Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "All Hail To Thee Immanuel"1 (Lyrics)
Isaiah 64:8 – Yet, O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. (NIV)
When I started writing devotionals again last December, I went through emotional agony at the thought of my dysfunctional life hanging out there naked in cyberworld for all to see.
I had felt led by God to write these devotionals. When I tried to ignore His nudges to write my thoughts down, the hound of heaven kept at me until finally, in frustration, I'd give in, just to get Him off my back. I'd often send the devotionals to our editor, Robin Ross, and then write him back to say that I couldn't go through with it. All I wanted to do was to close my door, shut off my computer, and be left alone with my pain, grief, and anonymity. Despite my pleas and prayers to God to help me, there was only silence. I should have known that He was up to something!
The whole mess came to a head one morning just after I'd written the devotional, "In Search Of My Roots". I had wakened feeling fragile, and as I stood in the kitchen making my breakfast, God's message literally convicted me as I distinctly heard Him say, "This is not your life. When you gave your life to Me as you were on your way home to commit suicide, it no longer belonged to you. Your life as it was, and is, no longer belongs to you — not even your life events before you met Me. I kept you safe during that time, and now it's time to use it to help others." Feeling shaken and awed at what had just occurred, I took my bowl of oatmeal and sat in front of my computer to read my e-mails. As if what I'd just been through wasn't awesome enough, there was an e-mail from Robin with the words, "That's because so many people can identify with your struggles. That's why God is urging you to write. Be encouraged! You can do this!"
Since the results of my sharing are no longer up to me, I'm thinking that I should just hang a sign around my neck that says "under permanent construction" and comfort myself with the Scripture, "Anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it." (Matthew 10:38-39 NIV)
Have you ever considered that since you gave your life to Christ, it no longer belongs to you? You are not your own!
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 – Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your body. (NIV)
Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (NIV)
Prayer: Father God, in the name of Jesus, forgive us when we have human feelings and think it's all about us. Forgive us when we forget that You have us here on earth only to further Your kingdom. Lord Jesus, we pray for the people who will read these words, that they may know that You care enough to assure them that they are not alone in their pain. Amen.