Archive for the ‘Faith’ Category

Airplane Mode

Posted: November 28, 2016 in Faith
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fullsizerender-10Last week, I got the opportunity to go out to Seattle with some friends. The trip started off with one of my traveling mates telling me that there was a little mix up on our flights. Ended up, I was going to be taking a separate route as them to Seattle. We were going to all land about 30 minutes apart in Seattle but I was flying with a layover in Chicago Midway and they were going through Houston. I’m not going to lie, at first, I was a little upset…I hadn’t seen my friend in a while and I was hoping that we were going to be able to catch up on the planes. At the same time, I couldn’t really do anything about it, so I just had to make the most of my time and embrace the adventure.

Turns out, the time that the flights provided me were exactly what I needed. I was forced to disconnect from all of life’s things. No phone, no computer, no emails, no internet, no texting, no social media. Nothing. Y’all know the dreaded airplane mode…BUT I was able to focus and pray about some of the things that I have been struggling with, all while knowing that on the other end of my flights I had an awesome adventure ahead of me in Seattle. It was much needed and so refreshing.

I had this overwhelming feeling as I was getting to Seattle of simply being on the same page with God. I felt a sense of shalom. It was no doubt the best “quiet time” that I have had in a long time. As I have gotten back from Seattle and settled into my life I have been asking myself, “How can I get back into airplane mode?” Let me clarify, by airplane mode I don’t mean the setting on your phone that shuts off all of it’s cellular/data functions. I mean, “How can I experience this closeness/shalom with God that I felt as I was getting off the plane for Seattle?”

We should take the approach everyday in our quiet time that on the other end of our time with the Lord there is going to be a crazy adventure. No matter if you are going all the way across the country to Seattle or walking to your office that is just a few blocks away. God promises us all sorts of adventures (good and bad) AND he promises to be with us in those adventures. I challenge you today as you read this to take a couple of minutes and think about ways that you can channel this new view of airplane mode. How can you take time and truly dedicate it to the Lord with no outside distractions?

Trust In You

Posted: November 22, 2016 in Faith

fullsizerender-8I can’t believe I’m hearing this song again. This summer, the Lord was reaching out to me over and over again through a song, and well I just wasn’t getting it. Lauren Daigle’s “Trust in You” came on every time I would get in the car, shuffle my iPod or turn on Pandora. My friend finally said, “You know I’m in my car all the time, and that song doesn’t come on like that for me. You might want to pay attention to that.”

Thus began my prayers and search for why this theme of trust was coming up so much for me. If you asked me, “Do you trust in the Lord?” I would answer with a resounding yes! When I was wrestling with the fear of going to Kenya two years ago, I came to a moment in my faith where I decided I trusted in the Lord with my life. I felt strong in the truth that He was with me everywhere, and that He would never leave me. I believed in His sovereignty over my life no matter where my geographical location was. So, that is where I rested for awhile, in the peace of knowing that the Lord is sovereign, all powerful, all knowing and I trusted in Him with my life. Sounds great right? No trust issues here.

Hah. The Lord began to challenge me in ways that I felt I had control over. I began to wrestle with the tension of how can I so easily trust the Lord with my life and with the big ideas, yet day to day I was not aligning that same trust to the decisions I made.

Now that he had my attention through church sermons, songs, books I was reading, conversations with biblical community and prayer I began a journey of wrestling in my soul with questions like:

  • Are you giving to God generously?
  • Are you taking your thoughts captive?
  • Are you living on mission for the Lord’s kingdom or for your own kingdom?

Through these questions he showed me that in reality I was trusting more in myself than in His truths for me. One that I find the most difficult to grasp is the the second question, because so much of it is subconscious. These are some of the revelations the Lord shared with me, and that I currently wrestle with on a daily basis.

Are You Taking Your Thoughts Captive?

This is a big ONE for me living in the beautiful season of singleness. This world does not value the ways of the kingdom, over and over again I found myself allowing worldly ideas, opinions, sayings, and thoughts dictate my feelings about my life. I was giving satan free reign of my thoughts. If I am weak in my thoughts, there he will be. Recently I did the Armor of God study, and thank you Priscilla Shirer for reminding me that I must gird myself in truth (Ephesians 6:14). If I don’t know the truths of God, how will I be able to stand against the schemes of the devil? It becomes this cycle, and I can get caught in it with one thought. If I trust in God’s word and what He says about who He is and who I am, then every time I let thoughts like: you will never get married, entertaining the idea of someone as my husband thus leading to unrealistic expectations, the cultural narrative of life goal=get married and have children, or even that I’m in a season of waiting…if I believe those lies, I am letting the truths of this world dictate what I believe about God, and that does not reveal a heart of trust.

