Master or Servant

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“I’m not your servant, Emma”, my son yelled at his sister. She was having one of those bossy days. “Do this. Don’t do that. Put this up. Would you get me this?”, were flying out of her mouth right and left. Our pride doesn’t like it when people tell us what to do and how to live. We can begin to feel uncomfortable and overtaken when those who don’t share our exact ideals and values start expressing their views.

Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized—whoever. I didn’t take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ—but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I’ve become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn’t just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it! 1 Corinthians 9:19-23 (The Message)

As Christians, we often forget that we aren’t the master. We serve the Master, but we are not Him. Our job, our mission, our calling is to be a servant to all. To share His love, His grace, His mercy and His story. Just because we love those who aren’t Christians, who don’t agree with us politically, who don’t share our same values or morals doesn’t mean we agree with them. It doesn’t mean we are going to start acting like them, change our beliefs, our traditions or lose our faith ~ it just means we love them.  We love them so we strive to meet them where they are and where they have been. We are called to be servants of all ~ because none of us deserves a Master that loves unconditionally and forgives constantly, but by grace have been given Him anyway.

This was on my heart as we approach Christmas. As we hear Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas. As our children learn about Kwanza, Hanukkah and other holiday traditions from around the world. We have no need to  worry about losing Christ as our center as long as WE keep our bearings on Him. As long as the Living Savior is our Light, our Compass and the middle of all we think, do and say. We should unruffle our feathers and as 1 Corinthians 9:19 says “voluntarily become a servant to any and all”  which is our only hope of introducing them to the one and only Master and Creator.

My point is that if we weren’t so worried about being the master ~ we could all be much better servants to our Master. I’m praying God gives me a servant’s heart in this world that constantly tries to tell me I’m the master. Will you join me in this prayer?

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Cloudy with a Chance of Son

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He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under his feet. 2 Samuel 22:10

I had to fly to an event a few weeks ago. It was overcast when we took off. You couldn’t see anything outside the window except for a cloudy foggy mist. As we began our assent the ride got a little bumpy from the turbulence. The fasten seat belt sign was on and I saw some gripping tightly to their arm rests. But, we kept climbing and eventually we broke through the clouds, the sun was shining, the sky was blue and everything was clear. All the clouds were beneath us and the turbulence disappeared. Everyone relaxed.

Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant. 2 Samuel 7:28

What an analogy for each of our walks with Christ. It can be so difficult to trust and wait in the dark and the clouds while we are tested and strengthened.  We can’t see or imagine the glory and good that is going to come out of it, but God promises never to waste our trials. Our God is trustworthy! As we wait with white knuckled grips on our own plans, own desires and fears we are losing sight of God.

I can see now, God, that your decisions are right; your testing has taught me what’s true and right. Oh, love me—and right now!—hold me tight! just the way you promised. Now comfort me so I can live, really live; your revelation is the tune I dance to. Psalm 119:73 MSG

Just because trials, challenges and sins are clouding our vision doesn’t mean the Son isn’t there! He is always close. So close, He need only whisper. It’s in these times we have to trust the most, pray for courage, ask for strength and lean into Him and wait for the Glory. The glory that brings peace, intimacy with the Father, love and learning. Lessons to share with those He will place in our paths to guide, teach and encourage with our own experiences of trial, redemption and grace. Your cloudy days will not be wasted! The Son will shine through the clouds and you will be changed from the inside out with an increased trust, faith, adoration and joy for Christ.

Spiritual Laryngitis

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but God has surely listened and has heard my prayer. Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!Psalm 66:19-20

I had laryngitis last week. It was so frustrating not being able to communicate like I normally do. When I did try to talk, it was hard to understand and I felt bad because it wasn’t helping my throat heal. I wanted to sit at dinner with my husband and kids, ask questions about their day, share mine and laugh. I felt like my hands had been tied, I was feeling left out and on the sidelines. Communication is vital to growing and strengthening relationships. Without it, they fizzle out and die from a lack of intimacy.

I tell you this because it made me realize, once again, how important prayer is. I don’t usually use definitions from Wikipedia, but I loved the first sentence they used to define prayer. It said, “Prayer is an  invocation or act that seeks to activate a rapport with a deity, an object of worship, or a spiritual entity through deliberate communication.” I love that  . . . . prayer activates relationship through  DELIBERATE (on purpose) communication.

I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer. Psalm 17:6

When we aren’t in communication with God everything is more difficult, we can’t feel His presence, we can’t hear His whisper, we aren’t learning from Him, we are on the sidelines. Our two most powerful weapons against the world and Satan are the Bible and prayer. They provide the foundation we need to live out what we love ~ the love of Christ.

Prayer = communication = companionship = a heart that seeks God above all else and strives to live according to His word.

The main cause of spiritual laryngitis is us. God always hears, always listens . . . in fact He waits on us to come to Him and have deliberate communication.  Will you sit down with Him and a cup of hot tea this week?

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:42