Stay On Course

When I woke up this morning, I was in decision mode—reflecting on life’s obstacles and struggling to make the right decisions. It was time to run!!! Instead of running on the main road this morning, I decided to run on the trail. The trail always helps to clear my head and give me an objective perspective.

On the trail, I get to feel the cool breeze flowing through the trees. There are sections of sunlight and shade to protect me from the smoldering heat. The creek runs alongside the paved road with flowing water that streams down the rocks. And the sound of falling water provides a tranquil atmosphere that calms my mind. As I run, birds, squirrels, and rabbits are actively engaging in their natural habitat. What a beautiful view! 

As I ran on the trail, observing the formation of the path, God spoke these words to my heart “Stay On Course!” He revealed that I’m on a paved road with specific (mapped out) destinations as I run on the trail, but when I look to the right or the left, I see the untamed forest. If I go to the right or the left, I end up in the woods. There’s a possibility of running into wild animals, snakes, swap areas, or poison ivy in the woods. Venturing into the forest can prolong my journey by altering my course. However, when I stay on the paved trail, it’s as if I am walking a road that was laid out just for me, minimizing the unforeseen dangers. 

God revealed that our life’s journey is no different. According to His Will, when we stay on course, we receive grace, mercy, favor, provision, and peace on our journey. But the detours that we “choose” often promote anxiety, stress, confusion, delay, and discouragement.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV

So today, as I choose to let God lead me in the right decisions and stay on His course, join me in trusting in the Lord, living with unwavering faith to believe that God will supply all your needs. 

“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 NIV

In the Mighty name of Jesus Christ, Amen ~

Fall at HIS Feet

“When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” John 11:32 NIV

For the past two months, I’ve been reading a devotion on the Book of John, and yesterday I got the chance to meditate on the story of Lazarus. Martha and Mary sent a message to Jesus that Lazarus was sick; however, Jesus decided to stay in his present location for two more days instead of leaving immediately. As Jesus arrives at Bethany, where Mary, Martha, and Lazarus live, many people inform Him that Lazarus has died.

Now with all the miracles Jesus performed, raising Lazarus from the dead would not be a challenging task. Jesus, all-knowing, informed the disciples that Lazarus was dead, but he would be raised from his sleep (John 11:14 NIV). Therefore in reading these verses, I was prepared to hear how Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. However, what illuminated from the scripture was a gesture that I needed to take to heart. A characteristic of God that beckons His presence, His provision, and His miraculous power.

God drew my attention to Mary falling at the feet of Jesus. In Mary’s anguish, hurt, and discouragement, she still fell at the feet of Jesus when she saw Him.

Mary, who loved and followed Jesus!

Mary, who poured perfume on Jesus’ feet and wiped it with her hair! John 12:3 NIV

Mary, who believed that Jesus could heal her brother from any sickness! John 11:3 NIV

Mary, who dropped everything to sit at the feet of Jesus listening to Him teach while Martha was busy doing other chores! Luke 10:39–40 NIV

When you are in pain, discouraged, stressed, or anguished, do you fall at the feet of Jesus Christ?

When your back is up against the wall with various trials and storms, do you fall at the feet of Jesus Christ?

When you don’t know where to turn or go, do you fall at the feet of Jesus Christ?

When your skills, abilities, and talents don’t produce favorable outcomes, do you fall at the feet of Jesus Christ?

As I read Lazarus’ story, God revealed that He desires His children to fall at the feet of Jesus in times of clarity or confusion, success or failure, test or trial, righteousness or sin.

Even in a pandemic as we see lives and jobs lost, uncertainty, isolation, and separation, our help and hope is in the Lord. So, as you go about your day, remember to fall at the feet of Jesus because He cares for you.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 NIV

Scripture tells us when Mary, crying, fell at the feet of Jesus, He not only felt her pain but also acted on it. He performed a miracle that no human could do. He resurrected Lazarus from the dead, and He can do the same for you! Whatever your circumstance, God can resurrect it! When you fall at the feet of Jesus in a submission posture, you give up the human effort for supernatural resurrection power.

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 NIV

In the Mighty name of Jesus Christ, Amen ~

Your Purpose

“Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.”

