Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy New Year!

Hope. It has been my word since October of 2012.  Last year especially, God gave me ample opportunity to bask in hope as well as share hope. I feel like it is "my" word. :)  My theme.  Who knows, maybe a song will come from this.

As we ended 2013, I began to ask the Lord if HOPE would be my theme/word for 2014 or was there something different.  Over the last weeks of the year, the word TRANSFORMATION slapped me across the heart. Clearly, this was my theme for 2014. 

I'm journaling my thoughts on my neglected blog this year simply calling them Transformation Thoughts. All will be based on what God is showing me in through his word.  Most of it, like today's will simply be raw nuggets of what God is teaching me. 

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

Transformation Thoughts #1

          Proverbs 3:3-4 (from ESV) tells us:

Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart.  So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man.

It is January.   A new year. A fresh start. I have some goals set for this year.  I bet you do too. For me, this is the year of transformation.  Transformation in health, business, and my spiritual life.  If we were together, you would probably share something similar. 

As I read the above verses in Proverbs this morning, I was struck with verse 4. It says, So you will find favor and success with GOD and MAN.

Favor and good success with God and man are the result or consequence of two things:
Steadfast Love.

Steadfast love. Faithfulness. Those things, at least for me, are hardest in the everyday. In the routine. The bed making. The laundry. The dishes. And for me, feeding the dog. (Sorry, just being honest)

Steadfast love and Faithfulness. In relationships where you just aren't sure where you stand. 

Steadfast love and Faithfulness when each day presents a new challenge. 

Steadfast love and faithfulness when it would be so very easy to simply wimp out, stay in bed and watch reality t.v. 

Why bind it around our neck and write it on the tablet of our hearts?

Favor and good success in the sight of God and man. Reminds me of Luke 2:52
And Jesus increased in wisdom, and in stature, and in favor with God and man.

Here was my question from this morning:

Do I want to accomplish my goals for this year? Well, yes! Of course I do!

Then I MUST STEADFASTLY love God and THEN love others with that unwavering, steady constant love. Even when rejected....choose LOVE.

I MUST be faithful (consistent, reliable, available) in relationships.  This will come from an overflow of my relationship with God.

Overtime I will see that my perception of "good success" will change.  It will be transformed into God's plan. He WILL transform my heart, my mind, my desires bringing them into complete obedience to his plan.  (That by the way, is when he will give me the desires of my heart.)

Even as I studied this passage...the term success is not what my American,goal oriented mind wanted it to mean!  (Financial accomplishment; achievement; promotion. WINNING!)

Nope it is talking about gaining a good name. Good repute. Being held in high regard. The Hebrew word literally talks about being WISE.  Gaining WISDOM.  Knowledge, understanding, discretion. See how God changed my perception in this?  My human thoughts went straight for the tangible...while God was saying dig deeper there is more!

My nugget for today:

Ask God to transform the way I love. Love steadfastly and be faithful.

Success may not look like what I thought it would.  BUT...when my perception has been transformed by Jesus, success is better than anything I could imagine.