Monday, January 9, 2012

Exhaustion

Do you ever get to the place of sheer and utter exhaustion?  Where you feel like you are being pulled in 12 different directions and have so many projects unfinished and so much on your calendar? I feel that way.  I'm not sure whether its truly because I've got too much going on or that I'm just completely emotionally drained.  I need to be refreshed.  I need to be filled up again.  I think I need to take Matthew 6:34 to heart.  It says "Do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will take care of itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Now y'all I'm gonna get a little southern here for a minute but ain't that the truth?  Every day for the last week (at the very least) something has either happened or not happened that wasn't good or right.  I am finding that I am worrying (once again in that old pattern) over the future when I'm barely hanging on to today.  I need to snap it back and set my mind on the truth and the real. (Phil 4:8)  I need to take my thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:5)
I watched Lysa Terkeurst's "Made to Crave" live webcast tonight and something that she said struck me hard.  She asked "are you physically hungry or soul hungry?" My thoughts tonight is am I physically tired or soul tired?  I think I'm both to be completely honest.  But what is going to satisfy that hunger and tiredness? Only God can.  I'm going to be meditating on God's peace tonight (see my post from last night) and focusing on what is true and real. And I'm asking God to rain down that peace and refreshment tonight as I sleep so that I wake up tomorrow ready to face the day, ready to take on whatever things get thrown our way.  Tonight through my exhaustion and soul hunger/tiredness, I have hope and I have promises from God that I can cling to. 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

What If We Were Real

What If We Were Real

At Christmas my kids were given itunes gift cards and so while searching for appropriate songs for them, I found out that Mandisa’s album “What If We Were Real” was on sale.  I love her music so I bought it.  Klove has been out around here for a bit now so I’ve literally played this album in the car over and over!  It is so uplifting and the songs have a great beat.  So maybe that’s why when I was pondering over some things this morning God impressed John 16:33 upon my heart.  It says, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

There are so many situations (some mine, some friends, and some community) that I haven’t been able to get out of my head.  You know the kind of conversations you replay in your head over and over and come up with things you should have said or done at the time.  Those are the kind of things I’ve been replaying in my mind lately.  I always second guess myself and my guess is that other people do too.  Recently I was facebook messaging a very sweet lady that I’m getting to know and she unloaded her stress, frustration, and doubts to me.  Then she immediately apologized.  She said she was sure she had scared me off.  I haven’t been able to let that conversation get out of my head because I just don’t understand why it isn’t okay to really let people in, really let them know who we are and what we are struggling with.  Maybe when people ask the question “How are you?” instead of looking for the pat, politically correct answer of “good and you?” We should listen to how the other person really is.  Otherwise I don’t think we should ask.  But I think more than ever that we as Christians have to stand up and show that we care about other people, and that we aren’t just wrapped up in our own little lives. 

Many of my friends are facing difficulties and they range from anywhere as “my husband is delayed” to our whole lives are changing and how do we prepare for it.  And yes in some cases there isn’t anything I can physically do other than listen and PRAY.  I think that those two things matter more than anything in the world because they show love, compassion, and action.  So I wonder what would happen if we stopped, asked the hard question of “how are you?” and really wanted to know the answer.  Really cared enough to listen and take action. 

I think maybe God put John 16:33 on my heart this morning because He in his infinite wisdom knew that I would need the reminder that He is in control, the battle is already won, and that I could carry on His love, compassion, and action with peace. I think that He wanted me to realize that listening to other’s struggles isn’t going to weigh me down or burden me because He already is taking that burden and He is giving me peace about it. I can show God’s love by letting the people around me know that I am here. I really want to know how you are. And yes, I will take action, by petitioning God on your behalf and stepping up to help if I can. 

So how about we all start being real?  That we all stop being afraid to show who we are and what is going on inside.  That we show that regardless of the storm, God is in control and that He working in our lives.  Maybe if we were real more people would see God working in the details.

Today Pastor Roy taught on fighting the good fight.  He said our challenge is to “Fight well for the right thing in the right way with the right motive.” He also said that “In a broken world, there are times to fight so that there may be peace.” I think for me that fighting the good fight is being real, showing God’s love, and pointing those who are scared to be real in His direction.

I wonder, how are you going to be real?