Friday, August 30, 2013

A Vision

John 9:4

I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day:  the night cometh, when no man can work.


This post and scripture was inspired by a conversation I had with a dear friend.  He recently lost his father and as we were recapping some of the last moments he had with his dad, he mentioned a couple of things that he learned.  He said his father was a visionary, and that he was always thinking three steps ahead.  It made me began thinking about how important a vision is to one’s life and the fact that we “all” should have one.

From the day you are formed there is a vision for your life.  God has a vision for you; your parents have a vision for you.   These visions help shape your future and your spiritual development.  Webster defines vision as the act or power of seeing.  Webster goes on to say it is a thought, concept, or object formed by the imagination.  Through God we have the ability to see what God has in store for us in our future, you just have to believe and allow God to lead your life.  Your parents picture/have a vision of the future they intend for you and the child they hope and pray you grow up to be.  They have hopes, dreams, and aspirations for you.  Both God and your parents help develop and nurture you by loving, protecting, and caring for you, in hopes of you fulfilling your purpose here on earth.

There comes a point in life when you will build a vision for yourself.  You will have your own goals to achieve, and dreams to pursue.  Having a vision will help you overcome obstacles, hold on when times are rough, help you stay focused, and help you fulfill your purpose.  A man with no vision can lack drive, hope, and miss his purpose.  This is why having a vision is very important.  A vision is a strong force that will keep you motivated, open your mind to endless possibilities, and help you see a future that is bright. Leaders do not see visions as a dream but as a reality that can and will come into existence.   You have to view your life the same way and believe in what God has in store for you. You have to see the future “you” and focus on your present condition and how you are going to get there.

The scripture says I must work the work of him that sent me, while it is day.  To achieve your vision you have to work.  You have to be willing to invest in your future in hopes that there is a brighter side further on.  The race is not given to the swift but to he who endurath to the end.  Your vision may require late nights, tears, sadness, pain, hard work, sacrifice, and happiness.  The continuous presence of God and a vision will help you build resistance against these negative setbacks. God will give you all that you need to carry out your vision.  The scripture goes on to say at night no man can work.  Once you return to the earth you can no longer work.  This scripture symbolizes how important it is to do all you can with your time here on earth.  Don’t allow your living to be in vain.  Have a vision, work by day, and feel good about all that you have accomplished. 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Time for Judgment

Psalms 50:6
And the heavens shall declare his righteousness: for God is judge himself. Selah.

I want to be a better person. I want to grow spiritually. I want to change. I want to walk in a new way. The only way to change, however, is to first acknowledge where I am.  What are my strengths? What are my weaknesses? Where do I keep messing up over and over and over again? And most importantly, where do I stand in terms of my relationship with God?

I admit that in the morning, when the world is quiet, before the day has begun, that God is my refuge and strength. I declare that in the evening, after the day is over, my God and I have a reunion. But in the middle of the day, in the midst of the noise and confusion, work and kids... I struggle to maintain a strong, intimate relationship with God. I struggle to hold my peace in the face of challenges. I struggle to keep my ego in check. I struggle to lean not to my own understanding, even though I know for myself that God is the only way.

Now is the time for me to take a long, hard, courageously honest look at myself. It is time for introspection. I looked up the definition of introspection and it means the examination or observation of ones own mental and emotional processes. Synonyms are self analysis, self examination, reflections, and soul searching.  But how? How do I deep into the recesses of my soul? How do I examine what is right in my life and what needs changing? How do I give myself a spiritual check up to analyze if I am keeping God's commandments? That I am living within the framework of the covenant? 

Some people meditate.  Some people run. Some people go fishing. As for me, I write. 20 minutes of unedited, unadulterated, pure truth. 20 minutes of judging myself harshly, of being unashamedly real about where I have fallen short, messed up, hurt people, hurt myself.

And when I'm done, to bring myself back to center, I remember that God is judge himself. And that He is a forgiving God. Much more ready to forgive me than I am ready to forgive myself. He is a God of love, and He loves me unconditionally.  In spite of my shortcomings. This doesn't mean that I shouldn't work harder and strive to do better. It inspires me to mirror the love that God has shown me, and to be a reflection of His forgiveness in my daily walk. Today is the day that I will declare His righteousness, for God himself is judge.