A New Place in Grace...
Greetings, Dear Friends!
And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. In the month of March I will give away a gift card and a couple of copies of my new book, "Growing Grateful Kids." So share a story or an insight, bless lots of people, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and friend!
Some of you may have noticed I was AWOL last week. So sorry about that. My husband ended up in the hospital last week and I was at his bedside with him. I didn't have a minute to think about my blog. But I'm back at it this week!
It's time to announce February's winner of the $10.00 Starbucks gift card. Drum roll, please...Helen Martin, congratulations! Please email me with your address and I will get your card in the mail within the next week or so.
A Quick Note:
I am thrilled to announce the release of my next book: Growing Grateful Kids: Teaching Them to Appreciate an Extraordinary God in Ordinary Places." Let me tell you, I am excited about the message in this book. If you have children at home (or grandchildren you want to influence spiritually), order a copy today. I do believe this book will equip you to parent from a spiritual perspective (but it's loaded with lots of practical application). You'll laugh, you'll cry, and you'll be inspired and encouraged (that was my goal, anyway). :)
Now on to my topic...
In my last post, "Grace and Power" I wrote about a new level of grace so to speak. Grace is what saves us, and what a gift that is! But grace also fuels us to walk out the above-and-beyond call God has for us! Read that post if you haven't yet.
Years ago while at a family camp, someone convinced me to do the Pamper Pull (not sure why it's called that). Ever done one of those? Yikes, I don't think I'll be doing it again any time soon. The Pamper Pull is a very tall telephone pole with spikes on each side for climbing up the (very) tall pole. You are harnessed in but it's a long ways up there.
That part wasn't so bad. But once you get to the top they want you to stand on the pole. But picture this with me. Once you get to the top, there's nothing for you to grab hold of to hoist yourself to the top of the pole. You have to keep your hands in place and put your body up over the pole and somehow lift your feet under you and place them on the pole. Are you nauseous yet?
Once you get your balance on the top of the pole, you have to jump a long ways out to grab hold of a trapeze bar. That part didn't scare me nearly as much as trying to finagle my body to the top of that wretched pole. :)
When I talk about a new place of grace, I'm not talking about a featherbed where you lay back and do nothing. I am talking about attempting things with God that take you out of your comfort zone and beyond your ability to manage in the ways you always have.
The Pamper Pull wasn't exactly my cup of tea, but I refused to be a land lover. I climbed the pole, and though that took me away from the comfortable, stable ground, at least I had those spikes to grab hold of to make the climb easier.
But when I got to the top where there was really nothing to grab hold of, I simply had to go for it and rely on the harness. Nothing about that feat was comfortable. But I did it!
As I explore this place of grace in my own life, it's not comfortable, but so essential if I want to grow and experience the exponential results that God offers when more rests on Him than on me.
This past weekend, I went into an important speaking event with very little preparation because of my husband's hospital stay, but I had God's assurance in my heart. Now don't misunderstand me; preparation is SO important. I've heard of speakers who don't prep at all. They walk out the door and think about what they are going to say on the way to their event. I would never do that.
But somewhere along the line, our routines and comfortable ways have to be challenged so that we don't end up trusting our efforts more than the living-breathing power, provision, and promises of God.
And can I just tell you this? We had a power-full weekend! God showed up in intimate and profound ways. And, though I've spoken to larger crowds in the past, we had record sales this weekend, by a lot. Record sales. Powerful God-encounters. Women saved and restored. He took my efforts out of the equation and showed me a new place of grace.
Are you there, possibly? Is God challenging the status quo in your life? Is He asking you to reach for something and you don't even know where to put your hands to get there? You don't need to have all of the answers. You don't even need to understand.
Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart (trust not in the things that make you feel comfortable and secure), and lean not on your own understanding (lean not on your love for a predictable routine or the need for everything to make sense), in ALL YOUR WAYS acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6).
I do pray that you'll attempt the crazy-impossible if God asks you to. As you lay down your affection for the comfortable and the predictable, you will step into a place of adventure with Him, a new place of Grace.
~Until Next Week...