We are told that you have to be tough to survive in this world. You have to have a thick skin and not let anything really get to you in order to succeed... But Lord, I am not tough! I am tender and tearful. I am deeply affected by most things... all things.
Take this young man that I passed by today who didn't want to be gracious to the senior citizens beside him. Instead, he chose to be unkind and intentionally caused added difficulty to some elderly people who obviously had trouble seeing and getting around. Furthermore he blatantly commented on it... he knew full well that he was being a burden to others and didn't care to change. He didn't want to be kind. He didn't want to love or lead others closer to You. How my heart sorrows for this man. How my stomach churns at his unwarranted and unnecessary words filled with resentment, hatred. Is this the person the man whom I am called to love and minister to? Is this the one whom you have instructed me to turn my cheek and pray for? Indeed. For surely he does not know the joy and refreshment of your Living Water. He has not found your Way! If he did, he would not have scoffed and carried on so abusively... so destructively. Would he?
Such moments prove that there can be no absolute peace without you, Jesus. Oh, how we need you to rule over our lives as King! Come, Lord Jesus. Come!
As I think about this further, I know that the condition of this young man is not exclusive. I quietly watch the dissatisfied expressions of others who pass by. The man with the colorful tattoo down his arm who is swearing under his breath as he texts vigorously on his phone. The disgusted mother dragging the hands of her two young children while yelling loudly about their bad attitudes. The spoiled teenage girls clucking like chickens as they fuss over a store window filled with "sparkles for sale" - agreeing about how fat they all feel and how inadequate they compare to others. The two more mature women with a bit more life experience, adorned with fancy designer handbags, rolling their eyes at the teens and their gaudy store displays - poo poo'ing the fashion on yet another mannequin while habitually talking over one another with their own language of social negativity and annoyance. Business colleagues waiting in line to pick up a quick lunch while gossipping about the failure and inadequacies of another co-worker who is not present to defend themselves... And the list goes on. We are indeed a discouraged and dissatisfied people, aren't we? We are broken, depraved, perverted, and in need of a solution!
So, is this the manner in which we are to live, Lord?
Is this all we humans are capable of being?
Of course not! You created us to be more! You made us so that we might accomplished so much goodness in your Name. But sin has corrupted. Satan has deceived. Sorrow has erupted and created a domino effect across the globe.
And to this I wonder... where are YOUR people, Jesus?
Where is the love you have instructed your disciples to share with all the world?
How are we each spending our time and resources?
What are we choosing to do and say in the more common moments of every day at the mall, at the gas station, at the office, and in our homes?
Are we too rolling our eyes?
Or are we praying, loving, embracing, and motivating others - leading them closer to YOU?
I find that many times we talk a great talk about the good news of Jesus in the presence of those "like-minded" and in places and/or during holiday seasons where such dialog is comfortable. But sadly, in truth we have forgotten Christ in our more "normal" moments of day-to-day life. Yes, most of us are also dissatisfied and lacking. Most of us have dropped the ball and are living lukewarm - apart from God - with little interest, little offering, little lives. It is indeed a narrow road, isn't it?
"But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." (Matthew 7:13)
Lord, I pray that you would revive the hearts of those who claim to know you. Let us live boldly for your kingdom and seek after you each and every day! Teach us to love like you love. To be kind to one another. To give everything we have without fear, without greed. And most importantly, might we each follow through in action once we hear your teachings. Might we apply what we have learned from your perfect Word whenever we are called to do so. For this world cannot know peace without you, Savior. You are the Way, the Truth, the Life - the only solution to our deepest needs.
Yes, come Lord Jesus! Come!
Come and worship, believers! Come!
“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End." (Revelation 22:12-13)
YOU, dear Jesus, are the answer to every craving, every need. So, TODAY, may we live obediently and feed your sheep. May we boldly represent your love to a desperate, dying world. May we live anxious for your return - for your reward! Use us, Master... use us TODAY!!
For THIS is YOUR day! So, we who love you will seek you. We will rejoice and be glad. We will pray! We will worship! We will feed and take care of your sheep with WHO nourishes! Yes, come Lord Jesus! Come!
Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”
Again Jesus said, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me?”
He answered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep.”
The third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep." (John 21:15b-17)
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