I slept in this morning-not sure why-except it is Christmas break for me and I can. I love rising with the sun and spending my mornings in God's word and with my cup of coffee. This last week I have been able to spend 2 hours each morning reading and meditating and I will miss this when this break is over. I am feeling rushed this morning but God again reminded me in one of my readings (Becoming a Vessel God Can Use by Donna Partow) that I need to memorize scripture. It's not enough to get into God's word but you have to let Gods word get into you so that you can be used of Him. That is my hearts desire. After the pit that I came out of, Satan daily reminds me that I am not worthy to be used of God but God keeps proving to me over and over that He is using me and will continue to use me despite my failures.
I love reading and learning about the characters in the Bible God has used. They were not perfect in their actions or words but they had one thing in common-they had a willing heart for God-Look at David, Rahab, Paul, Moses, just to name a few. This morning I read from Philippians chapter one and was drawn to Paul's words "I am in chains for Christ" (vs 13b) and "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain" (vs 21). Paul was being detained-literally imprisoned and yet he still was able to keep focused on God and fulfill God's plan-despite his past or his current circumstances! It made me think on life today and those things that chain us and bind us.
Do you find yourself bound by something from your past or something within your present? I have learned as I crawled out of the pit of my past through the ladder of God's grace that even it could "serve to advance the gospel" (vs 12). And so I say "yes Lord-use me, use my past, my labels, no matter how painful it is. I chose it then but I now choose You". Do you know this also? As Paul wrote in verses 7 (NLT): "So it is right that I should feel as I do about all of you, for you have a special place in my heart. You share with me the special favor of God, both in my imprisonment and in defending and confirming the truth of the Good News". Do you share in the FAVOR OF GOD'S GRACES? Do you know this amazing and redemptive grace that allows one to live in union with Christ, to arise from brokenness and walk in His joy? "I am in chains for Christ" and it is because of this I can now serve Him with a more dedicated and sincere heart and so can you. If this is you then let's barrow Paul's words from verses 9-11 as our prayer today...."And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
In His Graces~Pamela