We get so bothered by things that hold no spiritual value. We fight battles that produce no spiritual reward. Why is that? It is not until reality hits us in the face that we realize some of our battles weren’t even worth starting a fight.
On last Saturday evening, I had determined that I would get in bed early. For the last 2-3 weeks I have been battling a cold which ultimately became the flu. I had missed so many services that I felt disconnected. See, for me, there is nothing like being in the presence of my Father. It’s a place where healing dwells. Peace is there and the comfort in knowing that someone loves me without conditions. My Father met me in His house and changed me there and I adore Him and appreciate the opportunity to dwell in a house where He desires to dwell because His Spirit is not everywhere…let me move on because I will go…there.
As I flipped through the channels one last time, I was drawn to a story that occurred March of this year. The story was about a man who had traveled the world from a lad of a boy. His dad’s job required international travel and living and now as an adult, this man’s job required international travel as well. Flying was second nature for him.
One particular day, this guy had plans to return home from an overseas business meeting. As he checked in at the airport and headed to his gate that would bring him back to the U.S., he heard a loud explosion. Suddenly there was smoke everywhere. He realized it was a terrorist attack and a bomb had gone off. Because of his travel experiences, he knew what to do in cases such as this and what direction to run. Always to a gate where security is. “Never run towards the exit,” he claimed, “because you are uncertain of where the perpetrators are.” So, he ran as quickly as possible away from the scene.
Suddenly, another explosion. Another bomb had detonated. This time he wasn’t so lucky. The explosion happened just 30 feet from where he was. He had been hit. As he gathered himself, he looked down and recognized that he was completely covered in his own blood. His left leg was twisted and positioned in the total opposite direction as the other. He was bleeding from the hip as well. The man goes on to say that suddenly, only what mattered flashed before his eyes: His wife, and his family. He began to keep them in mind, saying within himself: “I have to get back to my girls. I have to get back home.” Knowing that he would die if he waited for help to arrive and despite the excruciating pain he was experiencing, the young man was able to get assistance from someone to prop himself up and his dangling, almost detached leg, to a luggage cart, and be carried out to the front of the airport. By chance, an ambulance was right there, saw him and rushed him to the hospital. This man believed and acted upon his belief. He thought on what mattered most to him. I dare you to think on things that matter (I just got excited).
Here is what matters:
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8 NKJV
Oh My Lord and Savior…okay, okay…back to the story. This man’s road to recovery was long, requiring 6 surgeries and to remain IN the foreign country, away from his family. Did you hear me? He had to remain in the war zone. He had to stay in the MIDST of the storm. But even in the MIDST of the storm, his blessing was right there!
The last surgery would determine if he would ever walk again. What kept him focused on his goal, was what mattered most. 6 months after, his horrific ordeal, this man was met at the airport in his hometown with family, friends, and a city of supporters. However, his suffering was not over. There would be months of rehab required for the “possibility” of having the ability to walk again, with the terrible nerve damage done to his left leg. Did you hear me? There was no guarantee that he would have the ability to walk on his own, even after completing rehab. Even with the remote chance of walking, ohhh Jesus, the young man pressed and endured the process.
THIS man continued to press toward the mark of his prize. His prize was the ability to walk and interact with his children. This man spoke nothing of JESUS or faith in God, but his faith moved me. I said within myself, if he could WILL himself into his victory, without the Lord…SURELY, I have my Savior, the Spirit of the living God, and a legion of Heavenly hosts, I WILL press toward the mark in Jesus!
“I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Philippians 3:14 NLT
I feel like I’m in a pulpit RIGHT now. I need you to understand the words in this devotion. Glory to the NAME of Jesus!!!!!
The guy went on to say that he looked back at how far he had come, and what remained constant to get him this far, would be the constant reminder that would allow him to push through the tough road that lied ahead of him. With strength, support, and resilience to never give up, he eventually walked again with no assistance.
If death were staring you in the face what you be thinking of? Your family? Children? Spouse? Your dreams and aspirations? The attitudes and behaviors you have had that reflect the opposite of who you say you’re representing- would it even matter?
This past week, we celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday. Are you able to look back at who and what kept you from dangers seen and unseen? What were you thankful for? We ought to be thankful for what we have, but bae bae, be thankful for what you don’t have as well.
- Thank God for not allowing you to get married to that man/woman who was abusive.
- Thank God for keeping you from getting that disease that could’ve killed you, as you slept around with who and whatever you desired.
- Thank God for not killing you in the MIDST of your willing act of sin when you knew that it was wrong.
- Thank God for not giving you the job that you desired, whose doors are now closing or downsizing.
- Thank God for not giving you the apartment that you wanted, that was just on the news from a horrific tragedy.
We must declare the works of the Lord not only with our mouths,!but also in our hearts and lifestyles.
Live each day as if it’s your last. Treat others with respect and be a SURE follower of Jesus. None of us have any idea of when that time will be our last time. Since we are fully aware of this, what prevents us from being more passionate, loving, kind and forgiving?
What stops us from doing the will of God and not our own? Every day we wake up is a constant reminder that we could one day not wake up. Isn’t that enough for you to get your life in order?
Focus on what matters most.
“But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.” Acts of the Apostles 20:24 NLT