Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Scraps of Life: Plant. Grow. Serve.

Note: this column appeared in the March issue of Christian Family Living, a new publication in Little Rock. Http://www.christianfamilyliving.net


Plow your fields, scatter seeds of justice, and harvest faithfulness. Worship me, the Lord, and I will send my saving power down like rain.” - Hosea 12:10 (CEV)

Spring flowers are blooming and we’re being bombarded with adds full of Easter bunnies, candies and more.

Let’s face it, if you are like me, you can’t walk through a check-out line at “the big box store” without seeing (and thus purchasing and eating) at least one peanut butter egg.

So it’s probably understandable if your dreams are filled with visions of jelly beans rather than spiritual stuff during this time of year.

But Easter is more than bunnies, chicks and beans. It’s a celebration of new life.

It’s the day we remember how Jesus gave us ultimate gift and sacrifice, so that we could have everlasting life.

His death on Good Friday and resurrection three days later shows us how he lived out his promise “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying.” (John 11:25 NLT).

So amid the bunnies and eggs, how do you keep your focus turned toward Jesus, and less on candy-filled eggs.

Here’s a three-minute retreat you can try at home (or even in the carpool lane) to help you adjust your spiritual perspective.

Start by reading Hosea 12:10.
Plow your fields, scatter seeds of justice, and harvest faithfulness. Worship me, the Lord, and I will send my saving power down like rain.” - Hosea 12:10 (CEV)

1) Plow your fields.
What does your “field” aka, work or home look like? Is it overflowing with toys and endless carpool trips to soccer practice. Or is your smart phone “blowing up” with to-dos, reminders and emails?

Think about how God could use you now, in this specific time and place, to serve Him.

2) Scatter seeds of justice….harvest faithfulness.
What issues are you passionate about? What ministry or faith-based non-profit could you bless with your time, talents or even financial gifts?

If you have children, what projects or activities could you do with them – to help nurture a passion for service in their lives?

3) Worship me.
Think about your best friend – and how much you talk to her (or him). You probably tell your best friend your joys and sorrows, your dreams and fears, your plans and stumbling blocks. Basically, you tell your friend EVERYTHING.

God wants to have that kind of relationship with you – and know everything about you. So take a minute today to simply talk to God. Talking can lead to worship – even in the carpool line.

Refocusing your spiritual life is pretty simple. Be aware of how God is present, in your life today.

Hopefully the next time you see a peanut butter egg in the aisle, it will remind you to stop and look for Jesus in the midst of the Easter hype.

Action Step: Here are a few things you could do to help you gain a new focus:

• Take time out to pray each day. Constantly and consistently talk to God.

• Download a Bible app (I love YouVersion) and choose a reading plan that will work for your life.

• Designate one night a week for family time – eat dinner together, play a game. What you do doesn’t matter as much as DOING something together, as a family.

• Disconnect from the world. Step away from the screens and do something that nurtures your creative side. Take a painting class. Read a book. Go for a hike. Take your kids to the park and fly a kite.

• Find a way to serve others. Volunteer for a non-profit like The Arkansas Rice Depot or Heifer International. Bake some cookies for the families at Our House. Visit someone living in a nursing home.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

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