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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

When God comes along next to you

This weeks sermon at church was about the Father's love. I've always had difficulty with understanding God's love for me and how God is involved in everything that I do. I've dabbled in and out of trying to comprehend it especially since, I don't really understand how a love like that can exist. And as much as I try to figure out how God loves me, I struggle with trying to figure out how God works through me and with me as I walk in His will. So I prayed that God would reveal that to me.

This morning, I woke up around 6:20am. I lied in bed staring up at the ceiling hoping to fall back asleep. That did not happen. So I got to praying. My prayer times have started to increase. In the past, I noticed that I could barely focus for 2-3 minutes at a time. Now, I can pray for 30 minutes and enjoy every moment of it. There's something awesome about communicating with God through prayer. During my prayer however, I asked God to allow me to experience the Father's Love and how exactly he operates in our obedience to His will.

After I prayed and read the Bible, I decided to wash my car because it had a whole bunch of bird poop on it. I looked around the house for my dad and sister, but they weren't anywhere to be found (I found out that they were grocery shopping later on). As I finished washing my car, my dad and my sister pulled up into the driveway. My dad then told me that I needed to wash all the cars. My initial reaction was "DOGGONEIT!" but then I remembered asking God to teach me how to serve others and this seemed like a perfect outlet to do so. Then I prayed that I would be able to bring glory to God while washing the cars.

The thing is, I hate doing any sort of manual labor. I like doing intellectual or relational labor - stuff that requires thinking or talking instead of waxing on and waxing off. But with the opportunity, I just said ok. I went back inside to gather some extra towels and went back and forth from working with joy to complaining under my breath as I struggled with the idea of enjoying washing 3 cars! Then I just said, "God, I'm going to wash these cars as an act of service and love. Please give me the strength to do it with gratitude." As I started hosing down the first car, my dad came out and said, "you scrub, I'll spray." We washed the cars together. As I scrubbed, I just smiled at how simply God showed me that not only does He come along side me, but that He makes work more enjoyable.

The interesting thing about all this was that I had just asked God in the morning to reveal to me how He works in our lives. I asked Him specifically, do you just tell us what to do and give us the training required and then want us to come back with a progress report? Or do you tell us what to do, get us ready, then watch us march confidently out the door knowing that you are following right behind us? I realized that it was neither. God told me what to do, prepared me to do it, then asked me to take a step of faith. As soon as I took that step, He immediately covered me to walk both in front of me, next to me, and behind me at every step. By my dad coming out to wash the cars with me, I realized that the way God operates is in a similar manner - to call us to do something then to do it with us.

Thanks dad for demonstrating an attribute of God today.

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