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Love - Living for Others

We get so caught up in the day to day responsibilities of getting children to school, getting to work, working at work or home, and forgetting to eat because we're too busy working to take care of the needs of our families. With the way the economy is going today, we sometimes feel like we are never going to make ends meet. My family needs this, we have so many bills to pay, and it seems like we are busting our behinds off for what? My husband needs this and that done, the children need one-on-one time, the house work needs doing, I don't remember when I saw the bottom of the laundry basket and we are all out of coffee. Our car payment is due, our utilities are on shut off notices, our medical bills are high and our mortgage payments each month are even higher. Ahhhhhhah! Sound familiar?

Dear brothers and sisters, take a deep breath. Jesus is in control. When you are able to say that and believe it, your life will become a much happier place for your spouse, family and you. I am learning that the more I focus on the things that are not getting done, the further I get from God. The moment I begin to worry about material things or daily living is the moment I stop trusting Him. Since the Lord has shown me this, I started to take each day as it came, trusting Him to help me make the right decisions to help my husband and raise our children. But, I found that it was still not enough. I began focusing on what had to be done for that day and started working towards those goals. Yet, when that day did not go according to plan I would become discouraged and annoyed that it went south instead of north.

Then it struck me! Jesus was not going to be coming for His bride at the end of my day, when I had accomplished my day's worth of hard earned toil and labor. Jesus is coming in the blink of an eye. That is a moment. What do I want to be found doing in that moment? The thought scared me because of where my heart attitude had been. I was convicted with the way that I had been living. My days were pretty full, long and tiresome and stressed. But God never gave that to me! I picked it up when I believed somewhere along the way that life was hard. Somewhere in the midst of things I fell from the grace of God into a pit of worry, disappear and depression. People would come to encourage me to find my peace in the Lord. I would grab a hold of it and have it for a few days and then before I knew it I was back in my pit. I was like a roller coaster going up and down and all over the place. I wanted to find that spot where the roller coaster slows down and comes to a complete stop.

Finally, I got before the Lord and He began to show me some things that I was doing to show the lack of trust I had in Him, not only in finances but in many areas of everyday living. I repented for my independence in not trusting Him and for leaning on my own understanding of how things should be done. I then made the decision in my heart to not only walk with the Lord on a day to day basis, but also walk with Him moment by moment. That is what it means to be in prayer without ceasing: to have an open relationship with the Lord.

Because of the Lord, that roller coaster has slowed down a lot. My peace I have in my heart is knowing that God is in control and that I belong to Him. This peace is worth more than any paid bill. I know that if times get tough or chaos arises, He has given me a loving supportive husband and brothers and sisters who are always there to lend a helping hand. He has shown me that I am never alone.

The Lord also began to show me how much I depended on me. I was able to see that my thoughts were not of that which was pleasing to God. I was dependant on the check that I knew was coming in. I would work out a budget to make sure that bills were paid. I repented then again for the trust that I had in man and in the world and asked the Lord to place me back onto the path of salvation.

My husband and I then went to the store and, lo and behold, our trolley was full of items to bless our brothers and sisters. Instead of getting all bent out of shape in purchasing things that I thought were needed and doing things my way, I got excited, excited about doing something for someone else. I began to really enjoy myself at the happiness of others. I realized that the gladness of my heart was in bringing joy and delight into someone else's life.

The Lord then reminded me that everything we do or get is from the Lord. I believe that the Lord also allowed this shopping experience to turn in another direction to see whether or not I would get frustrated and upset. The Lord replaced my frustration and sin with love. More love for my husband and children. More love for my family and others. Love is what brings us together because Christ is love. If we are saved, Christ lives in us and His love abounds in us. That is why love waits in line for half an hour just to get a candy bar to make someone smile. Love will take 15 minutes to find the perfect tomatoes to bless someone who needs them for dinner. Love steps in to watch the children so that mommy can take a breather. Love waits for the prodigal son to return to the Father. When we have love, we are able to give it to someone else whether it is done by deed or word. Love does not build walls. It destroys them so that we may have communication, unity and oneness in the Lord. Love brings brothers and sisters together to make the body of Christ complete and one. That is what Christ is coming back for. The bride to be must have faith, and as commanded: love.

It was God's love that he sent my husband and people to encourage, correct and pray for me. It was His love that kept coming back to convict me. He never gave up on me. When I repented my gloom turned into a joyful heart.

God causes all things to work together for good whether we understand or not. We can trust that He is in control of our family, our finances, our health, our needs and even our wants. We can also trust that He allows us to go through the hardships because He loves us. These times are growing pains. Without them we could not grow. They help strengthen our feeble knees. All glory to God.

Romans 8:28 "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose."

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