For as long as I can remember back, I have had a craving to know God. One of the many stories my mother has reminded me of more than once in my fifty years is how exuberantly I responded to the pastoral Sunday morning altar calls.... often...very often. She says I had a crush on the pastor. I do recall his kind countenance, but honestly, I remember fear far more. Not of the pastor, but rather fear at just how woefully ill-equipped I was to navigate LIFE alone.
Life is daunting, overwhelmingly so when one quiets themselves long enough to go face to face, toe to toe, with the fact we have zero control outside of our soul. I don't need to look past the housing of my soul (ie: my body) for confirmation of the zero-factor; I do not even control the ability to take my next breath.
Yet, God did gift to me and to you one hundred percent control over our soul which is comprised of three facets; the mind (thoughts), the will, and the emotions.
Slow your row for a moment. Take more than a moment right now to think on those three facets and how you permit them to influence you each and every day.
Now here's the million dollar question? Do you live "willy-nilly" out of any one or more of those three?
Do you let your own thoughts dictate to you what is truth, what is right? "What I think is..."
Do you let your will dictate what you will be doing today? "What I want to do...."
Do you let your emotions dictate the mood you find yourself in even now? "What I feel is..."
If you do, you are being robbed, duped, living subpar.
Our soul apart from the Captain WILL BE a lethal foe to us, destroying our destiny right down to our quality of life. You and I were NEVER meant to captain ourselves.
Seriously, think on that. The created knowing what, how, and when to do anything apart from the Creator is utter foolishness, but how many people proceed following themselves daily - whatever thought pops into their head, they run with it - whatever their to do list demands, they run with it - whatever emotion they wake up to, they run with it. Not so much as even taking a pause to ask God, "What do You want of me today?"
God beckons us, "Come to Me - you who are weary."
The one thing I have found that wearies me quicker than anything else is if I roll out of bed with my soul being in charge. It's a deliberate move on my part as I sit with God in the early morning to hand over my soul, asking Him to correct it. I don't have the pretense that I can do it apart from Him.
Some days, there might be an arrow or two the enemy fires off at me right from the beginning. Other days, it is an all out assault. On days that I fail to mindfully hand over my soul it is blatantly apparent to everyone I encounter. (Word: It is blatantly apparent of your life too.)
He has provided the solution for you and for me, but we have to act on it. I must come to Him with the understanding I am nothing apart from Him and I can do nothing - including direct myself - apart from Him. Second, in Ephesians, we find the passage concerning the putting on of the Armor of God. There has to be a deliberate mindfulness of putting it on EVERY day just as there is a deliberate mindfulness putting on of my natural clothes EVERY day. It does not simply occur. Only after taking these two steps can I have the hope of proceeding in the direction HE desires.
As we begin this new year, deep in my soul I ache to know Him more. I sat with Him this morning with a prayer, "Lord, I want to be even more mindful of You this year than last, even more instep with You. I so desperately want to know You; how You are on any given day. Let this year be more about You and less about me, please."
I don't know about you, but the older I get, the more I understand both the need and the blessing of leaning on Him for my everything. But the greater treasure that this life tends to rob us from exploring to great depths is knowing Him...not knowing about Him.... but knowing Him; discovering what brings Him joy, what brings Him sadness ...is His heart hurting, if so I want to know... is His heart happy, if so I want to know. I so desire to line my soul up greater still, such that I am in sync with Him and He with me. How about you? (Word: Part of that challenge is holding up - surrendering - to Him what we think we already know about Him. Remember, our soul is our worst hinderance apart from His Captainship.)
As I sat this morning, I smiled at the little girl I was so long ago, making haste down the aisle to the altar to her God. She knew then what she knows now: life apart from Him is all over the place and profoundly empty and meaningless. What a gift it is to be able to hand our soul over to Him!
I pray your 2021 will be a year of mindfulness; how you walk and with whom you walk.
"Though none go with me, still I will follow...."
Lead on, Lord! With haste, I'm still running to You.... Your forever daughter! ♡