My last week brought me many opportunities to grow in the Lord. I actually don't mind the Lord speaking to my heart. It's in these times I feel so connected to Him and so thankful I'm listening and hearing His voice.
Since June we have been blessed to host many families through AirBNB in our church house. We have blessed many families with our upstairs and a few downstairs. It wasn't always full but enough to help with the church expenses since the pandemic has changed the whole dynamics of our services. The church family watch from home more and the giving isn't the same. The house was our hidden treasure that blessed families and blessed the ministry. Then this week both of the December families cancelled since the church is in a Covid code red area. Most of you already know how I feel about all the overreach with the virus and it hit home a little closer this week. Many, many, many families do not feel the financial hit of the virus and I'm so thankful. But many, many, many have had their financial world changed - especially the small businesses. I got a bit down, discouraged and in fear. When will all this end? I have no fear of the virus but the side effects of it can be so much worse for people. So what do you think the Lord told me about my situation? Same thing He told me with Summer. It's His AirBNB, His dog and He will take care of the finances so what am I concerned about?
My answer was. "I don't know - uncertainty?" I know I was trying to figure out how to make the finances stretch. But then He said it wasn't my business to figure it out but to trust Him to take care of it. Guess I thought I need to help Him:(. I'm not speaking negatively about the ministries finances as the Lord always takes care of things. We do continue to speak life but I won't deny that things have changed and it is pretty tough at times. I know we have so much seed in the ground that our harvest is over flowing. But we all have these challenging times and this is when we need to know that we hear His voice.
"Rise up in splendor and be radiant, for your light has dawned, and Yahweh's
glory now streams from you! Lift up your eyes higher! Look all around you and
believe, for your sons are returning from far away and your daughters are being tenderly carried home. Watch as they all gather together, eager to come back to you!
Then you will understand and be radiant. Your heart will be thrilled and swell with joy. The fullness of the sea will flow to you and the wealth of the nations will be transferred to you!" Isaiah 60: 1, 4-5
"Lift up your eyes higher! Look all around you and believe," When trials come and you wonder what you are going to do - Lift up your eyes higher! I've talked about lift up your eyes - look up but this says Lift up your eyes higher! I realized I was acting like a victim. The mess we have lived in for the last 9 months, the fears and mandates that were spoken. People don't want to come to a church service right now or stay at the AirBNB. Then there was the Summer Dog accident that has changed a few things in our life for a couple months. Life has been different but we still have so much to be thankful for. I am to rise up! I need to stop limiting God! Now we have a beautiful home for our daughter and family from Wyoming and Montana to stay at Christmas instead of crowding in here. What a joy! He is faithful and watches over us!
"Who are these who soar like clouds, flying like doves into their portals?" Isaiah 60:8
Lift up your eyes higher! Soar like clouds and fly like doves. Doves only focus on one
thing at a time. We are to be like them and focus on Him alone. We are to fly high above, focus our eyes high above all the troubles, worldly issues, sickness, fear, money issues, election deceptions. We are to rise up in splendor and be radiant! The world is not our home. Our home is above the mess with Him. Our focus is faith. In Him we are unstoppable and glorious! He says to be more aware of what is happening in me than what is going on around me. I will take that word! When things look difficult I will trust Him to take care of it
"Yes, feast on all the treasures of the heavenly realm and fill your thoughts with heavenly realities, and not with the distractions of the natural realm." Colossians 3:2
What the Lord showed me early in the week when other distractions were trying to get me down was to CELEBRATE! He said to make this month the greatest month of 2020!
Here's a few things He said we could do.
* Daily read the story of Christmas in different translations, different books of the Word. Read them as a family. Read them to your children. Don't just put on a movie for your children to learn from - let them also learn form you!
* Everyday find someone special to bless. It's not the same as usual so let the Lord give you ideas of who needs an encouraging word and how you can bless that person. Do this daily.
* Take time to send cards via mail, internet or through a call. Everyone will look at these connections as precious gifts.
* Declare His Word always and pray for one another and our country always! Speak life for our nation and that evil cannot prevail!
* Take communion everyday remembering the reason He came to earth was to give His life for us! Never forget all He has given you, me, us through His death, burial and resurrection.
* Watch Christmas movies together and watch The Chosen. Can't stay down and watch that!
* Find special ways to celebrate Him since there aren't parties to go to. Party with Him at home! Sing! Dance! Rejoice! Enjoy HIM!
* Don't stress. This can be the greatest time of the year. We have something to celebrate! We have a reason to get out of bed! We have hope, love and joy!!
* Put up more lights! Light up the darkness. His is the Light of the world and darkness cannot exist in light.
I was thinking of Mary, the Mother of Jesus, this week. She had to look up higher to trust and believe what the angel was telling her. She had to look beyond her worldly life to believe. Joseph had to listen so closely to what God was telling him through the angel. And he believed and obeyed! That's what we all desire.
Lift up your eyes higher! Look all around you and believe!
Enjoy your week and make everyday a joyous, special day!!