Father Knows Best

John 14. After highlighting most of the chapter I felt compelled to share with you what I learned.  Here’s some context: The last supper has just happened and Jesus has washed the feet of every disciple. John 14 begins this beautiful epilogue from Jesus to His disciples.  As I read through the chapter I felt the need to make a list of the things Jesus shared with His disciples. If these were the things He really wanted them to remember and pocket before He left the earth then I needed to make sure not to miss it either. Below is my list, I pray it motivates you to seek out His heart, His will and His nature.

Things I need to learned from the Father
1. Don’t get lost in despair. Despair will alter your vison and that will cause your belief system to shift. (verse 1) 2. Get to REALLY know Jesus. Jesus is the only way to truly know the Father. (verse 5-8) 3. Our words and actions must be Holy Spirit led. That is the way others will know we belong to the Father. (verse 9-11) 4. If we are Holy Spirit led and chase Jesus with all that we are,  Heaven can and will Invade earth. (verse 12) not alone5. Ask and it will be given — but the glory will be God’s, so ask wisely, and ask unselfishly. Ask for things you’re mature enough to steward well. (verse 13-15) 6. Being led by and filled with the Holy Spirit will change you, so don’t get frustrated with the world for not understanding you. Your response should never be to fit in or to water down the life you live because your misunderstood. Being misunderstood will be the your lot in life, but that’s okay, Jesus was misunderstood and He saved humanity. (verse 16-17) 7. You are never alone. Don’t let the reality that you see impact what you know deep in your soul. (verse 18) 8. Love births obedience. Love for the Father will unlock His heart for people, His will for our lives & His nature so that we may replicate it. (verse 20-21) 9. Learn all you can from the Holy Spirit! Embrace development! ( verse 26 ) 10. Do not allow your heart to be troubled or to be fearful. Peace is the legacy He left for us. Peace is our inheritance and where we should be firmly planted. ( verse 27 )  ]]>

The Art of the Response

Top Gun or ET that I didn’t even know what it meant. Let’s just say I was the one who at the end of these interactions got in trouble. As the the years progressed I honed my comeback skills and my emotions became more uncontrollable. I became a person who reacted to everything with a sassy comeback or some verbal dart that left me feeling awesome and the person on the receiving end feeling demoralized.  See, I lived my life reacting to everything going on in my world instead of responding with the peace that surpasses all understanding. Truth is, in my 20’s I rarely sought God when faced with emotional bombs, I just trusted my gut feeling and reacted. This left me usually pretty frustrated and was incredibly unwise. Thankfully Jesus saw fit to intervene, He surrounded me with healthy relationships that taught me the art of the response. I was reading John 10 this morning and the Lord reminded me that I still struggle with reacting. We dialogued, as usual, and it went something like this: God: You may want to work on hearing my voice better…this will help with your tenancies to overreact when I need you to respond… Me: ( defensive tone ) What do you mean?? I hear you all the time!! God: …like I was saying before you overreacted and cut me off, If you take pause to hear my voice you won’t overreact. I will lead you. Frustrated, I reluctantly continued on with my devo and when I got to John 10:27 I stopped…

My sheep respond as they hear My voice; I know them intimately, and they follow Me…

Me: Oh…eesh. I see what ya did there… God: Yea. ( blink, blink ) I am not a sheep expert, but what I do know is that they respond to the shepherds voice and when they hear a strangers voice they scatter. Random Interjection: I recently read a book called The Way of the Shepherd: 7 Ancient Secrets to Managing Productive People , it changed the way I look at sheep and shepherds and as I read this story in the Bible it gave me incredible insight and perspective. Sheep are loyal and they are super intenso when it comes to the shepherd. They move when he moves, they want to be in His presence, they understand why he carries the staff and they are okay when he uses it to direct them. I sat on my couch, drinking my coffee and I reflected … If we are His sheep and He is our shepherd then trust should be a given and responding to His voice should be our default. I don’t know what you are walking through today, or if you are like me (a chronic overreactor) but God’s desire for us is to draw near and respond to the things that come our way with peace, and joy, and compassion. Our response should always be one that is filtered through our trust in the shepherd. I am His, and His voice is ever present…I just need to be listening. Chari]]>