A Life That Grows Around a Table, Not a Platform

God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ …(Luke 18:13).

I have sat in the temple courts of my own heart with vain, pithy attempts to showcase my own self-righteousness before God and man. Truly, I have been so foolish to believe that I am somehow above the rest.
 
It is truly remarkable that God takes lost sinners and in His grace, makes them brand new people. Truth is, we will never grow in our newness in Christ if the mirror keeps telling us we’re fine. If the reflection we are comparing ourselves too is the other person down the street, we will always find someone else we are better than. Yet, if we place Christ in the mirror as the reflection we are seeking to be like, then there is much work to do in our hearts. There are fears, pride, and insecurity that we must deal with because truly, we cannot shine His light if the only thing we reflect is our own vanity and self-righteousness.
 
People see through us and when all we give them is a puffed up ego and a perfect life they feel no need to come and share their burdens with us. After all, there is no room for them on our platform. We’d much rather not be bothered by them, because they weigh us down on our way to the top.
 
Jesus had no platform, instead, He had a table. A table for others to come and join with Him in fellowship. No matter what their background or status, they were invited to come in their current state and enjoy fellowship with Him.
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If the table of my life is empty, it’s most likely because my pursuit of a platform has gotten too big. There’s no time to enter into the lives of people because the pursuit of something “bigger” keeps getting in the way.
 
There is great feasting and joy at the table of God’s mercy. Truly, we need it more than anything we can pursue. As Christians, until we slow down and sit at the Master’s table, enjoying true communion with Him, we will never find rest for our souls wearied by the pursuit of our own vanity. We will never experience the joy of simply sitting at His table, because we have believed that our worth is tied up in what we accomplish for Him on the platform, instead of who we become at the table.
 
Lord, I want to grow in you. I want to invite others into your grace. Please Lord, may my heart find more room for people at the table. I am tempted to pursue a platform, but I know that the best thing I can pursue is to simply be your child. I long to sit at your table and be refreshed by you, in Jesus name, Amen.

When it Feels Like Life is Trying to Destroy You, God is Working for Your Good

Where there is a dead body, there the vultures will gather.”…. (Luke 17:37).

There is no resurrection life for those who have found their worth in building their own kingdom. Truly, God takes the lowly and despised of this world and makes them champions for His namesake. There is no grave that can hold them and there is no plan of the enemy that can prosper against those that hold fast to the risen Lord.
 
There is no dead body for the vultures to feast upon for those who are truly made alive in the risen Lord. For they are overcomers, true champions and victors through the cross of Christ. Whatever the enemy has set out to use to destroy us, God will use to redeem. That’s just who He is. The cross was meant for death and Jesus used it to bring life.
 
Therefore, it may feel like the season that you’re walking through right now is for your destruction, but truly, it is for your resurrection. God is working in the unseen. He’s growing the seeds that have been planted in your heart through faith. At the proper time, God will bring rain upon the fields of your heart to usher in His fruit. Fruit that is lasting. Fruit that is full of love and grace for others. Fruit that feeds lost souls for the Kingdom of God.
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Abba, daddy, you love me. Truly, this love of yours is enough for me. I may not have what I want, far from it, but you have given me my daily manna for today. You are a great and mighty King. I can trust your heart because I know that you are good, in Jesus name, Amen.

You Are Never Alone

you will not let your holy one see decay…..(Acts 2:27).

Our lives with Jesus, even in their darkest moments are not meant for our destruction and decay, but for our blessing and bounty. God will never let us be abandoned to the grave where we must stay there and waste away. Truly, at times it feels as if He’s let go of us and fed us to the wolves, but I can assure you that the season you’re walking through is not for your undoing, but for making you new.

It’s there, in the grave that God’s love meets us, breathing new life into our souls for the purpose of calling us out of the grave as new people. Things like bitterness, anger, and resentment eat away at our faith, keeping us stuck in the grave. We will never experience God’s resurrection if our attitude does not join with His grace.

We were made to experience the fullness of God’s joy, found only in Jesus. As we live in the joy of the Lord, we experience freedom from the things that tried to destroy our faith. When we do pass physically from this earth our bodies will be made perfect upon the Lord’s return. Never will we be left alone. Truly, if we are willing to trust in God’s plan, we will always be experiencing His resurrection.

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Abba, daddy, you are making me new. You will never leave me. Even in this life, when life seems unfair and I don’t understand what you’re taking me through, I have you. I have the joy of Jesus. I can trust that you are working all things for your good. You are so faithful and I love you, in Jesus name, Amen.

I Will Be Satisfied

I will be satisfied …(Psalm 17:15)

It doesn’t take long for my heart to grow weary and discontent, lacking the true joy and contentment of the Lord Jesus. Temporal things try to steal my heart. They seek to destroy my soul and keep me from persevering in my faith.
 
Yet, there is a healer I know that I call Savior and friend. In His love, I am deeply satisfied. I have found Him to be the greatest joy in all the world. He is light, love and truth.
 
There is a word on my tongue that wants to sing in my heart today, it is, “I will be satisfied.” This is a truth that comes from the heart of God into my life. It’s His bounty of love and goodness that can fill my heart through the Holy Spirit. It’s His joy, victory, and sustenance that let me know that I lack no good thing. Truly, I am satisfied in Him.
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When my heart wanders and starts to believe that I need someone external to be satisfied I will always be left wanting. No amount of money, experience, vacation, relationship or promotion will give me the satisfaction that is found in simply being God’s child.
 