He calls us to take every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) not just a few of them, every one of them. The truth says that a mind set on the Lord brings peace and life, and that we should dwell on his thoughts (Romans 8:6). (Philippians 4:8) The reality is, I was letting those thoughts run in my mind like wildfire because if I didn’t say it, then surely I didn’t believe it, but those thoughts did exactly what the devil wanted them to do; distract me. They distracted me from the Lord and his calling for me. I am called to be an ezer and satan knows I cannot do that when I’m thinking about how old I am and my time line, and that everyone else around me is married with children and I’m not. I cannot pour my heart out to middle school girls when my mind is preoccupied with waiting on the next season of life. I cannot fully display my trust in the Lord if I’ve convinced myself that this is just a season and I am waiting to get out of it. No! The Lord needs me in this season, with my strengths and my personality, to do the work that He needs right now for today. There is no waiting, it is a present and active life he calls me to live. And I must trust in him.

“The mind feasts on what it focuses on. What consumes my thinking will be the making or the breaking of my identity.” S-Lysa Terkeurst Uninvited

If I trust in Him, this life that I so freely give to Him in big ways should also be reflecting that in all the small ways, even down to what I think on a daily basis.

Capturing my thoughts and aligning them with truth will inevitably guide me further into giving generously out of obedience, as well as living on mission for the Lord’s kingdom. The less I think of myself, and the more I think of him and his truths, the more ways my life will display an unwavering trust in the One True God, and ultimately guide me to live out my calling.

Lord I pray I see you and hear you when you are pursuing me. I pray I have ears to hear and an open heart when the community you have so dearly blessed me with speaks truth into my life. I pray I take an active firm stand in your word against the schemes of the devil and seek to trust you in all that I do. I pray I seek out opportunities to live out my calling as an ezer to your people. Lord forgive me for when I fall short, because I know I will. Thank you for loving me through it and being my rock. You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord himself is the Rock eternal. Isaiah 26:3-4

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3

Let me just say, after reading this one verse in Philippians, a dagger went straight into my heart. Moments before I began reading the word in my quiet time this morning I prayed for Jesus to reveal to me where in my heart I am least like Him…and He delivered just like He always does.

Right now I am in my 4th year of medical school and getting ready to begin the “slightly” stressful residency application, interview, and match process. During this process I will compete against some of the best students and brightest minds in the country to obtain a position to further my training in a certain field of medicine. This whole process and culture of medicine glorifies being the best, having the best grades, having the top scores, and essentially trying to exalt yourself to the very top. Everyone tries to get an edge on each other, which makes for the culture to be a very dog-eat-dog world. I wish I could say that as a follower of Christ I haven’t succumbed to stooping to this level, but I am pretty sure it is near impossible not to get caught up in it at some point. I catch myself daily saying I did this, I did that, I am way better than that person, I deserve this/that… look at me, look how awesome I am! If you think about it, you probably thought the same things at your job or school as well!

Amazingly there is a God that “made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, and humbled himself”…and His name is Jesus. He did not self-exalt even though He could have easily done so. He did nothing out of selfish ambition. He could have easily come down to earth as a god, but chose the complete opposite. He humbled himself to the lowest of lows and you know what happened? He was exalted by God to the highest of highs and his name now reins above all names!

This verse is a challenge to be completely different than the culture we are fully immersed in. Instead of trying to out-do everyone and put our name on the pedestal, we must consider others better than ourselves. Think about a culture where everyone puts others before there own selfish pride. Think about what it would be like to work in a place or go to school where humility is the standard and not selfish ambition. Pretty cool to imagine that, right? I don’t know about you, but I am FIRED up thinking about it. It is time to put aside my own selfish ambition in a culture of pride, re-route my ways of thinking or acting as if I should be superior to others, and let Jesus’ name get all the glory, not my own.

But God

Posted: July 15, 2016 in Faith
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IMG_4220The other night my roommate and I were watching an episode of How I Met Your Mother. In the episode, the group of friends discuss each other’s biggest flaw, their “but.” For example, she’s really funny, but she talks too much. He’s extremely intelligent, but he’s always correcting people.

