Wednesday, April 15, 2015
pelicans, wet bottoms and self control
A few days ago I took the girls to Pelicans. This is a hot spot in Gastonia from spring all the way until fall. It serves a ton of different flavors of shaved ice and there is almost always a long line. I sat in the car while they stood in line and I watched a family walk up to the picnic tables and for the next few moments I just sat and watched them. The man walked up first and behind him was his wife and two daughters. One looked to be around 3 the other maybe a month old. He had a long beard and faded blue jeans on with a nice button down shirt. It had been raining so he sat down and slid across the bench to dry it for his family. He then took the baby from the mom’s arms and held her so tightly while she cried and never once did he take a bite of his fast melting shaved ice. His daughter then picked up her oversized what looked like to be grape slushy and the top fell off. He jumped up and scooped it back into her cup and wiped her face with his sleeve. I had tears feel my eyes when we drove off because I was reminded of how much that sweet father reminded me of Jesus. His sovereignty blows me away because never once do I go unnoticed even when I can't feel, see or hear Him. It is His attentiveness to my dreams, circumstances and doubt that sustains me when downpours come. That father responded gently to the spills, cries and wet seats. His little girl smiled with every bite and it was as if she felt that it was the very presence of her father that made that slushy trip worth it all. There are times we feel so apathetic, numb and overwhelmed by the big and small things that we face day to day and we forget about the presence of our Creator. We respond with panic and run and then we miss out on what God has for us. We allow our unedited emotions that are triggered by our daily circumstances to determine our choices of walking in obedience and how much we will love God and love His people. We think it is up to us to control the things around us. Self control is one of the fruit of the spirit listed in Galatians. I believe that this is one of the hardest areas to walk in because we like to make everything about us. If we succeed at something we walk in this inflated since of accomplishment. When things crumble we blame ourselves or others. We make everything about US. Self control isn’t about us. Its exercising the power of the holy spirit in us as we choose to make decisions, walk in obedience or let things go that we know isn’t going to glorify God. One of the definitions I found in the Holman bible dictionary regarding self control was this “dispassionate approach to life” which simply means that we aren’t influenced or affected by emotions. What if we allowed the pursuit of God and His love for us to be our only deciding factor when it comes to EVERY area of our lives? A heart that is surrendered is a life that is positioned for God to immeasurably more. When we aren’t exercising self control chaos will always set in and steal our joy, laughter and peace of mind. We desire blessings and a harvest and tend forget about the process of growth in between.
Psalm 126:4-6 (Message)
And now, God, do it again-bring rains to our drought-stricken lives so those who planted their crops in despair will shout hurrahs at the harvest. So those who went off with heavy hearts will come home laughing, armloads of blessing.
Today your drought is not the end result. Your financial ruin is not your end result. Your loneliness is not the end result. Your weight issues are not the end result. Your broken marriage is not the end result. Your past is not the end result. The list could go on and on and you need to hear that whatever is taunting you it is NOT your end result. Your father in heaven is ready to wipe your tears, pick up your mess and bless you beyond measure. Will you choose to let your emotions run the show or will you yield to your Creator that has placed within you the power to do immeasurably MORE in His name? Choose Jesus.