The Ultimate Creator

I have been praying and ask God to Divinely create some things in my life today. After all, if we think about it…He is the Ultimate Creator. I never really imagined God as the artsy, creative type until I really took time to think about it. He is the first artist, the first sculptor, the one who created and painted all the beautiful fish at the bottom of the sea that only HE will ever see. He painted the beautiful sunsets and made the starts shine. He gives all the creative power to all of creation. Any creative ideas any of us have, He has inspired.

So, while I was focusing on needing some creativity today, I read this just by happenstance (or really by God’s perfect placement and timing):

Hebrews 11:3 “By faith, we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.”

My favorite part of that today—that what we now see did not come from anything.

He made something out of nothing. In fact, He made everything out of nothing.

If you are needing God to create in your life today, please be encouraged as I was, that God creates so many something’s out of nothing for us. Whatever you need, whatever I need, He can create it. He is ready to make something out of nothing in your life today. He’s done it before and is always working and creating in ways we cannot see on our behalf.

Team Up With Jesus

Luke 8:22-25 (NLT)
22 One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and started out. 23 As they sailed across, Jesus settled down for a nap. But soon a fierce storm came down on the lake. The boat was filling with water, and they were in real danger.

24 The disciples went and woke him up, shouting, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!”

When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and the raging waves. Suddenly the storm stopped and all was calm. 25 Then he asked them, “Where is your faith?”

The disciples were terrified and amazed. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “When he gives a command, even the wind and waves obey him!”

This is one of those passages of scripture that most people learn in Sunday School or children’s church growing up. I, probably like you, have read this story many times. This week, as I read it again, the words “they were in real danger” caused me to pause. These men were in a boat with Jesus, the Son of God.  Which has always caused me to focus on the part where Jesus corrects them for doubting, or the part where He calms the winds and waves. Never focused on the part that says they were in real danger.

If the disciples were with Jesus all the time, in His actual physical presence and they went through a storm that caused them real danger, that translates to me that we will be in different types of real danger in this life.  It reminds me of the scripture, “In this life there will be trouble, but take heart because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

We will be in real danger. We will hurt. We will feel overwhelmed, confused, angry. We will have loss. But Jesus is in the boat with us. He’s in my boat when I feel like I’m drowning, and when it feels like He’s not answering. He’s in the boat with me in the silence and in the stretching times. And He will calm my storm. The storm has to obey Him–and suddenly. He can respond suddenly in our situations just like He suddenly calmed the storm for the disciples. One word from Him can change our lives in an instant, and calm the raging winds. He’s always right there with us. Lately I have been adding the word suddenly to end the of my prayers. I know God has His own timing, and I have learned a lot through times of delay and waiting on the Lord. There have been many times in my life that God has not answered me immediately, or at all in ways that I wanted. And there is a season for that in our lives. There is a reason for the delay. God is not our genie ready to grant our wishes as we command. But the other side to that is that He can move suddenly. You need to know He’s in your boat and He can speak one word to bring peace and calm and provision into your life.

You know, as I kept reading that same day, I read Matthew 11:28-30:

“28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

A yoke is a wooden bar that allows two oxen to be TEAMED UP together and work as a team efficiently.

Wow. I want to be teamed up with Jesus. I want Him to take the lead, and carry the burden, and teach me, and show me how to rest. (Don’t we need Him to show us how to rest?)

And notice it says, “let me teach you.” Oh how often do we refuse to listen. Refuse to rest. I think the key to teaming up with Him is to be teachable and actually come to Him. Come to Him in the storm, in the busy, when we are weary, and when we are not. Just come to Him. Every day.

Team up with Jesus. Let Him carry your load and give you rest. He pushes the weight, He holds it all together. And He’s in your boat, and on your side.

The struggle with timing…

 

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven….

Ecclesiastes 3:9-15 “What do people really get for their hard work? I have seen the burden God has placed on us all. Yet, God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. So I have concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God. 

And I know that whatever God does is final. Nothing can be added to it or taken away from it. God’s purpose is that people should fear Him. What is happening now has happened before, and what will happen in the future has happened before, because God makes the same things happen over and over again.

Discontentment has already made an attempt to sink in a little bit. It’s really hard to pray those big prayers, dream big with God, and allow Him to drop those God-sized dreams in your heart to build His Kingdom, and not get disillusioned waiting on His timing. It’s exciting to yield your mind, your heart, your schedule and plans to God’s purposes, but it feels dissatisfying, restless, and unfulfilling to wait, and wait, and wait.

If we are being honest here, it’s really hard to continue to wait expectantly, and joyfully, with increased faith when you see nothing new happening.

Psalm 5:3 says, “Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I lay my requests to You, and wait expectantly.”

The struggle and balance between laying down your life daily for God’s plans in your life and getting frustrated with waiting on God’s timing is real. We want to tell God what to do and when to do it (or at least I do). I do it all the time — not on purpose or with intentional disrespect — but it happens. As I was talking to God about all of this today (and maybe complaining a little), He led me to the book of Ecclesiastes to gently remind me that to everything there is a season in life. And He makes those seasons beautiful in His own timing. And not to get all worked up and impatient because He can actually handle it all and is, most definitely, still in charge of all my stuff.

The most interesting part of that passage in Ecclesiastes to me was the end of chapter 3, verse 15 that says, “God makes the same things happen over and over again.” I have read that before, but today it made a great impact. Nothing is new to God. Nothing is hard for God. He has done it all in the past before, and already knows what He is going to do in the future. He’s got it covered. Sure, its hard to wait, but I am learning (and will continue to have to learn this) to hold onto His mercies that are new every morning to guide me, and give me peace, patience, strength and grace when the waiting is hard.

And as I struggled with all of this today, God brought me full circle by reminding me that those who wait on the Lord shall be renewed in their strength (Isaiah 40:31) Funny how just talking to God a little while, dwelling in His presence and letting Him into our thought processes separates truth from feelings, and brings exactly the right Word at the right time.

“Lord, continually help me each morning to lay my requests out to you, and enable me to keep waiting expectantly with an open heart, full of faith, knowing You are working on our behalf. Help me to keep trusting fully that Your ways are best.”

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