This got my roommate and I talking about what we thought our own fatal flaw was. Initially the conversation was purely silly, but I soon found myself seriously contemplating what other people found annoying about me. But as my mind began to overanalyze every possible one of my flaws, I had to force myself to stop and seriously consider the harm I was doing:

  1. I was caring way too much about what people’s opinion of me was,
  2. I was being way too hard on myself and not giving myself any grace,
  3. And most importantly, I was not caring about what God thought of me, especially as His creation.

In Ephesians 2:1-9, Paul wrote:

“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved — and raised us up with Him and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages He might show the immeasurable riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

Paul writes that even at our darkest points of sin and doubt, God always chooses to give us grace. He reminds us, however, that while the giving of grace is an ongoing process of sinning and sanctification, our salvation is not a process.

On the contrary, our salvation is complete the moment we commit ourselves to Christ and become believers. That’s it. No good work can make us better in the eyes of God, and no sin can make us worse. Once we are saved by God’s grace through our faith, we are saved. We are new creations, and our sin no longer defines us. Our identity is in Christ alone. It is finished.

Therefore when we find ourselves wallowing in the guilt of our sins past and present, we in turn doubt God’s grace and our salvation. While sanctification through the Holy Spirit allows us to recognize and repent of our sin, we must be careful that Satan does not use our sanctification against us. We cannot allow the enemy to distort our understanding of grace. Where instead of seeing acknowledgement of sin as a gift from the Holy Spirit to repent, we become so caught up in our guilt that we begin to believe that our sins are too big for God to forgive.

We must caution ourselves from falling into the trap of creating a “but” argument for God against us. Instead we must remember the “but” argument that God created for us. Paul writes, “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ.”

Jesus didn’t sacrifice himself to make us feel guilty and chain us to our sin. He died on the Cross so that we may live a new holy life free from sin and death. While that doesn’t mean that we can sin without remorse, it does mean that acknowledgement of our sin should lead to repentance, not guilt. For unlike guilt, which is grief over what we have committed against the world, repentance is grief over what we have committed against God. Guilt creates in us a weak spirit, but repentance creates in us a righteous, sanctified heart.

So if you find yourself in a similar situation as I was, where you can’t seem to let go of your past sins and you’re finding every reason to doubt yourself, remember there’s grace for that.

God has already forgiven us. All we have to do is accept His gift and allow ourselves to be forgiven. For our inclination to sin may be strong, but God is stronger.

Cracked, Broken, and Mangled

Posted: May 3, 2016 in Faith

Yesterday, the pastor of my church gave an interesting welcome to the congregation. He used the cross that hangs on the pulpit as an illustration of the type of people that he wants to welcome at our church. My church is fairly new and as my Pastor put it…”we don’t have very many holy or meaningful churchy symbols.” The one thing we do have is a cross that hangs from the pulpit that was given to our church. It is made out of mesquite wood and has fallen apart and been broken multiple times. I’ve noticed the cross, but never really thought much into it. Our pastor removed it from the front of the pulpit. He held it up in the air and it seemed to be flawless. Then, he turned it around and it was held together by metal bracings and wood glue. He used the cross as a symbol of our church. We all look like we have it together on the outside, but on the inside we are cracked, broken, and mangled. We are all cracked in some sense. Physically, mentally, or emotional. Physically, I think about two of my best friends who have gone through ACL surgeries and had to basically reteach themselves to walk and run. You would never know what they have gone through if you didn’t see the evidence of scarring around their knee. Mentally, I think about different cracked relationships I have had to work through in my life and how they effect the way I approach potential future relationships. Emotionally, the fractured relationships have left me hurt and confused.

Why me?

How did this happen?

I thought we were going to __________.

These are questions and scenarios that can drive you crazy as you go through them in your day to day. I bet one of those questions has run through your mind before. These questions can lead to thoughts like…

Why pursue a relationship if you are just going to be let down? What’s the point?

Are they going to treat me like __________ treated me?

I want to leave you with a few of things:

  1. You are not alone
  2. Christ has paid for all the cracks, fractures, and breaks by what He did for us on the cross.
  3. As you grow with Christ…He will give you confidence because your hope and faith will be in Him and not in worldly things or beings.

