Don’t prioritize your agenda over God’s purpose
Good morning, dear friends! Spring came long ago, but now, as summer is nearing, the work of spring is full blown, isn’t it? We’re in the season of relentless work on the farm, it seems. The fields call for attention, the weeds are never ending, the grass always needs cut, new critters being born all around me, and all of this will go on whether I notice or not, won’t it? There are programs for end of the school year, graduations to attend, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthdays to celebrate, ball games, babysitting, and lastly, my time with Jesus. Oh dear, did I just say that?
Shouldn’t my time with the Lord come first, always? Yes, it should! But I’m afraid much too often, the temptation is to get all the work done and then spend time with Jesus. And when that becomes the focus, there’s a price to be paid. I suffer and those around me suffer, as well.
What is our purpose for this life, friend? Do you know? Or are you simply living day by day, going with the flow, or swamped by all of life’s demands? Have you lost your focus on the One who made you for His good purposes? The One who loved you enough to die for you? The One who loves you with an everlasting love? The One whose grace and mercy sustains you day after day? Have you slipped into complacency towards the Jesus you claim to love and serve? Has your own agenda taken precedence over God’s plans for your life? I ask myself these very questions, friend. None of us are exempt from falling into complacency.
May I gently remind you, and myself, that God is never indifferent about anything in our lives. Every attitude, every action has a consequence. We will either find discipline and/or punishment from the Father who loves us too much to let us go, or we’ll find reward for our faithfulness. It ALL matters to Him! In all of our busyness, may we take time to see Jesus in it all!
Last week, I attended the graduation of a dear grandson. How precious to my soul! He attended a Christian school, and just happened to be the only senior this year, so the focus was all on him. Ah, but it wasn’t! It was all on the Lord! It was a time of reflection for my grandson, but also a time of looking to God for the future. The singing was beautiful, as my grandson’s family sang during the ceremony. This grandson is one of many children in his family, and what impressed me was how intently he was listening to the advice of the speaker. My grandson has a big job ahead of him, as the oldest child in his family. He is setting the example for the rest of his siblings. He is, in a sense, modeling Christ to them. The speaker admonished him to not rush into life too fast, but to take time to bless his parents and to nurture his siblings, before he began his own adult life. I loved hearing those thoughts!
As I reflect on all of this today, I want to remind myself that life is short and eternity is long. I need to take a break from the busy agenda of my own making. I need to see Jesus in the midst of it all. I need to ask myself why I do what I do? Am I (are you) running in circles from morning til night and dropping into bed exhausted, but never met with Jesus at all in the course of a day? It WILL have consequences, friend! How can it all change?
Psalm 23, once more, talks about Jesus preparing a table for us in the presence of our enemies. What enemies? Are they physical beings? Or are they monsters of our own making…like work, pleasure, living outside of His will for us? We’ll find no peace and no rest there. No, Jesus prepares a table and He invites us to come and sit there. He invites us to sit quietly, waiting for Him to come…to come and sit with us. He invites us to let all the stress, the work, the worry, the fears, the rejection of others, all of our self-made plans behind, and simply sit with Him. He longs for us to come and find rest for our weary souls; our souls that have wandered far from Home. Jesus invites us to see HIM. He longs for us to find our all in HIM. We’ll find refreshment there and healing for our aching souls. We’ll find the courage to rise up in faith once more, to continue the journey of HIS making for us. We’ll get a new vision of the life we’ve been blessed with. It will come with such zeal to live life His way, instead of our own. We’ll find a new love for others; a deeper love than before. We will have a desire like none other to show the world just who our Jesus is…He is our all. He is our reason for being. He is the Savior of the world and the keeper of our souls. He is our Healer, our Strong Tower, our Shelter in the storms. In Him, we are complete. Nothing more is needed. All our striving to “be” somebody will fall by the wayside and we will find contentment in simply “being” His chosen vessel to a world so in need of Him. We will be healed and whole once again. All that is needed is simply to “Come to the Table”. Come, sit with Jesus. Find all that you need for all of your days. He is there already, waiting on you. Won’t you sit a spell and talk to Jesus?
Zephaniah 3:17 says:” For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty Savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With His love, He will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” The final song of that graduation service for my grandson was “Living Hope”…a beautiful song with a confession…Jesus Christ, my Living Hope. There weren’t many dry eyes in the house, for many reasons…all of which, Jesus already knew. Friend, He already knows all of your circumstances, too. He sits at that table, waiting for you to join Him there. Isn’t it time? Your days are in His hands. Isn’t it time to give them all to Him now? Sobering thoughts this morning. I can’t always write cheerful stories. There is coming a day when we all will give an account for the lives we have lived. Run to Jesus, sit with Him, tell Him all He already knows about you, and find His peace that passes all understanding. Then, once again, the world will see Jesus in you and you will once more find Jesus in all of your days. Just come, and sit at His table!
Debby Renninger is a freelance writer and inspirational speaker. She holds a Bible study in her home in McVeytown, where seeking women are always welcome. She may be reached at (717) 250-7086 for speaking engagements.