If you believe in God and believe in him to lead you and guide you, have you ever stopped to think just how He does that? I think it would blow our minds right out of our skulls if we could even begin to comprehend the enormity of such a task. You see in order for God to put us in the right place at the right time, He also has to orchestrate, not just our steps, but the movements of others thus putting everyone where they need to be at any given moment in time and space.
Some might say things just have a way of working out, while others would call an encounter a coincident. I once heard someone say that a coincident is a small miracle where God insist on remaining anonymous! I’m not sure, but I like the thought of that statement. He certainly doesn’t brag when He pulls off a complicated task in just 3 moves and say, “Hey, did you see what I did there?”
But back to God, He already knows where He wants us and how many moves it will take to achieve his plan. He knows the order of events that must take place, and to think all of this isn’t just for your life, but He also does this for everyone who has surrendered their life to him. Sometimes we wonder why certain things we ask God for take so long to happen. I assure you if you tried to make things happen in your life it would take much longer, because we cannot move others to where we might want them. Those others do not surrender their lives to us. And then, and then when we do try to make things happen and wind up going in the wrong direction for a while God is still able to get us back on his path. I assure you we do not surprise God, or throw him any curve balls. He knows, so He has already taken into account how many more moves it will take. This is why it is important to remember to let God move you!
Saying goodbye is hard sometimes. Today as I was driving, while running errands, I noticed that nature was saying goodbye to summer. Instead of a grey, sad, display of emotion I saw a bright, brilliant colorful celebration of change. This summer here in Chicago was one of the best ever. The weather was pleasant, the temperatures were comfortable. I really do hate to see this summer end. And now as we do say goodbye to summer we get to enjoy exuberant colors. Nature knows how to say goodbye gracefully.
In life there are times we have to say goodbye to people. Some move away, others go to college, some go back to their homes far away after a nice visit, and then there are those in our life that just move on. Some you say goodbye to knowing again you will see them, and yet others you may never see again. Those can be the hardest to say goodbye to. It is in those times we have an opportunity to display grace and understanding or we can choose something darker that can hurt.
When Jesus left the face of the earth he left in a cloud. Not a bad way to travel I must say. I would joke that He flew “Standby”, but actually He had a reservation. When He said goodbye He gave us a promise.
“What you’ll get is the Holy Spirit. And when the Holy Spirit comes on you, you will be able to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, all over Judea and Samaria, even to the ends of the world. These were his last words. As they watched, he was taken up and disappeared in a cloud.” (Act 1:8-9 MSG)
As you can see saying goodbye, though hard, can be good. In nature the earth rest during winter. Getting ready for a new year, a new season of life. When Jesus said goodbye He gave us a promise of the Holy Spirit to help us minister and live with power. We should learn to say goodbye gracefully, and accept the change.
(The image above has an embedded link to the song by Skillet on YouTube. Click on it)
My daughter called me the other day, and as our conversation continued the subject of “road rage” came up. She asked me, “Dad? How come it is so hard sometimes to remain Christ like when you share the road with people who drive like idiots?” I laughed, and thought, “Well I certainly know where she got that from!” “Her mother of course!” Okay, she got it from me. I feel really bad that I cannot even drive the 9 blocks to the train station sometimes without getting put out with how someone is driving. As a result I tend to think and even say out loud words that I know would not bring glory to God. I feel so bad, and I say, “God I’m so sorry! Please forgive me. I don’t want to be like this. Help me God.” Knowing I was going to write about this subject you cannot begin to fathom the joy and excitement I had when while I was having my chair time with God I came across the following verses:
“There will be a highway called the Holy Road. No one rude or rebellious is permitted on this road. It’s for GOD’s people exclusively– impossible to get lost on this road. Not even fools can get lost on it. No lions on this road, no dangerous wild animals– Nothing and no one dangerous or threatening. Only the redeemed will walk on it. The people GOD has ransomed will come back on this road. They’ll sing as they make their way home to Zion, unfading halos of joy encircling their heads, Welcomed home with gifts of joy and gladness as all sorrows and sighs scurry into the night.” (Isiah 35:8-10 MSG)
What a promise that God gives us! (And God always keeps His promises!) A road with “no one rude, dangerous or threatening”? It’s almost unbelievable. I can be on the road and have nothing happen to me that would generate a response out of me that would cause my halo to fade. I certainly need to learn to change how I look at others on the road that potentially could cause me harm. When I see them, knowing they obviously don’t see me, I need to pray for them. I need to pray that God would intervene in their lives. That He would be God and smooth out their lives so they are no longer so troubled by life that they have difficulties focusing on driving.
This promise that God gives us of a highway called the Holy Road, is only for those whom have accepted Jesus Christ to be the Lord of their life. Are you on this road?
Have you ever done something and wished that you had another opportunity to go back and handle it differently? I sure have! I mean if I was going to make a list where would I start? You would like to have those words back, or not gone somewhere you shouldn’t have. Maybe not expressed your thoughts or desires to someone who had no business hearing them. Possibly a marriage gone wrong, or the treatment of one you really loved, but your own short comings hindered you in expressing it correctly. The list could go on, and on, and does.
So should one live a life of regret of what could have been or maybe should have been? No. That does no good. The only good that can come from looking back is learning how to go forward. How not to ever do that again. A person should take their mistakes to the One who can forgive, heal, and help you move on.
Then there are those rare opportunities that come around every once in a while; second chances. Sometimes we are blessed with a second chance by the One who never needed a second chance! We have an opportunity to face a situation or relationship again and this time we pray we get it right. Have we learned? Do we know where we went wrong the first time? I hope so. Take second chances when you are presented with one and make the most of it. Make it beautiful, make it worthy of being offered to you. Make the way you handle it this time please God. God is the God of second chances. He made a way for us to be cleansed of all of our wrong doings, and to try again. Take what God has paid a high price to give you and this time do it right with His power and might, and not your own.
**Preview for next week: “Road Rage – Remaining Christ Centered while Thinking Everyone on the Road is an Idiot” **