I challenge you to be more bold and open in your relationships. Come as you are…Be yourself. Don’t put on a front that you have it all together even though that is what our culture today has us think is a necessity. We all have cracks…so don’t be afraid to show them.

Live life against the flow.

Superheroes

Posted: March 27, 2016 in Faith
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If you could have any single super power in the world, what would it be? Tough question, I know. There are so many good ones out there. Having to choose just one makes it tough. The ability to teleport, fly, or breathe underwater would each be an unbelievable power. Mind reading is one that tends to be longed for too, although personally I think that one would be more of a curse than anything. Super human strength…lightning speed…turning things into gold…the list goes on and on. If you’re someone like me, you’ve put some serious thought into this over the years. Let’s be honest, it’s important. In the slight chance that we encounter a genie, or find ourselves in proximity to some other extraordinary wish granting phenomena, we all need to be prepared to answer this question on the spot.

This past weekend some friends and I met up and gathered around the table to break bread. We enjoyed each other’s company as we talked about life. It was a truly fabulous night. We touched on faith, politics and sports. We shared our hopes and dreams and the cool things that were happening in the world around us. We were hitting all the high notes. Somewhere over the course of dinner the superpower question was thrown into the ring. I think it came into play shortly after the topics of Donald Trump and the early bracket busting upsets in the NCAA March Madness tourney. Since all proper dinner parties should not be concluded until you truly know where your loved one’s stand on the hot topic of “if you could have any superpower in the world”, we ventured down the rabbit hole. Once again my interest was piqued.

It’s strange that we are all attracted to the supernatural in some form or fashion. We love stories of heroes and their supernatural feats. Even when normal people do unbelievable things with their gifting, we want to dub them as “supernatural”. We term sports performances as supernatural, or out of extraordinary. We’ve heard stories of ordinary mothers lifting cars off of their children in moments of distress. We’re left in wonder by shows put on by great magicians. Supernatural things are riddled in the television shows and movies we watch. It’s been penned in the pages of books since the beginning of time. There is something inherent in each of us that yearns to believe in something out of this world.

Diving head first into the question, this particular discussion started shaping up almost exactly the way that I suspected. The superpower of flight gained momentum quickly and took the early lead. Invisibility, breathing under water and super strength all made a cameo appearance in the conversation, but were brushed under the rug rather quickly. Teleportation was introduced onto the scene and, with some strong support from the movie “Jumper”, was starting to gain some popularity around the table. The teleportation movement even included some converts from those in full support of flying. In the height of the conversation, as all of the supporting evidence was being brought to the table, the youngest member of our group chimed in. This bright young lady at the ripe age of 13 introduced a superpower that I had never heard of before. I could tell by the silence that followed that most of us were taken aback.

Whenever your Saturday night dinner party attendees are self-proclaimed professional world problem solvers, myth busters and formidable experts in regards to the superhero realm (just to name a few of the credentials), as most of us around the table were, it’s not often we find ourselves faced with a new scenario that no one had thought of before. Caught off guard by this foreign and original superpower, the natural reaction of the group was to interrogate and dismiss the idea altogether.

At first, the power seemed elementary at best. No true superhero in the history of superherodom would ever want this power! It was way too simple. Not cool or flashy. None of us had even heard of it before. How could it really be a sought after super power if it had never been aired on television or in cinemas? A superpower that has never been written about or spoken of in a story. I know I’m probably building the suspense a little at this point and I apologize if there is any feeling of let down at the grand reveal. Drum roll please…the superpower is…the supernatural ability to “fill things up”.

Crickets. Exactly how we felt. If you’re like our eclectic group of know-it-alls, you are probably left scratching your head at this point. You mean like the ability to fill up a cup with water? Or juice if you’re feeling crazy? I can do that myself, thanks. Or the ability to fill up a hole with dirt? We all have that power already. How about fill up our car with gas…do it several times a week… next. We started to grill this young lady on her not so “super”power and what happened next I won’t soon forget.

She started describing the power. “Yes, you would have the ability to fill all of those things up.” she answered. “Not only that, but you have the power to fill up anything. You can fill up closets with clothes. You can fill up your homes with anything also. Pictures, appliances and anything else. You can fill up your bank account.” At the mention of filling up bank accounts, she started winning over some of the group, including myself. I’m not even going to lie, I would definitely add a couple digits to the account total if this were a power I was entrusted. As she was gaining steam and winning the crowd, what she said next was nothing less than profound for me and everyone else in the room. Her next statements are what forever sealed a spot for the ability to “fill things up” in the super hero hall of fame.

