Perhaps like many of you, I am over scheduled and under-rested as the year winds down. I have experienced the feeling of being overwhelmed lately–which isn’t healthy for me. It isn’t healthy, and it isn’t helpful.
At the encouragement of someone wiser than I am, I simply began to pray about this feeling. And while there are many personal things the Lord has been gracious to open my eyes to in the past few days, there’s one thing in particular that I hear Him whispering to my heart: don’t be overwhelmed at a time when you should feel overjoyed.
Think about what we are actually celebrating. Let’s choose to rejoice in the miracle of a Creator God who made a way for me (and for you) to come into a personal relationship with Him by coming to earth, living and then dying for each of us.
“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
That, my friend, is truly overwhelming and makes me overjoyed.
Let’s all choose to be overjoyed this Christmas, rather than overwhelmed by our to do lists. Merry Christmas, y’all!
Contrary to popular desire, the purpose of this life as a believer isn’t to be happy. The purpose is to become holy (set apart), and it is a lifelong journey of becoming more like Jesus.
To achieve this process, we’re told we will be pruned in John 15. Pruned specifically for a purpose: so that we will produce fruit.
I’ve been through an intense season of pruning in my life and to be perfectly honest, it has been so painful. Relationships, destructive habits and deep-seeded beliefs all had to be cut away. The point of the process was not, however, the cutting away. The point was to grow the good stuff, the fruit of the Spirit, which required cutting away the branches that were sucking the life out of me.
He pruned. I participated.
He cut away. I sometimes cried my way through the process.
But in the end, what a sweet understanding He has given to me. While Jesus loves us just the way we are— He also loves us too much to leave us that way. Thank you, Lord.
I can get just as caught up as the next person in the hustle and bustle of life. Without intent and practice, I can lose my eternal perspective and begin to believe the world about what is important.
Get more. Be more. Save more. More. More. More. That’s definitely what I hear the world cheer.
“More” is a lie of the enemy. It is the robber of joy. The thief of contentment. I have learned that joy and peace do not come from “more,” joy and peace come from enough.
Practice being thankful for your “enough” today and be amazed at how it combats the lie that “more” is your answer.
In a world of fast fixes, 2-minute burritos and instant coffee (blasphemy!), I fear we are trading quick and easy for deeply transforming time with the Lord.
Can I just encourage you today to not be afraid to dig deep into God’s Word? Don’t be cheated out of the soul nourishing words of life that come from time in Bible study.
You can understand it. You really can. Don’t miss out. Dig into God’s Word. And find the joy that comes when God opens up the pages of His story to breathe life into your soul. Your heart longs for more. You know it does. Praying for you today that you will choose to dig deep.
P.S. This really isn’t a mysterious process. Send me a Facebook message if you want me to walk you through how to go about studying God’s Word for yourself. I’m no expert, but it doesn’t require an expert! You might be surprised that things you’ve been taught by well-meaning people aren’t what God teaches. It’s why you have to dig deep for yourself.
Why can it be so difficult to accept the grace that God so freely pours out? Even as His child, I lived under a veil of guilt and shame for far too many unnecessary years.
I believed in His grace for everyone else. I just wasn’t so sure it applied to me.
But a wise person in my life often says: God is not going to ruin His reputation on you, Kassi.
If His grace is real (and it is), then it has to be real for me. And the beauty of that is that it’s real for you, too. Praying today you’ll walk in the freedom of His grace.