Through nature, we visualize God’s power. We can see, feel (inwardly), smell, taste, hear and touch his wisdom with the beautiful majestic mountains, the lush green trees, the colorful fragrant blossoms, delicious fruit and vegetables that are grown out of this well-organized earth he created for us – the crisp cold air of Winter as it brushes against your face – Spring as it brings new life from the greenness of awakened grass to the chirp of freshly born baby birds requesting breakfast from their mother – wonders anew with each birth of a new season. God did that. He did it for his glory. He did it for you. He carefully planned out and created your life and no matter what you might think about your life, you are beautiful and your life is a beautiful thing. You have the power in you to assist God in that creation of your self, your life. You can have more power, more strength if you ask God and Jesus to walk with you every day of the rest of this life – together, you can have a better life that even you can imagine at this very moment. Endless possibilities in this life when you have God and Jesus by your side and in your heart. You have always had them. Perhaps you just didn’t invite them in? All you have to do is ask Jesus to come into your heart, to show you a better way of life, to teach you what real living is, not just existing.
Not only do we witness and learn how imaginative and generous God is with all he’s created on this planet and in our skies and the incredible vastness of space and the universe – have you learned how much of a sense of humor he has? He created me. All of us, we have to admit, have done some amazingly goofy things in our lives. We have made some ginormous mistakes and messed up with a lot of our decisions. As some of these mistakes have frustrated God, I’m sure — at times, I’m sure he’s laughed his head off at the things we do. We can all be pretty funny and goofy in our own way. And look at some of these creatures he’s created. You know he laughs when that leetle puppy dog turns her head sideways and that little question sound comes out of her mouth or when she thinks she’s a bunny rabbit instead of dog, jumping over a mound of grass or patch of flowers.
We are very selfish individuals. I’m talking about me. Not just selfish, but blinded by our oneness with ourselves – blinded by our self. Mr. Warren says, “Living for God’s glory is the greatest achievement we can accomplish with our lives.” Do you think about living this way every day? I know I don’t. Are you thinking of what you can do for God every day? I don’t. I think I’ve become so selfish and blind to me and my life and just those few people I enjoy surrounding myself with (and furbabies) and those things that we love to do together and by ourselves. Do I include God in those things? Not really. We become so busy in our lives that we don’t make time for God, to think of God, to do those things for God that will bring a smile to his face. It’s not that we don’t have time. God is very understanding that we have a lot on our plate. We have jobs, families, households, etc. to take care of. What I don’t take the time to realize is that I could include God in every single one of those things, and not only that, I can set aside time for just him, which pleases him even more. How we interact with our child and other people we love can bring him glory (including God when dealing with family, friends, co-workers, strangers), as just one example. Setting aside time with God can be as simple as 5 or 10 minutes in your car on the way to work in the morning, praying to him (or if you don’t know how to pray), simply talking to him or thinking to him (sharing your heart with him – which is a form of prayer). He’s always there, listening, watching, waiting for you. He never gives up on you, no matter what you may think about him. He loves you like no other can ever love you. He is your father, your heavenly father and there is nothing you can ever do in this life that will cause him to stop loving you. He’s waiting there for you to ask forgiveness and he’s ready to forgive and forget all about it and begin again with you. You may think you never had God in your life. That’s not true, ya know. No matter your beliefs, he has always believed in you and has faith in you and loves you no matter what. You are his creation and he held you in the palm of his hand before you were a figment of your mother’s imagination. Your soul was made by God and he wants you to remember how much you’re loved and cherished by him.
“In different ways we have all lived for our own glory, not God’s.” The Bible says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
“None of us have given God the full glory he deserves from our lives. This is the worst sin and the biggest mistake we can make. On the other hand, living for God’s glory is the greatest achievement we can accomplish with our lives. God says, “They are my own people, and I created them to bring me glory,” so it ought to be the supreme goal of our lives.”
