Today's devotion from Proverbs 31 Ministries was so good I wanted to share it with everyone! I hope it blesses you as much as it did me:
"'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'" Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Five years ago I sat beside my youngest sister and listened as she boldly rejected my views of God. She's always been a free spirit, much too non-conventional for traditional religion.
"Good thing I'm not into religion," I gently replied.
She twisted her face as if half expecting a lightening bolt to strike us both. "But you ARE religious."
I laid my head against the back of the lounge chair, closed my eyes to the sun now washing over me and simply replied, "Nope."
Deciding to let my statement just sit for a while, I decided not to clarify unless she asked. And ask she did.
That's when I explained that I follow God not a list of rules. I am passionate about getting into the Bible - God's teachings - and letting the Bible get into me. I no longer evaluate life based on my feelings. Instead, I let my feelings and experiences be evaluated in light of God's Word.
I have watched God chase me around with rich evidence of His presence and invitations to trade apathy for active faith. But I had to make the choice to see God. Hear God. Know God. And follow hard after God.
Then I took my sister's hand and told her I'd be praying for God to mess with her in ways too bold for her to deny.
Fast forward over five years later. My sister walks into one of her professor's office and sees one of my books on her bookshelf. I don't think she really believed anyone actually read my books. But there it was. And it messed with her.
She later went home and poked around my blog a bit where she found a clip of my testimony. Again, it messed with her. One verse in particular messed with her so much that she let the possibility that God exists slip into her heart.
A few days later she went and had Jeremiah 29:11 tattooed on the back of her neck. And she started calling wanting to talk to me. About life. About tattoos. And about God.
Last Thursday, I stood in the middle of the Atlanta airport praying for this precious girl who had called asking for those prayers. She had called. She had asked. And that's the miracle of our Jesus. He is the God of the impossible.
I wonder what might happen if we dared to ask God for the impossible just a little more often. I'm up for it? Are you?
Dear Lord, use me today to reach the heart of one. I want to trade any apathy I may have today for active faith. Lead me, and I will follow. In Jesus' Name, Amen.