Solitude is essential. Undoubtedly, it is only the enemy and our flesh that conspire to keep us too busy. It is in quietness (Ps. 46:10) that we can listen to our good Father tell us that we are His beloved children and begin to open our eyes to the height and breadth and depth of His great love for us (Ephesian 3: 16-19) and to the hope we have in Him (Ephesians 1:18-23). This message from our Creator God is the opposite of the messages we are bombarded with every day from the world: the media, our flesh, our competitive neighbor’s, and too often, ourselves. These voices, messages, and lies say we are pretty much useless, no good, guilty, unlikable, not as strong as ____, not as organized as ____, not as beautiful as____, or not as smart as____. You can fill in the blank and even the struggle; we all have something the enemy uses to wear us down if we let him. God's Word tells us something very different, if only we take the time, if only we make the time, to listen!
In Luke 21, God calls us to “keep ourselves in the love of God as we wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring us to eternal life.” Waiting seems easy, but it’s not and “keeping in the love of God” isn’t either! This keeping requires some effort and choices on our part. We must commit time each day to examine who is on the throne; is it God or….You? Your children? Your husband? Your hobby? Your busy-ness, Your plans for retirement or vacation? Your future education and training? Money? There are so many worldly things calling us away from God, but God Himself is calling us to keep ourselves in His love.
God does not demand this, instead, He wants us to seek Him (Deuteronomy 4: 29-30, Revelation 3: 19-20) with all of our heart. In the end, it’s about your heart, your first love, and your priorities (Revelations 2: 4-6, Mathew 22: 37-38)
Remember Susanna Wesley, the mother of 17 children, to include John Wesley. She found her “solitude” communing with her Savior, sitting with her apron pulled up over her head! How do you make time for your Savior? Wherever you are, however you commune with God you can be sure he will meet you there!
In the end, the transformation is a process, empowered by the Holy Spirit, but for our part it is not, it cannot be passive. We must plan for solitude, listening to God’s Spirit speak through His Word, leading us to walk in the Light (I John 1:7), ready to see, ready to repent and “to put off the old person and put on the new” (Col 3:9-10, Ephesians 4:20-25).
How do you make space for God? And if you aren’t already, then how will you?
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Please join us THIS SUNDAY for our potluck at 2:00! Meet us at Los Vecinos with your favorite side dish and celebrate with us!
International Students Inc. (ISI) has a fantastic volunteer opportunity for anyone willing to share their Thanksgiving with the students! There are options for large dinners hosted by churches, mid-size dinners hosted by smaller churches or church community groups, and several small dinners hosted by individuals or families. If you are interested in hosting one or more students for a Thanksgiving meal, contact Vince Tidwell for more information!
Shine will be putting together Winter Break boxes for A. Montoya families in need. Each box will provide breakfast and lunch items for a student every day of winter break! We will have a tree set up next Sunday, November 25 in the foyer that will have tags with specific items that we need to fill the boxes. Please take as many tags as you like and return the items on Friday, December 21. Also, please join us on Saturday, December 22 from 10:00am-12:00pm at the A. Montoya parking lot to have coffee and doughnuts with the families when they come to pick up their boxes! Contact Ashley Procter for more information.
The 2019 Clarus Conference is March 1st-3rd. The topic is “Letters to the 7 Churches” by guest speakers Kevin DeYoung and H. B. Charles Jr. There are postcards in the foyer if you want more information. If you are interested in the Early Group Registration rate of $30 per person, please let Elizabeth know by November 27th.