Went to church today at Bethel Baptist in Lebanon. Pastor Jody Breeding talked about regrets. He asked the question, "do you have regrets in your life, things you wish you hadn't done."
I think back to many of the choices that I have made in my life and have thought alot about some of them. I was brought up in church, we were at church every time the doors were open. I knew what God said about divorce, I knew that my parents didn't believe in divorce. But I hurried into my first marriage and thought I had the world by the tail. My first marriage failed and I had to go through a divorce which I knew my parents would be disappointed about. Do I regret the decision to get married young? No, if I hadn't been married I wouldn't have been blessed with my daughter.
I got married the second time...again too quickly after meeting him, totally against my Dad's advice. Seven years later. I divorced again. Do I regret that decision? No, if I hadn't married him and then moved to South Carolina I wouldn't have met Randy and been blessed in a Christian marriage and this ministry.
So yes are there many things that I have done that I wished I wouldn't have done or been through. But my choices and my decisions were part of my lifes' journey with God. See, God knows we are going to make bad choices, make bad decisions. He knows we are going to fail Him every day. He knows that we will do and say things totally against His plan for our lives. But He continues to love us unconditionally.
But there is one choice, one decision that will be the most important one of your life. This decision will decide your eternal destination. Accepting Jesus as your Savior is the decision that will get you an eternity in Heaven, but the decision to deny Him will put you in a devils hell for eternity. This is one regret you will never want to have. I know I have never regretted that day many tears ago that I asked Jesus into my heart.
Got a friend at work that loves Michael Jackson's song, Man in the mirror. As I laid in bed the other night I got to thinking about what we see when we look in a mirror.
If you look in the mirror, minus the makeup, the hair being done, just look at the "real" you in the mirror. Its amazing as I look at my reflection about the wrinkles, the gray hair, the changes from getting older it really makes me stop and think alot. I have really never been the makeup wearing, lots of work on my hair kind of girl. But what I see in the mirror is what God sees is a masterpiece. God made me just the way I am. I don't have to put on a,mask for Him, don't have to try and be something or someone I am not. Because He sees me as I am.
He sees the one who still sins, the one who cries, the one who can feel discouraged and overwhelmed, he sees me let satan interfere in my life. But God also sees my future. He sees the life and the vision He has for my life. But regardless of my flaws, my scars, my tears, my hurts and hang ups, He loves the real me that He created in His image.
What others see, what others think of me has no real meaning. Don't get me wrong, I want people I meet to see Jesus in me, I want them to see what He has done for me in my life.
I guess this is why I love the song, Flawless. See people may see my hurts, my scars, my bruises, my pain. But the cross has made me FLAWLESS in the eyes of God. What I see in the mirror is aging, is seeing life pass by quickly. I see our children becoming amazing people with jobs and careers and am proud of all of them. I see our grandchildren growing up way too fast. But I have been blessed in this life. I may not be the most beautiful woman in this world, but I love who God has made of this,woman I see in the mirror.
Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you,. And remember I am with you always to the end of the age.
As Randy and I have been following God's call into the ministry of reaching out to those caught up in drug addiction and alcoholism, we are following the great commission. God has told us that as we step out in faith that He will always be with us.
His provisions to keep us going, to get us where we need to be have just been amazing. We serve an all knowing, all giving Father who wants to take us into places that we would never reached before. Why is it that when He provides for us that as believers in Jesus, we are amazed at what God does?
I have had 2 very wise men of God tell us that the encouragement to go into ministry, to do what God tells us to do, will not come from the people we expect it from. One said, "the doves will starve you, the ravens will feed you."
But this isn't only in reaching out in a ministry, but many times, this is for the new Christian. When they first get saved, people are happy for them, hug them, congratulate them. But after that mountain high of salvation, where do these people go? Where are they to help direct me in understanding the Bibke, understanding what " being a Child of God is all about? Some of my best support in my walk with God has come from people who sit very quietly in the background of church. But their prayer life, their Bible reading, their worship with God is the most important thing in this world to them.
It all comes down to this, if it is reaching out to start a ministry, if it is beginning a journey into salvation, reach out to those who will be your support, your prayer partners, your encouragement without wanting to be recognized, or "patted on the back."
Jesus said go into ALL the world, no matter who the person is, where they come from, what they have done. But go knowing that when your heart if God's heart and your vision is,God's vision, God will amaze you with His favor and His blessings.