Oh!!! GRACE!!! 27NOV
Visiting my hometown, I knew this was another of those slipping away opportunities to EXPRESS open faith to family members who seem to have grown cold in their faith, who shun the conversations, and may have anger at religion being jammed down their throats.
But somehow I knew I had to try to gently plant seeds. No jamming, just Gardening.
As being a “Soul on Fire” (like the song) is a way of life, we are to balance normal thankfulness with overt faith displays which unfortunately might lead us to be appearing to be swept up in a cult to those uninformed… a constant question of how to share faith when no one wants to be judged in their faith, not even those who are kneeling in prayer. “Souls on Fire” don’t want to be judged either, not many want to be thrown into the fire, only a few decide to walk into the fire of their own will…
God put me on the training wheels path to roll me in more easily.
I often can speak freely of our collective faith with known believers, but in one’s own family (in my family) it is tougher than it seems it should be. It’s not easy for me. I know there are only so many opportunities to talk openly, most of our opportunities are left behind.
Oh…. Grace… I need it too…
It’s Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for GRACE…
Sitting down for our family THANKSGIVING, everyone chattingly gets their yummy portions onto their plate… and then I looked for the opportunity to pause to say Grace… my mom could tell I was waiting for the pause. And as I found the pause, I said “can we say Grace” not as a question but an opportunity. I realized as soon as I started praying that it became easy to earnestly and freely talk to the Lord on behalf of everyone, thanking Him for dinner and togetherness. Ohhhhh… that this WAS THE OPPORTUNITY! Oh, how easily He opened up the window for me to talk to Him directly OUTLOUD for others to hear. I was short and sweet, sincere and seeking. I told the Lord that I was thankful for Him loving EACH of us and I thanked Him for sending Jesus to Shine the Light FOR EACH OF US, and to ask Him to guide our steps, mine too.
Oh!!! GRACE!!! These were first steps for me, but guided steps for sure.
Even those who may have fallen off the praise wagon, or never climbed on, will pause to let you to EXPRESS THANKFULNESS. So you can EXPRESS collectively for all. Even strong believers may be so very private, that is a respect to give as well.
Those non-believers in my family and friends are still normal people who watch me on my praisewagon, and honestly worry about me getting swept away by what they may see as a whim of religion… but they will still allow folks GRACE to EXPRESS thankfulness at family dinner. Each stage of faith, from non-believers to reluctant-believers to full blown believers, you can find souls who are thankful for family togetherness and blessings…
The Lord collects us sometimes with believers as our PRACTICE ROUND, to speak freely of His love, before we go out Great Commission style… the easy sell before the tough sell.
Like when I trained as a college freshman at the volunteer night for making phone calls for alumni donations, free pizza for your whole dorm, a social scene and then they sit you down in front of a phone bank for cold calls for money. You are to express THANKFULNESS, of how donations help you get an education. First, they give you a stack of numbers from people who already donated in the past, small amounts, so likely to gain positive results for you, and a free hat, shirt or trinket…. you first are talking to believers in philanthropy to their alma mater… THEN you get the next stack, if you were good with the first. These people may be more open to donate larger sums.
If you get some donations and they hear your practiced pitch, there’s the “other room”. Not the “upper room” to hide in faith waiting for the Holy Spirit guidance, but the “OTHER room” to try some more phone calls.
When you are planted in the OTHER room, you get the “NEVER donated ” people… GOOD LUCK…
Great Commission – work your way to the OTHER room – give it a try… actually give the Holy Spirit the chance after you dial up the number…
As I pray this morning for my path, the Lord fills my thoughts with these straightforward instructions:
Keep planting seeds
Do your best, and let Me take care of the rest.
Yes Lord, we can try to do our best for the people in “the OTHER room” and share our knowledge of the gift of GRACE.
We are thankful to YOU for giving it.