Friday, January 27, 2017

make every effort

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)

This God - his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. (Psalm 18:30)

Gals, I know y'all will feel me on this one.  Don't you hate it when you spend a lot of time, energy, and thought on a project only to have a family member, a co-worker, a spouse, a child, a friend disregard and maybe even hinder your efforts?  Coats aren't hung up.  Dishes aren't put away.  Shoes are left to trip over.  Homework is lost.  Bills are unpaid. Timelines are forgotten.  Work is incomplete.  Invitations are ignored.  Ugh!  The list goes on and on concerning how our plans for life can quickly run amuck!

I so hate it when my plans and hard-earned efforts are disregarded, don't you?  I hate killing myself over something that is ultimately going to be trampled upon, abused, and/or even dismissed.  Why bother, right?  Why bother!!!

With this in mind, let's stop and think about the meticulously designed order and the specifically unmatched perfection that our God, the Creator of all the universe, readily gives to us in each day we draw His breath. Think about all He has planned for our individual lives and for the future of His people.  What love He gives in order to save and restore each of us to His Throne.

Consider His great law, order, and care for us.  Have we disregarded and maybe even hindered His will in our lives?  What invitations have we ignored that might have further brought us closer to His blessed holiness?  What opportunities have we blown off?  What momentum has dwindled due to our laziness and lack of care?  What laws have not been obeyed?  I wonder.

And I wonder how God feels about our regard or disregard to His perfect plan.  Does He look at us and think, "Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much.  Enter into the joy of your master." (Matthew 25:23)  Or does He throw up His hands in frustration rebuking us in disgust, "Woe to them, for they have strayed from me! Destruction to them, for they have rebelled against me! I would redeem them, but they speak lies against me." (Hosea 7:13) 

Ladies, if we do not make God's plan our own, if we disregard His law and fail to promote His Way most and love Him first, our efforts will be nothing more than blatant sabotage toward His kingdom.  Are you a saboteur?  Think about it:

Who are you dating, single gal?  Is he a believer or are you on a path of unequally yoking yourself?
What are you watching, dear housewife?  Is it holy and uplifting to your King's law or full of idolatry, lustfulness, revenge, and deceit?
How are you budgeting, lovely home keeper?  Do your spending habits represent what and whom you treasure the most?
Who are you loyal to, dear friend?
What are you selling and promoting, faithful servant?
Where are you playing, dear child?
What company will you keep, precious family member?

Yes, consider if your present efforts positively match the perfect plan of Christ?
Are you walking deliberately and faithfully inside His grace?
Or are you trampling, abusing, and dismissing His Way?
Are you part of the problem or part of the solution?
Are you damaging or devoted?

For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead. (James 2:26)

You shall therefore keep all my statutes and all my rules and do them, that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out. (Leviticus 20:22)

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. Give no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved. (1 Corinthians 10:31-33)

No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. (Matthew 6:24)

Make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:5-11)



© The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

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