Hard to believe we only have one chapter left in this awesome book by Micca Campbell.
CH. 11: PRACTICING HIS PRESENCE
Anything in blue is a quote from the book.
Living carefree in God's love is not only doable--it's real.
Right now we live in a world full of fear.
Suicide bombers overseas, the recent disappearance of a plane over the Atlantic, people losing jobs...the list could go on and on. Fear resides in the minds of many people.
So when Micca says we can live carefree, what does she mean and how do I sign up?
And as a Christian, doesn't that automatically sign me up for a carefree life?
Isn't Jesus Christ supposed to make my life perfect?
Many Christians are powerless and full of anxieties because they do not faithfully practice fellowship with God. They stand in God's shadow but don't draw near.
Okay, so in order to live carefree, I must have fellowship with God.
Why can't it just come with accepting Jesus into my life?
You and I were created by God for God.
That's why we exist.
We were created to have an ongoing personal relationship with God.
I love the truth that God wants us to talk with Him daily.
To develop a personal relationship with Him.
I love listening to my 7 year old daughter, Alivia pray. One thing I've taught her over the years is to not be formal...just talk to God like you would your BFF. And she does and it's beautiful when she prays prayers like:
Please help my daddy's back to feel better.
And Jesus, please help me to beat Marianna in tether ball tomorrow.
Anywhere and anytime she has access to her King.
And that's what He wants from us.
He wants us to tap into Him about the big things...a dying family member, or the little things like a game of tether ball.
He wants to be involved in our lives.
Every day and every area.
To really know God, we have to spend time with Him.
Knowing about God and knowing Him personally are two different things.
After Gene and I were first married, I read a book by Linda Dillow called Creative Counterpart. One thing that has stuck with me for all of these years is the words she wrote under the sub-title Talking With God. She used her husband Jody as an example:
If I talked with Jody only between eleven and twelve on Sunday morning, how well would I know him?
Gene and I will celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary on June 26th. I can't imagine if I only payed him attention for one hour a week that we would be celebrating anything this month.
Micca tells us how we must abide in God. Hang out with Him. Every single day.
When you and I hang out with God, we have nothing to fear.
Abiding in Christ means to remain in His presence during every season and turn of life.
The question is, "How do we do it?"
Jesus had a hoppin' ministry. He drew crowds of needy people wherever He went. He was in high demand. And yet, He stopped.
Micca took the time to point out what Jesus did and we need to follow His holy example.
Expect interruptions in our day.
Not all interruptions in Christ's day, or ours, are bad. As Jesus went about teaching, He was often interrupted by the sick, the blind, and those bound in sin. What was His reaction?
He stopped teaching to heal, give sight, and set the sinner free.
And He is still doing those things today.
He has the longest, most successful ministry of anyone.
When you are in demand, whether it's at work or from a family member...stop.
Stop and pay attention to what is right in front of you.
How did Christ handle all that responsibility without losing it?
I'm so not like Jesus in this area. So often, I lose it with my loved ones from feeling pulled in many directions. How did Jesus keep His cool? Oh, He was perfect one might say.
Yes, but like Micca pointed out, while Jesus was God, He was also a man.
"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed."
Jesus spent time with God and it was His top item on His "to-do list".
It's where He learned about the Father's ways and will.
It's where He cast His cares and got renewed and ready for whatever the day brought along. And He stayed as long as it took to connect with God.
When we spend time with God, Ms. Campbell tells us that we can expect things to happen, such as:
The Holy Spirit becomes our personal guide.
More awareness of God's presence.
Peace that only Christ can give us.
I must admit that when I put God first in my morning, it is pretty hard to go off on my kids or husband for something petty. Makes life so much better when I let God know...YOU are my #1.
One thing Micca's daughter has used to overcome fear in her life is to write down and memorize verses from God's Word.
Writing down and memorizing truths that counteract the Enemy's lies are good practices when we're weighed down with fear.
Peace is God's will. Peace, not fear, should rule our lives.
God wants our lives to be filled with His presence and His peace, not fear.
Wherever we go, whatever we do, we will encounter circumstances that are beyond our control.
As long as we try to remain in control, peace is absent.
When we simply remain connected to our source, God's peace is available at every turn.
So, to sum it up to have a live a carefree life, which is possible when we put Christ first, we must:
Prioritize, abide, pray, talk, focus, memorize, trust and the peace will come from our Father.
Thank you Jesus for loving us so much that You want a relationship with us everyday. You want to be the first thing in our planner each day. You want to be in high demand from us. You want to be the one that we seek for the peace we so desperately desire.
Tap into Jesus this week my friends. He is so worth the time we invest in Him.
I don't like what Mr. Linky is doing, so if you have something to share on your own blog regarding this chapter, just leave your blog address in the comment section.
Have a blessed day and join me next Tuesday, June 9th as we wrap up this book with
Chapter 12: Living with Courage.
My teenage daughter Alyssa checks in the hospital tomorrow morning.
A baby is on it's way...a BOY or a GIRL...stay tuned.