On Banana Bread, Elevation and Living for Jesus…

Banana Bread

I made banana bread yesterday.
It turned out pretty well.
But it could have been a disaster.

You see, I forgot where I was.
I forgot that I am way above sea level.
And at this altitude, adjustments must be made.
I’m used to baking at 128 feet above sea level – not 5,551 feet.

Fortunately, I added a little more liquid than the recipe called for because I decided to throw in a couple extra ingredients.
That’s a high-altitude adjustment – but I did it quite by accident.

Fortunately, I also used a little less sugar than the recipe called for but that was only because I didn’t want it too sweet.
So again, I adjusted by quite by accident.

What I completely forgot to do was to adjust the temperature of the oven.
It should have been about 25 degrees hotter – in Fahrenheit.
Of course, my gas oven only has Celsius marks – and those are in ranges of temperatures.
The bottom line is that it took FOREVER to bake.
I basically slow roasted it instead of baking it.

But eventually it came out of the oven.
And I think it is delicious.
But that is in no way thanks to me.

It so reminded me of my life here on earth.
How easy it is for me to forget my altitude.
And to live accordingly.

I forget that I am living at a higher elevation.
Not because of my righteousness or anything I have done.
Just like I didn’t climb these 5,000 plus feet to be here in Guatemala.
I was carried here by an airplane.
And I have been carried to a higher elevation spiritually by the incredible lift of being saved by grace alone.
Saved from sin.
Saved from separation from God.
Saved to be living “in the world but not of it.”
Saved to be existing on a different plane, a higher elevation than those who do not know Him.
An elevation that calls them to come up higher, to join me on this mountaintop.

I have been placed by grace at this living at a this-world-is-not-my-home elevation.
And because of that, everything should be different.
How I do life should be different.
Just like my baking here should be different than there.
I am supposed to be living with my heart and mind “set on things above and not on earthly things.” (Colossians 3)

I am supposed to be “laying up treasure in heaven where moths and rust can corrupt it and thieves can’t break in and steal.” (Matthew 6)

I am supposed to be “living up to what I have already attained” as a follower of Christ as I “press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me”, “forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”, pressing “on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3)

Living in a different way than the world that doesn’t know Him.
Forgiving quickly.
Living like Christ really has “torn down the dividing wall of hostility”.
Loving my brothers and sisters as I have been loved.
And loving those who don’t know the Father yet in the same extravagant way.
Giving generously.
Sharing His love constantly.
Reflecting His image consistently.

I am supposed to be making adjustments at this altitude.
Adding humility, love, kindness.
And subtracting bitterness, strife, anger.
Adding time to every relational equation, being “quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry.”
Along with so many other “high altitude adjustments” that are a part of being a disciple of Jesus.

This is the elevation we are called to live at day in and day out.
Not just me – but everyone who claims the name of Christ.

But how quickly I forget the altitude.
I forget to “live up to what I have already attained.”
How easily I slip back into baking at sea level in my Christian life.
I slide down old familiar pathways of worry.
I listen to breathy whispers of old lies from the enemy.
I let my emotions run the show instead of higher elevation realities.
I forget to “take every thought captive to Christ.”
I “lean on my own understanding” instead of trusting.
I forget who I am.
And worse, WHOSE I am.

Because life is so daily.

I have physically adjusted to living above 5,000 feet.
So it’s easy to forget where I am.
But I don’t ever want to adjust to this altitude with Jesus.

Instead, I want to climb higher.
Running hard toward the prize.
Pumping toward the finish line.
Always setting my gaze higher.
Always reaching for the next level.
Being transformed into His image from level to level.
From glory to glory.

Remember where you are, friends.
Look back at how far He has brought you, how high you have climbed.
Live up to what you have already attained with Him.

Remember who you are.
But most of all, remember whose you are.
And let’s keep climbing higher with Him, making those altitude adjustments each day.

Because at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how my banana bread turned out.
But I want my life to be a story of “progressively being transformed into His image from [one degree of] glory to [even more] glory, which comes from the Lord, [who is] the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3)

A Terrible Father…

worry

After talking with this little girl, it was obvious that she had a pretty terrible father.
She didn’t say that.
In fact, she was very complimentary towards him.
She said he was very good to her, very kind.