“How can I bring Glory to God? Jesus told the Father, “I brought glory to you here on earth by doing everything you told me to do.” Jesus honored God by fulfilling his purpose on earth. We honor God the same way. When anything in creation fulfills its purpose, it brings glory to God. Even the lowly ant brings glory to God when it fulfills the purpose it was created for.”
“There are many ways to bring glory to God, but they can be summarized in God’s five purposes for your life. We bring God glory by worshipping him.” To me (and many will probably disagree), church is not just the building you go to on Sunday morning. It is good to fellowship with other like-minded individuals who go to church to worship (and not all go to church for the right reasons; i.e. to find a good man; to be judged by your neighbors as a good person or Christian because you are in church; because you were forced to go against your will, etc.) – these things can cause you to turn away from God and it doesn’t please him for us to go to church while not having the right reasons for being there in the first place. Church is church. I say, go if you have the right reasons for going. Participate if you are doing it for the correct purposes of why God intended for you to go to that place. You can worship anywhere. You can fellowship anywhere. It is said in the Bible that God is where any two people are joined together in his name/word. In other words, if you are sharing God with someone else, talking about God, or allowing God to just use you to help someone, you get the concept. Church is not only about worshipping and fellowship, though. It’s studying his word and learning about God and Jesus. I was not raised in church. For a long time, I was resentful of this, as I’ve been resentful of many things in past years. I’ve learned to let go of so many of these resentments, because I’ve learned (I’m sure it was God showing me, because I could not have gotten there on my own, believe me!) all these experiences of our past help mold us into the person we become. My mother was forced into church. If the church doors were open, she was made to be there, whether she wanted to, or not. This would force anyone to be resentful of church and/or God, and/or our parents. We are made to do things we don’t agree with – we rebel. I know, I have and still do, if I’m forced to do something! I will rebel just out of spite, not because I didn’t agree with the thing – I’ll rebel because I was forced. You cannot force anyone to do anything and expect it to take hold. You can persuade, you can manipulate, but you cannot force and not expect them to rebel now and/or later. This is why I was not raised in church. I get it. To understand our lives, we have to understand our parents and how they were raised, and how our grandparents were raised. This is how you can get past blame and resentment toward people in your life. It takes years sometimes, and having a child yourself, to help you see these things. God uses everything to affect your life. Sometimes, you won’t get it until you are 42, or 80. This doesn’t matter. What matters is what you do from that moment on, how you make your decisions and what you do with that knowledge – those realizations. Those realizations can change your life and how you see absolutely everything, if you choose to let them.
“God wants our worship to be motivated by love, thanksgiving, and delight, not duty. Worship is far more than praising, singing, and praying to God. Worship is a lifestyle of enjoying God, loving him, and giving ourselves to be used for his purposes.”
“We bring God glory by loving other believers.” Does that need to be explained further? It seems pretty straight forward to me.
“We bring God glory by becoming like Christ. Spiritual maturity is becoming like Jesus in the way we think, feel, and act. The Bible says, “As the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like him and reflect glory even more.”
Once you claim Jesus, you start a new life. This is what some term as “born again”. I term it as wanting to be free of myself. When you claim Jesus, it’s not about you anymore. You can leave your selfishness behind.
“We bring God glory by serving others with your gifts. Each of us was uniquely designed by God with talents, gifts, skills, and abilities. The way you’re ‘wired’ is not an accident.” That’s a relief – that I was wired this way. For years, I had thought I was just weird. “God didn’t give you your abilities for selfish purposes. They were given to benefit others, just as others were given abilities for your benefit. The Bible says, “God has given gifts to each of you from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Manage them well so that God’s generosity can flow through you….Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then God will be given glory.”
Another thing I’m realizing is no matter how many times you might read this or have someone tell you this, you have to get there on your own. Others can help you to get there but you reach understandings by not just what you read and hear, but after you let it sink it and once you feel it’s real within your heart and allow God to help you see with new eyes – only at that time will you “get it”. I pray we all eventually “get it”, before it’s too late. As long as you are alive, it’s not too late for you. I don’t know about you, but that’s comforting to me!
