we have to make, we should listen first. It's when you listen that you tend to take the right direction and not get lost.
Is that favorite show REALLY a priority? Is the water boiling over really something to get un-nerved about? Life is so much more peacefully when you simplify it. Simplify your "need" for some of life's material things. Simplify your reactions to situations that come up in your life. Simplify your reactions to your childrens bad behavior. (Say it once and walk away. I highly recommend Kevin Leman's "Have a new kid by Friday" book. It REALLY helps you simplify and it works). Basically, the key here is, don't make things harder than they have to be!
Put into practice what the Holy Spirit is speaking to you. It's easier to be obedient once you've been still, listened and simplified. Much easier. By that point, you have such God given Joy you want to do everything God asks of you and you fully rely on Him knowing that whatever it is He's asking of you, He will guide you, protect you, comfort you, and equip you. After all isn't that the way a father does? Why wouldn't our Heavenly Father do the same for us?
9 Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!
I really had so much more on my mind but not being at a computer when I heard all this in my heart, it was hard to get it all written down. I just pray that these words can help someone else better prioritize their life as I also strive to get mine better prioritized. God bless!!