I have been on somewhat of a hiatus from blog writing for about the past month. Between the holidays, family coming to visit, kids being out of school, getting back into the groove of things and then our church going through 20 days of purpose where each week we have been fasting something specific (we just finished our 3rd week), I have just not been much in the blog writing mode. In all honesty I actually wrote this particular post out earlier in the week, then decided I wasn’t going to share it (sometimes I think I overthink things), but after having an encouraging chat with my friend, Julie Ouellette, who recently started a blog as well, which is well worth your time to check out (www.abecomingjourney.com) I decided the best way to get back to writing, much like falling off of your bike, is to just well… get back on. Consistency is key. So here we go, my first post for 2015, nothing profound, but something I wanted to share from my thoughts this past week.
So a few months ago in our singles class at church, our singles leader, Sharon Benson, (who is also our Senior Pastor’s wife & just an all around amazing lady who I love and admire deeply) asked us the following; What if money was not an issue in our lives how differently would we live our lives and what would we do with all that money? I enjoyed listening to the responses from around the table and was not surprised many would chose to give more to the Kingdom of God. One of the mornings this past week, after my personal devotion time, I was reminded of that question but it lead to another question in my mind, What if you had everything in the world you needed and you knew every event that what was going to transpire in your life until the day you died, how differently would your thought process change on a day to day basis? How differently would you view yourself? For the most part I realize I live in the day to day, What am I going to cook for dinner? What are the plans for this weekend? Do I need to wash a load of clothes today or can it wait until tomorrow? When was the insurance bill due again? But then there a whole other set of thoughts, the what if’s and the unknowns. I always kind of dread the “Where will you be in 5 years?” type questions because honestly, I’m scared to answer that. What if in 5 years I’m not where I want to be at all? Or what if it’s a place I’m afraid of being? Which I guess defeats the purpose of answering it, to overcome the fear of the unknown, but this past week I had somewhat of a paradigm shift, if you will. What if all of the unknowns were taken away and it was simply “Thank you Jesus for all that you have given me and for all that is to come. You have worked all of this out for my good!”
Maybe because I had just finished reading one of my favorite stories in the Bible, the story of Joseph, and to see how beautifully his life played out, this question which came to my mind just seemed to gnaw at me. Of course we have the benefit of reading Joseph’s life from beginning to end, from long before he was born, and long after he was gone, so it is easy for us to say, well good on ya’ bro for sticking it out through all you did, I’m proud of you. But in all honesty, each of our lives is like Joseph. No matter our current life situation, there are times where we have been the favorite, then turned on by those we thought loved us, then wrongfully accused and cast into a prison where those we helped moved on and seemed to forget about our mere existence. I think what I admire the most about Joseph is in every situation he found himself in, he excelled. We don’t read of him making excuses, falling behind on the job or developing a victim mentality living with life long grudges. He didn’t go out and form a Hebrews Union, but he adapted to the foreign land he was in and continued to pursue excellence whether it was in Potiphar’s house, in prison, or as Pharaoh’s right hand man. It is as though he had this extraordinary faith God was in control and working it all out for His good even in the darkest moments of his life. Joseph was a dreamer, which is what got him into trouble in the first place. But maybe, just maybe, it was those dreams that got him through the dungeon. It was those dreams that gave him the “want to.” God had given him specific things as a child and he lived to see them. What an awesome testimony. The same morning after I was thinking about all of these things, I logged onto my Instagram and someone I follow posted the following:
God has already given us everything we could ever want and need, it is our responsibility to walk in it. I am filled with His spirit, baptized in His name, living a life of peace and joy. I have hope and I am blessed. I want to live each day knowing everything is taken care of because it already is, and I know I am blessed. Whatever dreams we may each have, hold onto them, whether you are in the dungeon or in a high place, don’t loose sight of the big picture. One day someone might be reading your story and say, How awesome is that?
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.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)