Tuesday, October 8, 2013

knowing me through knowing Him

As some of you may already know, in this week I am enjoying another birthday. Every year on and around my birthday, I've gotten into the habit of spending some alone time with God to perform a personal audit of myself and digest "The Life of Victoria Anderson," if you will. I conduct an overall assessment of subjects like where I am spiritually, where I spend most of my time, what goals I want to accomplish, how well I've accomplished past goals, and where I have fallen short and dropped the ball, etc. etc. etc. It is a special block of time that I schedule to "just be" with God - to pray over my purpose and path. In these moments of rest and reflection, I ask my King to further reveal to me the specifics of how I can best serve Him and commit my life over to His care in the upcoming year.

The #1 objective of my personal audit is to insure that Jesus always remains my center focus and the reigning authority of my world - rather than Him being some afterthought after my own selfishness has dominated and ruled. In this process, I am compelled to re-devote my life to Him. Here, my Savior and I review my prayer list, and I share with my Lord the greatest joys and disappointments I've known over the past year. I read and recite meaningful scripture passages studied and/or memorized and meditate on His promised devotion and love. Lastly, I take time to write out what I'm struggling over (where I really need Him most)... and also what I am thankful for (praising Him for His generosity and grace). I make a point to always remember that no matter what I "want" in this life is never more important than what I already "have" in my eternal Christ. I know that His way is the only way for me.

Of course, to me a personal audit is not something that can be finished in one sitting. It takes much prayer and reflection, and is forever subject to modification according to scriptural revelation and spiritual governance from my Master. For me, the process of auditing usually takes about two weeks to a month to finish. That said, it seems that I am always revisiting my "life" journal as time plays out and experiences occur. But October (my birthday season) usually ends up being the official time when God and I sit down to discuss and review "everything" going on in my heart. I can't begin to tell you how much I cherish this "Parent/Teacher Conference" with my King.

Furthermore, my personal audit is indeed that... personal - between me and God. I rarely have shared details of it with anyone else. In fact, sometimes I am cautious to completely write my hopes and dreams down on a page. For, many of my precious thoughts are quite sensitive for me to even talk (or write) about. Many of my prayer requests are too intimate in nature and emotionally overwhelming that I can't bring myself to put pen to paper to list them. Rather, I simply jot down one or two trigger words as reminders to myself and then leave the rest in my heart for the Holy Spirit to oversee.

Anyway, this morning I was continuing through the process of my personal audit, and paused to read a little scripture and some of Charles Spurgeon's writings. Today's entry was so profound to the necessity of my audit, that I decided to share it with ya'll.

"I will meditate in thy precepts." (Psalm 119:15)

There are times when solitude is better than society, and silence is wiser than speech. We should be better Christians if we were more alone, waiting upon God, and gathering through meditation on his Word spiritual strength for labour in his service. We ought to muse upon the things of God, because we thus get the real nutriment out of them. Truth is something like the cluster of the vine: if we would have wine from it, we must bruise it; we must press and squeeze it many times. The bruiser's feet must come down joyfully upon the bunches, or else the juice will not flow; and they must well tread the grapes, or else much of the precious liquid will be wasted. So we must, by meditation, tread the clusters of truth, if we would get the wine of consolation therefrom.

Our bodies are not supported by merely taking food into the mouth, but the process which really supplies the muscle, and the nerve, and the sinew, and the bone, is the process of digestion. It is by digestion that the outward food becomes assimilated with the inner life. Our souls are not nourished merely by listening awhile to this, and then to that, and then to the other part of divine truth. Hearing, reading, marking, and learning, all require inwardly digesting to complete their usefulness, and the inward digesting of the truth lies for the most part in meditating upon it.

Why is it that some Christians, although they hear many sermons, make but slow advances in the divine life? Because they neglect their closets, and do not thoughtfully meditate on God's Word. They love the wheat, but they do not grind it; they would have the corn, but they will not go forth into the fields to gather it; the fruit hangs upon the tree, but they will not pluck it; the water flows at their feet, but they will not stoop to drink it. From such folly deliver us, O Lord, and be this our resolve this morning,
"I will meditate in thy precepts." (Charles Spurgeon)

Ladies, I encourage you to conduct your own personal audit with God. It doesn't have to be a formal process. It doesn't have to occur exactly on or before your birthday.  And it doesn't matter how long it takes to complete. A personal audit is simply a starting point. It is a place to meet God and share with Him the desires of your heart, the goals you wish to achieve, the hopes you wish to happen. From there, you can digest His truth and seek answers. You can specifically see His workings in your life as you walk with Him and meditate on Him daily.

I don't know why I felt compelled to share all this with you today, but I hope it has encouraged you to regularly audit your own life and seek a more intimate relationship with your Almighty Father and Teacher in areas exclusive and personal only to you. Also, I hope it motivates you to start moving forward - advancing your daily walk with Jesus. It is a starting point of what you can pray for... of what topics you can study and meditate on. You see, becoming a new creation in Jesus Christ is an immediate blessing of salvation and at the same time, a process through the workings of the Holy Spirit in your life. It is a moment-by-moment relationship with the One who knows us best... the One who wants us to know Him best.

My hope in writing this, is that you see the value in blocking off time to invest in your own personal audit with God. He is ready to start working in your life. He is sensitive to start healing your hurts. He is willing to start guiding your steps. He is able to start changing your life. Will you share your needs with Him? Will you invite Him in and walk with Him rather than continue to remain a stranger to His way? Will you cast all your cares upon Him? He does indeed care for you. He wants your life to be purposeful and fulfilling and joyful and meaningful. In Him all things are possible. So, I encourage you to sit down. List it out. Share yourself with your God... and then go from there... together. Allow Him to consume your heart and mind every day and walk with Him. Your Teacher... your Father has the power to change your life. All things become NEW in His presence! This is your starting point.

This... THIS is the day!

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:12-13)

And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible. (Jeremiah 15:21)

God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19)

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:6-11)

I call on you, O God, for you will answer me;
give ear to me and hear my prayer.

Show the wonder of your great love,

you who save by your right hand

those who take refuge in you from their foes.

Keep me as the apple of your eye;

hide me in the shadow of your wings. (Psalm 17:6-8)



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