Don’t Miss the Feast

hugs

And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

“Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up

“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.” – Luke 12:16-21

I am so good at talking myself out of doing something I should. I have a young friend who recently lost a close relative. I hadn’t seen her in about a year and wondered if it would matter if I was there. The visitation was quite a distance, my schedule was full, my gas tank low, my dog would be waiting in the kennel and so on. There was also a traffic jam from an accident along the way which added a good chunk of time to the commute. But I was determined to follow God’s leading no matter how misguided I thought it was.

I am so glad I went. I can now see why God wanted me to go. She needed to hear and experience God’s love for her. As we hugged, I thanked God for the opportunity to express love in a real way and feel I would have missed something huge if I had listened to my negative thoughts and didn’t go.

It’s all about focus. If we look at only the peanut butter and jelly of our own circumstances and try to make things better for us, we will miss the feast God has planned for us.

Prayer: Lord, I thank you for the opportunities you give me each day to express your love in a real way. I pray that I follow your leading and feast at your table. Amen

Faith Tip: Today when opportunities come up to show God’s love to someone, turn off the negative thoughts of why you shouldn’t and go forth in faith knowing God has set a special place just for you at the table.

Responding to Suffering

A homeless man in Paris

Image via Wikipedia

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.

“The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’

But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.’” – Luke 16:19-25

I admit that when I see people suffering in some way, I don’t always know what to do. At times, it can seem overwhelming for in this world there is a lot of evidence of brokenness. My heart goes out to those that hurt and I attempt to do something. I believe these verses are talking about the condition of our heart and not what we are able to do.

Jesus said we would always have the poor with us. How our heart responds to needs makes the difference, but we need to remember that we can’t do it all. God doesn’t want us to take on everything. That’s why he gave everyone a special call on their life. Listening carefully to the Spirit is needed at all times.

Prayer: Lord, I pray that I may be moved to respond where you call me to do so. I thank you that you give me the ability and enable me with your power to complete the task assigned. Amen

Faith Tip: Do you know someone in need of comfort today? Pray to God to give you direction and discernment.

It will be worth the wait

Lots of POPs

Image by etgeek (Eric) via Flickr

“But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.””  (Luke 1:30-31)

I remember as a child the commercial that asked the question, “How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop?” The wise old owl took three licks and crunched into it. The owl couldn’t wait until the center came later for he wanted the center now. But after he got to the center, it was done. No more pleasure from that sucker. That’s how it is with things of this world. We want things now, but once we get them the thrill is gone after awhile.

The above verses we have heard again and again, but there is so much we can take away from them. I think the best part of these verses is at the end. “…his kingdom will never end,” which shows us that the pleasure of being with God will last forever—not just a temporary timeframe after the kingdom comes. But it’s hard to wait. How many years does it take for Jesus’ kingdom to come? God knows exactly when, and we can be sure that it is the perfect time. We must be patient and continue to walk in God’s ways. The journey will be well worth it.

Prayer: Lord, I am anxious for your return, but know that your timing is perfect. Help me to be the woman of God you have designed. Your plan is complete and I just need to walk in it. Amen

Faith tip: What are you anxious for today? Is it something that will be with you forever, or temporary? Be excited for what God is doing in your life for the eternal.