Recently while riding my road bike I was reminded of the power and influence of the wind! When the wind was at my back I was able to go faster with ease, it wasn’t difficult to pedal or breathe. Even hills seemed easier, I just had to adjust my gears a little. Then I went against the wind, EVERYTHING became more challenging, my breathing quickly became labored, I was pedaling harder, yet going slower. As I fought against the wind, I began to think about how similar God is to the wind/air. When it’s still, we take it for granted, we forget it’s there. When we walk or move with it, hills and challenges seem so much easier. You can see things blowing and moving around, but you feel this super natural calm, a peace that others might not understand… Then we go against it and suddenly molehills become mountains! There is no peace, you are so distracted by all the challenges… you are just trying to breathe!
Over this last year, I have desperately wanted to know, that I was going in the direction that God has wanted me to go, in EVERY area of my life. This week I heard someone say, “We have to let go of what we had in mind and open our heart to what God has in mind!”.
The month of January we were challenged at our local church to participate in 30 days of prayer and fasting. We were able to choose what our individual fast looked like. We were also encouraged to spend as much or more time reading our bibles and praying as we did any form of social media, Ouch!
Last week I had the privilege to be a part of our leaders coming together to share with each other, what we heard from God during that time. I wanted to share some of those insights.
- During our prayer time, several of us shared that we were being encouraged to spend more time praising God than we did giving Him a laundry list of our needs or needs of those around us. We serve a good, good Father and we were created to praise Him! We often sound like Bob from the movie “What about Bob”, one of Bob’s famous lines “I need, I need!”
One of the mornings as I started to pray, I had our local Christian radio station on. I was planning on starting with praise, but had already starting to list all my needs when Lauren Daigle’s song “First” came on… “Before I bring my need, I will bring my heart, before I lift my cares, I will lift my arms, I wanna know you, I wanna find you, in every season, in every moment!” I was grateful to be quickly redirected back to starting my prayer time with praise!
- One of the scriptures our Pastor ask us to read during this time was Matthew 6:19-25 (MSG) It talks about, we cannot serve two gods at once. Imagine holding onto the reins of two horses of equal size and age. The two horses get in a tug of war with you in the middle. Only one can win and it will be the one that you have fed and watered the most! One of those horses represents the world and the other is God. We serve a God of love, but we are also told in Exodus, he is a jealous God, we are to put no one or no thing before Him!
- We were all encouraged to “GO!”. We need to spend time in God’s Word, we need to spend time in prayer and we need to spend time with fellow Christians… but then we need to go! In Matthew 28:18-20 Jesus gives the great commission… “get out there and tell others about me (Jesus)!” Spread the Word and please live it out! Jesus often met people’s needs, before he shared the gospel. Matthew West has a song “Do Something”…
I woke up this morning, Saw a world full of trouble now, Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around, So I turned my eyes to Heaven, I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of, People living in poverty, Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me, So, I shook my fist at Heaven, Said, “God, why don’t You do something?” He said, “I did, I created YOU!”
The first time I heard this song, I was in my car and just started to cry. We cannot and should not do everything but we were all created to DO SOMETHING! I’ve heard it said many times, people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care!
I will end with this, the other thing we talked about, was this isn’t about me and it’s not about you… it’s about what God wants to do through each of us! May 2017 be the year we ride with the wind!