Sometimes, it’s almost mind-boggling to think how, throughout the year before, we long for Christmas to get here. We dream of it, talk about it, plan for it and prepare so many things to perfectly progress for the precise moment it will arrive, and then, the day itself seems to pass almost as quickly as it arrives.
Yet, for those of us who claim to be Christians, it does make me wonder, do we do the same for the coming of our eternal King?
For He IS coming, and we will be with Him for so much longer than Christmas Day will ever have been.
Are we getting ready?
And are we urging others to be ready?
Just as we’ve asked, “Do you have your tree up?” Maybe we should also ask, “ Do you have your heart ready?”
Maybe just as we’ve asked, “Do you have all your presents bought?” We should also ask, “Did you know, your soul has already been purchased with a price?”
Just as we inquire, “Are your family members coming?” Maybe we follow that with, “Are they headed toward heaven as well?”
Because if we are ready for all the Christmases we could ever live through, but we miss the one event that only happens once in a lifetime, we will regret it forever.
If we have all the presents in the world bought and perfectly wrapped, yet we miss the very present that has been provided to us for free, then in comparison, all the rest is just trash.
And if we enjoy company with our family and friends during the season, but we fail to show them the way to Christ, all those seasons will fade for the eternity in which we will miss them.
Let us not lose a moment.
Let us not miss an opportunity.
Let us never ignore the Hope.
Our time is too short, and their lives are too precious to lose…and so are ours.
Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.
Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God.
It’s the second day of October, and I’m over here goal setting. I know it’s not the first of the year, and well, those “New Years Resolutions” don’t usually pan out anyway.
I’m just going to make a commitment here, kind of for accountability. Of course, it’ll be more for my own accountability, as those of you reading don’t usually “get on to me” anyway (lol. 😉😂), regardless, I’m going to put it out there. … of course, now that I’ve said that, there are some of you contemplating the task. Haha!
As I talked to a longtime friend yesterday, I was reminded of somethings that I’ve allowed to fall to the wayside of my life. And I am committing now to try to blog at least 2x a week (and to increase that after the first of the year). I’ve been SO slack the last two years…
Covid kind of turned my life upside down a bit, not because of the sickness nor the shutdowns, as Georgia has remained pretty open the whole time, but rather because our lives went into a bit of overdrive for a season. Our church remained as wide open as we could, in various stages, and we tried to get to all our people via internet, phone calls, drive-in services, in house services, etc. So, my “job” overran much of my writing space, and we just started doing what we needed to do to keep our people connected and to know we still loved and cared for them even if they couldn’t get to church.
Then, this year, when everyone hoped to “return to normal,” things didn’t seem to slow down one bit! Early in the year, we had a major staff transition, and much of that “work load” fell to me until the new staff member had transitioned. And so now, about 6 months later, things are lightening just a bit. Whew! I’m so thankful! And all of this was combined with continued Covid issues, confusion from the media on all fronts, continued families going through things and really, this part has probably been amplified on various levels because of Covid. … Side note here: I HATE Covid. Just wanted to make that clear.
I told someone the other day, I am just a bit weary. And it’s quite difficult to explain, because it’s not in anyway that I want to quit, or even change what we are doing!! I truly, absolutely LOVE what we do, where we are, and who we minister to (and really, that statement should be reversed: I love the people, the town, the job, and I’m so thankful God has placed us here.)
This might sound cliche, but it’s the truth. I consider this a high honor and blessing because there are so many pastors who are “running out of steam” and just quitting the ministry all together. That just breaks my heart, both for them and the people who followed them. When you’re called to ministry, it’s never easy. Really and truly, it’s not supposed to be. It’s a cross, but when you’re called, and you’re giving it daily to Christ, it shouldn’t be a weight that burns you out. But I digress, that’s a sermon for another day.
