1.) Your mother loves you with all her heart.
2.) You are wonderful.
3.) Jesus Loves you.
I made this list for my children because it's important. These are the things I want them to remember when life gets tough. These are the truths I want them to carry into adulthood. To one day teach their children. To hold in their hearts even after I'm gone.
We practice the list sometimes. I quiz them on it: "What are the three things I want you to always remember?" They often respond with some paraphrased version of what I've taught them. But I'll take it.
It makes me think, if Jesus had a similar list, what would it look like? What does He want us to carry always? To never forget, no matter where we are in life? Based on Scripture, here's what I think He wants us to remember:
1.) I love you.
2.) Don't worry.
3.) You are valuable.
He said "I love you" by leaving the beauty of heaven, taking on human flesh, and being born into this world. To be near us. To walk among us. To know us.
He says "don't worry" over and over in the Bible. Don't worry about food, clothes, tomorrow (Matthew 6). Will we listen? He says "my peace I give to you" (John 14:27). Will we take it?
He said "you are valuable" on the cross, by redeeming us with his blood- a payment more precious than silver or gold (1 Peter 1).
When life gets complicated, go back to the list. It's proven in the Word. Hold it close to your heart. Meditate on the simple truths He wants you to remember.
Thinking about the ocean evokes different and sometimes opposite emotions in people. For many, thinking of the ocean is peaceful, a pleasurable mind escape. One might imagine playing on the shoreline, relaxing in the cool of the gentle tide, being awed and inspired by the vastness and might of the sea. But ask anyone who has ever drifted too far out and they’ll tell you, the ocean is also scary. The idea of being far away from land, in rough waters, with unknown creatures swimming below the surface near you is terrifying.
Notice how dramatically the feelings about the daydream change based on proximity to the shore. The ocean didn’t change, but our position in it did. So it is with life. Life can be beautiful and peaceful, or challenging and scary, and it all depends on our proximity to the Savior. Close to the Lord, we enjoy the majesty of His creation and all His gifts, in safety. The further we drift away from Him, the less secure and the more vulnerable we are.
I choose to enjoy the ocean from the safety of the shore, as I choose to enjoy life from the safety of the Savior’s arms.
This post is my first attempt at a "Five Minute Friday" prompt from Kate Motaung. The prompt was the word "Ocean", and I confess, my writing time was twenty-five minutes instead of five. But it was a fun exercise, and I hope to do it again!
My youngest child is mischievous, and hyper, and often unruly, but he is one of the wisest people I know. He has a profound understanding of God, and an amazing commitment to follow Him. Only four when he made a profession of faith in Jesus, he was baptized before he was five and a half.
Daniel wanted to be the first one in the river, and there wasn’t a hint of nervousness on his face until he got into position to be dunked. He panicked a bit but rallied quickly, and he came out of the water smiling. Later that day, this is what he told me:
“I just kept telling my brain, I’ve made up my mind.”
Wow. What resolve! He made up his mind and was determined to follow through.
It reminds me of a song I've loved since childhood which says, “I’ve got my foot on the rock and my mind’s made up.” My aunt sings it often in our church, and she delivers the song's message so powerfully. (I don’t have a video of her singing it, but here’s another good version for you to enjoy: Bowling Family YouTube Video)
When we’ve decided to do anything that we know to be the will of God, we have to follow through. Jesus said, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62 NKJV) In a world full of wishy-washy, flip-floppers, it's important for us to have made-up minds.
I’ve started and stopped many projects. Sometimes I get excited about an idea and the next day it’s a distant memory. But I hope I will stay committed to the things that really matter. I want to be steadfast and immovable, like the scripture encourages: "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord." (1 Corinthians 15:58 NKJV)
Certainly, I wouldn't have been upset if my son had decided not to be baptized that day. It was his choice to make. But his courage to follow through is an inspiration to me, and I hope it is to you. When you feel like turning back on the task to which you've been called, just remind yourself you've made up your mind!
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Thank you for visiting my blog. I share devotional articles and musings about life, parenting, and the writing journey, as well as important news about my books. I hope you find something of interest here!