Tuesday, July 27, 2010
I will praise You, because I have been fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14A HCSB
Before God created you, He decided what role He wanted you to play on earth. Rick Warren*
Before Caleb was born, God carefully molded him into a unique shape that He designed specifically for him. He wired Caleb’s inborn creative talents with his future artistic ministry in mind. Caleb was fearfully and wonderfully made.
But, then Caleb was born. As he child, he tried living in his unique creative form, but his parents pushed him towards sports instead. He needed to learn discipline. As a teenager, Caleb signed up for the art club at school, but his friends pressured him into playing football instead, so he changed his schedule. Besides, football would be fun. In college, Caleb wanted to major in art, but his advisor steered him towards accounting instead. It was, of course, a much more practical vocation.
Now, Caleb has his own business, a nice home, and a great family. However, he
constantly doodles and daydreams of a different life, one that feels more natural to him.
Lord, give us the boldness to be who You created us to be.
*The Purpose Drive Life
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began. Psalm 139:16 HCSB
God’s gifts put man’s best dreams to shame. Elizabeth Barrett Browning*
I watched as the teenage girl silently looked at the pictures of her family on the wall. Her brothers and sisters were much older than she and had long since started their own families. Many of their awards still graced the picture wall. She turned and said, “I don’t fit into my family. It’s easy to see that I was an accident.”
My young friend may have been a surprise to her family, but the Lord had plans for her before she was ever conceived. He knew the ins and outs of each day that she would live. He saw the happiest moments of her life and he already knew the number of tears that she would ever cry. He gifted her with talents and abilities that would make her unique and special. As she was being formed, He turned to the angels and said, “She sure is precious to me.”
Lord, thank You that none of us are accidents.
*Sonnets From the Portuguese, 26
Thursday, July 15, 2010
According to the grace given to us, we have different gifts: If prophecy, use it according to the standard of faith; if service, in service; if teaching, in teaching; if exhorting, in exhortation; giving, with generosity; leading, with diligence; showing mercy, with cheerfulness. Romans 12:6-8 HCSB
Everyone is gifted – but some people never open their package. Anonymous*
Even though I love my church, because of the growing demands of the worship ministry, I most often find myself in the role of producer as opposed to worship leader, praise singer, or instrumentalist. Yesterday, it hit me hard that it had been a long time since I had been able to use my gifts and talents in these areas. “Lord,” I prayed. “Please show me somehow that You have still called me to lead people into Your presence.”
That’s when an elderly lady entered my office with a smile.
“Can you help us?” she asked.
Thinking that she probably wanted something moved, I sighed and said, “Sure, what do you need?”
“Well,” she said. “Our small group is meeting and we need someone to lead us in worship. Can you help?”
“Certainly,” I replied.
Lord, thank You for opportunities to serve You with our gifts.
Thursday, July 8, 2010
For we are His creation-created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 HCSB
I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world. Mother Theresa*
All my life, I’ve been taught that Jesus loves me and has great plans for my life that will change the world for His glory. I believe that with all my heart. However, I often lose sight of the purposes that He has for me. I sometimes even doubt that He has plans for me at all. But then I finally come back to His Word, and I read about how He created us in His image, how time and again He used His people, even ordinary, everyday people, to fulfill His purposes. That gives me hope. It helps me remember how God has used me in the past and builds my faith for what He will have for me to accomplish in the future. When all of these things come clear to me, I have no choice but to respond with worship.
Lord, thank You for giving my life purpose. I worship You.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
As a deer longs for streams of water, so I long for You, God. I thirst for God, the living God. When can I come and appear before God? Psalm 42:1-2 HCSB
Even as I was directing the short testimony film, I was convicted. In preparation for an upcoming patriotic service, I was filming an interview with an elderly veteran. Close to the end of the taping, I asked him if he had any advice for younger Christians today. He smiled, looked me straight in the eye, and said, “You’ve got to pray. You’ve got to pray when you get up in the morning, pray at your morning work break, pray at lunch, pray at your afternoon break, pray when you get home, pray before you go to bed. Then get up the next morning and pray again. If you don’t pray, it’s just like having vitamins sitting right next to you that you don’t take. You’ve got to pray. It’s a nourishing thing. It keeps you in contact with the Lord of the universe. Keep up Your relationship with Him. Nothing can compare to the mighty God we serve.”
God, it is You that I long for. Nothing compares to You.