Friday, November 22, 2013

November 22 – James 1 - 5

Below are my thoughts from the daily Bible reading of the West Side Church of Christ. Today’s reading comes from James 1 - 5. Before reading I invite you to pray and asked God to speak to you as you read his word. Also above in the tabs is a link to the Bible reading plan.
Photo Credit: Microsoft Clip Art

God has a wonderful sense of timing. Today he showed himself to me in a powerful way. My heart is hurting right now. I just have a mix of emotions flooding my mind. I have struggled to be productive, to write, to listen, and to worship because my heart has been heavy. I am not going to skirt around the truth … sometimes ministry is hard. Sometimes I get deflated. Sometimes people can sting. Often it is a culmination of things over a longer period of time.

Oh there are joys. The mountain tops are amazing. Watching someone come to Jesus is the greatest joy any minister could see and participate in. Watching people grow in Christ is just as rewarding. Participating in the weddings and funerals of members are both rewarding in their own ways. Being able to walk with church members in the trials of their lives gives ministry a real sense of purpose. Being able to communicate and teach the text of God’s Word is an immense responsibility and pleasure. I truly love my job.

But then there are seasons where I doubt my leadership. There are seasons when I doubt my strength. There are seasons I look at what I have been called to and think it is way above my own abilities and knowledge. I think these thoughts because I am serving real people, with real desires, with real problems, with real limitations, with real personalities, with real sin issues, and with real life happing.

Before reading today I sat down broken. I tried reading some blogs, but they just reminded me of another area of my life that I feel is not where I desire it to be. Thankfully that has all happened because it took me to my prayer journal. It forced me to go to the only place I could … to God. I sat and wrote my heart break before God. I turned on a cover of Wrecking Ball and God spoke to me. I then listened to Garden by NEEDTOBREATH and worship ensued. As I wrote I poured my heart to God through writing and another song Rest by Carrolton. Through it all God and I connected in a way that I had put off far too long.

And then God reminded me what trials and difficulties are in place for. When I sat down to read, and came to the passage I laughed. It is James 1. After his greeting James gives rather strange advice … “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:24 NIV) Here I am broken, going through trial, and it all erupts on the day we are scheduled to read this passage.

God I love you. I love your timing. I love your comfort. I love your strength. Thank you for your amazing reminder that you have a plan. Thank you for your reminder that you are involved in my life. Thank you for the reminder that you are running me through the fire to mold me and shape me into the creation you desire me to be. I know that when I walk with you, nothing is too big, or too out of reach, because of who you are. Thank you for the reminder that when I am hurting, I can turn to you! God I love you. 
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