Originally composed December 22, 2010

The following is part of a message I was blessed to hear this past Sunday while visiting family.  Out of my home church and my comfort zone, God spoke to me through this message, and I hope you take a brief moment to read what God has asked me to share with you:

God does speak in the thunder, but He normally speaks in the small, still voice of a gentle breeze. God chooses to use the subtle for two reasons:

1.  Christianity is a continuous discovery of who God is.  It is NOT an instantaneous moment.  You may have had one of those high impact, emotional experiences that brought you to Christ, but don’t we all know it doesn’t last.   Memories fade.  Christianity is NOT a sprint…it’s a marathon

2.  Christianity is to be by faith, not by sight.  It’s gonna be a sign to stretch our faith.  God is trying to show us, “even when it doesn’t make sense to you, I’ve got this under control.”

The truth of Christmas is this:  There are a number of us who would believe and follow Jesus if he would just do something to show the world He is in charge.  HE DID.  Against all odds, the Son of God was born, and the world got to experience it.   For some of you, every week you hear the message Christ.  You hear the hope of the Gospel.  You hear the call of giving your life to something that will last beyond your time here on Earth, and you sit back saying, “as soon as I get that feeling, as soon as I have that moment, as soon as the lights turn on for me, I’ll come.”

The lights did turn on for Mary and Joseph, and for the shepherds and for the wise men.  But they came expecting to find God, not expecting a feeling or emotion.  The shepherds left their sheep and came to find The Child to worship.  The wise men came to worship.  Mary and Joseph raised Jesus to worship Him.  The great moment in your life will be those everyday moments when you humble yourself before the King and admit, “I wouldn’t have done it this way, but God’s ways are not mine.”  God does dramatic things often times in very undramatic ways.

I can attest to this personally.  God has done some very dramatic things in my life in calling me to serve Him. It took me years to come to the reality that God does not call the qualified.  He qualifies the called.  I was not, nor am I, qualified to lead the Upward Sports ministry in our church, to be responsible for a ministry with over 500 children and 200 volunteers.  Yet He called me.  He is transforming a sin-stained man…a liar, a cheater, a cynic, a foul-mouthed and anger-filled man, with bitterness, hatred and evil thoughts.  He is transforming me into His likeness.  I am SO far away, and yet I am SO much closer with every passing day.  For as long as I have breath in this life…for as long as I am here on this Earth, He continues His work in me…to prepare my soul for eternity.  I will never be perfect this side of eternity, and that is why I am still here, so that God can continue His work in me.

I can attest that Christianity…that my faith and my walk with Christ…is NOT a sprint.  If it were, I would have lost the race long ago.  It truly is a marathon…with ups and downs, hills, valleys and plateaus.  I struggle everyday, along with every other Christian, to become more Christlike.  I get disappointed in myself for my failures, but then I remember that it is in my failures that God strengthens and changes me…transforms my heart.

My prayer is this:  For as long as You keep breath in my life, may I remember it is in my weakness that You are strong.  May I rest my head on Your shoulders when I am tired.  May I find comfort in Your hands as I fail.  May I find strength in Your arms as You carry me.  May You discipline me when I have need to learn what You would have me learn.  May my life be a witness to Your work in me.  I admit that I am weak…that I have been a bad witness for You…that others have not seen You in my life, and I ask for Your forgiveness, and that You continue Your work in me…so that those around me will begin to see You in me…so that I may shine a light of Truth in a dark world and that Your light shining in me would draw others to You.  Father, thank You for the many untold and countless blessings You have given to me.  I am not worthy of a single one, but You have chosen to give them to me anyway.  I am not worthy that Your Son would come and die for me, and all I can offer is a heartfelt and sincere thank You and an offering of my life in service to You.  May what I do not be about me, but may all that I do be to worship You.  You chose uncommon people throughout history to change the world, and I pray I may help to change the world around me.

Amen!

My child, open your heart to what God is laying upon it.  Do not let your mind outweigh what your heart is saying to you.  God uses the heart to talk to us.  Open yours to Him and follow His will for your life.  In all that you do, worship Him.  Jesus was a servant, all the while worshiping the Father.  Serve the Lord in whatever capacity He has called you.  Be it a missionary abroad…be it as disciple here in the states…be it as a Christian walking the life in your job…be it as a volunteer in your community.  Be it whatever you do, offer your worship to the Creator who gives you life.  No matter what you do, I your earthly father, am proud of you…not because of what you do…but because of who you are…a special creation and gift from the Father of all eternity.  He blesses me with your life and through your life.  Seek God’s will for your life and follow it with passion!

Love,

Dad

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