Acts 13: 47-49 For this is what the Lord has commanded us:
"I have made you a light for the Gentiles,
that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth."
When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honored the word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed.
The word of the Lord spread through the whole region.
Saturday, August 15, 2015
First Things First
I cherish arising early while darkness still covers my
little area of the country. The house is serenely quiet, enabling me to spend focused
time with the Lord. As my nostrils fill with the heady aroma of freshly made coffee
and I gather my study items at the kitchen table, I often say a quick prayer for discernment
Most mornings I read several daily devotionals along with a
chapter in the Bible. I look up the referenced Bible verses from the
devotionals, including the verses before and after, to better understand the
context of the message. Sometimes this simple act takes me on amazing rabbit
trails where God graciously speaks to me concerning a current trial in my life.
I love being reminded that, “He’s got this,” as the Lord lifts the burden I’ve
mistakenly placed on myself. I give thanks that He is still on the
throne – still in control. Spending this time alone with the Lord and putting
on my spiritual armor (especially necessary in these challenging times we live
in) helps keep me at peace.
But I have to admit; sometimes staying focused each morning is
a struggle. Sitting still and keeping my mind from wandering can be
challenging—I have to continually rein it in. Otherwise, it can be impossible to
discern His still small voice. Before reading my first devotional, “to-do” lists a mile long can easily
be scribbled down. And it doesn’t help that I’m considered to be a “senior” by many
standards. My aging brain knows if I don’t capture thoughts as they enter in,
forget it. They are history.
This mental struggle used to create frustration and
conflict. And then I had a lightbulb moment. I actually...prayed about it. (Yeah,
heavy, I know.) Sometimes the simplest answer is literally staring you right in
And God’s response to that prayer? For me to compromise just a
little. By keeping a small tablet barely within reach I can quickly jot down the list
of to-do items as they crowd in, but I keep my Bible and journal directly in
front of me to capture “God thoughts” or “divine messages.” For me this system works.
I’m able to keep the main thing the main thing, retaining my priority of staying
focused on the Lord.
God created our amazing mind and He wants us to use it
wisely. He also created us as spirit beings. He longs to fellowship with us
throughout the day. We can do both, and
have peace amidst the storm, as long as we remember to put Him first.
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)