Seeking God for God


Battlefield

Dear Father,

I was caught up with a task deadline this last few days, one I thought I’d never finish. Finally, last night I completed my task – 3 days late of the deadline. During those last 3 days, I remembered You a lot: I read about You, I wrote about You, I missed You. I was desperate.

Heart Commandment

Heart Commandment (Photo credit: Will Humes)

I came across the dreaded verse again yesterday in an email devotional: “The two greatest commandments” – with a twist. It highlighted how You gave the second commandment even though the people didn’t ask for it. The question people asked was – what is the greatest commandment? You answered – loving God. Then You gave the second too – without the people asking for it. The email highlighted that it was because loving God is only complete (and comes full circle) when I love myself and I love others, and these 2 commandments cannot be separated.

Cover of "Battlefield of the Mind: How to...

Cover via Amazon

I found a very inspirational blog Father – Jumping on Clouds – and through the blog I found a person who had gone through painful things in their lives but had come out victorious through You. Someone who is both hopeful and joyful through You. Like Joyce Meyer says in her first chapter of “Battlefield of the Mind” (the book jumpingonclouds recommended to me), I used to be both hopeless and miserable. Then when I was 15 and was found by You, I became hopeful and for a time joyful. But I didn’t let go of my past. My misery and pain remained and so the scars didn’t heal completely. I didn’t let go, so You brought me face to face with it in December 2010 and more profoundly in July 2011. I’m recovering from those experiences, yes, but I haven’t yet learnt about being joyful. You keep bringing me against situations where I cannot ignore.

I started listening again to Joyce Meyer’s broadcasts from her website. In her “Intimacy with God – Part 2” she said something that really got to me: we are so caught up in asking “things” of You that we seek You for “things” but we don’t really seek You for You.

I don’t know where I go from here, Father, but like Paul said in Philippians 4:6-7, and like Joyce Meyer also said, I’m going to ask here for what I need. You. Please. I ask this in the name of Jesus, my Savior through His blood and the cross.

Amen.

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Walking the Thin Line


Flower & pot

Flower & pot (Photo credit: Vijay Sonar)

Father,

When I look at my life, I seem to be walking a very thin line between giving up and barely keeping my head above the water.  Maybe it is a safety valve You’ve built in to my life to keep in check my tendency to be prideful and selfish. The struggle drives me to You and opens my eyes to other struggling people, giving me the ability to relate to them! It’s like the story about the cracked pot used to grow flowers along the path. Take my struggle with forgiveness.

It’s interesting to note that most bible devotionals I read the past couple of days focused on love, fruits of the spirit etc. The theme touched me a lot and the repeating pattern caught my notice.

Father, I need knowledge in Your perspective, so that I may rejoice in what You choose for me. Most of the time, I waste days being discouraged about my circumstances and challenges, when they are really blessings in disguise, given to teach me in Your ways. Thank You for being patient with me when my family and friends acknowledge how difficult it is to love me and live with me.

Father, I came across Hebrews 10: 26 – 31 yesterday, which reminded me of the man Christian saw who had lost You in Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” and I grew worried. I need to always remember You Father! Thank You for scattering the little reminders through out my day that show me You still love me!

Father, forgive me my cracked nature and my forgetfulness and use them for Your work. Just as You are patient with me, help me be patient with the cracked pots and forgetful people in my life and love them like You do. I ask this in the name of Jesus, my Lord and my Savior.

Amen

–xx–

The Broken Pot (source: www.word4life.com)

A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on an end of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the masters house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his masters house. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream.

“I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you.” 
“Why?” asked the bearer. “What are you ashamed of?” 
“I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your masters house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts.” the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, “As we return to the masters house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path.”

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again the Pot apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pots side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my masters table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house.”

Each of us has our own unique flaws. We’re all cracked pots. But if we will allow it, the Lord will use our flaws to grace His Father’s table. In Gods great economy, nothing goes to waste. Don’t be afraid of your flaws.

Acknowledge them, and you too can be the cause of beauty. Know that in our weakness your strength is made perfect. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

 

Success bounce (via Qualiaquotesforlife’s Blog)


Success

We all hit bottom. Right now I feel like I am at the bottom. Do I accept defeat or do I fight back, pushing back against pressure to conform and be yourself in the process? I bounce back. As high as I can! Away from the people who want to talk you down, out of your dreams. I don’t hear them anymore. Even when it’s my near and dear loved ones. Satan attacks the mind, heart and your words through where it hurts the most.

It’s not right to shout back at your mother when she is unconsciously registering doubt in you when all you want her to have is faith. You need someone to have faith in you. But it isn’t completely necessary, because Jesus has faith in you. He had so much faith that He gave us the benefit of the doubt always and gave us free will, even when He knew we could go from bad to worse. That’s because He had faith in us. As such, we should never let the “bottom” stick us up to it but keep jumping as high as we can to get over the slump.

“Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.” – General George PattonRead More

via Qualiaquotesforlife’s Blog

Hope Always Returns at Dawn


Dawn - swifts creek

Image via Wikipedia

When dawn comes it brings with it renewal and hope. Things don’t look as black as they seemed during the night. You dry your tears and prepare yourself for the fight all over again and look forward to victory. At least to die trying! Why? Because, Jesus loves me still!

Why Do I Always Fail?


View along the river in Saint Paul, Minnesota

All of us have ideals that we strive and struggle to live up to. As Christians, the pressure to maintain and overcome is heavier, because it is important to us that we live according to what Jesus teaches us; many eyes watch us.

Contradictory to my wishes, my life goes in the opposite direction, taking turns I don’t want it to take. All I see across the landscape of years in to the past are failures. My life is strewn with collapses, messes and set backs rather than spiritual victories I want to see as a Christian. Which is why, I am comforted when St. Paul says to the effect “…I do what I don’t want to do, and don’t do what I want to do!” in Romans, chapter 8.

Still more frustrating is when you realize that the mistakes that trip you up are the same mistakes, attacking you over and over again throughout the years! You expected to have learnt better than fall in the same ruts as before. Why can’t we do the things we know are right? Why is temptation so strong? And why do we always analyze after and not before?

I wish I knew the answers, but I don’t. All I know and wish to remember is that as Christians, the important things is to keep coming back to Jesus, no matter how many times we waver in our faiths. Also remember that real Christians can look like they’re not. Only God knows who the real Christians are, because only He sees the real inner us. In that we can hope despite our many failures.