I just returned from a wonderful trip to Colorado. It was beautiful, every morning I woke up and just looked out my window because the mountains, the lakes, the trees…everything was just phenomenal. It was so relaxing and calming, quiet and peaceful.
When I was driving back home, I encountered some rain. The clouds were amazing and a short way down the road I looked up and saw a double rainbow. It was vibrant and beautiful; people were pulling over just to take pictures. (I would have, but the other cars driving 80-85 mph intimidated me just a bit.)
I was driving- so I couldn’t fully appreciate the rainbow like I would have liked too, but the thought came to my mind: That is the same kind of rainbow God sent Noah! That is the same kind of rainbow my ancestors have seen throughout time. That rainbow is the same message and promise that God has shared all along. That rainbow, like God, is the same then and now. God is the same as he has always been!
I look back in time and especially with the recent passing of Elisabeth Elliot, I am awestruck by the amazing people who have walked this earth. I think how amazing it would be to be like them! They were who they were though, because of God who has never changed.
It makes me think about how much emphasis we put on our “thoughts” of ourselves. We often limit ourselves and overextend ourselves with our thoughts.
We think “I can’t do that, I am not smart enough” I can’t do this, it is too hard and I don’t have the strength.”
Sometimes we say- “sure I would be happy to help”- even though our plate is full. We end up over extending ourselves to the point we set ourselves up for failure, or a break down.
Really though, when we set limits to our potential or over extend ourselves…we are really only hindering God’s potential for us. If we think we can’t do something – we are not trusting in his abilities to allow us to do it. If we offer to do too much, maybe our time is filling up and we won’t have the time for something he wants us to do.
One thing we always have to put in the front of our minds is – am I living my life so others see Christ in me?
I was running yesterday and well lets just say it wasn’t really that pretty. I just came back from the mountains so reintroduction to humidity…not fun. I was sweating profusely and my breathing varied from hehe hoo , to sucking for air! My face was as red as a fire truck and my feet were beginning to drag.
I personally know that I can run, not like an Olympian, but I can run. I like to run and I knew that I wasn’t dying, but by pushing myself, I would ultimately improve.
Now, the people who were driving by me, they surely thought I was dying! I am surprised there weren’t calls made for medical assistance. The sight they saw was far from the sight I saw in my head! You know the pictures you see of “how I think I look running….how others see me when running” Yes, perfect example.
This is true also with my faith. I know that I love Jesus! I know that I want to do his will and that I want to live my life for him. This I personally have no doubt about! The question I asked myself though was: Do others see this same thing in me? Do I live out my life so that others see Christ in me?
Well, I came to the answer of…I really try to! Sometimes though, try to – is an easy excuse to replace I did or I will.
We can say: I am trying to, I tried to, I did try – until we are blue in the face. Sometimes though we console ourselves with ” its ok, I tried” but really we knew better all along and acted out of weakness.
I am still new and still learning about truly living your life for Christ. Living with abandon, picking up and carrying your cross. I am learning that it is hard because you have your natural human tendencies to want to be selfish. Sometimes, living for Christ can bring pain, isolation, fear of the unknown etc. It can be hard and it can be scary.
When I look back to when I was pregnant, I was sick and throwing up non stop for the first 14 weeks each time. I had heart burn galore and was swollen like a balloon. I am a coffee addict and I had to limit myself (this was like taking air away from me! I neeeeed Coffee!) To make it even more fun – I only have half of my thyroid so my levels were up and down and had to be monitored regularly. Hot flashes, cravings, weight gain, hair loss…all kinds of pretty symptoms came from this.
There are medications that will help all of these things, but you have to weigh the cost and whether or not they are safe. I chose to limit myself as much as possible to over-the-counter meds and prescriptions…simply because I would rather be safe than sorry when it came to my baby.
When we are pregnant and carrying our child…there is no limit that is out of reach! We will do whatever it takes and suffer however we have to in order to keep our child safe. Sometimes this means laying in bad for weeks on end. Sometimes it means not consuming air, I mean coffee! Sometimes it means pain and suffering and unfortunately there can be risk and at times sadness. The thing is though…we are willing to endure all of this things and these risk, for the life of our child.
Hmmm….Sounds a lot like living our life for Christ. Sometimes there is pain, there are risk, there is uncertainty, there is fear, there is abandonment from loved ones or friends….all kinds of unknowns. In the end though, there is something great!
My kids are hands down the BEST thing that has ever happened to me! They are worth every single bit of pain or suffering that was encountered. Labor, I remember it sucked big time, but I don’t remember it specifically because as soon as my baby was put into my arms….all of it went away!
Living a life for Christ, will have an ending even better than this! It is hard for me to believe because I can hardly imagine something better than the love I have for my kiddos! God promises that he will use all things for good and his plan is better than anything I could ever imagine or hope to imagine. So, by abandoning yourself and giving your all to God…you are jumping into uncertainty, but it will be worth it.
Imagine yourself as a tourist in this unknown place called life, you have rented a car so you can go anywhere…but you don’t know where anything is. So you go nowhere.
You see an ad for a personal tour guide who will lead you everywhere and show you more than you could ever dream of seeing. You call and the guide offers to meet you right where you are. He shows up and says, wow we have a lot to see and do – let’s go! You join him and your life is enriched and overflows with joy! You see so much and learn so much! You meet people and experience life changing things! You are so happy you found him because before you were stuck in a world of unknown, but now the world has been opened up to you!
There were a few flat tires and a couple of bumps in the road, but your guide was perfectly capable of taking care of you through them all. In fact, you managed to learn a lot through these trials.
This tour guide….is Jesus! He will take your life from ordinary to extraordinary, he will show you things and take you places you never imagined. He doesn’t offer insurance because there is no package better than he himself. He promises there will be accidents and bumps along the way, but he will carry you through them all.
We just have to make the call. If we never call, we will be sitting in our room and our rental car will be parked outside, waiting on us to use it. We will waste a wonderful opportunity that we can’t even imagine. Yes, sitting in our room is a safer more “comfortable” option, but it will be pretty boring. In the end, you wont have much to look back on or say was accomplished.