So first off – make coffee. Coffee is good. I honestly have so many things to tell you about that I could probably write like, three posts worth in one….. but I won’t *wink* I’ll space it out aha cause a lot of reading makes my eyes go funky.. and I definitely don’t wanna cause your eyes to do that! Anyways, do you know what really hit me over the past few weeks? The amount of people that care enough about me to actually say something about it. Hear me out: once again it’s been like, a month since I last posted (can we just add that to the apologies list?) but you guys are SO encouraging and patient with me. God has been teaching me so much about adjusting back at home over the summer and learning the things that I thought I had already learned. You know what I’m saying? Like, for example, you may struggle with being patient and God helps you with that battle but then a couple months later – or even a year later, you find yourself struggling with lack of patience all over again! That’s kinda what I’ve been working on the last couple weeks. I’m slightly frustrated with myself for having to “relearn” things I thought I already knew. Thank you so much to the people that come along side me when I ‘m in the valley! Like actually. You guys are gems.
I’m realizing more and more how important consistency and community is. Consistency with spending our time with The Lord; reading our Bibles, talking to Him throughout the day and living our lives not for our own pleasure but ultimately for His glory. Community; being open to talking about the things going on in our lives. You know? No one’s perfect – we all go through slumps. It’s the way people are. Both community and consistency need to work together. When we are not being consistent with God we need our brothers and sisters in Christ to come along side us and help us in the way we need, to get outta the slump. See where I’m going with this? We need to be consistent with God to stay on the right path ourselves, but also so that God can put on our hearts when to help other people around us who are struggling. Ultimately the body of Christ functioning together to keep the body strong.
“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Do you ever have those days when you wake up. You lay in bed. Aaaaannnnnnnd you stay there and hit snooze like…. 11 times – until the absolute latest time you HAVE to get up before you’re late for work, or school, or whatever? Last week I had that moment. I did not wanna get up. I did not wanna go to work. I didn’t wanna do anything actually. Embarrassingly enough, I remember asking God if I could just not do any lifeing that day. My bucket of caring was empty and I really wanted pizza. Obviously I’m exaggerating my lack of motivation…slightly.. but I know I’m definitely not the only person that’s had those moments. Anyways… I dragged myself outta bed and started getting ready for work when a good friend of mine shot me a text, “..Fix your eyes on Him who is love and that God’s love will shine through you to the people you encounter today..” It woke me up. I had immediately woken up and started the day on the wrong, selfish foot. After I got ready I was reading my devotions, “Let Me help you get through this day.” I think God was tapping me on the shoulder… “There are many possible paths to travel between your getting up in the morning and your lying down at night, Stay alert to the many choices throughout your day. Be continually aware of My presence. You WILL get through this day one way or the other. One way is to moan and groan, stumbling and dragging your feet. This will get you to the end of the day.. eventually – but there is a better way! You can also choose to walk with Me along the path of peace, leaning on Me as much as you need. There will still be difficulties along the way but you can face them confidently in My strength. Thank Me for each problem you encounter, and watch to see how I transform trials into blessings!” I just sat there. Quiet. Then I prayed; asking God to change my heart and that He would give me an extra dose of love, joy and patience towards the people I would talk to through out the day. I had no idea why God was nudging me to make sure His amour was fitted properly but when the commander says double check your gear – you check it three times.
As soon as I left the house I was hearing the hiss of flaming arrows soar past my head. While I was driving to work, there were random cars honking at me for whatever reason (obviously not my spectacular driving skills..) My parking spot was taken. My boss was in a.. less than cheerful mood and there were several people that obviously woke up with the same attitude I originally had. But none of this phased me. Odd. At the end of the day I was still joyful and I can only thank God for being there to strengthen me before I left the house that day. I shot my friend a text about how the day went and to thank him for sending that reminder earlier that morning. “You know, the funny thing is I felt I needed to text that to you this morning. God put the words on my heart and I’m glad He was able to help you through today!” Community helping each other with consistency. Even still, earlier this week I had a friend over for coffee. We made our drinks, sat outside at the fire and talked and talked…. and talked. Seriously woman, you’re a gem. Then she called me out, “Hey, by the way, I haven’t seen you around lately…. what’s up?” I fumbled around with a couple words and then decided I needed to just be blunt and honest. We talked about a couple things going on. At first I was a little nervous to share my thoughts on certain situations and what not, but the more I shared – the more she shared. In the end we had both been thinking a lot of the same things but just didn’t want to say it first. It isn’t often when I’m confronted with something but when I am – I love it. Honestly, I think that is something we as humans need to get over. Bringing up hard and potentially rough conversations. WE all know that we avoid them because of fear. But nearly every time a “potentially difficult conversation” comes up – I and the person walk away encouraged and challenged in the Lord. Raw and real conversation build solid and strong friendships. I’m thankful that she pushed the ball down the hill and we were able to grow from that conversation. Community helping each other with consistency. It goes on. Last Sunday at church I had a lady come up to me, “Hey, how have you been doing? You’ve been on my heart the last couple weeks and I’ve been praying for you! What’s up?” God continued to show me that not only does He care for me, but so do the people around me.
You guys have encouraged me to step out and obey the nudge that is quite easy to brush off. I was thinking about it, “I’m meeting you where you’re at Payton. I’ve had the friends you have, near and far from you, reach out to you in different ways for a reason. I need you to keep striving after Me. You need to be willing to reach out to those around you just like they have been reaching out to you recently. My body is there not to simply bring others to know Me – but to also encourage each other to keep going! I will never forget about you or let you go.”
“…reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained.” – Philippians 3 :13-16
Spending time alone with God is the best way to develop seeing eyes and hearing ears. Being consistent with The Lord is the only way to keep yourself in tune with Him. When our hearts are focused on Him and doing His Will, God will allow us to see things that no one else can see and we should then act on them. God isn’t showing you something for no reason! In the same sense God will allow you to hear things only you can hear. Act on it. If God is revealing something to you in His Word then it is your responsibility to share what God has shown you! The goal is to be aware of unseen things by walking close to God. If God has been tugging on your heart to talk to someone – get up and go talk to them. If God is encouraging you to touch base with an old friend – go out of your way to do it. Maybe God is confronting you to deal with an issue in your heart – submit the situation to Him and do your best to make peace. I’m encouraging you guys to be bold and take the leap of faith with whatever God is putting on your heart or allowing you to hear or see. BECAUSE these past few weeks I was on the receiving end and it totally changed the way I view the Christian Body. Being bold is always worth it.
“In whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him.” – Ephesians 3:12
– Stay Satisfied