"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened."
Belief...how do I live out belief? Do I pray believing that the Lord will answer me? Or do I pray because that's just what you do and then am I surprised when a prayer is answered? Father help me in my unbelief! I want to pray in the spirit of belief. In faith, believing that You will answer but knowing that Your answer might not be the answer that I want. To pray with open hands and a open spirit, "Not my will but Yours be done Father God". What a beautiful way of spending time with my Savior...in speaking and in silence, sharing my turmoil and resting in His sovereignty, in quiet places and in the business of life. To pray in a spirit of joy, peace, patience, love, thankfulness, giving, trust, openness. To give all over to my Father and to not carry around the burden of prayers I feel have gone unanswered, but to acknowledge that His ways are higher than my ways and to be grateful that He cares for every prayer, spoken and unspoken.
"Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' Then the righteous will answer Him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry, and feed You, or thirst, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invited You in, or naked, and clothes You?' The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'"
What a generous heart described in these verses above! What a high calling and yet one I am not expected to do on my own. I long to give in a manor that pleases and gives glory to my Father, and yet when I commit to a spirit of generosity I find that my selfish side just about boils over! Why am I selfish? Why does that ugly voice enter my head "Oh but you could spend that time watching a movie and catching up on sleep rather than investing your time in others." "Why are you giving away all those cookies that just made the house smell so good? You should keep more for yourself." "You could buy yourself a new scarf with that money instead of putting it in the offering plate." And the list could go on and on! Why do my selfish desires rear their ugly head at the most inopportune times?! Because I view this life as mine...and it's not. Because I see life filled with "my time, my work, my money, etc." when it's really filled with "God's time, God's work, and God's money, etc." This life is a God given gift, will I treat it as such? Will I start the day in a spirit of thankfulness for another day that He has given me? With eyes that are always watching for His work, His will, His ways, His character? Will I daily give over the rights I feel I have and open up myself to whatever He has in store, rather than planning out "my" day according to my desires and needs? Will I trust that He knows my needs, and yet at the same time that He is big enough to overcome them?
Jesus I offer up today, grant me eyes to see You, ears to hear You, and strength to follow You. Thank You for the opportunity to live this life that You have given me. Thank You for walking with me and never leaving me to figure things out on my own even when I forsake you and try to live this life on my own. Thank You for Your grace that is daily given, for Your forgiveness that is always waiting for repentance, for Your love that is never failing, for Your word that is living and breathing and the Holy Spirit who lives inside of me and guides me.
Thank you Lord...
for energy given when eyelids are heavy.
for hot water and bubbles in sink to clean dirty dishes.
for floors in need of mopping from muddy winter boots.
that You can overcome my selfish desires.
for Your spirit working in the midst of my struggling.