Sunday, February 7, 2010

Called out of darkness

" are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." 1 Peter 2:9.  We sang a song tonight at church that had that phrase in it.  I can't stop singing it.  It keeps going over and over in my mind.  Experience has taught me that when I can't get something out of my mind, it's usually because the Lord has something He wants to show me.  I am ashamed to confess that I haven't always stopped and listened.  Sometimes I have just pressed on with whatever I deemed so important that I couldn't stop and look up a scripture and let the Holy Spirit teach me something. Tonight, however, I didn't push the urging of the Holy Spirit aside; I looked up the scripture and asked Him to please show me what He wants me to know.  There may be more, because I will meditate on this for awhile, but I realized this much right away: 

I have given my heart and life to God; accepted His gift of salvation by trusting in Jesus Christ as my Savior. This much I know; I am His. In case I didn't get it, though, He reaffirms four times over that I am His; I belong to Him.  As a Christian I have become part of a (1) chosen people, (2) a royal priesthood, (3) a holy nation, and (4) a people belonging to God.  It doesn't stop there, though.  He also wants me to know that I am to declare His praises; He who has "called me out of darkness and into His marvelous light."  This is not only my calling to sing His praises on the worship team; it is much more than that.  It is the "everyday me," the "day in, day out, going to work and school me."  Do I let His light shine through me?  Am I reflecting His love to the people I encounter, or am I keeping it all inside?  I have just been made aware again that I am salt and light; a representative of Jesus to people who are lost and hurting.  I have to admit that I have not done a very good job of this lately. 

I AM NO LONGER IN DARKNESS!  Praise God!  He has rescued me, and I have to tell the world.  I have a new fire inside me to journal; to share what He does for me; to encourage whenever I can.  I know this is also a calling; the inclination to write everything down; to keep a journal.  I don't have the right to keep His blessings to myself.  The journaling has been sketchy for the last year or so; I had effectively set it aside.  In the hurry and busyness of everyday life, I allowed it to get squeezed out of my life.  I thought I had lost the ability to express my heart and God's goodness and faithfulness through the written word. 

But I found it. And I just picked it back up.

Be blessed, my friends!     

Monday, February 1, 2010

The Old is Gone...

It is always amazing to me when I happen upon an element of my former life, something I used to enjoy; some aspect of my life before I accepted Christ as my Savior in 1994.  I think sometimes the Lord lets us forget what we were like so that we can really see the change that He has brought about.  I can take absolutely no credit for the change whatsoever.  It's all God.  He has been at work in me all these years, and I had been feeling a little inadequate lately, somewhat of a failure.  He just let me see that I am not where I used to be, and I was encouraged.   As Joyce Meyer says, "I'm not where I want to be, but praise God I'm not where I used to be."  Thank God!

"...if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" 1 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV).