“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10 NLT
This time is a gift from the Lord in which to allow God to strengthen our faith, and heal and restore us physically, spiritually, and emotionally. We do this, not just for ourselves, but for all those who depend on us to be a positive influence. As believers in Jesus, when we make ourselves sit and connect with God, his Spirit is delighted to show us the condition of our hearts and point out places in our thinking that are getting us in trouble and stealing our peace and joy. Would you trust God to do that for you now that you have the time and opportunity?
As I made myself still and listened with my heart recently, I realized that so many were feeling all alone, isolated, and beginning to cry out to family and friends for connection. Immediately, what flashed across my mind were what seemed to be fine, white roots, all intertwined like those of the roots of a plant that needs to be repotted. I sensed the Lord wanting us to know that our physical isolation was an opportunity to understand that we were not alone, rather living in communities that were connected and interwoven with hundreds, maybe thousands, of others.
Why is that important now? We might be tempted to feel helpless to make a difference in this crisis. God wants to encourage us. Just as when a pebble is thrown into a pool, our small attitudes, words, and actions ripple out and do matter. One kind word, small sacrifice, or even a warm smile, may strengthen and encourage another who impacts ten more, and their lives each touch many more.
As we determine daily to be filled with the Holy Spirit, his love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-discipline (Gal.5:22) and ask God to use us, he will! Those few people who experience your love, peace and joy, will be used by God to continue to knock down the dominoes of depression, hopelessness and despair. Remember we are just one root of many hundreds and thousands. If we each determine to trust God, and not to be overcome with discouragement, we can change our environment, our communities, and make a real difference.
Let’s determine, not just to cause a ripple, but a big splash for God in our pools of influence!
Dear friend, be richly blessed as you choose to trust God to restore you and use you in these dark times. Be encouraged as you believe that who you are and what you do matters, and that you are not alone. Amen.
Mary Sumner ~ April, 2020