Friday, August 31, 2012

Don't Lose Jesus

This past week I was up in northern California for a business trip, but I got the chance to meet up with a couple of friends I haven't seen since I moved.

While we were catching up my friend told me about a recent dispute that she had with a relative. They were driving separately to a location (relative following) and got separated by a red light. When my friend got to her destination she noticed the trailing car was not there. Quite some time later, the second car showed up with a very irritated person. An argument commenced and the rest was a very unpleasant encounter. My friend was very hurt.

I couldn't help but wonder as she was telling me the story, "Didn't you notice she was no longer with you? Weren't you paying attention?" To me the relative's frustration was understandable. You are traveling on a journey with someone and suddenly they separate from you and don't even make an effort to reconnect. Her statement to my friend, "You should've waited for me!!"

But before I could judge my friend too harshly, I am reminded of the times I have sped through the red lights on life and separated myself from Jesus; either by following my own agenda or being impatient with the pace of His plan and rushing. We all do that from time to time, but as long as we stay connected to Him, we will quickly recognize those times when we have left Him out of a decision, a thought, or our day.

My word for you today is, don't lose Jesus. Wait on Him. Seek Him every step of the way. We don't want to want to get to our destination and realize He's not with us. My devotional I read (below) hit the nail right on the head with this point.

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How to Experience His Presence in Your Everyday Life

John 14:23

Life is busy and filled with distractions. It's so easy to get caught up in our cares, errands and worries that we lose sight of what matters most.

There's an interesting little story at the end of Luke chapter two about when Mary and Joseph took Jesus to Jerusalem for Passover when He was twelve years old. After the festival was over, they left to go home, supposing He was with them.

I wonder how many times we suppose God's with us when we've wandered off to do our own thing?
Now here's the interesting part. Mary and Joseph had traveled a day's journey before they realized Jesus wasn't with them and then it took three days to find Him. Three days! The message here is that it's easier to lose that special presence of God than it is to get it back once we've lost it.

We need to be careful to remain in the presence of God. When we do, we make God feel at home in our hearts. This simply starts with being obedient to His Word. A commitment to
turn from behavior that offends God is the number one sign of spiritual
maturity. It shows you care about what He thinks.

That means you choose to be generous toward others, you learn to forgive, let go of your offenses and live in peace. When we choose to be intentional with our words, giving thanks to God and lifting up
others, we'll feel connected to God all throughout the day.

Prayer Starter: Father, thank You for making Your home in my heart. I need Your presence today, Lord. Help me to honor You with my thoughts and my words and to be a blessing to those around me.

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