If you want to make the greatest investment, then take note of the eternal as well as this lifetime. Time spent in prayer will never be time lost or wasted.
How many of us can watch the news, TV series, netflix, whatever, with total ease for hours on end, and yet struggle to gather ourselves for time in prayer?
This last year we have been given the gift of time. How many of us have chatted on about not having time?! Well, we have it now! And how have we spent it..?! It’s interesting how we are often very good at chatting on about good intentions, but not so good at being actually honest or loyal to what we promised.. Even to God.
It is always what is least edifying that is the easiest option, and what is the most powerful option has to be fought for- in determination, intention, sacrifice..
Prayer is like this. Yet it is speaking with God- Creator of Heaven and Earth. How crazy that this incredible privilege is something that we allow the cheap distractions of life to take us away from.. And yet surely we can understand from this that there is a war for our attention. To keep us numb and ineffective, distracted into confusion about our identities as we watch and compare ourselves with culture- the culture we are called to add seasoning to and to demonstrate the Love and Truth of God. The God who created each and every person perfectly and with His designed identity for each and every one. The God who calls Himself our Father.
We are so toxified and in desperate need of coming back to the Father’s house. We have wandered off for way too long and need to come back to find ourselves in the One who is Truth. Who is our Truth. And The Truth. And to do this, we need to talk to Him. We simply need to spend time talking and listening, communicating and building with Him. This is time investment that will resound through eternity. That will be able to join with communications of others to release prayerful movements of God.
Time in prayer is never wasted. But there will always be a battle for it. The devil will never fight for anything where there is no spoils. Remember that. And push back harder.
I’m not sure if you’ve read in the news recently about the earth spinning faster and the days getting shorter, but how interesting is that?!? This is not “Biblical” or “religious” news but scientific. There is no mention of God at all, but we know He fills the whole earth.
It brings to mind that the Bible is absolutely timeless, and that we have already read in the Bible that God has told us that the days will get shorter, and that it will be a good job because it would be unbearable if they don’t.. This is massive information for us to take heed of. Whatever age and era we are born in, we only have a very limited amount of time here because of the time limits on these bodies, and so we must be aware that the time is always now for us to act, to speak, to seek, to find… Let us not put off what needs to be done now..
Surrender. Trust. And get deployed into what God has for you in this lifetime. You have been born for such a time as this. Don’t waste any more of the time that is spinning out of our hands.
We have all had people in our lives who are great at talking and saying the right things…and yet we just do not feel the heart from them.
We can be physically so close to someone and yet feel so far from them. And yet can feel the heart of someone from across the world.
This goes to show us that we are deep beings and can discern true authenticity. I believe God shows us this so that we can be aware of how often we treat Him, and that He wants our hearts involvement and deep personal investment, not our lip service and small talk.
God wants us– our lives surrendered completely unto Him- not our cheap talk about it.
Let us honour God and our relationships with Truth and heart.
Acts 27 in the Bible is about Paul being shipwrecked with the crew and all that were on board. God gives Paul instruction and hope that he will live and not die. And yet everything around him is stripped away and lost.
This is what we need to realise- sometimes the promise of God for our lives is actually a pretty painful and stressful process! He is not too interested in keeping us warm and comfortable in our transition periods, but He is also not a “head-messer”. I don’t believe He would ever do something out of a weird, painful, head-mess way just to “teach us a lesson”. His ways are perfect. We will perhaps not often understand His ways as they are higher than ours, but He will shield all of us who trust in Him.
Yesterday we had snow come down in a few hours that brought so much change!
Snow always gives me so much to ponder about! It is so amazing to me! For me it represents so much of God. We can lift our faces towards the falling snow and hardly feel the fragile flakes as it falls upon us, and yet it can cause chaos on the roads that bring cars and strong vehicles to a halt.
Small children can mould and create with their small hands and yet it needs big snow plough vehicles to move it off the roads.
People come out of their houses to play and laugh and enjoy the freshly fallen white blanket of snow, while cars are kept blocked in, or jammed up.
It is so amazing that it causes such polarised living! For some it brings community, creativity, laughter, togetherness.. For others, it causes disturbance, frustration, insecurity, danger.
