During this time, I focus on His plans not mine.
The days leading up to Resurrection Sunday have been a time of fasting, prayer and reflection for many years now, for me. Even more so than a New Year’s Resolution. Each year around mid-January I meditate on my life’s verses (Jeremiah 29:11 and Genesis 50:20) and ask God to show me how to live it out.
Jeremiah 29:11 NIV “…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 a hope and a future…”
During this time, I focus on His plans not mine. I ask God, “What distractions can I remove (or fast) for these 40 days to hear Your voice, Lord?” Throughout the years He has provided the list of things, food, mindsets and or people to put aside for 40 days. That is when our (mine and God’s) relationship goes to the next level. That is when I hear His voice so clearly. Here is where daily commitments turn into renewed habits of daily time with my God, my best friend and the lover of my soul.
Genesis 50:20 NIV “…You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives…”
This verse reminds me to forgive. There is no room to hold grudges, harbor resentment or carry burdens that aren’t mine to bare. I must remember that God’s plans for me impact others in a positive or negative way. I don’t get a choice on the circumstances that develop as I live out my days here, but I do get a choice of how I respond to them. When I start to have a pity party or I think, I have the right to withhold forgiveness from anyone; I remind myself I was once captive too, I was once lost too, and then God pulled me out of that pit and set my feet on His rock solid truth that changed my destination for eternity. Lead me to the cross, Lord and let me respond to anyone who has hurt me, disappointed me or abandoned me with Your famous words on the cross, “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34 NIV
*written by Kelliann Howard