September 26, 2008

Be a Reflector

As we were driving home after dark the other night, my eyes became keenly aware of the many reflectors along the road side. On bikes, mailboxes, trailers, and marking driveways, bridges, signs, roadside poles. They just continually "lit up" our journey home. And the Lord reminded me I am to be a reflector. A reflector has no power to give light, it simply reflects it. In the day time, they don't catch our eye. But in the darkness they seem to shine. I am a born-again believer in Christ Jesus. And it is my duty to reflect Him, the Light, in this world of darkness. To reflect His love, His truth, His mercy, His forgiveness, His grace, His holiness. That is an awesome and overwhelming responsibility. Yet the Light doesn't come from me, I just reflect it. Yet no Light, means no reflection. How often do I try to do something yet fail, because I haven't turned to the Lord to do it? Him through me......I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me.........Through Him, I can. Through Him I can believe in the impossible. But........if I am not turned toward Christ Jesus, there is no reflection, just empty works that may seem to be good but fall so far short of their potential.

And another deep thought was this, the reflectors where there all the way home.

I am a reflector not just for Christ to the lost world, but to other believers. At my husband's funeral, many spoke words that revealed he had been a reflector to them in this world. Who have encouraged me on this journey of life? And who is farther down the road who will encourage me home? Am I being an encourager to my brethren? And not just to the weary in well doing, but also those that have stumbled and turned their back on God? And I think about when I whine about tough times that surround me with thick blackness, isn't that when a reflector reflects the Light best?

Ten years ago I was saved and I humbly say, Lord, I have much to learn.

September 10, 2008

Greatly Beloved

Sometimes when I read my Bible, certain things really grab me and a truth just hits me. Other times something intrigues me and I just have to dig into it more and find the "treasure." This week I was intrigued. "O man, greatly beloved" Who are these words spoken to and by whom?

David? Jesus? Moses? Paul? Actually these loving words were spoken to Daniel by an angel of God. What child doesn't like being told he is loved. We all long for that outpouring of affection from our parents, spouse, family and friends. And ultimately from our Creator. But to be greatly loved.......this speaks of being held especially dear. So I began to seek why Daniel was so greatly loved. What qualities did he have that endeared him so much to God? I began to dig and I will be meditating on what God showed me for awhile:

Separated- he was set apart when he was taken captive because of being without blemish; As a born-again believer, aren't I called to be set apart from this world? To be unspotted?

Knowledgeable-smart kid before taken captive about science, stars, and such; Am I seeking to grow in knowledge?

Refused to defile himself-by eating the king's meat and drinking his wine; Am I willing to deny myself the "pleasures" of this world and seek contentment in what God says is best for me?

Teachable-Daniel was a great student who excelled, and greatly impressed the king; Am I remaining teachable to the Spirit of Truth? And making changes in my life, even when it stretches me way outside my comfort zone?

Retained his true identity-his name is changed, but through out scripture he is still known as Daniel; Do I remember who I am in Christ?

Gave God the glory- said God, not himself, gave interpretation of dreams; Do I take credit for God's handiwork or do I give credit to the Master?

Unashamed- Daniel never hides that he is a man of God, he doesn't "sugar coat" the dream interpretations, his enemies well knew Daniel's prayer warrior habits; Do I tried to hide who my Heavenly Father is or that I am His child?

Uncompromising- not one sip or bite, he did not skipped prayer to save his life; Am I compromising my convictions or am I willing to lose my life for them?

Believed in his God-this is the scriptural reason for his protection in lion's den! Am I doubtiing or believing in my God?

Protected-because of his faith in God; Am I fearful of what man can do to me or feel protected no matter what the outcome may be?

Feared the Lord-he trembled at visions, fell on face, couldn't speak; Do I tremble at the thought of standing before Him someday soon?

Understood spiritual warfare-The angel expected Daniel to understand the reason for his delay and that he had to return to battle, Daniel doesn't seem surprised by this info; Do I realize that the spiritual world is more real than the world my eyes see?

Man of prayer and fasting-Daniel fasted and sought God diligently when problems arose; Do I seek the Lord diligently for myself or others I know? Am I coupling my intense prayers with fasting?

Faithful-never hear that there was a bad ending to Daniel's life; Am I on guard against sin so that my life witness isn't tarnished by my sins later in life?

September 03, 2008

Remembered Again

A week ago my sons and I were eating out at DQ. We got there before the evening rush and sat in the back. As we ate more and more people began filling in. I knew none of them and wondered how many of them knew my husband. Then I saw an adorable little girl in a beautiful flowered dress bounce through the crowd holding on to her daddy's hand. I smiled and in my mind said, Cherish your daddy, little one. Much later, that same little girl came bouncing up to us with her daddy. And it turned out her daddy was an old classmate of mine. He asked how we were doing and I usually dread answering this. It is a loaded question that most people don't really want to know the answer to. But as I searched his face for how best to answer memories flashed through my mind. Just days after my husband's death his wife and him sent us a card and I learned that they had recently had a precious baby die. This brother-in-Christ knew my companion Grief and so I answered with a heavy sigh and held back tears that we were doing alright and that God was good. Nodding his head he replied, Yes He is. We chatted briefly, his little girl and my boys, then right before they left he handed me a $20 bill! I tried to give it back saying we didn't need it, but he wouldn't listen and told me to just thank God and keep remembering God is good. I fought to hold back the tears as we finished and headed out to the van. It wasn't so much my old classmate's actions that touched my heart so. It was the God I knew who prompted his heart that touched my heart so. God knew how I felt so forgotten. How I longed not to be the single parent balancing three boys in a restaurant. Once again, He was showing me.......I remember you. You see, we were gearing up to face the 3rd family reunion without my husband. And that just involves more emotions than words can explain. We didn't need the money, but my boys and I need a reminder that we were not alone. Jesus knows our hearts and cares so much about us. I don't think I will ever spend that $20, but I have tucked in somewhere were I will see it often as a reminder of God's love and watch care over us. "Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. Behold, I have graven thee upon the the palms of my hands....." Isaiah 49:15-16