Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.
But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me.
So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices.
If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways,
how quickly would I subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes.
You would be fed with the finest wheat,
with honey from the rock I would satisfy you."
~ psalm 81:10-16
"Don't you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves,
you are slaves to the one who you obey ~ whether you are slaves to sin,
which leads to death, or to obedience which leads to righteousness?
But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin,
you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted.
You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.
But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God,
the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.
~ Romans 6: 16- 17, 22
I read these verses yesterday in my early morning quiet time. I was so struck by the TRUTH of these words....these TRUTHS and PROMISES of our Lord Jesus. This past year I had been left to my own devices by the Lord. I truly believe that. He sought me for years to submit to Him in so many areas of my life....Food, Exercise, Time management, Discipline, Study of His Word, Endeavors, Mothering, Wifing, the list goes on and on. Yes, I have done much for the furthering of His kingdom, but not in TRUE submission because I had NEED underlying. I hungered for SIGNIFICANCE, for IDENTITY, for VALIDATION. I was PRIDEFUL in my giftings from the Lord...though that pride lingered beneath the surface, I knew it was there, and though I didn't want it there I let it live there as I ran full speed in pursuit of service to the Lord.
After 9 years of balancing husband, children, home... with Coordinating this and that ministry, a tour, fundraising events, etc. the Lord brought me LOW...He closed the door on me...as unto my little Gracie when I tell her, "That is unacceptable behavior, you need to go and SIT ON YOUR BED until I TELL YOU TO GET UP". I have been sitting on my bed all year. Then, by God's sweet Mercy and Grace, at the start of 2010, He said, "Cheryl, you can get up now." = ) And not only that, but He let me get up armed with the power of His Holy Spirit and knowing that the pride that had been lurking under the surface.. I had sent packing, and the rebellion of "But Lord, I am gifted in THIS area, can I do this or that?" ...lay smashed on the ground. He knew that I was repentant and ready to receive ...the finest wheat, with honey from the rock to satisy me. He knew I had become a slave to Him and abandoned my slavery to...chocolate, coffee, pride, significance, identity.
It has been a long, road, but WHAT AN AWESOME GOD WE SERVE, as we TRULY repent, let go and LISTEN AND OBEY ALL ...let me say that again...ALL that He commands us.
I used to struggle so much in my parenting because I would compromise so much with my Heavenly Father and feel..."Oh, He loves me so much, He will redeem this bad choice I've made". Then I would see my children disobeying and discipline them. I have now reached the truth...as Ted Tripp talks about...teaching our children to stay in the Circle of Safety. Jesus wants HIS CHILDREN...US...to stay in the Circle of Safety and He will POUR into our lives ALL THAT WILL SATISFY US!
As of January the Lord has given me these...
1. Freedom from chocolate, sugar and coffee
2. Exercise at a gym - with childcare..given by my Mom
2. Because of #1 and #2 I am able to "rise while it is still dark" ..5:20 every day and do daily chores and have an EXTENDED time of prayer and Bible Study with my Jesus
3. A clear mind and HUNGER to fully SERVE my FAMILY instead of being constantly pulled to outside service.
4. and Lastly, Gazella Intense...PASSIONATE hunger to be fully in control of our finances. Giving EVERY PENNY a name.
I am EXCITED to get up every day! To see my kitchen floor clean, the sweet sacrifice in saying "No" to purchases I once couldn't live without, to sit and love on my children and hear EVERYTHING they want to share!
The Truth of God's Word...His desire is for His Children to put their confidence and trust in HIM...to walk in His ways and to "lean not to their own understanding".
Our Creator created us and has given us all that we need to live a full ABUNDANT LIFE..if we would only truly submit and let HIS power of His Holy Spirit equip us.
As you can see his sisters' backpacks are still waiting to be put on.
Daniel focuses every day
to be READY for the DAY. A great example!
May we know the JOY of
being Slaves of God and not Slaves of Sin.