Seems like we all juggle lots of things: kids schedules with sports, practices, dr appointments, work responsibilities, relationship stuff, . . . the hustle, bustle & rustle of everyday living.
In all of these things, let’s be mindful to nurture in our hearts our relationship with Jesus. Lots of things want your attention so we must daily chose to fellowship with Jesus beyond the quickie “help!!!” requests. While these are important & good, our hearts are designed for deep fellowship with Jesus so lets yield to our design & align our values, focus & time to nurture the deeps with Jesus!
Flirting is an interesting concept. It can be a playful and teasing way to interact with people, but from personal experience (back in the day), it became tiring really fast. Flirting felt like a game to me, a relational game that had very high stakes. When I look up “flirt”, it means to act amorously without serious intentions. Sometimes, I think we flirt with God: we go to church, sing love songs to God, dress up and act like we love God, but we don’t have any serious intentions of making a long term commitment (except when there’s some appealing benefit or carrot that keeps us engaged). Flirting means that we get to pretend without any promises, chat without any change and be shallow without any sacrifice. Let’s be serious about our relationship with God, keep our promises, change and make sacrifices all with God’s Help working throughout out daily living 🙂
When I was growing up, I thought obstacle courses were really cool & if the truth be known, I still think they’re cool. I like how they make you use different ways to overcome obstacles – whether it’s climbing a wall, crawling though a pipe, hoping into small platforms, etc, I like all of that stuff (and the TV shows that do the spoofs on obstacle courses are nothing less than hilarious, but I’ll save that for another day). But here’s something to consider: everyday we face various obstacles (big, little, emotional, relational, financial, wisdom, etc). We can perceive these things are obstacles & hardships or we can see them for what they really are: helpful exercises to enable us to be closer & more intimate a God. So let’s celebrate the various obstacle courses in our lives because we are letting them work into our hearts a deeper relationship & trust in God! 🙂
I’m a big tech fan – I like being able to do things with greater efficiency & sometimes effectiveness, with the use of technology. Its also interesting to chat w my kids about life before the cell phone, personal computers, wifi & all of these wonderful inventions.
With that being said, lets be mindful that technology is a tool & not always the solution. For example, even though we can text, Facebook, FaceTime, tweet, etc, there’s nothing that will ever replace the experience of a real face to face conversation. The same holds true in our chats with God – lets not rely on methods, systems or anything that would substitute for the real face to face presence & fellowship that we can have with God! 🙂
I’m laughing as I write this blog because I might possibly be the least prepared person you’ll ever meet. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve found some definite disadvantages to the “leap before you look” approach, having gotten myself into all sorts of challenging situations, especially when you consider all of the variables that can go with any kind of international travel. With all that being said, I’m becoming an ever increasing advocate of being prepared & this also applies to the area of my connection with God.
In my experience, I know that God is altogether gracious with me & far exceeds any of my best efforts & I’m crazy grateful for God’s grace to me everyday! While I totally appreciate God’s grace, I’ve also come to the conclusion that my relationship with God seems to have more depth, gravity and fullness when I maintain a few preparation things:
go to bed early so I can get up early & spend time with God
talk with God throughout the day – more inclusion & less exclusion / isolation
understand that God’s connection with me spans the entire spectrum of uber shallow to depths of which I have yet to explore
fresh forgiveness – super important to keep a clean heart
unified prioritites: seeing all of the various responsibilities that I have within the context of God using them to improve & enhance my relationship with God 🙂
have a prepared mindset that God can do any thing at any time 🙂
This morning I read about Zacheus, the wee little man who climbed up in a syacmore tree, so that he could get a better glimpse of Jesus. In this very brief story, we see that Zacheus was a tax collector & not popular with the general public (maybe like our IRS – smile). Nevertheless, his interest in Jesus compelled him to do something that was out of the ordinary – maybe he was used to doing these kinds of things since he was a wee little man ,)
Whatever was his normal behavior, he caught Jesus’ attention and Jesus was happy to visit Zacheus’ house – the beginning of Zacheus’ transformation. When we genuinely look for & accept Jesus for Who He really is, then our lives change. Our relationship with Jesus is about living a transformational life more than being a religious follower of Jesus 🙂
I was reading earlier this week about Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, when He was under tremendous pressure knowing that He would be betrayed, brutally beaten and crucified in less than 24 hours. In the Garden, He was in an extremely weak place emotionally and He asked 3 of His closest friends to “keep watch with Me.” It seems to me that Jesus wanted some company during this REALLY TOUGH time – unfortunately, His friends fell asleep and weren’t very good company.
But here’s my point, if you want to be close to someone and really connect and know them, you can’t just hang around when everything is smoothy groovy. Deep, genuine and constructive intimacy requires us to be present when the other person is in their most vulnerable and even weakest state. Let’s learn from the failure of Jesus’ friends and do our level best to be present for others when they are in difficult times.
Before I met my husband, I had a few boyfriends who were nice guys. Some of them were really smart, some of them were very funny, some of them were very philosophical and some had some great business skills. They were all unique and great in their own ways. When I met Reece, it was really obvious that we were both very different people, but in a really good way. Of course we had some very essential commonalities, but to this day after more than 18 years of marriage, we are still very distinct and unique individuals. One of the beauties of our relationship is how well we complement each other.
So I’ve been thinking about this idea of complementary natures as it relates to God and us as individuals. It seems to me that we are God’s complement – broken, weak, frail, dysfunctional, insecure, etc and God is our complement. Sometimes I’ve tried to find my complement in various human relationships only to be disappointed and hurt. The only true complement to our true self is the Truine God. They have designed us to be Their complement 🙂
I was reading this morning about how Moses was up on Sinai & how he went into the cloud with God’s presence. I thought this was interesting because I remember how when I was on my honeymoon how we visited a semi-mountain in Seattle that was all fogged in. I remember really well how bizarre it felt to be thoroughly inundated by this cloud. I couldn’t tell if anyone was around me on this mountain & then i heard voices through the cloud that seemed to be just inches away. It was an amazing experience.
Here’s my point: sometimes I think we can miss out on some really amazing experiences w God because we are afraid of the unknown. Moses walked into the cloud & what an incredible relationship was developed between God & him. Maybe Moses was scared of the unknown or maybe not. Whatever the case, Moses had a relationship w God that was nothing short of fantastic & part of that relationship came because he walked into the unknown 🙂
I always want my fellowship with Jesus to be getting deeper & more vibrant. Some days my fellowship with Him seems to be deeper & more vibrant than others. But I’m reminded about my relationships in my husband. We most certainly have a good marriage, but there are lots of days where we just live together doing the daily routines and maintainence of family life. We talk about the daily schedule for our family, our responsibilities, etc. Just because every day in our marriage doesn’t have indescribable bliss and euphoria doesn’t mean that we’re not close or that we don’t have a good marriage. Quite the contrary.
I think this is also true w our relationship with Jesus. I think that some of the greatest fellowship & intimacy can come through including Him throughout the entirety of each day. Jesus loves to be an integral part of our daily living – hence, daily fellowship 🙂