Have I mentioned that I am loving the E100 Challenge? When we first began, I signed up for the military spouse edition. It sends me a daily email with the scripture, reflections, and a prayer. In my busy life, it helps me stay in God's word each day. I can read it from my cell phone while waiting in the car, on my iPad during the school day, or I can listen to it from the web page or my audio Bible while I am working.
When I read day 93, 1Peter 1:14-15 (GNT) really stuck out at me.
Be obedient to God, and do not allow your lives to be shaped by those desires you had when you were still ignorant. Instead, be holy in all that you do, just as God who called you is holy.
Let's take a look at these two verses.
First, BE OBEDIENT TO GOD. Just as we talked about in Sunday school yesterday, that can be so hard, especially if what God is wanting us do is not what fits in "our plans." Sometimes what He calls us to do isn't easy, or pretty. Regardless, we are commanded to be obedient. My friend Caroline and I were talking about being away from a spouse for a long period of time due to a job, and she asked, "You wouldn't want that would you?" No, I wouldn't. But if that is what God calls for, then I must be obedient. Jeff and I have been away from each other due to his civilian job and his army job. That's just what God has called us to do. So you learn to be obedient. You learn to lean on God and let Him lead and guide you and your decisions.
Second, DO NOT ALLOW YOUR LIVES TO BE SHAPED BY THOSE DESIRES YOU HAD WHEN YOU WERE STILL IGNORANT. As Christians, we are to be like Christ. When we surrendered our lives to Him, we gained a new understanding. We were to put away the old and live according to the will of God, according to His word. When we were still ignorant, it is like being a child; we really didn't understand or know better so the things we did were sinful and against God. But now we do know better. We have the Holy Spirit that lives within us. We are to listen to the Spirit. We are to recognize the things that can shape our lives, that can pull us from living like Christ.
So, that takes us to the third thing, INSTEAD, BE HOLY IN ALL THAT YOU DO, JUST AS GOD WHO CALLED YOU IS HOLY. You see, if we are obedient and we do stay clear of desires of the flesh, then we can live holy (as holy as we can here on earth). God has called us to a higher purpose: to glorify Him in all we do. We should live our lives as a witness to the love of God, to His Son Jesus Christ. We should live so that people we see everyday and those who are strangers know that we are set apart, not better, just set apart. We are sinners. We are no better than anyone else just because we are Christians. We are just saved from our sins, forgiven. We have a purpose. We have a knowledge that others don't. We have peace, hope, and abundant joy.
I know that I am not always the best wife, mom, teacher, daughter, friend, or me that I can be. I let life get to me. I get tired and bogged down. I lose my temper. I don't always let those I love know how much I love them. I try to find balance, hence the lack of posting on this blog. I made a promise to God that this blog would be used for His glory. That I would share with you, the world, what He is doing in my life. I would share the weak branches He breaks away, and the fruit He allows to grow.
Through spending time with the Lord, I am becoming more obedient to what He wants in my life. I am controlling my temper better. I am thinking before reacting. I am hopefully showing my love for others more. He has definitely led me to places where I never expected to be: leading Bible studies, being an army wife, being a leader in my church and school. He has seen me through difficult times whether physical, financial, or emotional. God is my rock. He is my everything. As Carson put it so well last night, "Mama, God made everything. If God wasnt' real, nothing would be real. There would be nothing."
As you journey through this week, Holy Week, I pray that you find a peace that surpasses understanding. I hope that you grow in your relationship with the Lord. If you don't know Jesus Christ, I pray that He will reveal Himself to you.
Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Because of His great mercy He gave us new life by raising Jesus Christ from death. This fills us with a living hope...