Read His Words Before Ours!
The winter, though long and cold, was full of merriment and memories. My husband and I had finally settled into a rhythm with our new little one. Only 17 months had passed since the all-too-brief life of our firstborn, and we marveled at every moment we had with our son, Zai. We spent every minute we could with him. Playing, laughing, teaching, learning. We celebrated every first and cried at every second. We took down our Christmas decorations one night and boxed up the clothes he had already outgrown the next. Life had been difficult for a while, but it seemed like things were finally good.
One night in February, we spent some time reflecting over the previous year…both highs and lows. With happy hearts, we discussed our plans for the months to come as we tucked our Tiny into his bed. I stole back downstairs to switch the laundry over and decided to finish some reading and write in my prayer journal for a little while as I waited for the cycle to end. I skimmed through the passages halfheartedly and began to write. Several sentences later, I paused and looked over what I had just written. My brow wrinkled with concern. There wasn’t anything wrong with the words…but there was a definite lack of sincerity. I had written the words only moments prior, but I couldn’t even recall them until I read over them again. As I thought about what that implied, I felt a gentle nudge in my spirit.
Why is it that when your life is hard, you seek Me with everything in you…
but when your life feels easier I become just another task on your to-do list?
My heart ached suddenly with conviction and remorse.
Such a gentle question. Such a gentle Father.
As always, He was right. I had been going through the motions, but my heart was removed from my words of praise.
We can all recall moments when we have done the same.
Faced with circumstances or events that knock us on our heels and take our breath away, it is all too apparent that we can’t cope on our own. Our dependence becomes painfully and beautifully obvious. Transparent and hurting, we kneel before Him, desperate for His light. We worship Him in our brokenness. Our very spirit cries out for connection with Immanuel, God With Us.
And He IS Immanuel. He is with us.
But what about when our pace of life becomes easy?
How do we worship when
our health is good,
our relationships are flourishing,
our children are obedient,
our bank accounts are large,
our career is advancing,
we are “in a good place?”
Relieved at our new normal, we celebrate our “change of circumstance” and jump into this new rhythm wholeheartedly. So easily, we become caught in a cycle of busy as we flit from one good thing or experience to the next.
We fail to recognize that our behavior has become another form of worship
Slowly but surely, our agendas and plans edge their way forward in our thoughts until we suddenly realize
we haven’t even talked to Him in a few days…
Or has it been a week?
If we’re being honest, not one of us can say we haven’t been there.
So…how do we change the reality of our nature?
By purposing to live a life of worship.
As we intentionally seek to live with a heart of worship and incorporate worship into our daily routines, we will begin to see the fruit of that decision reflected on our
because the truth of His goodness will be written on our hearts
and in our habits,
regardless of our situation, circumstance or reality.
Father, thank You for Your loving correction. Thank You for loving us enough to speak to us and show us Your heart. Show me when my motives and habits begin to shift so that I can remain tuned in to You and give You the worship that only You deserve. Help me to live a life of worship in spirit and in truth.
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!