A Productive Wait
As I wind down my job search for a full-time position after completing my MBA, I thought waiting was the worst part of the process but actually not having anything to wait for or hope for is the ultimate worst. That signifies a loss of hope, imagination, creativity and honestly loss of trust in God. God is never done with us. I believe He plants dreams in us through our entire time on Earth that are in His will for us to complete.
“When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (Psalm 139: 15-16)
“In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works everything in conformity with the purpose of his will.” (Ephesians 1: 11)
Contentment through the wait is critical; gratitude for new opportunities, challenges, tests, and ultimately growth is necessary. What is being taught in the wait? What is being refined?
A wait for a job brings opportunities to grow professional skills and catch up with friends and family.
A wait for a relationship brings opportunities for self-discovery and confidence growth.
It’s hard to see it now but waiting is rarely regretted. We may never know the terrors and trials God is helping us evade during an extended wait.
I know God hasn’t failed me yet and I’m sure He never will.
“For nothing is impossible with God.” Luke 1: 37
We all have a track record of how He’s brought us through. We have no reason to stop trusting Him; so, we should remain patient and faithful during our waiting period. Even if no evidence is provided to comfort us. Did Noah receive a drop of rain before the flood? Did Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego feel a cool breeze before entering the fiery furnace?
Stay strong in the faith, future generations are depending on it.
“They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.” Psalm 145: 11-12
In most scenarios tunnel vision may not be the best thing to have but I think it can be a good thing sometimes in our spiritual lives. When you have tunnel vision you can focus on what God is doing in your life and what plans He has for you down the line and not be so focused on other people’s blessings and achievements that you become jealous and sidetracked.
“A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” (Proverbs 14:30)
At times it may be frustrating when you feel like other people are accomplishing more or walking in God’s favor but you must remember God’s timing is perfect and you must trust His plan; He makes no mistakes.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:5)
A beautiful thing about life is that God made us each different and we each have a unique purpose as customized and special as our fingerprints. In the bible was every person named Abraham? Moses? David? Was every person God used a king? The head of their family? Was anyone perfect? Was anyone able to accomplish their purpose without God? The answer to all those questions would be no.
“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things and the things that are not to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God that is our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.'” (1 Corinthians 1: 27-31)
So I encourage you (and myself) to keep blazing ahead. There is purpose in each day that we are on Earth.
“Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.” (Philippians 2:12-13)
“He has saved us and called us to a holy life not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace.” (2 Timothy 1:9)
Bloom Where You're Planted
I’ll admit I’m not the biggest NBA fan. To be honest, I only tune in for the playoffs. I’ve heard of Steph Curry, but I didn’t really know a lot about him. Now that Golden State is making a deep run in the playoffs, I’ve definitely been seeing a lot more of Curry and his family and I’m liking what I’m finding out.
Here’s what he said a few years ago in a Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) article:
“Personally I am just trying to use this stage to share how God has been a blessing to my life and how He can be the same in everyone else’s. God’s given me talents to play basketball for a living, but I still have to work hard to improve every day. I know that in the grand scheme of things, this is just a game that can be taken from me at any moment. But I love that basketball gives me the opportunities to do good things for people and to point them towards the Man who died for our sins on the cross. I know I have a place in heaven waiting for me because of Him, and that’s something no earthly prize or trophy could ever top. There’s more to me than just this jersey I wear, and that’s Christ living inside of me.”
“Each man should remain in the situation which he was in when God called him.” (1 Corinthians 7: 20)
Commentary for this verse says “Often we are so concerned about what we could be doing for God somewhere else that we miss great opportunities right where we are. Every job can become Christian work when you realize that the purpose of your life is to honor, serve, and speak out for Christ. Because God has placed you where you are, look carefully for opportunities to serve him there.”
Here’s a snippet about Curry in a USA Today article from earlier this year:
“As Curry sees it, his game is relatable—duplicable, even—because of both his skill set and stature. Whereas stars such as James (6-8, 250 pounds) and Durant (6-9, 240) have the kinds of measurements and athleticism that most people can never dream of, Curry dazzles in the kind of wonderful way that fools one into thinking this is just an extreme case of practice making perfect. ‘I'm 6-3 and 185 pounds on a good day, so I probably relate more to the casual fan who watches the game and is not super athletic, not this crazy monster of physical stature,’ says Curry.”
I think that’s what makes Curry so great. He’s relatable and humble. He knows his talent comes from God.
“God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things--and the things that are not--to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him…Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.’” (1 Corinthians 1:27-29, 31)
Definitely encouragement for us “average joes.” But is anyone really average?
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.” (Psalm 139:14-15)
We’re all different and have different gifts and abilities.
I think Curry is a great example of how you don’t have to be a pastor to reach people.
“There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men…The body is a unit, though it is made of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.” (1 Corinthians 12: 5-6, 12)
Whether you shoot three-pointers for a living or work in a cubicle, God has you there for a reason. Don’t forget to use your natural abilities to turn your workplace or wherever you go into a ministry field.
Summer, Summer, Summertime!
Summer is officially here (6/21) and I’m going to get excited. Sure I get no two month break like the good old days but hey it’s still summer. Something about summer is so refreshing, and exciting. Maybe it’s the warm weather and opportunity for trips or the idea of a summer romance! hehe Whatever it is I’ve always looked forward to summer and all the season has to offer. With summer comes the idea of lounging around and enjoying lazy days which is cool but I think summer also presents the opportunity to improve ourselves and reflect.
“He who gathers crops in summer is a wise son, but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.” Proverbs 10:5
The seeds we sow in the summer could mean a harvest in the fall. Many churches have revivals during the summer because summer is halfway through the year and we need refreshing. It’s so easy to lose the fervor we once felt coming into the New Year. Looking back on my new year’s post I’m not feeling too bad about my progress halfway into the year. Not going to lie that 30-day journaling challenge fell off pretty quick but I am reading my bible daily and trying to stay in constant conversation with God throughout the day. So I don’t think I’m doing too bad but the important thing for me is to always stay on top of the grind; never lose the hunger for my goals. Something that always motivates me is avoiding the scenario where I’m older, look up, and realize I never pursued my goals/dreams. That “fear” motivates me and pushes me past the laziness and fatigue. I just have faith that if I do my best God will honor that and take care of the rest.
“All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.” Proverbs 14:23
“The Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.” Psalm 84:11
So stay encouraged my friends and I hope you have an awesome summer!
**image courtesy of youtube.com
Passion. Passion. Passion.
It’s something that’s so essential to life. No, I’m not talking about the hot, steamy one you feel for another person. I’m talking about the one that burns inside you for something; the one God places in your heart. A desire to do something because you love it, you’re good at it, and you want to use it to change the world. I believe my passion is writing and hey I just got a job where I’m paid to do it every day. (I’m a News Producer.) How exciting! But I also want to use my passion for God. So that’s why I’m here online and occasionally popping up on your social media feed telling you Jesus Rocks!
I guess five years ago I knew a thing or two about passion. Amazing what God revealed to me as I was healing from a traumatic brain injury.
So, looking back I surmise that I got total peace after I wrote for the Lord without shame. I still wonder about that last line I wrote. I no longer want to marry that person I was referring to but if I look at strictly the words maybe I can take that to say my spirit knows the exact person I’m going to marry? And as for the Jonas Brothers, I’m still holding out!
In conclusion, I would encourage you to find your passion if you don’t know it already. The easiest way I can think to do this is with prayer. God is always listening and eager to strengthen the relationship you have with Him. Go ahead and tell me how it goes!
Hi! I'm Marilyn!