Saturday, May 29, 2010

Poor In Spirit

It's a beautiful Saturday morning. The air is cool but the sun is warm and bright and those beautiful white clouds are floating across the blue sky. I sat out on my back patio with my current Bible study guide and soaked in God's presence. I needed this morning. I wish every morning could be like this.

In my brokenness, I have been lead to work on "meekness" in my life. This is a huge task for anyone I suppose but was something that spoke so loudly to me I had to take notice. God lead me to a Kay Arthur study "Lord, Only You Can Change Me". I love her work. This is an older study (1995, 2000 published dates) but so spiritually rich. Kay has that ability to draw you deep into the scripture and my soul has needed this for the repairing and mending of the devastation I recently journeyed through. Here is what I have learned and re-learned in today's reading...

To be poor in spirit is humility, yes, but it is so much more. It begins with a heart attitude. It begins with a brokenness for what what we are not coupled with a desire for what God intends for us to become. As Kay wrote...

"To be poor in spirit, then, is to realize what state you are in before God. It is to be actively conscious of your inability to walk with Him, please Him, or serve Him. To be poor in spirit is to abandon all pretense and to acknowledge your TOTAL dependence upon God for vindication from your sins. To be poor in spirit is to cry out with the apostle Paul, 'I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh' (Romans 7:18) is brokenness."

God created us, all of us-our body, our mind, and our spirit. As humans we tend to spend more time on our bodies (health & fitness) and our minds (psychological well-being). We know our spirit comes to life when we acknowledge Him in our life and it is fed on obedience and time spend in God's Word. But to live fully, we are to live daily in body, mind and spirit. There is completeness in life, satisfaction, and peace.

As humans, most of us struggle with this don't we? When the body is broken, whether by sin or by physical means, often our minds follows suit and becomes broken, being distorted in thinking or beliefs, and self-centered. And when you have a injured and imperfect body and mind, the spirit finds it difficult to function as God intended for it to. There a disconnect between the three when something goes wrong with just one of these. Dissatisfaction and dysfunction sets into our personal world.

So where does the healing come from? How do these three come together in unity, as God created them to?

One way is to live poor in spirit. This doesn't mean we walk around with our heads low, moping over our inability to get it right. We acknowledge it instead. We allow our imperfections and sins to break us for His good. Brokenness over our mistakes and weaknesses is a process of His sanctification. Brokenness over our self-reliance, our self-assurance, our unforgiveness, our pride, and our daily sins will open our eyes to realize the state we are in before God and enable us to take action. It opens us up to allow the spirit of God to rest on us.

But He said to me "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weakness so that the power of Christ may rest on me. That is why, for Christ sake, I will delight in weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. ~ 2 Cor 12:9-10

So I ask you this you see your poverty of spirit? Do you awaken each morning and shake off any self-dependence, sin, or pride that you may have and allow a spirit of humility and repentance to seep in? Being poor in spirit should so overcome us that God and God alone controls our hearts, our minds, our actions, and our will.

May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.~1 Thes 5:23

My Holy God, You protect the simple-hearted and save the low (Ps 116: 6 NKJV). I am low. Return rest to my soul. Be bountiful once again in my life. Rescue me from this sinful flesh that so tightly grips me. Loosen its bond. I want to be your servant in body, mind, and spirit. In repentance I turn to You for dependence. In brokenness I surrender my pride, my sins, my self-justifications. Sanctify me. I am nothing without You. I want to live poor in spirit so much so that it overcomes me enough to control my thoughts, my actions, and my will. Make me willing to be made willing for You and You alone.~ Amen

Believing Him~Pamela

Monday, May 3, 2010

Peace For The Journey

At the end of 2007 I stumbled onto the Christian blog world. Shortly thereafter in March of 2008 I became friends with a blogger whose words instantly grabbed my heart and soul. She could take you on a journey and lead you to the presence of God literally. Later that summer I actually ran into her at a Christian women's conference. She was in the hallway laughing and handing out candy. When I realized who she was there was an instant warmth and comfort with being in her presence. A peace. Seriously, and she is all about peace. She is Elaine Olsen from the Carolina's and I have been honored to call her my blog friend. I have felt safe to share with her my pain throughout the years and knew this women of God was one of the first I could call on for prayer. Though she is my age, her writings have been a mentoring of sorts, spiritual counseling, guiding me closer to this God we both cherish. I have been in awe of her penmanship and the spiritual depth she could take you to. And I have encouraged her since that meeting to write me a book. there's something about copying all her blog entries being a copyright violation or something. Smile.

I did a little scream this morning when she announced today her book was being released. I am so darn proud for her! I know most of you who venture over this way these days are already friends with Elaine and her blog site "Peace for the Journey", BUT if by chance you have stumbled on here, and you don't know Elaine, I encourage you to visit her site and be captivated by the words she pens prompted by a God she serves so well. As you see below, God has given her a gift and now it's wrapped in a cover for us to cherish!

Elaine, you are huge to me. I cherish your writings and so look forward to this new book of yours!! Thank you for being there and thank you for listening to God! I hope you are already starting on book number two!!

Believing Him~Pamela