But as I listened, his neglect was obvious.
She was worried about so many things!
What she was going to eat.
What she was going to wear.
What she was going to say.
How she was going to manage her relationships.
How she was going to manage her future.
How she was going to manage her to-do list.

She kept talking about her fears
She wondered if her Dad would actually have enough money to take care of her needs.
And if he would be able to take care of his responsibilities.
She was concerned that he would forget about her since she was part of a large family.
And she obviously didn’t care for his advice about her life since she was fretting over her choices like she had no guidance.

She said her Dad was good.
But after listening to her, there is no way that could be true.

That little girl is me.
With my Heavenly Father.

That was my “Aha!” moment this week:
When I worry, I am representing My Good, Good Father to the world as a terrible, awful Dad.

I SAY He is good.
I SING that He is a “good, good Father”.
But when I take the reins in my own hands,
when I am worried about money,
or people,
or circumstances,
my actions tattle on me.
They declare the truth of my heart:
that I don’t really believe He is good.
I don’t really believe He is in control.
I don’t really believe I can trust Him.
I don’t really believe He is capable.
And I don’t really believe He loves me.

And that is what the world hears.
And sees.
And knows.
That while I say good things about this God I serve, this God I worship, this God I claim to love, I must not actually believe it.
Therefore, He must not actually be Who I say He is.
Or worse, He must not be who HE says He is in His Word.

Practical atheism.
Saying one thing.
Doing another.

Saying, “God is big”.
And acting like He is not big enough.

Saying, “God will provide.”
And then spending time and energy trying to figure out how I will fix it.

Saying, “God’s got this.”
And then rushing to micro-manage the circumstances – at least in my head.

Saying, “God, I trust You.”
And then allowing my stomach to churn as I bite my nails and quake in my boots.

Jesus told the disciples “Do not LET your hearts be troubled.”
Paul said, “Do NOT be anxious about ANYTHING.”
Jesus said, “DO NOT WORRY.”

It is a choice.

I have a proven track record of His goodness.
First in His Word.
Then in the history of His people.
And finally, in my own history.

And yet I choose worry.
Choose to try to control it all.
Choose to spend time chasing how I will solve it.
How foolish!
And how badly I represent my Dad when I do.

How much better would it be – and how much better off would I be – if I simply told Him about it all.
Dumped it all, turning it over to His big hands. His capable arms. His enormous capacity.
Letting it go.
And then doing the same thing the next time that thought jumps into my brain.
Every time.
Until it finally lets go of me. And I finally let go of it.

That little girl would look a whole lot more like her Dad if I did that.
And I am sure the world would see the family resemblance and want to know more about it.
Because I would be representing my Dad accurately.
Who He is.
And all I have in Him.

Forgive me, Abba Father, for so badly representing You to the world when I worry. Help me to take every thought captive to You. You deserve my worship, not my worry. Amen.

On Guate, God and How He Brought Me To This Day…

 

Calling to Guatemala

I don’t know how many of you know the story of how I came to be on staff at my church, South Potomac Church, in Maryland.

The story starts when I was 12, when God called me to be a teacher.  By the end of high school, I had a life plan that went something like this: teach in the public school until I got fired for sharing my faith and then teach in a private Christian school or overseas with missionary kids.  (There was a whole other piece to the plan involving marriage and kids but that is a topic for another day…)

As God would have it, I taught for Charles County Public Schools in Maryland for 8 years, walking out that plan and my calling.  Three of those years I was an exchange teacher in Japan, teaching English to middle school students. But as I taught, I got sicker and sicker with horrible sinus infections as well as persistent bronchitis and chronic asthma.  After my 4th sinus surgery, which was within 6 months of my 3rd, the best-in-the-nation doctor at Georgetown told me it was the children, that they were re-infecting me and that I had to get out of the classroom or face a gruesome surgery called a “sinus obliteration”.

So I left the classroom and became a Gifted Resource Teacher for the county – and hated every moment of it because it felt like it was about politics and testing, not kids.  Because I was missing interacting with children, I started doing something I had never done – volunteering in the children’s ministry at my church.  Up until then I had served in almost every other capacity, other than the praise team.  But while I was teaching, I worked with kids all week long and I did not want to work with them on Sundays.   However, that year I was missing the kids, so I started serving in the preschool on Sundays.

