Jul 11, 2012

Wednesday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Ecclesiastes 8

Happy Worship Wednesday, sweet SHINE girls! Celebrate your Heavenly Father today by praising Him through worship! He loves to see your heart in full-on praise!

Today is day 17 of our 40 Day Prayer Challenge. We are moving right along on our prayer journey!

Okay, I want to encourage you for just a minute.

Let me just be bold and say that these last few weeks of prayer have not always been the easiest. Ok, let me clarify. Praying is not the hard part. Nope, not the praying part.

The hard part is getting closer to His Light and seeing my sinful heart magnified 1000x. When I am closest to Him, I get a better picture of myself. In other words, the closer I am to Him, the further I am from myself. Make sense?

It's like He is a mirror. Bright and shiny and beautiful. From far away, I don't look too shabby. However, the closer I draw to Him, the clearer my reflection becomes, and I start seeing the stains all over myself.

Not pretty.

However, if I don't ever get close enough to Him to see the stains, I don't know that they need to be removed. Are you following me?

So, during our prayer journey, please know that there will be times when you literally feel your spiritual growth. Growth can bring pain. It just does. It's natural.

Growth involves cutting off  the nice fatty comfortable flesh, in order to produce the best possible fruit in your life.

The closer we are to Him through prayer, the more we are growing.


Girls, the Lord designed all of Creation for growth and change. Look back at a picture of yourself from 10 years ago. See the change? 

Or how about a picture from 20 years ago? Hello, major change.

We were created for change. 

The question is: What kind of change do we want?

Are we content with just settling into natural physical change?

 Or are we ready for some spiritual change, and some spiritual growth?

I don't know about you, but I want spiritual growth! I don't want to be at the same place with the Lord that I am today 10 years from now.

I want to be wiser! I want to be bolder! I want to be better!

So, how does this growth thing look?

  • Growth comes when we offer forgiveness instead of hanging onto our pride.
  • Growth comes when we choose to not say those things to our spouse that are sitting on the tips of our tongues waiting to jump off and insult and injure.
  • Growth comes when we keep our mouths closed when a gossip session is taking place at the table with our girl friends. 
  • Growth comes when we choose not to compromise our witness and example when it would just be easier to "jump in" instead of being the odd-girl out. 
  • Growth comes when we suffer through the seeming isolation of being more concerned with the approval of Jesus than the approval of others. 
  • Growth comes when we feel like we don't have to make excuses anymore for choosing God's best for ourselves instead of  the crowd-pleasing mediocre.
  • Growth comes when we persevere through injustice and trust in the Lord to make things right. Instead of trusting in ourselves.
  • Growth comes when we are okay being last instead of first.
  • Growth comes when we desire to serve instead of be served.
  • Growth comes when we encourage a wayward friend instead of condemning them.
  • Growth comes when we can humble ourselves when we need to admit that we were wrong. 
  • Growth comes when we are not willing to sit by the side lines waiting for someone else to make a difference, when WE can make a difference.
  • Growth comes when we can turn the other cheek to someone who has hurt us.
  • Growth comes when we can lie down at night and sleep in peace instead of anxiety, knowing that our lives are in the Lord's hands.
Girls, that's what growth looks like.

Keep praying, and you WILL keep growing. It's inevitable.

embracing the growing pains,


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