It is true that the cacophony of paperwork and tasks must be managed in order to hear the voice of God (so that He is not drowned out) in order for us to love on others as He would have us. The first step to silencing the incessant chatter of shoulds and have-to’s, however, is always to hunker down and refuse to listen to any voice beyond the voice of God. To listen to Him is a deliberate choice. It happens when above all else, we lift our heads above the muck of distraction and we seek Him.
Lord, what would You have me do today? Lord, what would You have me do this hour? Lord, what would You have me do in this moment? Lord, teach me to know and recognize Your voice so I can follow You. Lord, I know You as not just Savior but as Lord, Master, Boss, Shepherd… I am not my own. Jesus only did as He saw the Father doing. I am a follower of You, Jesus, but cannot unless I can recognize Your voice. I know You are speaking. Holy Spirit, teach me to hear and give me courage and strength to follow.
Our life in God submitted to His will is our only life with purpose. We have no real reason for being outside His will.
We are His ambassadors – His hands and feet to a broken world. Just as Jesus was, we now are His manifest presence to those around us. Well, not we ourselves, but His Spirit at work flowing through our God-submitted selves so the world sees His supernatural invading our natural, not by our power, but by His. They experience His love manifesting in mercy, forgiveness and taking care of those in His righteousness who cannot take care of themselves. He stands as their Protector, therefore so do we.
But the endless lists tend to hold us captive. The on-going, never-ending chatter of the urgent. As we hear His voice and follow Him, the power of the list abates because the list no longer holds sway over how we run our day and where we spend our time. He does.
But there is a second factor. As He leads and only as He leads, piece by piece by piece, we must allow Him to show us how to unclutter our lives, persevering to bring things in order so we have a greater freedom to flow as He is calling.
Granted there will be periods of time when the call of ministry, work and family (which is all ministry) will not allow this uncluttering, but it will be only a season (albeit sometimes a long one). He will lead us out if we will let Him.
All this said, never can the overcoming of the clutter of the mind, desk or home become the focus. It is much too task-driven to be God. He is always about people. The dirty floor which begs to be swept will be dirty once again soon after the current sweeping is complete. The cycle of dirty to clean to dirty again will continue through generations and long beyond our season of “here”. The people God puts before us to serve cannot wait. Only He knows when their time in this physical life is done and what each of them needs in order to have their eyes opened so that for the first time they might catch a glimpse of Him or that others for whom He is already Savior and Lord might be encouraged in their work so they do not despair and quit.
When the phone call comes, or the email, or the encounter on the street, office hallway, or in the store, pay close attention to His assignment. Breathe deep and listen intently for what He wants done. Frequently, His instructions will not be to flee the encounter in order to accomplish the incessant to-do list which seemingly cannot wait, but to stay and listen, then speak only that which He knows they need, and which we can only speak because we are at rest in Him as the singular focus of our existence – not the list.
God is about people. God is about love. Certainly we are not called to just be out there available to everyone at all times. God does have very specific tasks for each of us, which He does want done.
The foundation and motivation for every moment, however, is to love Him because He first loved us and submit to Him for who He is because we recognize He alone is God with the power and plan. We are not. And out of a heart seeking to be transformed into His we choose to put love first in the way He calls us as He calls us because we are seeking to be guided by His Spirit.
God will not fail us. We have to choose to trust. He knows which deadlines are truly urgent and when. He knows how much is enough. He knows; He knows; He knows all. We do not.
And so it comes back to trust because we honor Him as God, Savior and Lord. It comes back to listening for His Spirit’s directions and following through on each step no matter what the cost appears to be because we trust, because we fear Him alone, because we know He is God, because in Him (not ourselves) we live, move and have our being.
Embrace the peace of only doing as He tells us to do individually – as He has us serve in love and as He has us unclutter. His Way in His perfect timing is where the freedom is and the purpose and the joy. It is where His will is fulfilled on earth as in heaven and a fallen, blind world is touched by His love, His way and offered the opportunity to be healed forever.
ISA 58:6-12 (Amplified)
6[Rather] is not this the fast that I have chosen: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the bands of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every [enslaving] yoke?
7Is it not to divide your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house–when you see the naked, that you cover him, and that you hide not yourself from [the needs of] your own flesh and blood?
8Then shall your light break forth like the morning, and your healing (your restoration and the power of a new life) shall spring forth speedily; your righteousness (your rightness, your justice, and your right relationship with God) shall go before you [conducting you to peace and prosperity], and the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
9Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry, and He will say, Here I am. If you take away from your midst yokes of oppression [wherever you find them], the finger pointed in scorn [toward the oppressed or the godly], and every form of false, harsh, unjust, and wicked speaking,
10And if you pour out that with which you sustain your own life for the hungry and satisfy the need of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in darkness, and your obscurity and gloom become like the noonday.
11And the Lord shall guide you continually and satisfy you in drought and in dry places and make strong your bones. And you shall be like a watered garden and like a spring of water whose waters fail not.
12And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of [buildings that have laid waste for] many generations; and you shall be called Repairer of the Breach, Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.
Selah! [Pause & calmly think of that!]
Please consider giving the gift of CHRISTMAS WORSHIP this Christmas. Christmas is coming. A few years ago, the Lord whispered to my heart that He wanted to be worshipped at Christmas and He showed me how many of the songs we sing beautifully tell the story of His birth and why He came, but very few actually worship Him during this festive season. So I asked Him what songs He wanted released. The result is CHRISTMAS WORSHIP, which includes 7 new, original Christmas worship songs, which the Lord had me compose specifically for this project. It is available for purchase at:
- amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Worship-Elizabeth-Fulgaro/dp/B004D9931G/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1320069144&sr=8-2
- CDbaby.com http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/elizabethfulgaro3. Music clips can be heard at the CD Baby or amazon.com links. May God receive the honor and worship He is due this Christmas season.
May God receive the honor and worship He is due this Christmas season!
Elizabeth Fulgaro is a wife, mother, writer, inspirational speaker, worship leader, composer, singer & recording artist. She is also a Certified Financial Planner and Accredited Financial Counselor with a heart for helping Christians understand and steward their finances God’s way.
For books, worship cds, Bible studies and teachings written by Elizabeth Fulgaro or to schedule her to come speak to your group please visit www.holyspiritpress.org Worship music audio clips can be found at www.cdbaby.com/Artist/ElizabethFulgaro For information on her work for the military and their families please visit www.eaglesnestfoundation.org Eagles Nest Foundation is a 501(c)3 corporation. Contributions are tax-deductible.