Delivering our services to the world
Made in the image of God, Adam and Eve had remarkable freedom and premier careers. To begin with, they were the first parents of the human race, they held the possession of chief caretakers, zoologists, and gardeners, just to mention a few… God did not put Adam and Eve on the earth and then form it. It was quite the opposite; our Loving Creator prepared the place and then put them in it to enjoy it!
God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, does the same for each and every one of us. Fear of the unknown can have the greatest grip on our lives. Still, we can take comfort in this Psalm of David, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for He founded it on the seas and established it on the waters. Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in His Holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god. They will receive blessing from the Lord and vindication from God their Savior.” [Psalm 24:1-5] God will fulfill every purpose He has for us, still our choices and actions are indeed important.
In the early years of 1995 as the beautiful fall foliage covered the landscapes and crisp November fragrances filled the air, my husband and I moved our growing family from a co-op, to the top floor of an apartment building. A few weeks prior I had gone with my Dad to see his friend about a temporary place to stay, as we searched for a more permanent home to raise our children. The next thing I knew, it was ours. I was speechless but not so much in a good way. I started having nightmares. To me, 8H seemed as though the “H” stood for Hell and the 8 was way too high. After all, I had lived in a house up until I was married and our co-op was a walk-in duplex. Living in a building was new to me. I had these visions of getting stuck in the elevator with the kids, the structure collapsing, you name it. Little did I know that this top floor apartment was a gift from God to me and my family.
Shortly after moving in, the elevator did break down and for a short while we had to climb 8 flights of steps – 2 young boys, a baby in a carrier, laundry, shopping bags… Wherever there was a place on me to hang something, I did! It became routine, as we’d approach the 6th floor, my boys always a flight ahead looking down the stairs at me, saying “Come on Mom, come on.” I could only laugh, because the weight hanging from me would not allow my brain to signal my legs to lift up to the next step. But somehow, we always made it to the top and when we got there, the 8th floor, I must say it was well worth it, simply breath-taking. There was peace there as it overlooked the Long Island Sound and we could see the bridge to Manhattan as well as up toward Connecticut. Higher than the birds flew our living room windows held a different abstract everyday and during our daughter’s a.m. feeding we could capture the sunrise – like a burst of flame scoring through the sky. Although 8H carried its challenges, God had put us in an awesome place.
One morning as my husband and the boys’ were out of the apartment and our baby girl was napping, there was a strong desire inside of me to pick up the Bible. As I began to read while facing the east on an incredibly clear skied day, I noticed that everyone in the Bible that loved God had given their lives to Him. With a very nervous feeling within me, I quickly stood up and prayed this prayer to God. “I love you so much; but I can’t give my life to you right now. I can’t die, my children need me...” That’s when a gentle whisper of God’s Holy Spirit filled me with these words, “You won’t die, give your life to Me and you will live!” At that very moment the fear in me disappeared, and with a overwhelming sense of joy, I responded, “Well then, I give my life to You!” I remember feeling this sensation of completeness. Helen Keller, said it so well, “The best and most beautiful things could never be seen nor touched only felt with the heart”. What had happened to me at that moment was something between God and me. As if a shade that was covering up my eyes, had been lifted up. The beauty in that experience can never truly be described and at that very moment I knew apartment 8H was meant to be. Only now the ‘H’ was Heaven to me!
There is so much room in our lives for improvement. Taking chances, healthy chances, plays a great part in the process of delivering our services to the world. I heard what God was saying to me that day and He clarified His intentions. All it took was a little bit of prayer and understanding was granted. Only through the Holy Spirit of God could we understand. Just as a hole in the sand can be filled with a taste of the ocean, the ocean is way too big for the hole to consume it all, and in just that way God gives us enough of Himself to be filled with His awesome love, direction and plan.
Hallmark moments from a gentle lullaby to the wedding ceremony; happy events to the last dance, faith helps us to see things as God does. The desire for God is written in the Human Heart. What we allow to feed our mind and our soul has just as much worth if not more than the things we feed our bodies. Through the lives of others we learn how and how not to live. There is pricelessness in the gift of listening and communing with the Lord. Take a look at the life of Moses for confirmation.
Moses Led a Nation because He kept His eyes on God. Jethro, his father-in-law, gave him some constructive criticism in Exodus 18:13-26. But it was up to Moses to receive it. Moses from morning till night listened to a people lined up with arguments and complaints against each other. Jethro asked Moses, “Why are you trying to do this all alone, this is not good,” he exclaimed. “You are going to wear yourself out and the people too. This job is too heavy a burden for you to handle all by yourself. Now let me give you a word of advice….” How did Moses feel after a long day of complaints and now his father-in-law is telling him how he thinks he should be doing things, that he got it all wrong. Well, this would all have to depend on Moses attitude. The blessing God gave to Jethro to give to Moses could have been hindered if he, ‘Moses’ thought I’m the one with the gift, not you, after all was it not I who saw the burning bush, led these people out of Israel, parted the sea and now you’re telling me what I should be doing. No, Moses had a different approach. He listened to the advice to see if there was a better way and in his listening, he heard the sound of music, great advice and a weight off his shoulders. A way to bless others, how to delegate and form a better government. And I’m sure a peace in his soul and the joy of getting it all started.
God has given us all the gift of life, how we use that gift is truly the gift we give back to Him. There are some many encouraging stories in the Bible that leave us with understanding for times when in need. Healthy risks, opportunities and taking chances bless us. It’s the open doors we go through to experience the journey that Our Creator has prepared for us and knowing, whatever the outcome of that journey, we will not be walking it alone. It’s knowing the guarantee and security of when this lifetime is over we will be spending our eternity with the One who Created us and everything around us, in us and for us. God did not put Adam and Eve in an unprepared place, and through the different journeys we take that never seem to succeed, with God we are guaranteed stronger character building, inner strength, patience, greater endurance, more confidence and an education, “no money could ever buy.” Success is not measured by the amount of things we have. True success is the amount of valuable time we spend with Our Creator, allowing Our God to be part of our every thought, our every move, our every breath. We don’t have to go very far to find Him, He is as close as the breath we breathe, we only have to let Him in, He’s been waiting. Our God is a kind, loving and patient God who cares about our every move, we are His mosaics. The fear of the Lord is where true success begins.
“John the Baptist, who was at this time in prison, heard about all the things the Messiah was doing. So he sent his disciples to ask Jesus, “are you really the Messiah we’ve been waiting for, or should we keep looking for someone else?” Jesus told them, “go back to John and tell him about what you have heard and seen – the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor. And tell him, God blesses those who are not offended by Me.” [Matthew 11:2-6]
As we read and learn about things like this in the Bible, you can’t help but to fall in love with Jesus.
Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I am humble and gentle, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke fits perfectly, and My burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28]
Our God is merciful, tender-loving, loyal, unchanging, and undenying – He loves us no matter what, even though God does discipline us to keep us from sin. He is a restorer and an encourager to those who repent fullheartedly. It is God and only God that gives us a new beginning, a fresh start for delivering our services to the world!
A teacher is not so much responsible for what our students know, but more so for the seeds we plant to help them grow.
Father in the Name of Jesus, by the power and grace of the Holy Spirit, be with us, direct our path, fill us with the riches of Your grace, transform our mind with a healthy balance that is good for our body and soul. Guide us with Your gracious love, that we may press forward to being all that You created us to be. In Your Holy Name we pray… Amen
Sweet blessings always,