Proverbs 29:18 was at the forefront of my mind as I was dreaming of what our time together would look like. It says in the Message "If people can't see what God is doing, they stumble all over themselves; But when they attend to what he reveals, they are most blessed." One of the greatest problems we have as a body is not paying attention to what God is doing. We are too distracted with all of the mundane, ordinary things in life that we don't have our eyes open to the really important things. We don't have our eyes open to God. I have been trying to pay better attention to God lately. I have cut off the distraction of most media and am spending more time just noticing my husband, and my son. I am spending more time just enjoying them and being in their presence. While I watch them play, I am filled with gratitude toward God. He is the giver of all good things. He is teaching me to enjoy the gifts of my beloved family. I could have missed them. I could have been engrossed in a silly show or tied up on facebook. Jesus is calling me: Judy, pay attention to the important things. Notice what God is doing. Notice that Zack asked me this morning to pray that Jesus would heal his bug bites. I am so glad he knows to go to his maker when he has a boo boo. Zack is learning about Jesus. I am teaching him, Jeff is teaching him. It is something God is doing through us. I don't want to miss out on a moment of it.
Hearing the ladies last night share their triumphs and their struggles just got me to thinking how beautiful they all are. I am amazed that God has let me be on this journey with these women of God who humble and encourage me. If we didn't take the time to rehearse, to present, to share God's faithfulness then how would I know? How would I be able to see the fingerprints of God all over my friend if she never got close enough for me to see them? We need to be honest in victory and in struggle. We need to realise that God has us in this journey together. We were never meant to take this journey alone. We are meant to be in community.
Here is my challenge. Do the extremely strange thing that I do on Sunday mornings. Look around. See the church. Look at the people all lined up in rows and singing their hearts out, or sitting quietly listening to God. Look at them, and thank God for making them so beautiful. Thank God for making them a part of you, and you a part of them. Thank God for placing His image on them and creating them to be a light in a dark world. Thank God for your friends who sit beside you and the new person who slipped in late and is hiding on the back pew. They are dear to God. They should be dear to you. Let God fill your heart with his love for the church. They are not perfect, sure they are broken, but they are your family, they are God's chosen ones. They are in that building listening to the words of God and God is speaking to them. Sweet church, appreciate each other. See each other. Notice one another. The prayer Jesus prayed in the garden of Gethsemane before he was brutally murdered was for the church.
Just as you, Father, are in me and I in you,
So they might be one heart and mind with us.
Then the world might believe that you, in fact, sent me.
The same glory you gave me, I gave them,
So they'll be as unified and together as we are—
I in them and you in me.
Then they'll be mature in this oneness,
And give the godless world evidence
That you've sent me and loved them
In the same way you've loved me.
Church, you are beautiful. Take a look around and let God fill you with love for one another. You were not meant to try to just barely make it through this impossible world alone. You were meant to journey together. You were meant to walk in unity with Jesus and those He has called. Rejoice sweet church, you are not alone.