Thursday, July 1, 2010

Hello 41...

Having a birthday always brings the nostalgic, year-in-review persona to the surface for me.  Last year, when I turned 40, God gave me 3 words as a vision for what He desired from me.  I've had to ask myself lately if I have seen any fruit borne in these areas of my life.  Right now seems a difficult time to assess accurately as I have been in a desolate desert of spiritual dryness.  What never ceases to amaze me is when I lift my tear-smudged, grubby-self-absorbed face to the heavens - even an inch - God floods me with the light of His grace and reminds me He has been close all along. I need only crack the door of my heart in soft submission to Him an inch.  Charles Spurgeon wrote to me personally yesterday morning - how sweet of him, right?  I'll share what he said to me on the pages of his devotional Morning and Evening:

“Looking unto Jesus.”

Hebrews 12:2

It is ever the Holy Spirit’s work to turn our eyes away from self to Jesus; but Satan’s work is just the opposite of this, for he is constantly trying to make us regard ourselves instead of Christ. He insinuates, “Your sins are too great for pardon; you have no faith; you do not repent enough; you will never be able to continue to the end; you have not the joy of his children; you have such a wavering hold of Jesus.” All these are thoughts about self, and we shall never find comfort or assurance by looking within. But the Holy Spirit turns our eyes entirely away from self: he tells us that we are nothing, but that “Christ is all in all.” Remember, therefore, it is not thy hold of Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not thy joy in Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not even faith in Christ, though that be the instrument—it is Christ’s blood and merits; therefore, look not so much to thy hand with which thou art grasping Christ, as to Christ; look not to thy hope, but to Jesus, the source of thy hope; look not to thy faith, but to Jesus, the author and finisher of thy faith. We shall never find happiness by looking at our prayers, our doings, or our feelings; it is what Jesus is, not what we are, that gives rest to the soul. If we would at once overcome Satan and have peace with God, it must be by “looking unto Jesus.” Keep thine eye simply on him; let his death, his sufferings, his merits, his glories, his intercession, be fresh upon thy mind; when thou wakest in the morning look to him; when thou liest down at night look to him. Oh! let not thy hopes or fears come between thee and Jesus; follow hard after him, and he will never fail thee.
“My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness:
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.”

Focused, Fruitful and Faithful will only be woven into the fabric of my life as I look to Jesus with gaze and affections unwavering - that is my prayer for 41...


  1. I loved this post. It reminded me of Spurgeon’s book, “All of Grace”. It also reminded me of the verse in the Message, which is one of the things that drew Kristian to Christ. Matthew 11:28-30 0"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." Praying that you are experiencing times of refreshing and renewal in Christ’s love for you and the hope that is ours because we are His.

  2. Thanks Bina - All of Grace flooded my soul with peace and gratitude when I read it - need to pick it up again!

  3. You haven't written for a while. Hope and pray that all is well. Love, Bina

  4. Thanks for checking Bina. I am done some writing for the Mars Hill blog and am finding that homeschooling 2 jr.high boys is sucking my time and heart energy away - in a good way:) Lots brewing in my heart so I hope to be more disciplined after we get done with some teaching and travelling.