I am but clay and every day you perfect your art

All to Jesus I surrender, wow what a commitment.  When we say that do we think through exactly what it means? I think it’s a tall order if we are to do it well, but one I want to be obedient to.

Romans 12:1 – Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship

Job 11:13-15 – Yet if you devote your heart to him and stretch out your hands to him, if you put away the sin that is in your hand and allow no evil to dwell in your tent, then, free of fault, you will lift up your face; you will stand firm and without fear

Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me

Matthew 16: 24-25 – Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.

Isaiah 64:8 –  Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand

SURRENDER

Surrender, relinquish all that is mine for all that you give, entrust all that I am to you, my body is a living sacrifice, I offer up my life, devote my heart to you, I stretch out my hands, take all my sin, allow no evil to dwell within me, and free of sin at last I lift up my face, standing firm without fear, keeping near, keeping close to Jesus, carrying my cross, no longer lost, found, standing on solid ground, I am but clay and every day you perfect your art, transformed from glory into glory as I step into the story you’ve authored for me, my role, to submit to you completely, to do your will, to be still and know you, to answer, to follow, obediently go where you send me, devotedly do what you ask of me, willingly seek your place for me, faithfully live in the body.

I gain nothing from being devoid of emotion

As I sit down to Blog today I feel this verse on my heart:

1 Corinthians 13:13 – And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

I have been battling over the last few days with my feelings for my brother.  When someone dies it stirs up a lot of emotions and thoughts and my mind has been spinning a lot of the time.  If I just put it out there, I didn’t get on with my brother and if I’m honest I didn’t like him much.  OK that’s it in black and white, how does that sound and what kind of Christian does that make me?

But, and it’s a big but, I did love him.  I am really coming to realise that now, I loved him.  If the truth be known we can love someone without liking who they have become or their personality, we can love them because there’s a bond, a shared connection, and I love him because I can see that like me he was damaged, like me he got things wrong and like me he needed God’s grace.

I am reminded of the film sliding doors, how different could we both have been given a different start in life?  We will never know but what I do know is that the greatest gift is love and while it may be too late to say it to his face I can say it here in this Blog, Andy I loved you, I’m mad with you for dying young but I loved you.

LOVE, A GIFT

Love, a gift, a precious gift, love lifts me up it fills me with hope, love helps me cope with anything the world throws at me, love changes my status from sad to happy, love, a bond, a shared connection, a reflection of your thoughts towards me and mine towards you, a complex series of emotions that express my connection to you, if I have no love then I am nothing, I gain nothing from being devoid of emotion, a human reaction to difficult interaction, yet there is no satisfaction in being free if there is no love, I gain strength from my Father above, on earth as in heaven, reminder that I am that new creation, without God I am nothing, by his Grace I’m forgiven.

Holy Spirit in me, not locational but relational

Was reading John 14 today and it is so true that we need to draw on the amazing gift God left us, the Holy Spirit who lives in us.  We have to build a relationship to get the most out of this gift, it’s not just about the Holy Spirit living in us, we need to work at that relationship, stir up that gift.

John 14:26 “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” 

2 Timothy 1:6 – Stir up the gift of God which is in you

Hebrews 10:24 – And let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds

THE GIFT

Do not neglect the gift that is in you, draw out the treasure God has placed with you, Holy Spirit in me, not locational but relational and I am accountable for all that I do with you, I believe in my ability partnered with you,  it’s time to be unstoppable, heart stirred, awareness heightened for I could have no better teacher than the Spirit within me, stirring up my heart to continue into the beautiful unknown, fanning the flames of my calling, no more stalling, no excuses, I choose this, to love the Lord my God with all my heart, to impart that love to all I meet, to shine my light, be the spark that stirs up others to love and good works.

 

God gave me a gift, a present that really meant something,

Oh wow, so today think God had a message for me to blog about really started thinking last night after counselling about where I am in my life and how, despite worrying or concerning myself with the past, God has made me who I am and how he now needs me to serve him, he has created me to do his good works so that his name should be proclaimed throughout the earth – how awesome is that. The verses God gave me were:

Ephesians 2: 8 – 10 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Exodus 9:16 But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth. 

GOD’S GIFT

God gave me a gift, he wanted to get me a present that really meant something, something that would change my life forever, would never run out, never break, a gift that would never lose its appeal and a gift that was real.  That gift, well for me it’s his Grace, his unmerited favour, his life saving Grace that means through faith I am saved.  Saved from all the empty things I used to chase, empty promises, running the race without keeping the rules, keeping the company of liars and fools, saving me from me, from being what I wanted to be, showing me what he made me to be and that means, well it really means that God gets it, he sees the bigger picture, he made me just as I am, I am his handiwork, created by him to do his work, yes he prepared me for a moment like this, my purpose found, I am a sinner saved by his Grace through my faith.  You can’t earn your way to his kingdom, it’s a gift and how much does it lift your spirit to think that however unmerited God’s gift is for you, however far you turned from his face, his Grace is sufficient, Jesus, he nailed it, but what are you doing with it, what gift are you giving back to God, it’s not hard, take a look at what he’s done for you, let’s face it a ship in a port is safe but that’s not what ships were built for, he’s opened the door of your heart, he’s done his part, now it’s time to sail, time to set out from the safety of the port, you get from God what you have the courage to ask for, God can change what you fail to, God is the author of your story now it’s  time to give him the Glory, not loudly or boasting, like it’s not through anything you did, so don’t brag or be full of hot air, it’s not all about you, it’s all about God, and what goes on between you and God stays between you and God, what God does secretly will bless many openly, true purpose is found when you are alone with God, he sees the works of your hands and your heart, so ask him to reveal what he has planned, help you to see what he has uniquely equipped you to do in his Kingdom, ask for his wisdom and then (wait for it) be fearsome, strike terror into the heart of the enemy, be prepared to do anything that gives God the Glory, live out the story he has written for you, let his Spirit work through you, be bold in your Faith, stand out for your God, he knows the plans he has for you, plans to prosper and never harm you, think on, think hard, what can I do?

Taken time today to stop and think about God

Thinking about how great God is, you know when you just sit back, put aside your own cares and thoughts and just look to God wow, you realise how awesome he is and what an exciting and fulfilling future we have here on earth and then even more exciting, in heaven!

PRAISE YOU AGAIN AND AGAIN

My every breath comes from you, every heartbeat is a gift and I will lift my eyes to you and praise your name again and again for calling me by name, for I had no idea that someone would look at me and take away my shame, not a clue that you had taken my blame on yourself when you hung upon that cross and when I think of what it means for me, the freedom you bought for me, the price you paid to make me clean, I cannot comprehend how for so long it went unseen, that I filled my life with insignificance, my dreams so materialistic, and my characteristics flawed for I suppose I just adored my own small world, closeted myself in what I knew instead of looking up to you, to answer your call to explore all that you were offering, understand that your suffering had already paid the price for my weakness, and out of darkness a light was shining, guiding me to a place of great joy, a place of forgiveness and it wasn’t about being religious but having a belief, a faith, a knowledge that although I cannot see you, I can feel you, I can hear you and I have been given the most amazing gift of life,  a new life on earth where I can serve and worship you daily and quite plainly that is an amazing prize, but more than that, I will reside with you eternally, live in the house of the Lord for ever, never to turn away again but live with you for ever and ever AMEN