A new year. A new month. A new week. A new day. It is time to refresh 0ur thinking, and work on things we feel we can do better.
I want to thank all of you who stop by each day. I hope you find some comfort and thoughts that may help your day.
I have another excerpt from my book, “Signs of Hope: Ways to Survive in an Unfriendly World.” People often get very selfish and try to tell God what they want instead of asking Him. We need to realize that God has the final say in everything. We should pray with a humble heart. We should also remember: Never, ever, give up!
When Praying, Don’t Give God Instructions;
Just Report to Work
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and
not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will pray to me,
and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me
with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord.
I could do well—if God would just listen to me! I would ask that peanut butter not be fattening; that I would never be overweight; that I had a beautiful house right onWaikikiBeachinHawaii. And while you are at it, God, could You help me to always catch the biggest fish when I go fishing?
Pretty silly, huh? People do get that selfish. They always say “give me.” They pray for a promotion, a new car, one more drink before they die, a great life as a beach bum—and the list goes on.
We would love to live the life of a beach bum, but like sand castles on the beach, dreams get washed away because of illness, divorce, death of a spouse, or bankruptcy.
There are no absolutes on this earth. God did not promise us a rose garden. He didn’t even promise us a garden.
What if we simply ask God to use us for His glory? A very short prayer—and God will be smiling when He hears it. You never know what God might have for you to do. You never know if He wants you to lead thousands of people out into the desert. He may want you to attack a giant with a slingshot. He may want you to lead many people to Christ.
He did that with Moses, David and Paul. They were very ordinary people like you and me, but God made them extraordinary people by having them report for duty. They didn’t plan to be the people they turned out to be, but God wanted each of them to fulfill a specific purpose and they responded.
What do you think God wants you to do? Have you ever thought God wanted you to paint like Picasso? Has God wanted you to administer to a school in the jungle, but you thought it was just a dream you kept having? How about becoming an evangelist traveling the world and leading many people to Christ?
Maybe these thoughts seem too far away for you to reach. You should never think that. And God might have completely different—and maybe what you consider “smaller”—plans for you, but He still has a plan for you. Every task has an equal place in God’s view. He planned yours before you were even born. It may be that you are to be a choir member at your church. It could be that you help out at the soup kitchen or usher at your church.
That is what I am doing right now. I am an usher at my church. At first I thought it would be rather dull. You walk people down the aisle and show them to an available seat. Boring! But I have found that being an usher can be a wonderful experience. On more than one occasion someone has tugged on my sleeve when I was passing the offering plate and asked for some help. They wanted someone to pray with them.
I alert what I call “the God squad,” and they have a person waiting to talk to and pray with that person at the end of the service. Each time the person has accepted Christ right on the spot. Pretty cool, huh? I am not just an usher—God is using me as an ambassador for Him.
I spent many years after I retired wondering what God wanted me to do. I was searching behind the wrong doors. It wasn’t behind door number 1 or door number 2; it was behind door number 3! Door number 3 was God telling me, “You can write. You have a talent to tell people about Me.”
As I sat down and began to write, I felt something I had never felt before. It felt as if God were directing my hands to write what He wanted to say. I am sure other Christian writers have had the same feeling.
What happened was that I had finally stopped searching and started praying. I asked God to show me what He wanted me to do for Him. I didn’t tell God what I wanted. I asked Him to show me what He wanted.
How about you? Do you tell God what you need and want, or do you ask Him to show you His plan for your life? You will be amazed what will happen if you are patient. God doesn’t always answer prayer by5 p.m.on the day you pray. He already knows what He wants for you, and He may be preparing you for that.
I was once writing a book about how to be a salesman in a tough world. I look back at my work on that book, and it was horrible! A publisher would be laughing me right out that number 3 door. But God let me work on that horrible book to prepare me for this book He really wanted me to write. It just wasn’t what I thought He wanted me to write. So here I am rambling away, happy as a clam!
Don’t spend your time asking God, for “goodies.” Spend time telling God that you are willing to do whatever He wants you to do. When He does open that door for you, enjoy the ride. You will never have to look back, and you will be serving God in a way that is pleasing to Him.
If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all
without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
Moses went to the mountain and asked God for guidance. God loved Moses for coming to see Him and obey Him. What about you? Do you pray for a new car, or do you go to the mountain and seek what God really wants you to do instead of what you want from God? You will be amazed how many things God will provide for you if you follow His instructions for your life. It may not be that new car, but you will feel that you have really accomplished something that was meaningful and important.
Something to Ponder
Isn’t it funny that when we think we can, we do; but when we think we can’t, we fail?