In the same way, let your light shine before men, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
In the past year and half, it has been a real struggle to stay afloat. I cannot be the only one who has felt that way. It has felt like it has been one wave after another of bad news. Just when you recover from the crash of one wave and come up for air, another is soon to follow leaving you feeling helpless and drowning in despair. I have struggled with staying above the flood of negativity and heart ache. Only by the grace of God am I able to rise up each morning and realize how blessed I am to be able to have my health and family with me. I tend to show a little more gratitude each day. In a year in which we have faced so many uncertainties, I have realized that my heart that once was eager to serve, has gotten a little more selfish. Maybe it is in protection mode, but it has become focused more on me, me, me. Now don’t get me wrong, there are times when we need to step back and take care of ourselves, whether it be physically, emotionally, or spiritually. Life isn’t easy, but we have a God who promised we wouldn’t have to walk alone.
In a time when so many around us are barely hanging on or have lost all hope, we need to step up and let our lights shine, not for ourselves, but for the glory of God. Despite the chaos and sadness that is consuming our world, God is still God. He is still in control. He is aware of every single thing going on. He cares about us, he loves us, and He hears our prayers. Even though we feel as though we have been knocked down repeatedly, he wants us to rise up and continue to do the work he has called us to do. Now is not the time to quit. Now is not the time to hide your light even if it has been dimmed. Even the smallest flame can be seen for a great distance on the darkest night. I know it is hard and some days I just want to wave the white flag of surrender, but that is not what we are called to do. We all still have a purpose. We can all still make a difference. It is not the size of the task that matters, but the obedience to follow it. Something as small as a smile towards a stranger can make a huge difference in the rest of their day. After the period of mask mandates, I learned the value of a smile. It is priceless and should be used more and cherished. Small acts of kindness can have just as deep of an impact as big, grand gestures. Do what you can, where you can!
We have a mission trip coming up very soon. We will be heading to KY to help serve the area in whatever capacity the Lord will have for us. This year it has been hard to be focused on this trip and dedicate myself to praying for this trip like I should have. I didn’t know if we would get to go and I got distracted by all the others issues at hand going on. I am nervous and excited. I pray we can go and help meet the needs of those we will serve. I pray they don’t see us, but the hands and feet of Jesus. Pray for us that we can do the work He has called us to do.
Mission trips provide good opportunities to serve, but we have opportunities every single day where we can let Jesus’s love flow through us onto others. A lot of times for me, it is a small nudging in which God will place something on my heart to do. Don’t ignore it, or put it off till later. There is a reason He put it on your heart, follow through with it. If your like me and this year your light inside hasn’t felt or shone too brightly, pray that God will help ignite the passion and fire inside of you to go out and serve however He calls you to it. Do not let fear stop you, or the busyness of life detain you from living out your purpose. This world needs hope, it needs kindness, and more importantly it needs Jesus. There may be some people in your life, where you are the only Christian they know, don’t waste that opportunity to tell them about Him.
I just want to say if your feeling overwhelmed and burdened down, please know your not alone. There is a lot going on right now and I can see in the faces of those around me. I feel it too. If you need to talk or need help, please reach out to someone. Message me if you need too. You may be in such a state that you don’t know what to do, or what to say, but please hear me when I say this, God sees you. He hears you, even if it’s just a whimper coming out, He is listening and wants to help you with the burdens you are carrying. Believe on Him and His promises. He is the God of peace and I don’t know about you, but I long to have more peace inside of me right now. He is able to provide that to us if we just go to Him. Never underestimate the power of prayer!
Keep hanging on and keep on shining,