Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Mid-Week Message - Looking Ahead

"When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.  When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.  For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.  Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known."  1 Corinthians 13:11-12 (NIV)  

One of my favorite Christmas presents ever received was given to me by my grandfather.  It was a Chatty Cathy doll.  Oh, how I loved her!  Of course, as toys that are played with do, eventually she no longer talked and was discarded into the memories of my youth.  When my daughter was around six, they began remaking the doll.  I saw it in a catalog and showed it to my husband.  My mother also saw it and that following Christmas I was given an identical box from each of them.  Two lovely Chatty Cathy dolls!  

During this time I was collecting rag dolls.  My little one knew that the dolls were not to be played with.  However, when the Chatty Cathy dolls arrived, it was almost too much for her.  One day she asked me if she could play with one of them.  My response was, "No.  But one day all of my dolls will be yours."  When she asked for clarification I explained that someday I would die and she would become the owner of many things that I had, including the dolls.  She then perked up and asked me quite eagerly, "When are you going to die?"  That is still something we laugh over.  

As I grow older and think of my own mortality, I realize how precious the time I have on this earth is and how vital it is that the time I have left is used wisely.  I make a sincere attempt to show appreciation for the blessings I have been given and to share love and encouragement with the people God brings into my pathway.   But I have begun to understand that more is needed.  

My prayer has become that the Lord would open my eyes and enable me to see as He sees.  I have walked with Him now for many years and He has taught me that His perspective is much more complete than mine.  But, He is more than willing to grant wisdom when it is sought and that wisdom is able to remove the blinders from my earthly eyes to allow me to more clearly see into the hearts of those created in His image.  When that occurs, love can more freely flow because there is a deeper understanding of the pain and need that others experience which creates a fervent desire to accompany them to the foot of the cross where they might find forgiveness and healing.  

As we all enter this new year, may we do so agreeing in prayer that our Father would open our hearts, minds and eyes to see as He sees?  Rather than a fuzzy image, we need to clearly understand that His desire is that none should perish.  We do not have control over whether someone accepts the salvation that is offered to them, but we certainly have control over whether we treat those around us with compassion and love and share the Good News with them.  They may turn away from the gospel, but, oh, beloved, what if they embrace the Savior?  We will never hear the rejoicing if we never share Him.  

I wish you all a blessed 2020.  May we enter this decade understanding the urgency that the passing of the years creates and may we all look forward to His return.  God bless.  

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