I remember as a child how I used to burrow up into my daddy’s lap. It was some of my favorite moments, to sit with him and simply be held. This is what our heavenly Father longs to do for us, to hold us in His embrace, reminding us that in His love, we can be satisfied.
 
Jesus, you are enough. Today, I have everything I need. I lack no good thing. You are a mighty God. Satisfy me today Jesus that I might simply be held in your love, in Jesus name, Amen.

When the Praise of People Becomes Your Highest Goal

“Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.”…. (2 Corinthians 10:17).

I spend a lot of time, in my head, boasting about myself. It’s there, inside my own mind, that I am the very best and most commendable of all God’s children. In my own sinfulness, I am hoping the people of God reciprocate back to me my own self- aggrandizement.
 
It’s easy to get our focus off of God and onto ourselves. God gives us gifts, for they are many, and we are quick to praise ourselves instead of Him. Every good and perfect gift is from above. Therefore, we must remember that the praise of our heart must always be in check. We must be careful, as we live, that our own hearts are not held captive by pride and the praise of man.
 
We live in a world where a platform, albeit big or small, is always at our fingertips. The praise and adoration of man are always knocking. Our hearts and minds get wrapped up in how many likes or comments we get. I have noticed within my own self this unhealthy pattern of seeking the approval of others via a platform on social media.
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Our bodies are but vessels for the Lord to accomplish His work. They are not vehicles of self-promotion and self-directed praise. As easy as that is for me to say, it is a battle I fight with the Lord because I want to be seen as someone special. Man’s approval makes me feel valuable and worthy. Sadly, my misdirected approval leads me down paths where I can never fully be satisfied, because so and so didn’t like this or that or so and so made a cutting comment. Therefore, I must not have really been accomplishing anything for God.
 
I am learning that the best place I can find my head is bowed down low with my heart held in the hands of God. He sees me, and He loves me. Truly, that is enough for me. It’s His approval spelled out in my heart, that says, quite simply, “Heather, don’t you see, I’m growing you, not in who you can be to others, but who you are in me.”
 
Lord, you are so great. There is no one like you, why do I try to compare with your greatness? Why do I want the praise of others believing that validates me in your kingdom? Jesus, be my eternal joy. Today, I will rest in simply being your child. I love you, daddy, thank you for loving me.

The Greatest Work God Can Accomplish in Your Life

establish the work of our hands for us….(Psalm 90:17).

Sometimes the work God has for us to simply be at rest in His love and receive from His hand. The joy of the Lord comes as we feast at His table. Sadly, we believe we are most productive when we are, “doing something for God.” Yet, there is work to be done within our hearts that requires us to sit, listen and be fed by the Lord of love.
 
I am learning that what needs the most work is not “ministry,” but my own heart. My most effective time spent is not in accomplishing something great, but simply, learning how to rest in the Father’s love. There’s something there, in His warm embrace that is the greatest joy I have ever experienced. It is His love dancing over me that makes my heart spring to life in the shadows of His grace that cover my heart from the enemies attack.
 
It’s there, in His presence that I am overwhelmed not with what I can do for God, but that He chooses me to sing and dance over. It’s the love of a Father with endless grace. It’s a simple love that asks me to sit still and be fed by His love.
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Lord, I am your daughter. Truly, that is enough for me. I am found in your love. Thank you for setting me free. Thank you for making me new. Jesus, you are the world’s greatest joy. I long to see you today, but what I want most is more of you in my life. I cannot live without you. Jesus, be my joy, Amen!

Hold Fast, A New Season of Fruitfulness is Coming

And we boast in the hope of the glory of God…(Romans 5:2).

Last night as I was speaking to the students at SOLID youth group it felt like God pulled a plug off my mouth and for the first time in months I sensed such a strong demonstration of the Spirit’s power that I was overwhelmed with thankfulness for the grace of God.
 
This season I have been walking through in life has been far from easy, in fact, it has been extremely painful. Yet, I am seeing the fruit of holding fast to the Lord Jesus through suffering. I now see the grace of God being displayed in my life in ways I have not experienced. It is a demonstration of the Spirit’s power that for many months was silenced so that God could go somewhere in my heart to bring healing.
 
Sometimes we walk through seasons in life when we are not shining for God, because we need to be refined for Him instead. These are by no means wasted seasons, they are seasons to know and experience the love of God, so that at the proper time, God might release us into new lengths of ministry. The season of hardship is not for our ruining, but for our renovation.
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Fear was a deeply embedded issue in my life. I have seen God uproot it. Truly, it is remarkable. I sense a difference in my thinking. I am more confident in who I am in Christ because I am no longer being led by fear.
 
Whatever the enemy has set up in your life to use against you, let God have it. God can take the most broken, messy moments of our lives and restore them to fullness for the praise of His glory. There is a purpose in our pain, it just takes time to see the fruit of holding fast to Jesus through it.
 
Rejoice dear friend that God is truly working in your situation. Don’t fear, don’t believe the lies, just hold fast to your Lord. Believe with all hope that He is a mighty God who takes our brokenness and through it, brings blessing. The refiner’s fire is for our good. It burns away the deeply embedded lies so that we live as people with deeply embedded hope.
 
Abba, daddy, you love me. You always have. You are making me new. I may not have all I want, but I have you in greater measure. Truly, that is enough. If I never get the things that I want, I have you. Thank you for your redeeming, restorative love. Father, may my heart be fully alive now in your goodness. I will forever praise you, in Jesus name, Amen.