Sunday, June 11, 2006

Focusing

I teach Preschool Children's Church once a month, the 2nd Sunday of the month! I really enjoy it! It's exciting to watch these precious kids learn about Jesus, about the bible, and all the glorious teachings God has given us through the bible. Today we talked about how Moses mother put him in the basket and sent him down the Nile. We took egg carton shells and cotton balls...the shells were the basket and the cotton was baby Moses. The kids loved this activity! They are truly sponges. I listened to these children telling us adults about what they learned and already know is just truly humbling. Jacob is in that class and let me tell you when he answers questions it gives me a joy I can't describe.

 Trust me when I say this is another thing out of my comfort zone. Not the children, but the adults helping and feeling like I will mess up. It's silly, because my "helpers" are wonderful, amazing people! One is our Chaplains wife and I adore her. She's so encouraging and uplifting to me. The other lady is wonderful as well. She's never helped me before, but she was great! I wasn't as prepared today as I normally am. I am not really sure what was going on with me, just wasn't "on my game" so to speak! LOL She really picked up the slack. I was so greatful for that!

I have a wonderful devotional that I read from every night before I go to sleep. Last night's truly seems to hit the theme that I'm writing on today. This is from: "Diamonds in the Dust 366 Sparkling Devotions" by Joni Eareckson Tada. If you're looking for a Devotional this is a wonderful one. Here's yesterday's:

June 10

True Service

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving." Colossians 3:23-24

Sometimes I hear people say that a single man has "given his elderly parent the best years of his life." Or I hear about a mother who has sacrificed all to "devote her years to care for her handicapped child." Occassionally it is the missionary who has "given up her life for the mission field".

And sometimes I hear that this single man, mother, or missionary has nearly worn out himself or herself, collapsing in bone-weary exhaustion. No wonder these people sound tired. Whom do they think they're serving? Jesus must not only energize our service, He must be the focus of our service. As Colossians chapter 3 advices, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not men."

Yes, service to God means sacrifice and devotion. But we don't give up our lives to serve others-we give up our lives to serve the Lord. It is almost incidental that we are serving a husband or wife, and elderly parent, a handicapped child, or a tribe on a mission field.

 When our focus is Christian service is squarely on the Lord Jesus, our work may be tiring, but it doesn't have to be tiresome. We may get weary, but our work does not have to be wearisome if our energy comes directly from the Lord Jesus. How can service to the Lor be tedious, boring effort?

Lord Jesus, it is You whom I love to serve. Help me to keep my focus on You today so that I will have all the energy I need to help others around me.

 

How many times do we do things for "man" verses for God? How many times do we go into something trying to "convince" ourselves we're doing it for God or more so trying to convince OTHERS we're doing this or that for GOD, while in reality we're doing it for "man". I am guilty of this time and time again. It's something I struggle with.

I'm not that strong. I'm very weak, shakeable, vulunerable, well...I'm human. I'm a woman after God's heart. I fall down flat on my face so often it's embarrassing. Yet I believe. I believe with all my heart. I LOVE Jesus so much. I honestly HURT, deeply when people I care about don't know our Lord. I cry when I think they may not join me in Heaven. I rejoice for those who accept him.

Works will NOT get us to Heaven. The only way to Heaven is through Jesus Christ, by accepting him as our savior, as the one and only God. There are so many "false" God's. I see people hurting, stuck in a holding pattern, not being able to really live. Not knowing true happiness, because they just won't give it up to God. They want to hold on to their pain for whatever reason, yet what they need so desperately is Christ. I see people in my real life, I read people's desperation on line, etc. We all know those who NEED Christ. Some of you may be one of them who has yet to give it all to Christ.

Jesus does not say we will not face trials. What he does tell us is that we will not be alone when we go through those trials. He will carry us. Jesus wants to carry you. He wants you to know his love, his peace, his forgiveness, his Mercy. NO ONE and NOTHING can bring you any of these, the only one who can...is Jesus.

I have to keep giving things over to him. I struggle at times to not take those things back. They're almost always struggles, sadness, anxiety issue's. I know though that once I give them over to Christ and snatch them back, he will take care of me. He will not leave us, in our struggles. He will give us the strength that we need to get through it. I am so thankful for this promise of tomorrow. For the knowledge that I will be with MY KING in Heaven one day. I have the true hope of tomorrow.

I wish truly that everyone had this hope and knowledge.Focus on Jesus in all that you do, let go of Man's hold on you.

God Bless

6 comments:

deshelestraci said...

I too love to hear my kids talk about Jesus.  Friday Emma walked around in the grocery store singing Jesus loves me.  I was about to shush her when she said that people need to hear that, don't they Mom?  Oh. Well. Yes. Of course.
Traci

lv2trnscrb said...

beautiful devotion and beautiful writing of yourself and your joy in knowing Jesus, Christy. Just awesome.

betty

sangrialel said...

What a totally awesome entry Christy!  One I really needed to hear today!  Linda

jckfrstross said...

wow i did not know you taught:) hats of to you!!! so many do not want to help in my church and the kids are like sponges:) have a good week

Deb

angelm0304 said...

I am so happy that you get to teach preschool children and that you enjoy it.  Nicholas has a little blue bunny that sings "Jesus Loves Me" and he just  LOVES that bunny.  He takes it everywhere with him.  It is so cute.  My next goal on my list of goals is to find a nice church to attend.  I pray that I can find a nice church where I can learn and grow as a christian.  I want to find a church that also  has a nice youth program and a good Sunday School for Nicholas.  I know the church for me is out there and I am not gonna give up until I find it.
I am glad you shared this insightful entry with us.  I enjoyed it.
Hugs,
Angel

cdittric77 said...

A great entry, Christy. I respectfully disagree that our work to serve a husband, wife, elderly parent, child, etc., is almost incidental.

Christ's death brought salvation to all men. All men and women are part of the body of Christ. All have been given the opportunity to choose Christ, or to choose otherwise.

Choosing Christ means living out our vocation as best as we can, to our utmost. The despair and distress and distraction we feel when doing so is normal and to be expected. Even Christ begged to have the cup pass him by. Even he wondered why God's will was for him to die. Those feelings, his emotions, and behaviors during and after experiencing them are what give us the strength and example to continue doing God's will. There are many scriptural references which remind us that we must strive to be as much like Christ as possible and that faith in the salvation he provides will yield good fruit. By neccessity, our true belief in Christ will yield good work. You cannot have one without the other. To have faith but do nothing with it is to horde what Christ has given for yourself. To have works without faith is to be a good person, but not one that has accepted salvation. Neither is good. The New and Old Testaments provide us with many examples to this efffect.

Thanks for such a thought provoking entry!
Blessings,
Charley
http://journals.aol.com/cdittric77/courage