Jun 17, 2013

Monday SHINE....

Reading Plan for the week of 6/17-6/23:

  • Monday 6/17: 1 Peter 1:1-12
  • Tuesday 6/18: 1 Peter 1:13-2:3
  • Wednesday 6/19: 1 Peter 2:4-17
  • Thursday 6/20: 1 Peter 2:18-25
  • Friday 6/21: 1 Peter 3:1-12
  • Saturday 6/22: 1 Peter 3:13-4:6
  • Sunday 6/23: 1 Peter 4:7-19
Happy Monday, sweet SHINE girls! I hope your weekend was full of JOY and family time. 

We are heading back from vacation today. It is so much more fun on the drive to the beach, rather than the drive home. 

I literally soaked up God's glorious creation of the ocean, sand, blue skies, and white fluffy clouds. I sat and inhaled His Goodness, and followed with an exhale of thanksgiving.

When I am away, and my mind is at rest, I seem to hear the Lord speak to me very clearly. Without a hectic schedule, my heart seems to be more in tune with the Father. 

I got up the first morning later than usual. At home, on my Summer schedule, I am up by 6:00 am. So, when I slept until 7:30 our first morning, it was very strange. I felt like I had missed a big part of my day! {crazy, I know!}

I ate my breakfast, drank my coffee, checked my emails, and headed to find a quiet spot with Jesus.

This did not work. Everyone was now up, loud, and ready for their breakfast. Shoot.

As the day went on, I just felt strange for not having "my time" with Jesus. Something was just amiss.

I asked the Lord to show me why I was feeling strange and somewhat disconnected from Him.

As clear as you are reading this, I heard in my spirit Him say to me that I needed to put Him first in the morning, before anything else. Even if that meant waiting on my breakfast, or my coffee, or checking emails.

Not only does He want me to put Him first in the morning, but He wants to be the last thing I think about/read about before I go to sleep at night.

Yes, first. Yes, last.

Now listen closely....

I'm not telling you this to make you feel convicted about how He wants you to spend time with Him. That's between you and Him. 

This is just what He was telling me that day. Actually, He has been nudging me for a few days about this, I've just kind of acted like I didn't hear Him. {oops}

I kept hearing the word "holiness" in my spirit. Over and over and over. Holiness, in the sense of my love for Him. Showing Him my love through holiness of how I choose to spend my time.

"Consecrate yourselves therefore, 
and be holy; for I am the Lord your God"
 Leviticus 20: 7

We all have a very intimate relationship with the Father, and He speaks to us in different ways.

This, for sure, was Him telling me to change a few things about my schedule.

Let me get something clear though......He is not demanding me to do this. At all.

He's just letting me know that the peace I had been lacking, and the emptiness I was feeling that day was because I didn't go to Him first. 

I could continue to do things my way, and He would still love me the same. However, I know Him well enough by now that when He tells me to do something, it's for my own good. Not to punish me, but to sharpen me. To draw me even closer to Him and His voice.

Make sense?

So, as I looked at our reading for this week, I almost fell out of my chair when I read this verse in 1 Peter chapter 1, our memory verse for this week:

"Be Holy, because I am Holy.."
1 Peter 1:16
Holiness is honoring Him.

Holiness is giving Him the praise, the devotion, the honor, in all we do. 

Holiness is making a conscious effort to praise Him in our actions, our words, and how we spend our time.

Holiness is resting in His shadow and soaking up His goodness.

Holiness is not about being prim and proper and a "good girl" Christian.

Holiness is actually surrendering ourselves to Him in spite of the beautiful  and crazy mess of our lives.

Holiness is not perfection. Holiness is not another burden for us to carry, or another thing to check off our our Christian-y list.

Oh, the contrary.

Holiness is a broken girl giving our Holy Father the very best of our messy day. The very best of our chaotic schedule. The very best of our wounded and broken hearts.

Holiness is an expression of our love to Him. 

Father, show us any place in our lives that lack holiness. Show us where we need to brush up, or clean up some unholy areas. Our hearts crave You, Father. Help us to honor you with our thoughts, our time, our actions, our finances, our conversations, all of it. We long to give you the very best of us, Father. Help us to honor You in holiness.  In Jesus name, amen.

"Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; 
without holiness no one will see the Lord." 
Hebrews 12:14

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