She continued to list the amazing attributes of what shortly became the most remarkable superpower I had ever heard of. “You see, not only can you fill up all of these great things that we all want, but you can also fill up yourself and you can fill up others too. You can fill people up with peace. You can fill people up with hope. You can fill people up with joy. You can fill people up with love.” We were blown away. What a shift. Everyone in the room went from all but scolding the young lady on such a foolish recommendation to congratulating her on her nomination for what we now believed to be the greatest superpower of all time. Marveling at the insight and deep thought I tried to recollect any superheroes to date that had ever possessed this superpower. I could think of none. There were no marvel comic characters, Greek mythological beings or extraterrestrials that came to mind who had ever possessed this power.

Our group couldn’t think of anyone either. We were baffled. Then, in the moments of silence and pondering, there he was. How did we miss him? With all of this searching it’s hard to believe that he didn’t come to mind. The greatest superhero in the history of the universe. The only one ever that was endowed the supernatural power to “fill things up”. His name is Jesus. I was truly humbled in that moment. Here we are in a world where our souls are yearning for something believe in. Something supernatural and out of this world. Searching for something eternal, that is greater than this life on planet Earth itself. In the magnitude of the reality of the quest for truth, here we are, desperately searching for a hero who has the ability to “fill us up”. Someone who can fill us with peace, hope, joy and true love. Someone who can give us purpose and complete the since of fulfillment in us. In the face of all of this searching, we almost missed him.

Jesus said, “ The thief comes to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10

In this Easter season, whether you are a believer or a skeptic, I challenge all of us alike to take a look at what the savior of the universe has done for us. He sacrificed it all so that we could have life and have it to the full. He gave his life on a cross, paid for our sins and rose from the dead three days later so that we may have unity with God himself. As we think about this gift, let’s think about the hole that each of us have in our inner most being. The part of our soul that we often try not to think about. The part of us that knows there is something more. The part of us that we have tried to fill up ourselves with so many things of this world. The part of us that we fill only to find temporary fleeting happiness that it is always fading and never enough. We just don’t have the power.

If you’ve found Jesus and you have found the peace, hope, love, joy and life to the full that he has promised, let’s give praise to the Savior of the universe. Let’s lift up the King of Kings and Lord of Lord in a way that we never have before. Let’s honor the one name above all names. Jesus Christ, the only name that can save, and the only one in heaven and earth with the supernatural power to fill things up!

Only Jesus has the power to make us:

Thankful – Hopeful – Peaceful – JoyfulFull of Purpose – Full of Love – Full of Life

Maybe this is not the case for you. Your life does not feel full. In fact, you feel empty this season. Maybe you are like I was a few years ago. Like we all feel before we find our purpose in Jesus. You are still searching for this fullness of life. If you have been turning to the things that this world has to offer and it is still not working, or you’re only finding temporary happiness, maybe you’ve been missing it? I invite you to open up your hearts to the ultimate healer and redeemer. The one who wants to offer us life and wants to give it to us to the full. The one who wants you to hope again. Dream again. Feel true joy and contentment again. Give your life to Jesus. It doesn’t matter where you are at, or what you have done, he has overcome the world. Trust him. Put your faith in him. Give over your heart to the only one that has the power to truly fill us up. His grace is enough and the life he gives us will change us for forever!

“If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

“For it is by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast.”

 

FullSizeRenderRecently, I found myself trying to give a close friend some sound advice. His dilemma was a tough one.  A journey that I had not yet navigated through myself.  Without much direction and certainly no clear path, how would he ascend the daunting mountain of an obstacle that lay ahead of him?  He was searching for answers and unfortunately, I had none. In my head I started praying and I asked God to bring me some supernatural wisdom to share with my friend in need. Instead of honing in on an epiphany that I could reveal to my friend, I started reaching for some of the colloquial phrases that we probably find surfacing way too often, at least I do. Phrases like “The million mile march starts with the first step”, or “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”

I mean, seriously….who thought of these phrases anyway? Who do we know that has marched even close to the tune of a million miles? And an African elephant is a 12,000 pound creature. The average human eats only about 4 pounds worth of food each day. I’m no rocket scientist, but that sounds to me like we’re talking about 3,000 days’ worth of eating elephants. That’s over 8 years!  In the midst of my friend’s completely overwhelming situation, where life seems too tough and almost hopeless all together, here I am wanting to offer up metaphorical advice on eating elephants. Wow.