And this is how God also is! He continues to present to us our choice of response. Will we continue to try and get through in our own strength.. Or submit to Him and start to live “outside” of our self-built/bought cages..?
Let us choose Life! Let us live fully and embrace every uncertainty and change and “hindrance” with eyes of faith and excitement and creativity!
In a recent prayer time praying for strongholds to fall, we remembered the walls of Jericho coming down after the Israelites walking around and around.
It is scientific that the same stepping and marching of people done over and over will cause an undermining and weakening of structures, and with a loud noise the vibrations will then bring down the already undermined structure.
This is amazing to me. But, we have to remember that it comes from being in unified step. It is not haphazard. And so any steps that come out of sync have no power or authority.
Imagine the Church united!?
John 17.21: Prayer for All Believers by Jesus: “I am not asking on behalf of them alone, but also on behalf of those who will believe in Me through their message, that all of them may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I am in You. May they also be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.”
Recently there’s been a circus in town (which has been in-between lockdowns) and it’s made me wonder about churches.. The church buildings have had to close for lockdown and passing the circus in town, I think of how similar these enterprises are.
I do not mean or intend to cuss the church at all, but it has become so well oiled with such great performances that we can often travel to go and even pay an entry fee for some evenings or ‘performances’.
I am totally for the Church of Jesus Christ and love being taught by brothers and sisters who have much to pass on to us. I have travelled to go to conferences and love how God uses the talents that He puts within people for the benefit and growth of so many others.
But I am loving church on lockdown! It is bringing out the questions of why are we going to church..? To be social? To grow? To serve God? To serve man? Because it’s what we do..? Or has it intensified our relationship with God because we are now sharpened from being the Church rather than going to church..? Do we now realise the power of God’s Word that says He is with us when two or three gather? Or do we think that He desires big, polished stages and crowds..?
Have we struggled to connect with God outside of the church building?
Jesus clearly talks about His people being the Church and so why would the building being closed impact our relationship with God and each other- especially in this age of phones, internet, zoom, etc. We are the most connected age ever! (It may be coming across that I have enjoyed making the most of this unique time in history.)
So the next level from circus is safari- to see animals in their own kind of habitat, but in the safety of our own vehicles.. This is good with a little more realism, but we are still comfortable and reasonably safe. Imagine when we get out of our safety zones and get under the prayer of protection that Jesus Himself prayed for us, and we go into the wild..!? (John 17.15)
God has created us for adventure! Not safety and risklessness. He put His whole being on the line and He is our example to live by..
Our rubber is now getting to hit the road.. Let’s make sure we are made of supernatural strength and with a spirit full of Life, Truth and Love.
As followers of Christ we need to exchange our toys for tools. It is time for us to get ourselves out of nappies/diapers and start to grow up.. We need to know how to feed ourselves, and how to exchange our toys for tools to start and continue the work that we have been created for.
All of us have a great destiny and purpose- ultimately to serve and worship God- and our lifestyle of work is all part of that. It is during times of crisis that we are able to take as an opportunity to grow and develop and to use this time to mature. It is an opportunity to reach for our own food, and exercise with our own weights. Times like this will show us if we have been babysat or if we are able to take care of ourselves. It is an exposing time. Are we able to feed ourselves or have we relied on others to do this for us, and so need to develop these skills now?
It is not too late to take stock and get out of the baby seat and start to take steps into maturity. Each one is needed to play a vital part. We can’t have brothers and sisters who are carrying others, because each of us has been given our capacity for our own positioning. Of course we are to help each other, and that comes in our own capacity, but we aren’t designed to live other people’s lives for them. We will all be accountable to God for how we lived and invested our own talent- not someone else’s.
Living honestly and in the open is a great key to freedom. When we are real and honest we have nothing to hide.
I do not believe in being fully open and vulnerable with everyone and anyone. People need to be filtered well to see who comes through as a valuable and trustworthy confidants for the core details of our lives. But on every level of relationship with people we can be honest and open to whatever degree is appropriate and cultivate a culture of authenticity and openness which brings freedom and space to be real.
Let’s be people who are wise in trust, but free in authenticity to all.