Friday, March 25, 2016

Rejoicing Sister Party

" ...and when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together..."  
Luke 15:9

How many times have we heard the phrase, "No news is good news"? You know how it is, if things go wrong, you definitely can be expecting a phone call, email, text, or some means of communication from someone. I wonder sometimes why we aren't as readily willing to share the goodness in our lives with each other?

I just recently learned about the term "sistering" and have been totally amused that a bunch of rough, strong, muscular construction men would use this phrase in their construction and building lingo. (Why not "brothering"?) Sistering is the idea of strengthening a sagging or weak board by sandwiching it between two new, strong boards. Immediately, my mind went to the Word as I thought of the verse in Ecclesiastes that talks about "two being better than one."

In the world in which we live, everyone expects us to be OK every day. Yet, it's completely OK if we're NOT OK. If we were always alright, there would be no need or opportunity for a sister (or brother) to come to our side and encourage us, there would be no need to rely on someone else; we would be self-sufficient. And that, my friend, we are NOT! That is definitely not in God's plan for us.

So, when I stumbled upon Luke 15:9, I was excited. Jesus spoke of the parable of the lady looking for her missing piece of silver. Everything in her day was NOT OK. She had lost something precious to her. The Bible doesn't tell us if she called someone to help her find it, however, it does tell us that WHEN she found it, she called her friends to rejoice with her. There was good news and she shared it. There just might have been a Rejoicing Sister Party way back there in the Bible days. Somebody pass the cupcakes!!!

There was good news to share. Good news encourages others. It uplifts. It unites us in a common purpose when we rejoice together. What an experience! My mind turns to the healing of a little girl in our church. Healed of a tumor behind her eye just this week. (I had the same experience when I was a little girl too so this is extra special to me.) What rejoicing took place when her mother came back and testified of what God had done in the little one's life. Faith grew as we rejoiced together. We were encouraged. We shared the good news with others! The testimony still hasn't died!

Be encouraged today to share your good news. Be a faith-builder. Be a part of the sistering process. Your testimony just might help someone else in their time of depression, doubt, etc. What a blessing to come alongside somebody and be a faith builder, to be able to position a solid, stepping stone across their mud-filled path. What a blessed opportunity to be the part of a process God has called each of us to. Who knows, maybe God is waiting to see if you'll throw your own Rejoicing Sister Party. Find something positive to share, and find a sister to share it with...then rejoice!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Take That Step...Forward

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way." 
 Psalms 37:23

It's on those days when we're a blundering mess, feel like we'll never "get there", and maybe even considering throwing in the towel. Yes, on those days when we find ourselves looking Heaven-ward and crying out to our Savior,"Lord, have your way in me! Fix ME! I need a little help here." 

I found myself in such a moment recently. Wondering to myself, "How did this just happen? I thought I was ahead of the game!" Yet, there I sat in a puddle of tears having a moment. Ladies, you know that moment I'm talking about, right? Hurting. Wounded. Afraid. There is only one PERFECT thing to do in those moments.

It's during those times when we feel we've taken three steps backward that God is looking on us with compassion and wooing us to come to Him. He patiently waits for us to tell Him all about what we're feeling down deep inside, to open up and admit that we need His help, and to allow Him to make something beautiful out of our mess. How He longs for us to come to Him and allow Him to mend our brokenness and teach us a little bit more about grace. 

So, I found myself on my knees, crying out to God, opening and emptying my wounded heart to Him...and, guess what? He was there to take it all in. Every bit of it. What He showed me is that with every step backward, there should be an equal step forward if we're walking with Him. You see, He doesn't measure things the way we do. His ways are NOT our ways! We might not feel as if we're stepping forward, yet in the spiritual realm, we might have actually just taken two steps forward. Wait! What? How? By gaining valuable insight from our Maker and fortitude because of our current dilemma. 

Maybe He was able to get us to see how we SHOULD have responded or how that NEXT TIME we can take a different approach in hurtful situations. Or maybe He was working on us, to teach us to tear down walls which are built up so easily during painful seasons. Perhaps He awakened in us a bit more determination to keep walking. The possibilities are limitless because we serve a limitless God.

The truth of the matter, the lesson I took away from this season, was that although we may feel like we've taken those steps backwards and that we're not making any progress, on God's measurement scale, we've actually probably just made another step or two forward. "Lord, have your way in me!" He's right there teaching and cheering us on to the next step, the next mile, the next victory. 

Steps in God are counted on a scale far superior than any of our own. Be encouraged~take that step.