Because of that, when the then-children’s pastor told the then-senior pastor in December of 2002 that he was changing jobs, the senior pastor asked, “Who is already here that is your logical replacement?”  And the children’s pastor said, “Kathy.”  The rest is history.  I took the job and officially joined SPC staff August 1, 2003.

Thankfully, my health did improve after I left the classroom.  But in 2005 I made a life-altering discovery – that I have Celiac Disease.  I began to suspect that it was not the children who caused my health issues but instead it was gluten.

I proved that theory this past fall.  God opened the door for me to take a one-year Sabbatical from my church and teach here in Guatemala at the Christian Academy of Guatemala.  My 3rd graders have been sick with all the crud kids carry, including the flu.  However, I have had one cold all year and I was able to easily kick it without meds and without missing any school.

My heart has always been about children: loving them, serving them, drawing them closer to the King and the Kingdom.  But my first love in how to accomplish that has always been the elementary school classroom.  Five days a week pouring into their lives, teaching them, modeling Jesus for them, loving them – that is my dream job.

At the same time, I had been sensing for the past couple years that my role at SPC was going to shift, that it was time for a change.  I had no idea what that looked like – I just knew I had a holy discontent building inside.  When God opened the door to take this Sabbatical, I had thought that perhaps this was the extent of it – an extended break from leadership.

However, God has made it clear that He is giving me back my greatest passion – being a classroom teacher – and mixing it with another great passion, world missions.  Although my time thus far in Guatemala has not been easy, it has been incredibly blessed and very fulfilling.  I have come to realize that I long to stay here as a classroom teacher for as long as God wills.

So as of August 1, 2020, after 17 years on staff, I will be switching roles at SPC from pastoral staff to missionary.  I am in the process of finding a sending agency to join and will begin raising support as soon as possible.  SPC will be my “sending church” and remains my church home.  I will be coming home to Maryland in late May, after school lets out here, to deal with my house, stuff, car and cats.  I will then return in July with the short-term team to go to our Care Point, Bethlehem, with Children’s Hope Chest.  But when the team gets back on the plane August 1, I will head back here to CAG to start a new school year.

I know this is a shock for some of you.  Others have suspected since the beginning that this would happen.  I really had no idea when I came here that God was going to call me here for the foreseeable future.  And yes, I will miss SPC and my family and friends in the U.S.  I already do!  And yet, I know that I will have all of eternity to hang out with you guys.  But being here and teaching at CAG facilitates at least a dozen ministries to happen for the people of Guatemala.  In other words, my impact is exponentially increased while I am doing something I love and was designed to do.  And MKs (missionary kids) have a unique position and set of needs.  They did not choose to be here and for many it is a struggle.  Being here to disciple them, love them, serve them, draw them closer to Jesus and yes, teach them academics – it is a joy.  And it is a joy that positively impacts hundreds of Guatemalans as their parents minister across the area in Jesus’ name.

Thanks in advance for praying for me.  I will keep you posted about the next steps and what God is up to in my life.

Benediciones para ti!

 

 

Hello, Ambassador!

Ambassadors

Ambassador.
That word keeps coming up.

Maybe it is because I am living in a foreign country.
Or maybe it is because I am prepping with a team to do a serving trip to this same country this summer.

But it keeps reoccurring:
I am an ambassador for Christ.

And so are you if you are a Christ-follower.

Think about it:
We are citizens of another country, sent to live in a foreign land, to represent our King and His authority.
Yes, even you who have never left the land of your birth.
Once you accepted Christ as Savior, you became an ambassador for the heavenly Kingdom.

A citizen of heaven.
Living temporarily on earth.
Sent here to represent the King of Kings.

That’s heady enough.
But then there is more.

An ambassador is a plenipotentiary of his or her home country.

Yup.
That’s you.
A plenipotentiary of heaven!

What does that mean?
I am so glad you asked!

Webster’s Dictionary defines it this way:
“a person and especially a diplomatic agent invested with full power to transact business”.

Invested.
With full power.
To conduct business.

The King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Creator of the Universe, the One Who is Above All, In All and Through All, the Great I AM, the One Who Was and Is and Is to Come – that Power, that Head of State – has invested in you.