So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing.”
Matthew 26:39, 42, 44 NIV

As I read these scriptures, one word came to mind – “Purpose.” Jesus came to save us from our sins and die for us. His purpose was not only illustrated throughout the New Testament but also predestined and foretold within the Old Testament. 

As I reflected on “Matthew 26, The Garden of Gethsemane”, Jesus prayed to His Heavenly Father and asked that this cup be taken away” three times. But, what’s more important is what was said next. Jesus stated that God’s Will be done and not his. Each time Jesus petitioned for his will, He concluded with God’s Will. 

I believe Jesus knew in his heart that His purpose and God’s plan was more significant than his immediate circumstance. Scripture tells us that Jesus held a heavy burden.

“Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” Matthew 26:38 NIV

Do you think the burden was concerning His Purpose, His Will, or God’s Will? I would imagine all considering he knew what was to come through Him for us. However, Jesus took the straight path and didn’t turn to the right or left. He accepted God’s Will for his life. 

“So be careful to do what the Lord your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left. Walk in obedience to all that the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.” Deuteronomy 5:32–33 NIV

Reflection:

Whose Will is leading You?

How is your Plan working?

Are you praying for what you want, when you know what God has for you? 

What direction are you going to take with your “Free-will,” which, by the way, is not free?


You might say, “What is my purpose?” And, I would say, “Get connected to the source!” As you trust and lean on God, He will order your steps. 

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” Proverbs 16:9 NIV

“Lord, I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps.” Jeremiah 10:23 NIV

“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example that you should follow in his steps.” 1 Peter 2:21 NIV

Prayer

All-Knowing Father, thank you for ordering my steps. I ask for your help with listening and obeying to your Will for my life. I know that you created me to do great things, and I can only accomplish those things by surrendering to your Will. Please help me to fulfill my purpose today. In the awesome name of Jesus Christ! Amen~

Seasons of Life

Seasons of Life

I find lakes and ponds to be a place that is very tranquil and serene. In this atmosphere I can really become one with nature and God.  In my neighborhood there is a lake and it’s very peaceful.  In the middle of the lake there is a water spout, and as the water splashes from the spout it causes a ripple effect. 

On this beautiful, hot sunny day, I was sitting on the bench observing the lake and the trees. But, I began to notice the surrounding edges of the lake. The edges of the lake were corroded and discolored. It was obvious that the edges of the lake were receding and drying up due to the hot summer days.  However the condition of the lake did not alarm me because I had seen this very lake full and overflowing with water, oxygenated and crystal clear.

In the summer, I have seen this lake dry and parched, in the fall season the lake is full of pollen and green, and in the winter this very lake is frozen and iced. But what is consistent about the lake is it’s always there. With every seasonal trial the lake stands!

Through my focus on the lake seeing how hot days and lack of rain expose the corroded underground, I thought about life and my own periods of dry seasons.

Lack exposes a need! Whether physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, financial, social or relational, our deficiency reveals our need. Of course, as humans we always try to figure things out ourselves. Whether through connections or personal effort we try to solve our problem and establish our own plans.

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” Proverbs 16:9 NIV

https://www.bible.com/bible/111/pro.16.9.niv

But this is not how God intends for us to live life. As I focus on the condition of the lake, one thing is for sure – the lake will not fill up unless God sends the rain. The hot summer days will continue to dry up the lake unless there are some rainy days to replenish the waters.

And, our human existence is no different. We were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:28) which means we cannot flourish without Him. Our existence is no existence unless HE is included. God will send the rain on my lack when I surrender, submit, rest and wait on His Will.  It’s a Trust Principle! Trusting in His Divine timing!

Like the lake, people experience various seasons in their lives but the key is to remain steadfast and firm on the Word of God and His promises for us to endure and persevere.

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8 NIV

https://www.bible.com/bible/111/jer.17.7-8.niv

So, whatever season you are experiencing in your life right now, know that God is there and in control. Do not give into the fear, doubt or worry! Your sufficiency is just beyond your trust, prayer and praise!

In the Awesome name of Jesus Christ, Amen!