Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for June, 2017

If you know anything about football (American) you know that there are four quarters played.  But right between the second and third quarters is what is called half time.  The players go into the locker room, discuss the good and bad of the first half, then strategically plan how to go into the second half.

 

It’s June, and we are soon to enter the second half of the year 2017.  It’s hard to believe.  There are still 24 hours in the day and yet the older I get the quicker the time.

 

The other morning I sat on the back porch with a cup of coffee in my hand being still before the Lord.  I was running our Sunday lesson through my head.  Can you guess the title?  Half-Time: Moving from Success to Significance.  I chuckled.   Halfway through the year and we’re talking about the second half of our lives being more focused on significance.

 

I thought of my word for the year, transformation, and wondered was I making any strides?  A lot has happened in the past six months;  however, was change being made?

 

Then a question from Brannon Manning’s book The Furious Longing of God, came to mind:

 

“How often do you monitor your spiritual growth?  Several times a day?  Once a month?  Every thirty days? Twice a year?”*

 

It’s good for me to sit and reflect on where I’ve been and where I feel like the Lord is leading, but I get in the habit of going through the day checking every action, every word, etc.  I monitor my spiritual walk and just about everything I do.

 

The funny thing is it’s not my job.  It’s His and His only through the work of His Spirit.   I’m not saying that it isn’t good to take inventory once in a while.  However, it is not for me to carry around the monitor of change and growth with me every minute of every day.

 

There are three things that happen when I take control of the monitor.

 

First, me being a doer, I tend to set my standards high – way too high. When I don’t meet those standards, I get frustrated, depressed and feel like a failure because I’m not growing.

 

Furthermore, monitoring of self also starts a slippery slope of comparison.  I can look at others and see “giants” of faith and say I must be doing something wrong. My standards aren’t high enough.  I turn spiritual disciplines into legalistic performance. My goals are attempted in my own strength.

 

Lastly, as I take the role of monitor, I am more focused on the “change” then I am on living life and allowing God to work.

 

When I give God the role as monitor, He will grow what He wants to, when He wants to, and how He wants to.  I think that’s why over the past year as I embraced the study, “Read for Life –Reading the Bible Chronologically” in my church’s women’s ministry. The growth God worked through this study proved to be amazing.  I was allowing the Holy Spirit to teach what He wanted me to learn just by reading the Word.  Not that studies from well known teachers — like Beth Moore or Pricilla Shirer — aren’t great, but many times the studies can be all about what I should be doing and I don’t allow God to grow the concepts in me.

 

I will continue to take these studies, but I have to be willing to allow God to grow character traits, or spiritual fruit, in me.

 

To give God the control of my growth, He has shown me things that need healing, changing and encouragement that I never knew I needed.  There is also relief and peace to know that I am not in charge.

 

Are you monitoring your spiritual growth?  “How often do you monitor your spiritual growth?  Several times a day?  Once a month?  Every thirty days? Twice a year?”*

 

I would like to challenge you to allow God to monitor your growth for a month and during those weeks be still, listen for His voice and obey.  I think you may be surprised at what you experience through His work and strength.  And when you look in the mirror months from now you may notice Christ in you a little more.

 

“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed in the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”

2 Corinthians 3:18 (NASB)

 

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

The Gospel Project

Journey through the storyline of Scripture.

marthaparish

The pages of my life

The Great Adventure

A Journal of Life and Faith in Southeast Asia

Hearts Set Free Blog

Just another WordPress.com site

Eggs In Asia

follow us as we follow Him

%d bloggers like this: