Have you thought about?
You have a few things that God, Himself, cannot have unless you give them to Him, He won’t take them without your permission; and yes, they’re all things He filled you with in the first place.
You have a wealth of praise flooding through your soul. You can choose where you aim it and to whom you give it. We may praise our children for their beauty or a job well done. We may praise our spouses for taking such good care of us. We may praise the doctors and nurses for care given to our loved ones or to teachers for bringing out the best in our children. We may praise our favorite performers for their talent. And, of course, we mean it all with sincere passion.
Believe it or not, there are self-centered, hurting people who have no praise on their tongue for anyone. You see them while shopping or dining out – or even in traffic, hurling anger at everyone in their path. Even their own spouse or children do nothing praise worthy in their darkened eyes.
Yes, our praise is something God desires from us; one of those things He allows us to choose to give to Him or to withhold from him.
|(photo from leloveimage.blogspot.com)|
Our thankfulness. Do we thank the one who prepared our meals? Or the ones that pour into our lives daily; the ones who let us have that choice parking spot or to cut in line ahead of them? What about the folks who pick up where we slack off? Do we thank the ones who meet our tangible needs or the needs of our souls (our mind, will and emotions)?
Yes, we choose to be thankful. And we have to choose to thank God – for everything from the prosperity in our checkbook to our families and the multitude of blessings in our lives, to the very life in our bodies and our eternal salvation.
Our love. Where do we so lavishly pour out this priceless commodity? True, we can only express love to the degree we’ve received it and allowed it to work in our hearts. How I express my love might be entirely different than the ways you do it. Check out the book The Five Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman. Here’s his quiz to find out your love languages: Click Here for the Quiz
Upon reflection, from whom do we withhold our love? The neighbor who made us angry? The child who hurt our child? The boss who makes us work too much? The God we perceive as letting us down? Yes – you know, the One Who created us and has laid out the plans He has for our lives – plans to prosper us and fill us with great favor. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Loving anyone is a choice. Loving God – is our choice.
Our hearts. We hold them dear, we hide them to protect them; we build walls around them to keep them safe from hurt and abandonment – sometimes even from the One Who has promised, with a promise that cannot be broken, to never leave us or forsake us. (Deuteronomy 31:6; Hebrews 13:5)
Is it even possible to love without allowing our hearts to become vulnerable?
I think not.
|(photo from A Woman of Faith, pinterest)|
Is it worth pondering? Is it possible we’re withholding our hearts from God today?
In this season of Advent (advent means – the arrival of a notable person, thing or event), let’s seek this new adventure – exposing our hearts to God and giving Him what He so richly deserves and desire more than anything; our praise, our thanks, our love; our hearts.
“And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” – Deuteronomy 6:5 (KJV)
“Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;” – Deuteronomy 7:9 (KJV)
“Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” – Matthew 22:36-40 (KJV)