“We bring God glory by telling others about him. God doesn’t want his love and purposes kept a secret. Once we know the truth, he expects us to share it with others.” Okay, ya know what?. God is making me very aware of so many things through reading this book. I love this Mr. Warren, as well, as he interprets the Bible through his book. He explains important points of the Bible in a very inspiring, enlightening light that is so easy to understand. You, Mr. Warren, have allowed God to use your many gifts to reach people in a new way – a more easily understood, loving, inspired way of understanding God, as well as ourselves. Reading this chapter, I realize I need to share the miracles I’ve experienced in my life that (1) proved to me there is a God and he’s real and always there, loving and protecting, listening and answering prayers – never to question his existence again; (2) saving a death of a broken heart and feeling of useless existence – I had an empty soul, praying for love and security and purpose, meaning to my life, a reason to live – he gave me a reason to live. I will share these miracles with you either later today or tomorrow. My child needs my attention. 😉 Have you prayed for miracles? Have you experienced one or more? I’m sure many of us have and dismissed it or tried to explain it away to ourselves, because it was hard to wrap our minds around. Is this you?
What will you live for? Living a life for God is not always an easy one. He gives us difficulties to give us strength. We don’t see this until later in life. Some of us never see it. We are too angry, too resentful. This was me, for so many years. Even Jesus struggled with choosing a difficult path instead of an easy one. Page 64 explains how he questioned and pleaded with God. This is an awesome page! I’m reading it again and again, letting it resonate and sink in. I’m having many ah-ha moments from this book, so far. Have you had any ah-ha moments? This book just gets better and better and is awesome from the beginning page. Have you been inspired?
Every minute, God is longing for you to love him and for you to fulfill the purposes he made for you. When you aren’t living to please God, everything else is simply existing. I think I’m finally realizing why I’ve been so tired – I’ve only been existing. Are you still searching like I have been searching for so many years? Are you seeking every day, trying to figure out what your purpose is? I believe this book is helping me to realize several of my purposes.
The way to true enlightenment is only through God and Jesus is the only way to reach him. When you decide you are ready to become enlightened, God and Jesus will be ready, too. First, you have to believe. Believe who Jesus is, what he did and why. Second, you receive. Open your heart, and let Jesus live there. It’ll change your life. It’s sort of like waking up from a very long, intense, drugged sleep. It’s the coolest experience of my life. See, up till now, my daughter has been the coolest experience of my life. She’s pretty awesome. Her life has opened my eyes to new ways of living – I never even knew existed. God is opening my eyes a bit wider. Why? Because I’m finally allowing him to. He’s tried so long to reach me and I’ve had those barriers/walls/fortress strong. I had to open the door and let him in. He doesn’t force himself on you. He waits for his invitation. How do you invite him? Invite Jesus? Simply – ask. Then, know that he’s there, loving you, working in you, helping you every minute.
“How in my daily routine could I become more aware of God’s glory around me?” As you have a picture of your child or spouse or furbaby, or sailboat (things and people you love), have a picture or image or item you can sit in view that reminds you of God/Jesus – their presence – the fact that they are holding your hand and, many times, carrying you through your day. They know your heart and you are never alone. What image would that be for you? I think of a baby’s hand inside of a father’s hand. Perhaps I will find this picture, print it out, frame it and put it on my desk, at work and home. Maybe I will give this as gifts to those who need a reminder, and maybe place something on the picture or frame, saying something like, “I am your heavenly father, always loving you, protecting and guiding you, holding your hand.” What is the image you see?
In my daily routine? I will make at least one conscious effort to do something (to take action) to benefit someone else and I’ll do it with the intention of making God smile.
I realize I’m posting this at 1:00. Sorry I didn’t finish this morning. I try to not take time away from Hallie when we finally have some quality time with each other. So, I’ve started today’s blog, taken a break, I’ve come back, and now I’m finishing and publishing.
Y’all make it an inspired, inviting, fun-filled day. Love you!