This week’s Photo Challenge drew me to this naturally occurring beach sculpture:
A beloved tradition of mine is to spend my birthday (or a portion thereof) at the beach, alone, in quiet contemplation. It is a chance to take inventory of things which have passed, what my purpose is in the present and where I stand with goals for the future.
It is a rich time of reflection and communion with God, a time for us both to speak to each other.
There I walk, run, sit and stare, pray, sing, dance and breathe life into a brand new year.
With no other footprints but mine and those of the beach creatures, God greeted me this time with this curious driftwood cross, sunbeams slanted toward it.
That day I learned that as much as I try to keep God in a box with “I shalts and oughts and musts,” that God is much bigger than our interpretations of what we think we are supposed to do when we think we’re following His word.
Sometimes God leads us in ways and directions we cannot fathom. Quite unexpectedly, we can find ourselves on an unforeseen path.
So we must stop, listen, and let go of our rigid interpretations and assumptions of who He is and what His plans for us are.
God never promised that running the race would be easy; to follow Him requires blind faith, an open heart and an open mind. It means being ready to change, to move forward into what often can be scary, new territory.
And, like a long race, one must do their best to be mentally, physically and emotionally fit for the endurance. This is not easy, but is critical for being up for the challenge. He calls us to be our very best…for Him.
Following God is not about staying stuck, it is about challenging yourself to look at things differently and breaking free of the chains of trying to save our own lives, trying too hard to make right out of wrong – and instead trusting Him to lead us.
It’s about having the courage to change for the better….a kind of spiritual upward mobility, if you will.
“Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?’” ~~Matthew 16:24-26
Hey, God…thank you SO much for times of contemplative revelation, for being with us when it is time for us to grow toward your Light.
Thank you for equipping us with capable minds and bodies to run the long race for being with us every step of the way and for putting the cross in our path on our way to be with You.
God, please bless us with open minds and hearts, a willingness to follow. Grant us unwavering courage to change…for Your sake and ours.
Dear readers, please take a moment to scamper over to our fellow blogger’s site, Our Life in 3D. Today he completed his first 1/2 marathon race since prevailing over cancer, which God saw fit to eliminate because He had other plans for him. It simply wasn’t his time!
May we all make the most of the one earthly life God gives us…