I do believe the “reprieve” is coming, and we’ve just got to hold on. Because it may not be until Jesus calls us home; however, in the meanwhile, we’ve got to find those “breathing moments” in the midst of the chaos. And I believe, THIS is where my weariness has come creeping in… Somewhere between the day to day grind, the grief of losing my father, the twisted up vacation we had this year (that really amounted to two days snatched here and there; although, we were gone a week), the various ministry trips, and truthfully, the lack of writing, has all equated to my feelings of fatigue.
Well, not that you needed all of that explanation, but I suppose, I’m writing it for my own benefit and remembrance… and maybe a bit of therapy. Haha!! … I know I desperately need to get back after it, my writing, if for no other reason but for my own sense of solitude and peace. Writing brings a sense of calm to my heart and a discipline to my soul, and it helps me to fall into a cadence of thinking that is needed in my life.
So, this is why today, October 2, 2021, I am making a resolution for change. It might not seem like much to someone whose writing doesn’t bring them joy, peace and strength, but for me, it’s like knowing that walking will help your overall heart health and not doing it means certain death. It’s either make the change immediately or slowly walk the downward slope toward dying. I choose LIFE … and life more abundantly!!
…And since I wrote yesterday, that’s two blogs down this week. Woohoo! Haha! 😂 Thanks for reading and indulging my New Fall Resolution.
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
*UPDATE 10/17/21: I am adjusting this goal just by 1. After a couple of weeks, I am realizing that 3x – week may have been a bit too lofty of a goal after such a long stint of none and then once a month in the past year or less. So, as of now, I am adjusting to 2x a week, and I don’t think that’s unrealistic. I will strive to increase this in 3-6months. 😉
It’s been a bit since I sat down to write, and my fingers have aches for the pen and paper (or in this case, the keys of the keyboard). It seems life has become a bit of a whirlwind, and other things take priority over the enjoyment of my blogging right now. It kind of makes me sad, but more, I’d have to admit it makes me frustrated.
Writing is when my mind relaxes and my soul pours out to become a settled peace. Taking pen to paper, or even my fingertips to the keys, has a stabilizing, relaxing effect to my mind.
My thoughts can be swirling, tossing and turning, and I will pick up my pen and journal and begin writing until my heart is content. Sometimes, that only needs to be a half hour, yet, at other times, I might linger for hours, but when it has all been spent, my head is clear, and my breathing steady.
I do believer I may have to write for my own sanity, at least, for my own tranquility. Yet, these writings have to mean something as well.
They cannot be frivolous words written in a frantic that have no meaning, no strength. They have to come from deep in the soul, and first and foremost, they must be a nod to my Creator.
For after all, He placed the desire in my heart. He buried the longing deep within the recesses of my mind, and when I start penning, He is always there, as if my writing becomes a one-on-one conversation to His heart.
So today, I say, “Thank You.” Thank you to my Creator for breath, and life and grace. Thank you for joy, and peace and hope. All the things with which You overwhelm my life.
And thank You for this longing, this unquenchable desire to send You a love letter from the depths of my being. For without You, I am nothing.
But with You, I can conquer any fear, I can scale any mountain, I can slay any giant. For You within me are a mighty force with which to be reckoned. Thank You! ❤️
I will cry to God Most High, Who accomplishes all things on my behalf [for He completes my purpose in His plan].
Psalm 47:2 (AMP)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
When the winds blow harder, the sails fill up; yet, the boat doesn’t crack.
When the waves threaten to burst forth, the tiller is set; yet, the keel doesn’t buckle.
When the thunder rolls and the rains pour in, the sails don’t shatter, the mast never weakens.
When the storms of life threaten to overtake the heart of your ship, make sure your anchor is secure.
There is only One who can carry you through the hardships, the hurricanes and even the shipwrecks.
He is the Only One who is an eternal safe harbor.
Penned – MG – 4/16/20
“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies. The pangs of death surrounded me, And the floods of ungodliness made me afraid. The sorrows of Sheol surrounded me; The snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called upon the Lord, And cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, And my cry came before Him, even to His ears.” Psalm 18:2-6