Memory verse: And the Lord appeared to us from afar saying, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love, I have drawn you to myself with loving kindness.’ Jeremiah 31:3
Challenge: Pamper yourself. Treat yourself to a nice lunch today, give yourself a pedicure, fellas spend some time just relaxing-open you a cold ROOT beer and enjoy the afternoon breeze on the patio. Take a long bath (with candles, scented oils). Turn off the TV, sign out of Twitter, off Facebook, and just be with you. Spend some time today just being with you and doing something just for yourself…Go on, you deserve it.
God loves Him some you. If He had a wallet, your picture would be in it. You would be highlighted on His refrigerator. He’d wear a shirt everyday with your picture on the front and ‘PROUD PAPA’ on the back. He loves you- completely, unconditionally, irrevocably loves you. At times this is hard to grasp-that the Maker of the entire universe, just wants to spend time with you. God wants to commune with you-put your feet up, let your hair down and just talk.
INSIGHT: Oh, how I missed this. I allowed the busyness of life to push away the presence of God. I was too involved in ministry, work, ‘my man’, to steal away with God and get ministered to. I was running on empty, and because I have so much Word stored up in me, no one noticed. If you have been saved a while and have grown to a certain level of maturity, you know that you can operate and serve and ministry simply out of a reservoir. You haven’t spent quality time with God for days, weeks sometimes even months but you are still ministering off of the overflow that you have stored up. Only the transparently honest will admit to doing it, and I was one. I knew that I could minister and pull an appropriate word for someone, even when I hadn’t been feed in a while. And although no one could tell, I suffered for it. I was spiritually weak and kingdom-ly ineffective, because I was trying to use yesterday’s manna for todays tasks. Didn’t work for the Isrealites, so there was no way that it would work for me. Oh but when I got back into the presence of God-it was the sweetest thing, I never want to operate from that reservoir again. I long to spend fresh time with Christ daily-whether ten minutes or 2 hours-I need manna for EACH day.
But often times we don’t ‘find time’ to do it. We feel like prayer or quiet time is a chore that we have to fit into our life, instead of a time that we get to cast the cares of our world that we have been carrying on our shoulders- on a broader Back. If Christ could carry
the sins of the world, and still get up with all power in His hands-surely He can handle whatever is keeping you stressed out.
So today let it go. Spend some time just relaxing-not thinking, not worrying, not planning out your 5 year strategic plan for success—just be with yourself. I’ve found that those are the times that I find God walking in my garden, when I can get back to the cool of the day (Genesis 3:8). His presence is always there, we just drown it out with our busyness. Busy does not always equate productivity.
Before I understood the difference between being alone and being lonely, I used to find it difficult to just be…with me. I always had to be doing something. Cleaning, cooking, washing clothes, reading, etc. Now, none of these things are bad things and they all should be done, but when we use it to avoid spending some quality time with ourselves, it becomes a hindrance to our spiritual growth and getting to know ourselves in light of God’s vision. As we saw yesterday, our perspective changes when we ask God to ‘give us eyes to see’ (Matthew 13:11-13, John 16:12-16).
You should miss YOU. I know I did, when I was on a journey of finding myself. We are never lost, I believe we are just hidden under all the lies, conformity, expectations, and fears that others place on us and that we often place on ourselves. I don’t think we can truly know ourselves, unless we spend some time alone with ourselves. In those quiet alone times, God downloads into you vision, peace, guidance, direction—and you begin to realize that you don’t have to work so hard for something that your Daddy already has and WANTS to give to you. You just have to be receptive and ready to receive it. God is waiting on you…what are you waiting on?
INSIGHT: I missed me when I was in my relationship. I guess I still hadn’t completely learned that balance, so I started sacrificing me time for we time. And because the guy that I was with had allot more free time than I did-that left no time for myself. That’s another Egypt mindset that the Lord is ridding me of. You can’t lose yourself in a relationship-otherwise you will be back on the journey of discovering yourself again when the relationship is over. And if the relationship leads to marriage- you will drain your spouse while you desperately try to search for yourself again. Take it from me…’my struggle-your lesson.’
Meet Him in the quiet place and share with someone what He deposits into you about yourself today.