Last night a good friend called me. Ironically I was headed to bed, having already fallen asleep earlier, sometime around 7. (It was a l-o-n-g day.) But we had not spoken for a long time. His wife has been dealing with some pretty unusual sickness issues. I wanted to bring comfort and so I stayed up. On some levels it was more for me than for him.
What does that really mean? How do we digest that? What do we do with that? So often we think a new season is going to be great, but what if it isn’t?
For instance I began a new season a few months ago. By my standards (And others…) I failed. For the first time in my life I was “unsuccessful” and did not meet goals or expectations. Was that a good season? Does God look at it and say “you failed” or you had a bad season?
The result of my “bad season” is I have turned inward. I have stayed closer to God. (Further from friends and family.) I don’t have my verve. I am not sure what it looks like to be like Paul and Silas in a prison singing praise. Do not get me wrong. I have praised God. Only yesterday I am sure some folks thought I was “loose” from somewhere as I sang my songs of praise.
Here we are. August.
As I spoke to many people, most were ready for July to end. It had not “panned” out the way they thought. So what are our standards? I had a new grandchild. Made a couple of new friends. What is your thought?
I believe that the “hunger” for the Lord to move has increased. Things often change in a day or a moment. Only last month people wanted Health Care resolved but today it is the fears caused by the border explosion: hungry children, disease and violence.
Down seasons can make you bitter or better. They can reduce you or increase you. Who is your hope tied to?
Lee…where is the word? I believe this is it.
Today is the day of the beginning. The day where you can say “I am going to praise God in my season of downness”. To recognize God with my praise. To look for Him in what I do not see Him doing yet. To review what He did do for me in my season of down, of apparent failure. To recognize He is “now” in my now.
I looked at Joseph. The man who seemed to lose coats. The man who went from the pit to Potiphar’s, to the prison to the palace. How long did he sit in his place of apparent failure, of despair while in the pit? How long did he languish after he gave a “great” word to a baker and a butler? What was his standard? Did he give up? Did he stop giving words or interpreting dreams? Apparently not, because it was an interpretation that set him free.
Will you extend grace in your pit? Will you minister in your prison? Will you not waver in the “house of Potiphar”?
My time in “darkness” has revealed to me what I am good at and what I am not.
August. The dictionary describes the word August, as majestic, imposing, dignified or of noble birth. So, I say to you this day, what will you birth of majesty, of dignity? Will you release that which has been within you all these years?
Regardless of your prison or palace, God is in you, seeking a place to express Himself through you. Whether it is in the work place or in the grocery store. God invested in you. He invested with a return in mind and He is a long term investor. Regardless of the season, the return is coming.