I’m flying home today. Athens is already behind me and I’ll be sleeping in my own bed tonight.
It’s a bittersweet feeling that I’m sure I’ll be pondering for weeks to come but not today.
Today, I celebrate the personal victories and the spiritual ones.
Today, I remember the journey and try to permanently write the lessons learned on my mind. Even before I landed in Athens, these lessons were things that I could have quoted because common sense told me they were true but two months encouraged me to live them out and to make them real. I won’t elaborate on all of them but I do have three spiritual spiritual lessons I want to share with you.
Far too often, I feel, we spend so much time “doing” for God that we forget that basics. We forget who we are in Him and we forget the simple lessons that Scripture teaches us.
So, here they are…
Three Simple Truths from Scripture
1.We were made for a purpose in Christ.
In the busy-ness of life, purpose can be difficult to find. There are many out there giving us quizzes, self-evaluations, and avenues to travel in order to find that elusive “purpose.”
However, God doesn’t try to hide it from us. He’s written it out plainly in Scripture.
We were created for God’s glory. We were created to honor God and to keep His commandments. We were created to love and be loved by Him.
Far to often, I get caught up in the things that the world tells me that I have to do so I can be successful. I get tangled in the tasks of everyday life.
I find purpose in what I do rather than in who He designed me to be.
2.Rest is God given gift that we need to embrace.
There’s that busy-ness again!
We’re told to work hard, fulfill dreams, and make things happen. And there’s nothing wrong with those things!
But, God desires that we stop and rest. Rest is not an occasional thing. It’s not something that should happen once and a while when we begin to burn out.
Rest should happen frequently.
He built a whole day for rest alone.
Mark 2: 27 tells us that God created a day of rest for man. The rest day wasn’t an afterthought. It wasn’t as if God didn’t have something to put in there so He just gave up and called it rest.
He designed it specifically for us! It’s a gift!
And not one we should leave on the shelf.
3.It’s in the stillness that God speaks.
One of my favorite passages of Scripture is found in 1 Kings 19.
The Prophet Elijah is running from Queen Jezebel. He’s depressed and feels as if his work for God is meaningless. Discouragement? Depression? Doubt? Seems pretty familiar, right?
Anyway, he goes into a cave and God tells him to stand in the opening because He, God, was going to show up.
First, there’s massive wind. But God wasn’t in that.
Then, an earthquake. But God wasn’t there either.
Next was a fire. But no God there.
Finally, a low whisper came. And there was God.
God is in stillness. When we stop long enough to listen, there He is.
In Athens, there was more down-time for me than there was for Jay. That time I had could not be wasted in all the same ways it is when I’m at home. I couldn’t just hop in my car and drive somewhere. My to-do list was limited by what was available to me.
And it was wonderful!
New dreams could be planted because I had the stillness to listen. I had the forced stillness to let God speak in His timing.
Stillness is often viewed as a bad thing. And it may look that way from the outside. But there is nothing more beautiful than the words that the infinite God speaks to the human soul.
There is always more that God wants to speak to those He loves. We all have different lessons we need to learn but these were the three that my life journey needed.