I knew when I walked passed his hunched over frame that I would have to go back. I pushed my daughter’s stroller ahead and into the grocery store. Lord, you’re prompting me to interact with that homeless man aren’t you? You want me to pray? With Ari with me?
There she was.
She stood all of three feet tall, and she twirled.
She twirled freely, round and round and round.
Like, she was unashamed, uninhibited.
She was uninhibited, because she didn’t know.
“I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please—not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep, but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk or a snooze in the sunshine. I don’t want enough of Him to make me love a black man or pick beets with a migrant. I want ecstasy, not transformation; I want the warmth of the womb, not a new birth. I want a pound of the eternal in a paper sack. I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please.” – Wilbur Rees
Wilbur Rees understood what we ourselves don’t always see—we often just want enough of God. Enough to bring healing. Enough to bring abundance. Enough to bring an answered prayer. Enough to bring an encounter and a shiver down the spine. Enough to bring revelation.
I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.
I’ve always loved the book of Ecclesiastes, since I first read it through as a teenager. Maybe it was the season I was in when I first met these words. Of course it was; I was a teenage girl. We all remember those days, right?
Solomon’s honesty appealed to me, and in my deepest melancholy, I guess I was drawn to his hopelessness. Everything is meaningless, he began, and he continued this theme until the end.
Ahhh, distraction. It prevents us from giving our full attention to what we’re doing. It may seem a lot like procrastination, and if you’re like me, you could use a little help with procrastination AND distraction, but the two are different.
We’re going to tackle distraction today, but first here is a good way to remember the difference between procrastination and distraction, so when you’re smack dab in the midst, you can identify what you’re dealing with and address your struggle.
What do you desire?
It may be the most important question you’ll ever answer.
Before you respond with the answer you think you should say, give it some thought. Resist the temptation to use the fast-pass. Let these questions help you get to the heart of what you desire most.
“Come to me, all of you who are tired from carrying heavy loads and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28
In January, I designed a journal for a women’s retreat that I attended, with this verse on the cover (see above). Little did I know that this verse would resonate so loudly with me. I have gone back to this verse over and over this past year. As I have gone on this journey through all of my health issues, I have been carrying a heavy load. Things were better for little while and now I am traveling through the darkness again.
I have felt hopeless and tired.
That’s why I keep coming back to this verse. God tells us to come to him when things get too hard and He will give us rest. So why do I continue to try to carry this burden on my own?
Isaiah 40:31 says “But those who trust in the Lord for help will find their strength renewed. They will rise on wings like eagles; they will run and not get weary; they will walk and not grow weak”
I need His strength. I do not want weakness or to be weary. I want to walk, run… soar.
And when they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees. 5 But as one was cutting down a tree, the iron ax head fell into the water; and he cried out and said, “Alas, master! For it was borrowed.”
6 So the man of God said, “Where did it fall?” And he showed him the place. So he cut off a stick, and threw it in there; and he made the iron float. 7 Therefore he said, “Pick it up for yourself.” So he reached out his hand and took it.
I read through this scripture during my quiet time the other day, and while I’ve read it before, this time I paused to pray and ask God what the point of this scripture is or how I could apply it directly to my life. The study notes in my Bible are pretty silent around this scripture and instead of Googling or researching online, I wanted to pray and ask God what He wanted me to take from it.
I am more than thrilled to announce that Life Passionately will be a sponsor at Allume this year! We hope you will plan on attending. If you do please stop by our sponsor booth and say hi!
My husband slid our car into a parking space at the shopping center near his work, and kissed me and our baby girl goodbye. I watched his grey suit dance across his back as he headed for a day at the office, and I situated myself in the backseat to nurse our daughter before a busy day of grocery shopping and errand-running.
As I sat there, I watched a cluster of crows and tiny birds pick at food on the ground in front of me. There’s always something about birds eating that reminds me of Matthew 6:26:
“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (NIV)
God really spoke to me this weekend. He didn't whisper in my ear and gently nudge me. He yelled loudly in my face the message- Get out of your comfort zone!
I am not an out going/ extroverted person. Don't get me wrong, I love people and I love to talk. But I do not like crowds of strangers or being forced to talk them. In spite of hating these things, I willingly signed up for Allume this weekend. I basically wanted to grow my blog and every blog/ podcast/ videocast says you have to go to a conference. You have to network! So I pulled up my big girl panties and singed up to go to this christian blogging conference.
I thought "ok, this is what I have to do to increase my following and grow my business"... but God had other plans for me.
First off, I got sick two days before the trip. So I was totally off my game. Secondly and most importantly, I was not prepared for the true presence of Jesus at this conference. These women did not care how many followers I had on Twitter. The speakers did not teach about how to grow your audience or make more money by setting up advertising. They spoke of love and relationships, purpose and understanding. They spoke of God's love and using something silly like a blog to reach others and to tell others about Christ.
I really didn't want to "network" and try to sell people on what I'm doing this weekend. Thankfully I didn't have to. I got to meet wonderful women, who love Jesus and begin a relationship with others. God really wanted me to get out of my comfort zone because it's not until we are out of our comfort zone that we grow.
"But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves." - James 1:22, ESV