I DON’T understand God….(let me clarify) that is, in my heart. I think I understand God in my head to an exceptional level. I have several degrees, one being a Masters of Divinity in Theology so of course I understand God in my head right? But my heart…now that’s a different story. I can read about how much God loves me, but it’s taken at least 8 years of living for Christ before my heart has just started to believe that God might actually really love ME….little ol’ me! What a confession! I think that’s the problem with most Christian people, we know a lot of biblical words, but we don’t overflow of our acquaintance with God’s character until we begin to truly know him. Over time, we learn from Him and in turn, our experience naturally flows out to other people. I think we instinctively sense a degree of authenticity. Our words will have minimal impact or appeal until our heart knows what we claim to believe.
Psalms 100:3 Know and fully recognize with gratitude that the Lord Himself is God; It is He who has made us, not we ourselves [and we are His]. We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. (AMP version)
Yesterday, I pulled into the convenient store parking lot. On my way, I saw a girl sitting by the trash cans listening to her Ipod with a sign that said “need a Christmas miracle”. I thought to myself, that’s what I’ve been saying all month long. That’s what I have been praying. I do need a Christmas miracle because Christmas is only a few weeks away, yet despite my hard work, the money is very tight this year and bills are piling up. As I walked into the store to make my purchase I was thinking about the girl I passed holding the sign, and I thought “that girl has an expensive iPod”, so it made me question whether or not she really needed money. Immediately, God’s voice said, “boy, you have a house and a car and a job, clothes and food, and you’ve been talking about needing a Christmas miracle all month long.” While returning to my car, and thinking about what God had revealed to me about my own judgments, I pulled out the only two bills I had in my pocket, a $1 and a $20 and handed both to the girl with the sign. She pulled her earphones out to engage me and I said to her, “here’s a little something for you but I’m going to pray that God gives you a real Christmas miracle.” She replied, “I will also pray you receive your Christmas Miracle too”. Then she gave me the biggest, sincerest “real” hug that I’ve had in a long time. How did she know?
Breadcrumb, catch it – Hebrews 13:2, Do not forgot to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without knowing it.
It’s almost 11pm at night and I just finished sewing up an Ugly Christmas Sweater for my daughter’s last day at school before her winter break. Tomorrow I will likely sew another for my son’s church youth group’s Christmas party. All the sewing I’ve done lately reminds me of the sacrifices my mother use to make when and I was young and she was still alive; the kind that only an adult whose years are passing and with school age children in the home can truly appreciate. She would stay up all hours of the night as the house hummed of the sewing machine with her foot tapping the pedal. My mother sacrificially served numerous groups and churches she was a part of, throwing every extra moment she could to sew for the Choir’s Christmas costumes or her workplace team’s latest event in order to serve her friends. I often think it was her attempt to please God, and in turn, it would make her all too deprived life a bit more happy and festive. I find myself thinking this way too. Jesus says, “the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.” (Luke 22:27-28) As a mother of 5, I don’t know how my momma found the time to serve as much as she did at times but the next time you are feeling exhausted for serving the people who God put in your life, remember that Jesus understands and must be proud of our serving hands.
Luke 22:27-28 “the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.”