Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us … (Ephesians 3:20).
When I was in school, we studied the play Shirley Valentine by Willy Russell. A large part of the play is a monologue of a woman talking to the wall. At one point she says, “Most of us are dead before we die, and the thing that kills us is all of this unused life we carry around with us.”
I can’t help but think that so many people’s lives are like this. We get up and go through our well-rehearsed motions of existence; we check off all the tasks on our lists and go to bed. Then we arise the next day to do it all over again.
As Christians, we know that such a mundane existence falls far short of the abundant life Jesus came to give us. God did not create all of us with such creativity, cultural diversity, unique gifts and talents to simply go through the motions of a boring religious life.We were meant to be dynamic, vibrant, life-giving – a people of hope, healing and destiny. So let’s wake up and be just that!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones!
The Bible says the Lord loves a grateful heart. Let’s be determined to be thankful for all that He has done for us every day of the year. God is so good!Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations. (Psalm 100:1-5)
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:12-14).
Vision is the fuel that keeps us pursuing our dreams and destiny. God has given us spiritual eyes to see ahead so that we do not get stuck where we have been or where we are.Today, don’t look at your current circumstances; instead, start looking at the promises God has stored up for you in the future. There is more ahead for you than there is behind you. God’s hope, plan, provision and purpose are before you. All you need to do is keep taking one step at a time and watch the vision unfold before your eyes.
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free …” (Luke 4:18).
When it comes to computers and technology, Nick is the super whiz of the family. With his computer, he can do all kinds of neat things with photos, videos, PowerPoint, music – you name it. But when he starts explaining how I can do the same with my computer, everything starts to go fuzzy. So here we have a girl (that would be me) who has a computer with the capacity to do all that she needs done, but she does not take the time to learn the programs.
I can’t help but think that this is how we are with God sometimes. He has not only saved us, but He has given us His Holy Spirit so that we can reach our full potential and complete His mission here on earth.
Jesus clearly tells us why we have the power of the Holy Spirit working in our lives: The Spirit of the Lord is upon us to enable us to reach out beyond ourselves and help others.Let’s not let our relationship with God be like my relationship with my computer – barely scratching the surface of our potential. Let’s allow the Holy Spirit to unleash awesome power within us, making us more like Jesus and bringing hope and life and liberty to a lost, sick and brokenhearted humanity.
“And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward” (Matthew 10:42).
A few years ago, Nick and I decided to take our daughter Catherine on a trip to South Africa. As we were driving through one of the townships, I could see Catherine’s confusion when she saw the children living on the side of the road. She said, “Mummy, why are those girls sleeping on the ground? And how come that boy’s shirt is so dirty and ripped?”
Before I could answer her, she then said, “That girl over there looks very sad. Can we stop and give her one of my dollies to play with?”
As I thought about Catherine’s questions, I was reminded of the purity, innocence and simplicity with which children process situations. The solution was so simple to Catherine that day – and you know what? In many ways, it can be this simple. Imagine what the world would look like if we all considered it our personal responsibility to make a difference in our corner of it.Instead of being daunted by the immense need on the planet, let’s be determined to be part of the solution by helping to change the world, one life at a time. We cannot do everything to alleviate all the pain and injustice on the earth, but we can each do something!