Tuesday, August 21, 2012

What I'm Praying - Part 4

So this summer I have explored some deeply meaningful scripture passages in an effort to get away from just word searching scriptures and not really spending time digging into a specific scripture chock full of wisdom.  There is such great value in having the Bible accessible on the Internet, but I also find myself scanning scripture instead of sitting with them.  Soaking up a few priceless words and letting God speak to me through them. 

I just stumbled upon this one.  A friend posted it on her Facebook page.  While it is not new to me, it is FRESH to me and immediately it sent me to Phillipians 2 to sit for a while.  Here's the passage, hang on to your hats: 

For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.

Holy. Toledo.

This morning I read a few of the blog posts of Lysa TerKeurst's blog tour of her new book, Unglued.  I read examples of single women, retired wives, and working mommas all coming unglued.  My sweet readers here have had no shortage of material in reading instances of my embarrassing unglued behaviour. 

I struggle.  I feel overwhelmed.  I react when I shouldn't. 

But this is what God says: HE is working in ME to give me the DESIRE and the POWER to please Him.  I have written that there are times I can not quite work up the courage to do what HE wants me to do.  A wise friend told me not to pray for strength to undertake the action, but rather to pray that I would have the DESIRE to do what God wanted of me. 

So the God that created the universe and calmed the storms is working in little ole me to do what pleases Him?  Yes.  I do not have to do it alone.  And don't you love the order that verse is laid out?  First, God is going to give me the desire.  That is critical.  I have to desire, truly crave, pleasing Him.  But we all know from experience that desire, no matter how acute, won't get me across the finish line.  It's the power.  The power propels me over the finish line.  The power given to us from God Almighty grants us the honor of pleasing Him. 

Isn't that exactly what Hebrews 11 tells us?  Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. 

There's no way we could please Him on our own.  But if we believe Him, believe in Him, and seek Him, then He will work in us to give us the desire and power to please Him. 

And don't you know that if we're desiring to please Him, and powerfully moving under the hand of God on the path to please Him, that we won't be coming unglued.  We won't come unglued on our co-workers.  We won't come unglued on our husbands.  We won't come unglued on our kids.  Can you imagine how relieved they will be?  And what a powerful testimony that will be?  

If you want to read more after Philippians 2:13, here are a few spectacular passages that illustrate what the power of God has in store for us if only we surrender to it:

Ephesians 3: I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge —that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Jeremiah 32:  Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.

Romans 15: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

2 Corinthians 12:  But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Colossians 1:  To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.

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