He has invested time.
Calling you to Himself.
Preparing the way for you to come.
And once you came, pouring into your life.
Teaching you spiritual things.
Guiding you by His Spirit.
Transforming you by His Word.
Teaching you to praise Him.
Teaching you who you are in Him.
Providing all that you need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1).

He is invested in you!
Therefore, you are invested with His power.

And not just any power.
With FULL power.
• The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is at work in you. (Ephesians 1)

• That power will take every part of your life – yes, even your mistakes – and use them for your good and God’s glory. (Romans 8)

• You have the power to fight Satan and all “rulers, authorities, the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6)

• You not only have the power to fight them, you are guaranteed to overcome because the One in you is greater than they are! (I John 4)

• You have been given the ability to praise God, which “silences the foe and the avenger” (Psalm 8)

• And you have been given the Word of God, which is a sharp sword, living, powerful and able to get even to the point of dividing bone from marrow and motive from attitude! (Hebrews 4)

• On top of all that, you have the Spirit of the Living God inside of you, giving you all that you need to “will and to act according to His good purpose”. (Philippians 2)

• And that power at work in you will continue until the day Christ returns! (Philippians 1)

ALL of that – and MORE – is yours as a plenipotentiary of the King!

But that is not all!

He has INVESTED you with FULL power –
so that you can accomplish HIS business!

Yes, you.
Not your pastor.
Not the missionary.
Not your godly grandma or even your neighbor who has it more together.
You.

He has called you.
Invested in you.
Given you full power.
And now expects you to take care of HIS business on this earth.
It’s why He left you here after you got saved.
It’s also what the world desperately needs you to do.

Invest in His business.
Give generously to the local church, His “main office” in your community.
Give of your time, talent and treasure.

Share the gospel extravagantly and often.
Everywhere. To everyone.
Use words as needed.

Consider how you are going to be a part of the “Go into ALL the world” command.
Are you a go-er? Or a sender?
The only thing you cannot be is a non-participant.

Be like Jesus and love the outcast.
The difficult.
The downtrodden.
The forsaken.

Be like Jesus and disciple those in your circle.
Be intentional in friendships.
Share what you have learned with someone further back on the path.

Do His business.
Or, as Jesus prayed in his model prayer, do His “will on earth as it is in heaven”.

After all, that is your real home.
You may have a very nice embassy here on earth.
And you may enjoy lots of benefits of this foreign land.
But it is a temporary assignment.

And one day you will stand before the King of all Kings.
And He will say, “OK, Ambassador. As my plenipotentiary, what did you do with that power I invested in you?”

I hope you have a great answer!
It is never too late to start living one…

Offended.

OffendedI was furious.
I cried in the shower that morning.
Not because I was hurt but because I was livid.

I bounced a check.
Not because I hadn’t kept track of my accounts.
But because of a series of truly unfortunate mishaps.
And suddenly, I had a bounced check, overdraft fees and anger.

I was angry with the people involved.
But more than that, I was angry with God.
He could have prevented the entire debacle.
But He chose not to.
So I was angry.

Frustrated at His unwillingness to intervene.
Angry that He had brought me to this place of lack.
Furious that He had put me in this situation.

I spent the rest of that week wrestling with God.
Not wanting to be angry.
Not wanting to feel as let down as I did.

But He is good.
And kind.
And patient.
In His kindness, He reminded me of Jesus and John.

John had been called by God to have a life set apart.
He was the second Elijah, a prophet just like the first one.
His mission was to prepare the way for the Messiah.
For his cousin, Jesus.
And he had done that.
And done it well.
Crowds followed him.
People repented and were baptized by him to show they wanted to be ready for the Messiah.
And finally, when the time was right, Jesus walked onto the scene.

John gladly watched as Jesus’ fame rose and his own fell.
He told his followers that Jesus “must increase” as he, John, “decreased”.

But then one day John found himself in King Herod’s dungeon.
Simply because he told the Truth about Herod’s sin.

From there the anger built.
The disappointment.
The “God, I did what You wanted. I served You well. In fact, I gave up everything for You. And this is how You repay me? This is the thanks I get?”

The Bible doesn’t record those words.
It does record the message John sent to Jesus.
“Are you the one we have been waiting for? Or should we look for someone else?”

Are you actually God?
Do You have this under control?
Or have I been living a delusion?

