Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Filling the Jar

Try this sometime. Take a jar...not just a small mason jar, take a big jar and fill it with big, fist size rocks. Is the jar full? Then take a bucket of gravel and pour it into the jar. Shake the jar so the gravel has time to seep in between the rocks. Then ask, is the jar full. Take a bucket of sand and pour it into the jar. Shake it so the sand has a chance to fall in between the rocks and the gravel. Now is the jar full? Now take a pitcher of water and pour it in. Allow the water to seep in between the rocks, gravel, and sand. Now is the jar full? So what is the point of this little illustration...
Look at your jar...your life. God has put so many things in your life to make you full. He has put people in your life to mold, guide, and love you. He has given you gifts and talents to use to serve His kingdom. He has given you opportunities for rest. He has given you food and shelter. He has given you the opportunity to worship. All things in your life, are given by God. Each item fills you up. Some items are big...family, work, worship. Some items might be smaller, but each one...not matter how big, makes you who you are...they fill you...fill your jar. If one item is missing, the jar isn't full...you aren't complete. God continues to put the things in your life to make you full...full of His glory. Full of His love! Is your jar full? What is God adding to it? Why not allow Him to fill it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Have Patience...It Is All God's Plan

As my wife can attest, I haven't been the most patient driver. If once in traffic, a different lane is moving faster than the one I'm in, I move over to it. If the speed limit is 50, I expect people to go 50. I get frustrated when I hit every red light. But now living in Michigan for three years, I've learned a little more patience. I've learned that in construction traffic, staying in your lane might actually be better. I've learned that sometimes a car driving slower than speed limit actually can help you see that deer about ready to dart across the road. Red lights! I've never figured out why lights aren't timed to keep traffic moving. So now I just expect to be stopped. Having patience while driving, well, I'm getting better at it.
The same is true in our walk with God. God has a plan for all of us. He knows what will happen with life situations. He knows where we will be. He knows what ministry and in what capacity we will serve Him. He knows our future. He knows and He will reveal it according to His time. It is our job to have patience. It is our job to trust in His plan. It isn't easy. We are so impatient...we want the answer and NOW! But "now" might not be what God has in store. We must have patience. John Waller's song "While I'm Waiting" shares this very thing. Waiting isn't easy. But when God's plan is revealed, you will know and you will thrive doing His will.

You can see the video of John Waller's song "While I'm Waiting" by following the link on Living Word's website at www.livword.net

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Make In Me

As many of you know, I am starting to write my own music. It is a joy when a phrase or melody comes to mind. But recently, I told myself that I was going to write another ballad. Yes, another ballad. To write a ballad about something so spiritually strong that people are going to say to themselves, "yes, that song was speaking to me". That is what I had in mind...but that wasn't what God had in mind. For many months, I struggled. I couldn't come up with a good line, catch phrase, topic, melody...nothing clicked. Nothing worked. I looked at the world and thought of everything happening there. Still nothing clicked. I spent a lot of time in scripture, reading passage after passage thinking that something would hit me...nothing clicked. I would do some random singing and playing of chord progressions on the piano...nothing clicked. Nothing...I was trying way too hard. I wanted to create another song so bad, that I tried way too hard. Then...Saturday came. Saturday, May 8th. Nothing special about this day...but it was special to God. As I was working putting some final touches on the worship team set up. The words and melody came. You see, I wanted to write the song before. I wanted it to come from my own thoughts, but God had other plans. My focus was on me, not Him...when I changed that focus, then the song came. "Work In Me" is a prayer. A prayer to help us remember that all we are...our whole life is His. It is a prayer for us to listen to His call, His will and then...be His servant. "Work In Me"...Your desire, O Lord. Lord, your servant is here.

You can hear a copy of "Work In Me" at www.livword.net at the bottom of the main page.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Ice Cream Base

I know ice cream. I learned all about the art of ice cream when I worked part-time at an ice cream shop in Indiana. I learned about the ice cream flavors. I learned the proper way to scoop ice cream, which most people still do wrong. I learned the art of creating shakes, floats, cakes, pies...if it was about ice cream, I knew how to make it. It was important that you made things right. It was very important when it comes to an ice cream sundae. You could use any ice cream and any toppings, but the most important thing you had to learn was to create a base. You needed a solid base of ice cream so that everything else could be placed on it to build the perfect sundae. A solid base...vital for a great sundae.
Our faith needs this solid base also. Without it, life will fall. There are so many things that are piled on us...our jobs, school, relationships...the list of things continues to grow and grow. We need that solid base so we can handle these things. Scripture is very clear. It tells us that Christ is that solid rock...that solid base to build our life on. Without it, things will fall. Things will sink. Things will overtake us. We have so many opportunities to build and strength our base...our faith in God. Worship, Bible study, prayer, singing...all these things help build a stronger base. A stronger base helps when things get tough. A stronger base holds those things up, not allowing things to topple down. When we are built on Him, a stronger base helps us handle things in life.