Worth It All

God has really been pressing into my heart lately.  I feel him stirring my desires for something big.  Something big for Him. I feel like He is preparing me for something that He is going to ask me to do, and He knows me so well, that He knows I’ll be scared.

He is putting all of these people, and writers, and singers, and pastors, and books, and verses in my path to speak His truth to my heart to push me into a place where I’m able to accept His call for my life.

I know He is asking me to step out on that limb, the one I’ve been so scared to step out on, but I HAVE to live my life for Him.  There is no other choice.

I’ve been spending a lot of time with Him lately, a lot of much needed catch up time.  It’s so tender and gentle, yet encouraging and incredibly convicting.  I know I have to obey, so why don’t I?  Every. Single. Day.  Why?

Jesus is speaking to me in so many different ways right now, and I know I just need to trust Him, and obey Him.  That’s it.  He’s got the rest.  It’s never up to me, and it never will be.

In light of all of this, a friend posted this song on Facebook tonight and it really touched my heart.  Jesus wanted me to hear it tonight, because after all…He IS worth it all.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=dg7h6GiNTLg

What are you afraid to give up?

Last night during my Young Life small group meeting we talked about Jesus asking his disciples (Peter in particular) to leave everything to follow Him.  He asks the same of us, but fear holds us back sometimes.  Fear of being uncomfortable.   What are we most of afraid of letting go of?

Think about that for a minute.  What is the first thing you think of as you imagine Jesus knocking on your door telling you that you need to come with Him….and leave everything.  Every single thing and person.  Can you imagine?

For me, it was my family.  I really can’t imagine life without them.  However, if I had to choose, I would choose Jesus.  I would walk out the door behind Him.  Because without Him, my life is nothing.

The point isn’t to sit around scared that He is going to ask you to leave your family because odds are, He won’t.  The point is to put in perspective what it means to follow His lead.   Obeying God should be our #1 priority.  Period. 

It should come before your comforts, your to-do lists, your schedules, your hobbies, your job,  your friends and even your family at times.  Making time for, talking to, listening to and obeying Jesus should be your #1 priority.  Today. Tomorrow. Everyday. 

What if at the top of your to-do list every single day you wrote “Obey Jesus” as #1?   Think how that could change your perspective, your priorities, your focus and your life.

For Such A Time As This

I’ve been a Christian now since 2005 and ever since God and I started getting to know each other, He has been putting on my heart that His plan for me is to work with young women.  For many of those years I just felt this on my heart,  and had no clue how it was going to happen or what it would look like.  Basically I had no idea where to begin.

Well, as always, God knew what He was doing all along.  He has literally been preparing me for “such a time as this” for really my entire life.   And the past few years He has been preparing my heart.   Last night began this journey for me.  The one God has been preparing me for.  I sat among 600+ college freshman at UT at a Young Life Club meeting late last night in a huge lecture room on UT’s campus.   It was incredible.  That’s all I can say.

I looked around the room and thought…wow!  All of these 18-year-old kids have their entire futures in front of them.  If only they could fully understand how much Jesus loves them and what they can do for Him if they just give their lives to Him now.  Not wait until they are 34 to do so, like I did. 

However, as I looked around the room and thought that, I knew exactly why God had chosen me to do this.  Because I can share with them the reasons God asks us to obey Him.  I can give them real and painful examples of what happens when we don’t.  I can also share with them what Grace really means and what it looks like.   I knew in those moments last night that I was there for a very specific reason and God planned it a long time ago.  And now it was so much clearer to me.

At church yesterday, Matt Carter said exactly that.   That we are here and live where we live because God planned it to be that way.  There is no other reason.  It is not an accident, it was planned.

Let me illustrate that a little bit.  Brian and I made some decisions last year that were made for a few particular reasons (or so we thought), but now I can see God orchestrating it all the entire time.  We sold our house and planned to move to Central Austin, the we got involved with a new church in Central Austin.  In doing so, I met someone who led  me to  College Young Life and the person in charge of the girl’s small groups (after a year of going to this new church).  Then my church merges with the largest college age church body in our city at the very same time I’m about to begin this journey.  

So, let me go over that again.   I now literally live 4 minutes from the UT campus,  my church has now merged  (as of 2 weeks ago) with the church that has the highest # of UT students, and I am now (as of two days ago) going to be a small group leader for College Young Life.    Happenstance?  I think not.  I know not.  God had this all in his back pocket way before he even put one teeny notion of working with young women on my heart. 

Today I will receive my list of girls.  The young women that will be in my small group.   I will have the opportunity to meet these girls next week and then love on them , guide them, share the love of Jesus with them, and be there for them for the next 4 years of their lives.  I cannot wait. 

God knows what He is doing.  Trust Him every step of the way. 

He will prepare you and when the time comes, you will also think to yourself that you are where you are  “for such a time as this”.  Just like Esther.

When God puts something on your heart, it’s not your job to think of the ways to get there.  Just listen and obey.  Do the next thing.  He won’t give you the destination, He’ll only give you the next leg of the trip.  Follow Him.

Lukewarm

I take really hot showers.  I just like the water really hot. I notice my back is red sometimes when I get out of the shower because the water was so hot during my shower.   But that’s how I like it.  I think if you are going to take a shower, it should be HOT water.  It’s relaxing to me and it just feels right.  Lukewarm is irritating to me.  I hate how it feels.  I would rather just not take a shower then have the water be lukewarm.

This is how Jesus feels about some of us.  It’s irritating to him when we are lukewarm Christians. Which means we do a few things here and there that do obey God, but we aren’t ALL IN.  We are just lukewarm. We aren’t on FIRE with passion for Christ and wanting to live every single day with Him and for Him. 

Jesus actually says if we are lukewarm Christians, he wants to “spit us out of his mouth”.  Yikes.  That makes me cringe and it stirs some pretty strong convictions inside of me. 

A lot of times we cling to things that are not of God, that are not glorifying God in some way.  We cling to what is comfortable and safe and “feels good”.  That is when we are lukewarm about our faith. 

When we want God to fit into our lives, we are lukewarm. 

When we let God run our lives, and trust him completely with every single thing, we are All In.  When we are willing to get very uncomfortable on a constant basis ,then we are All In.    We are hot and that is where God wants us.  Not because He needs us, but because THAT is where we will find all the joy God has in store for us.  Having lukewarm faith will get you lukewarm results.

I need to turn up the heat and keep it there.

Obeying God

My pastor and his wife are good friends of mine.  I love them, and I’m so inspired by them.  They are such obedient followers of Christ.  Even when it’s scary and unknown they tackle it knowing it’s where God is leading them.  That’s tough sometimes, well actually a lot of the time.  Let this be an inspiration to you.

This is Jennie’s blog .  The video is of their family meeting their new son, Cooper,  for the first time in Rwanda.  God started this process in their hearts about 2 1/2 years ago…please read what Jennie has written in this post and watch the video.  You will be convinced, once again, that God really does  have a plan for all of us.  We just have to obey.

http://jennieallen.com/adoption/beautiful-things/