I love Jesus’ response to John. He didn’t preach a sermon or lecture.
Instead, he turned to the people near him and healed them.
Here is how Luke recorded it:
“At that very time Jesus cured many who had diseases, sicknesses and evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind.”

After He was done healing, he turned back to John’s friends and said, “Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor.”

In other words, tell John that, yes, I am the Messiah.

But then Jesus added the words that convict me every time I read them:
“Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.” Other translations say, “Blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”

For me, my week of wrestling finally boiled down to one statement that I felt Him say in my spirit:
“Kathy, you are either with me or you are against me. There is no middle ground.”

It doesn’t matter if I understand Him.
A god I can understand isn’t big enough to be God at all.

It doesn’t matter if I like or dislike what He is doing.
Only one of us sees the whole picture. Only one of us is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. And it isn’t me.

It doesn’t matter if I am happy. Or sad.
Confused or walking in great clarity.
Frustrated or delighted.
Full of faith or full of doubt.
Ill or healthy
Broke or wealthy
Full or hungry.
Weary or well-rested.

None of those circumstances change the foundational question:
Am I for Him? Or against Him?
Am I in His camp? Or the camp of the enemy?
Do I bear His name or not?

If I am His, and He is God, then He can do what He wants.
When He wants.
How He wants.
Even when I don’t understand.
Even when I don’t like it.
Even when it hurts.

Because what John had forgotten and what I so often forget is that He is good.
And everything He does is right.
His timing and ways are not like mine.
He doesn’t see things that way I see them.
He knows hearts.
Thoughts.
Motives.
He knows the past, present and future.
He knows it all.
Sees it all.
Understands it all.

And most of all, He is Lord of all.

So, when the darkness is thick…when the questions are heavy…when the feelings are raging…when the circumstances are bleak…when the confusion sets in…when the doubts weigh in…when my head is spinning…

Whose side am I on?

Will I choose to believe that He is good?
That He is in control?
That He loves me and will work even this out for my good and His glory?

Will I choose to believe that if He loved me enough to die for me, He loves me enough to live with me? And to give me the abundant life?

If He really did create me and really does know me, that He also knows what is best?
That my feelings are not reality?
That my circumstances are not truth?

Will I choose to NOT be offended because of Him?

The alternative is not acceptable.
And so I choose.
I choose to look at His track record.
The blind see.
The lame walk.
The dead are raised.

I choose to look at His heart, even when His hand is unfathomable.
I choose to remember the cross where He died.
And the tomb where He did not stay.
I choose to remember that this life is incredibly temporary.
And that He owes me nothing, while I owe Him everything.

But most of all, I choose to remember that He is good.
And everything He does is right.

Blessed is the one who is not offended by Him.

What Say You?

What Say You

They say:
Hustle.
Work hard.
Then work harder.
Make it happen.
Make a plan.
Implement it.
Work around the obstacles.
Peer into the future.
Try to determine the best outcome.
Make projections.
Work harder still.
Hustle.
You are enough.
You’ve got this.

He says:
Pray.
Ask for direction.
Do the next thing.
Look ahead expectantly.
Wait for guidance.
Then walk forward in confidence.

Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.
For My glory.
Don’t try to figure out what is next.
Or how to get around the obstacle.
Instead, take it to Me, the One Who made you, the Designer of all things, the Lord.

Don’t worry about anything.
Instead, give thanks for ALL things.
Even the tough stuff.
And then leave it in My hands.
Tell Me what you need. Yes, even what you want.
And then rest.
Rest in the fact that I will make it happen – if “it” is My will.
Rest in the fact that I will show you what to do next – if there is a “to do”.
Rest in the fact that I CAN see the future and I know exactly what will happen – and that I am working all things out “in conformity to the purpose of My will”.

I say:
But God has given me a brain – He expects me to use it!
(As I bow at the idol of self-sufficiency.)

Laziness and sloth are sins. I have to work hard!
(As I bow at the idol of control.)

If I don’t take care of this, who will?
(As I bow at the idol of my own importance.)

The Truth:

Time is short.
We desperately need workers in the harvest field.
The Lord of the Harvest is returning soon.
And we want to be found faithful in working for Him.

But He never asked us to do it in our own strength.
He never asked us to do it without Him.
He never asked us to figure it out.
He never asked us to make a plan for His approval.