I don’t really feel like I’m going out on much of a limb hear, but I believe every single person reading this blog can think back to a similar time in their lives – where this life just feels downright overwhelming and every single problem / solution seems hopeless at best. I would even dare to say that a lot of us, if we’re being completely honest, feel that this is describing the season that we are currently in. Many of us have embarked on new journeys and don’t know the destination, or even where to start. Maybe some of us have found ourselves in a situation where we are dissatisfied with a series of decisions we’ve made and we do not even know where to go from here.  It could be that financial struggles are looming over our heads. Maybe relationships that we’ve been fighting for are crumbling beneath our fingertips.  Maybe illness and disease are plaguing loved ones and we feel that we’re at the end of our rope praying for healing. Whatever the giant obstacle we are facing, we just feel stuck. Staring into the face of what feels like a hopeless situation, with no end in sight….is a scary place to be!  If you have ever been here, or maybe you’re here now, the only natural question to ask ourselves is, “What next? Where do I go from here?”

I found myself thinking about my friend’s situation in my quiet time. I found myself reflecting the great obstacles in my own life.  As I the wheels in my head turned, I opened up the word and I ran across a story in the Bible that really shed some light on everything. The story, in John 5:1-15 (read it, it’s good!), recounts the tale of a man who was in dire circumstances. The story tells of a disabled man who was trying to make his way down to a pool of water called Bethesda. You see, this particular pool of water was rumored to have healing powers. The blind, lame and paralyzed came from all over to dip themselves in the pool, searching for some end to their ailments and a new start to the rest of their life.  This particular man in the story had been disabled for 38 years. Can you imagine the size of the elephant this guy was facing? The frustrations and questions he must have had….searching for healing and answers, not knowing what to do next.  I wonder if his buddies ever chimed in, “You know how to eat an elephant, right”?

As the man tries to make it to the pool with no avail, the story pans over to Jesus’ point of view. Jesus asks the man, “Do you want to get well”? Um… let’s stop right here. Why does Jesus ask this guys that question? Of course he wants to get well! He’s been crippled for 38 years.  I’m sure he’s tried everything at this point. The disabled man looks at Jesus and more or less says, “I’m trying man.” “Every time I’m about to try to get in the pool and get healed, someone else goes down ahead of me and I’m left in the same boat. The same situation where I left off.” I can almost feel his pain. The years of heartbreak and disappoint. He’s found himself in the same situation he’s been in since he can remember, trying to do everything in his power and finding himself catching the short end of the stick once again.

Jesus response to the man blows my mind. He tells him “Get up. Pick up your mat and walk”. Wait…that seems too easy. You just want him to pick up his mat and walk? What about all of the struggles he’s had Jesus? What about all of the problems that have been building up over the past 38 years Jesus? The solution is just for him to pick up his mat and walk? ….and then it hit me. In the face of an obstacle that seems bigger than life and impossible to tackle, Jesus told the man to get up. With an elephant in his way, a life that had been getting the best of him, a hopeless situation where there was no end in sight, Jesus told the man to take a bite. He gave him one simple command. Get up. Granted, this simple command seemed like an impossible task, but the man trusted in Christ. He trusted his next step in the hands of the one true healer and redeemer. The one who holds eternity in the palm of his hand. The one who loves us more than we can ever imagine and wants to give us life to the fullest. He listened to Jesus.  He put his faith in the one simple instruction Jesus gave and then responded.

What giants are you facing in your life? What hopeless situation have you been facing and trying to resolve, but you’ve found no relief? Give it to Jesus. Get in the word and seek him with all of your heart. Ask him what your next step should be and listen. No matter how simple, how impossible, how crazy, trust him and he will blow your mind! I trust that in this season of life he’s giving us all a next step, even if it is be patient and wait. Take the first bite. Trust him with your next move and then the one after that.  One day at a time, let the Creator of the Universe who has gone before make our path straight. God promises that He will be a lamp unto our path if we seek Him.  We might not be able to see the end in sight, but this story offers hope and encouragement to faithfully trust in His goodness and take the next step!

 

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.”

Psalm 16:9