Maranatha Devotionals

For the Weary – Day 2 – Looking

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It is vital for a Christian to protect his eyes or he will find himself growing weary in his walk. I’m not talking about protecting one’s eyes from things we should not be looking at (like unsightly billboards) but from looking at our life’s circumstances.

It is when we look at our own circumstances that we become dissatisfied and we then begin to covet. We become jealous of others who are not stricken with the illness that we have. We hear ourselves saying, “Others cannot know what I am going through because they do not have the problems that I have.” The moment we take our eyes off the Lord and place them on our problems, we will grow weary.

~1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Did you notice the reference to the “lust of the eyes”? You may wonder what this has to do with the topic of growing weary. When we begin to look at what we feel is wrong in our lives, it is very easy to become covetous. Ole slew foot will be sure to kick you when you’re down, my friend! He will make sure that the grass you are looking at on the other side of that fence will appear to be a whole lot greener than your own! You will become resentful of your lot in life and you will desire what others have. You may not covet their belongings, but you will resent your own life for not being like theirs – what appears to be care free.

Why do I have to be the one who is sick when Jean Jones seems to have everything in life?” This statement is a direct result of the lust of the eyes. This person would not notice that Jean seems to have everything in life if she had not looked at her own circumstances and compared them with Jean’s.


Changing Our View

It is critical that we change how we view our circumstances. God’s Word teaches us how to do this. Use your eyes to focus on someone else’s needs rather than your own. Allow God to let you be a blessing to someone else. God can see when a need must be met and if you allow Him, He will use you to meet a need. Have you heard the statement, “God wants you to be Jesus with skin on”? We have the Holy Spirit residing within us and His goal is to mold us into the image of Jesus Christ. Allow the Holy Spirit to use you – each time you do, you become more and more like Christ.  When we yield ourselves to the Spirit’s will, God is glorified.

God would be glorified if He healed you right now or took away whatever trial you are experiencing.  However, God may receive more glory by allowing you to go through the trial to help others.

So, where should you start? Look within your own church family. Look for those who are lonely or hurting. Often times they are the ones who are quiet and probably do not get the opportunity to fellowship with others very much. They are sadly left out for one reason or another.

~1 John 4:7-12, Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Our church has a membership directory and it is a good place to start. Take your church’s directory and write little facts you know beside each member. For example: Jane Smith has chemo from June through August; John Green is a recent widower and has no family living nearby; Mary is caring for her invalid mother; Susie’s husband is not saved and she does not get much Christian fellowship with other ladies, etc. If you personally do not know what the needs are, call your Pastor or the church secretary. They are usually the first to know when a need has arisen in the church.  You can also glean from the weekly prayer bulletin.

Everyone has a need in their lives, my friend. Everyone! Use your eyes to see what these needs are and then focus your efforts on meeting those needs using the talents God has given to you.


Use your talents

Every one of us has a talent given by God above.  You may not view your abilities as a talent given from God but they truly are.  As each part of our body is needed to make a fully-functional human body, so is each talent and ability given to make Christ’s fully-functional precious church! We can’t all be good cooks because we also need someone to work on the Pastor’s computer when it goes down.

Are you a good cook? Make some extra food at your next meal for someone who could use a “touch” from the Lord. Notice I said, “from the Lord”?  Your talents are to be used for the glory of God, not yours.  Be that “Jesus with skin on” and let the Lord meet their need through you.  When you are a humble and willing servant, you accomplish the Master’s tasks no matter if you receive a thank you or not.  Your joy will come from being willing to be used of God.

If you cannot deliver the meal yourself, ask someone else in your church if they would like to do so. Some people don’t like to cook but they don’t mind delivering a meal to someone in need. God will put the two of you together and you’ll make a good team.  Working together strives to make your church family a well rounded, fully-functional family.  Each one using his/her talent for the Lord!  Maybe someone else likes to make cards and has one that could be included with the meal.  As well, maybe someone else has a beautiful flower garden and would like to include a bouquet of flowers.  Do you see how God can be glorified through your abilities?  The meal deliverer can also keep an eye open for things that may need to be done in the dear Saint’s home.  For example, as she sits and chats for a bit, she can see if housework is needed.  When can let the church secretary know this and the house cleaning can be assigned to ladies who love to do this.  Or if a shutter is falling off a window, or any other fix-it project, etc.  She can call the Pastor and let him know so he can assign it to one of his men.

Maybe you are home bound yourself but want to help others? Pick up the phone and call someone in need of an encouraging word. You would be amazed how much of a blessing it is for a dear bed ridden Saint to receive a call just because someone cared about them! Even if it is just to say that the Lord had laid them on your heart and you wanted to say, “Hi.”

Do you like to write? Send a card or just a short note. I have found that God will usually cause someone’s name in my church directory to “pop out” at me. This person will come up to me later and tell me that my note was exactly what they needed that day.  Although I feel great that my card was appreciated, I feel wonderful that the Lord met the need of that dear Saint.

Can you spare a few hours to do someone’s grocery shopping who is home bound? Do you like to clean? How about offering to clean a new Momma’s house because her hands are full with a colicky baby. Do you love to play the piano? Go to a nursing home and play for the elderly. When my husband was in the hospital for his cancer surgery, a dear lady would go up and down the hallways playing her harp!  You could hear sound as she rounded the corner and the melodies of the harp calmed the heart!  Now here is a lady who was using her talent to be a blessing to those who are bed ridden.  Was she a Christian?  I don’t know.  But what a blessing she was to this lady as I sat there watching my beloved sleeping.  It was as if the Lord was reaching out to me and calming my weary spirit!

What do you do best? What gifts has God given to you? The possibilities are endless! Everyone has a talent that God has blessed them with. Use your talent for the glory of God!

results

When we are yielded to the Holy Spirit’s guidance, He is busy at work in the lives of others at the same time that He is directing us. He will use us to minister to those in need. So let’s be diligent. When we are serving God in this capacity, He will bless us and will help us not to grow weary in our Christian walk. It will amaze you how much your outlook on your own circumstances will change for the good even though your own trials have not improved!

I pray that today’s devotional has been a blessing to you.  I have often felt as though God couldn’t use me.  My abilities are writing and being an encourager – whether that is here on this blog or in a note card or phone call, I can use them.  This allows the God of Glory to reveal Himself to those in need!

Won’t you be yielded today?  It is wonderful to know that you are needed by God.  It is wonderful to know that despite your physical impairments, you can still be used to encourage the life of another!  My spiritual mother has fibromyalgia.  Despite the excruciating pain that she suffers 24/7, she ministers to the lost by sending out devotionals, tracts, Bibles, etc.  She ministers to the sick by sending care packages with music, literature, etc.  This is her ministry despite her circumstances.  She may not see reward this side of Heaven, but once she goes home to be with the Lord, she will meet all those Saints whose lives she has touched.

Let God use you, my friend.  Do not be weary in well doing!  Continue for the cause of Christ.  Look at what He suffered through yet He continued.  He knew what He would have to go through, yet He continued.  Press on for the glory of God!  God will combine your abilities with those in your church family and together He will use your talents for His ultimate glory!

© Kate Plourde 2009

The picture above was taken by Carol Meyers and used here with her permission. She has traveled to some of the most beautiful places in the world and has captured so many pictures which depict peace and tranquility. Thank you, Carol, for allowing me this opportunity to use your work!

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