He never said, “Hustle first. Then pray when you have exhausted all other resources.”
He never said, “You can do this; I can help.”
He never said, “You are enough.”
He never said, “You’ve got this.”

He said, “My power is made perfect in your weakness.”
He said, “Sit back and watch what I can do.”
He said, “I am the Potter, you are the vessel.”
He said, “Take my yoke upon you. Do things my way. And you will find rest for your soul.”
He said, “You can do all things – if you do them in Me. Through Me. Because I asked you to do them. For My glory.”
He said, “Humble yourself before Me. And then watch me raise you up.”
He said, “Without Me, you can do nothing.”

Your first job is not to hustle.
Your first job is the stay connected to the Vine.

Your first job is not the make it happen.
Your first job is to make time for Him. For prayer. For the Word. For listening.

Your first job is not to tell yourself how good you are.
Your first job is to tell Him how great He is.

Your first job is not to recognize all your best qualities.
Your first job is to yield every part of yourself to His mighty hand.

“The natural temptation with every difficulty is to plan for it, to put it out of the way yourself; but stop short with all your planning, your thinking, your worry, and talk to Him! Rest, trust, and wait, and see how He does that which you wanted to do and had so much care about. ‘Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord.’”
A. E. Funk

Resolved: One and Done

New Years Resolution

‘Tis the season for New Year’s Resolutions.

I have a lot of things I would like to see happen this year:
Dreams
Goals
Ideas
Hopes

And a lot of things that I DON’T want to happen this year:
Fears
Worries
Concerns

But here’s the thing about most resolutions:
They are about control.
Controlling my finances.
Controlling what I eat.
Controlling how much I exercise.
Controlling my habits.
Controlling my emotions.

But here’s the other thing:
Self-control is a great thing.
But it is not a product of my will.
I have proven over and over again that I can have it for a little while and then I will lose it, drop it, blow it big.
Because on my own, I am incapable of maintaining self-control.
So it cannot be a product I manufacture.
Rather, it is a fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22)
A product of the work of God in my life.

Fruit doesn’t grit its teeth to make itself appear.
It doesn’t lay out elaborate plans.
It doesn’t work harder, smarter or faster.

It just emerges in a healthy plant.
A natural product of growth.

I need self-control – we all do.
But I don’t get it by willing myself to have it.

I get it simply by abiding in The Vine. (John 15)
Sticking close to Jesus.
Listening to the Holy Spirit.
And obeying His still, small voice.
Choosing to keep short accounts with God and people.
When the Holy Spirit nudges me to say, “That was wrong”, I immediately say, “I am so sorry – I will turn and walk a different way. Please give me the grace and strength to do that.”
And when He says, “Get up and do this thing”, I do it. Immediately. Without question.
That might be exercising.
Or putting down the thing I want to buy.
That might be doing something kind.
Or doing a task I don’t want to do.
Whatever it is, He will lead. And I will choose to follow.

I will know His voice by saturating my life in the Word of God.
Making room to be still before Him.
Filling my life with people who point me to Him.
Choosing to make His ways a priority.
Abiding in The Vine.

When I do that, self-control is a natural byproduct.
As is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and faithfulness.

So for the “cost” of one “resolution” – drawing closer to God – I gain all of those benefits.
Or, more accurately, the people in my life gain all those benefits!

And here is what I love about the Spirit of the God.
He doesn’t use intimidation or bullying to get me to change.
Instead, He peels back layers one at a time and shows me the thing that needs to be dealt with next.
And He does it in loving terms.
Never by sarcasm, insults or shame.
But simply by wooing me closer to Himself.
Showing where I am not like Jesus.
And then giving me the power to become more like Him.

Why wouldn’t I resolve to draw closer?
It is a one-and-done proposition.
Draw near to Him in love and obedience (which Jesus said are one and the same).
Let Him do the necessary work to make my life pleasing to Him.
It will show up in the practical ways that are always on the list of resolutions.
Directly impacting everything I do.
From what I eat to what I do with my time and how I spend my money – and everything in between.
Much easier than trying to gut it out myself.
And productive for all of eternity.

Resolved: Abide in The Vine. Saturate my life in His life. Breathe deeply of Who He is. Marinate in His character, His Word, His heart. Obey Him as He leads. And let Him take care of the rest.

One and done.

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