Saturday, June 23, 2012


...let us lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. 

Hebrews 12:1

Recently I hosted a garage sale for my daughter, who had asked me to help her raise money for a one year assignment she received in China. Haltingly, I agreed. I had previously declared that I would "never again" host a rummage sale, but here I was sorting through clothes, household items, and various other "absolutes" that no longer held sway over my fickle emotions. When the sale was over, I was relieved to have the needed space. Once again, I felt free from the encumbrance of material possessions that require both time and mental energy to maintain.

As I reflect on this experience, I realize there is another sale I need to hold. I need to declare "soul sale." I need to sort through the responsibilities I have, the obligations I have committed to, and the unnecessary entanglements of complicated relationships. I have noticed that when I do not clear the attic of my soul, then I lack the ability to maintain the focus of what is both necessary and divinely ordained. 

God has uniquely created us to live with meaning and purpose. We have been given a direction, but the clutter in our lives clouds our vision and understanding of His intentional direction. We must post a "soul sale" up that would require sorting and pitching the "entanglements" that prevent us from living full and meaningful lives. What is it you need to sort through and pitch? Today, host a "soul sale" and enjoy the freedom of living unencumbered for the Lord. 

Today, Lord, show me what responsibilities and obligations I need to release. Free my soul from the chain of expectation, and let me live as you intended; with meaning and purpose. Today, I declare a "soul sale." Amen.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Speaking Light

Then God Said, "Let there be light"; and there was light.

Genesis 1:3

As I sit reflecting on the power of words, I am reminded of a story my husband recounts on occasion. He had always desired to become an architect. In high-school he had taken a drafting class as preparation for his dream job, however, an ill-spoken comment by his drafting teacher shattered his belief that he could pursue this career. His teacher had made a critical comment on one of his designs without teaching or providing guidance as to how he could improve upon what he was creating. This harsh spoken comment convinced my husband that he was not equipped or talented enough to become an architect. 

Having taught both college and high-school students cumulatively for over 22 years, I wonder how many times my words have seared the direction of a student. Proverbs 18:21 states, "The tongue has the power of life and death" (NIV). Words are so powerful that even God himself used them to speak light into existence. Light illuminates and provides insight to a path once darkened.    

Whose path can you illuminate today by thoughtfully choosing words that bring light? Whose soul can find nourishment through the delivery of carefully chosen words (Proverbs 10:21)? Today, be mindful of your ability to "speak light" into a fellow sojourner. You may never know the final destination your words may have. Speak light not darkness. 

Today, Lord, remind me to choose carefully my words. A "wise tongue brings healing" (Proverbs 12:18). I pray that today I can be a healing force, amen. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Sight Unseen

Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he had done. 

Revelation 22:12

While traveling to one of my speaking engagements, I met an extremely delightful, engaging, and well-educated woman. Our conversation was lively and made the two and one half hour flight "fly" by. We enjoyed mutual exchanges in our conversation and anecdotes. One particular piece of biographical data she conveyed was about one of the things she would be doing upon arrival to the city we were flying into. Fifteen years prior she had met and befriended a woman via the internet. For 15 years these two women have written back and forth using technology, but have never once met in person or conversed on the phone. Today both women would meet face-to-face. In addition to being held captive by her story, I was extremely excited that after 15 years these two women would get to meet.

Our relationship with Christ is similar. We read His Word and express ourselves via prayer, but we never get a face-to-face or verbal conversation with Him. And just like my new friend, we believe in the relationship in spite of the tangible evidence of His existence. We believe, because by faith we place our hope in "Him who is unseen (Hebrews 11:27). We believe because we "consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us" (Romans 8:18). We believe because "no eye has seen, nor ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" (1 Cor. 2:9 NIV).

I believe in Christ "sight-unseen" because, like my flight partner, I too will one day behold His glory. One day my faith will become my sight and I will receive the reward due to me. My faith will be my reward. What about you? Where is your hope? Where do you place your faith? Ready or not, Christ will return and He will "render to every man according to what he [has] done."

Father, today I reminded that my faith will one day become my sight. Help me to endure for "Him who is unseen." Help me to hold on in the midst of trials and tribulations. "Hope does not disappoint" (Romans 5:5), and my hope is in you.