Saturday, April 5, 2008

A Beautiful Thought

"Then, if we cannot as yet think alike in all things, at least we may love
alike. Herein we cannot possibly do amiss." John Wesley

Amen, and amen!!


Rachelle said...

Hi Joyce,

I thought I'd come over here and return the compliment :)

The last line of your profile intrigued me. You wrote "Daily I seek to make my life itself an act of worship."

I'd love to hear more about this, when you get chance......

Best wishes,
Mrs Green x

Joyce said...

I think what I mean by that is to be fully devoted to God, keep my eyes open to the signs of his presence in my life, letting him lead me in all my actions. And, as you can imagine, I fall short of this quite routinely! But that's okay. God knows my limitations. All he asks is that I try.

Most of us recognize God's power in the natural world, but it can be hard to see him in people around us. I have a tendency to just go along on autopilot, doing my own thing, instead of asking Him what He would like me to be doing at each step of the way. It's hard, especially for someone living in a culture that values independence, to submit and live a servant's life. But that's the example Jesus set for me, and what He calls me to do.

I don't think I've articulated it very well, but that's the thmbnail version of what I'm up to. Hope it makes some sort of sense!

Rachelle said...

Hi Joyce,

You articulated that really well - thank you!

If you have the time there are a couple more things that interest me. You talk of keeping your eyes open to the signs of his presence in your life. What things do you mean, specifically? I understand how we can see his presence in nature, but I'd love to hear of other things.

And how do you find he makes his wishes known to you throughout your life and leads you to your life purpose?

I'm a bit of a seeker at the moment, so bear with me please!

Mrs G x

Joyce said...

Well, let me just start with the circumstance I mentioned in my profile.

I have four children, and four years ago, when my youngest was in her last year of high school and planning to go off to college the next year, I began to pray to God that He would show me what He would like me to turn to next. Although I have always worked part time, I mostly considered myself a homemaker and mom, but my children were not going to need me (at least as intensively!), and I didn't want to go through that "empty nest syndrome" that so many full-time moms experience-sort of a sense of purposelessness, I guess. I believe God created all of us for a purpose, so I wanted him to make it clear to me what I should be doing. I really had no idea what my next stage of life would bring me.

Anyway, I had always been very active in the music things at church because I was trained to be a singer. Part way through that year, when I had been praying, the lady who had been our choir director at church quit rather suddenly, about a month before Easter. The pastor called me up in some desperation. Would I step in as the interim director? They knew they wouldn't find anybody else in time to get all the Easter music ready. Of course I was willing to help out. It was a big job, but everything turned out well, and I absolutely loved doing it. The church was happy with what I had done, and asked me to stay on in an official staff position. It was something I had a degree in, it allowed me to serve God, and I didn't even have to look for the job-it came to me! And my daughter hadn't even quite graduated, so I never missed a beat as far as purposeful work.

I think it was more than circumstance. I was open to God's leading, and he made things quite clear for me. I suppose I could have passed on the job, because it's not well paid or glamorous, and my husband and I had talked about me finding full time work, but the ministry part of it was more important than the money, and fortunately my husband sees things that way too.

I also find that if I am consistently reading the Bible things just sort of pop out at me that I need to know right then. The Bible is full of stories of people, and often there is an example from one of their experiences that I can relate to my life at that time. And of course, there are basic instructions in there too, like the Golden Rule, that, if you know them, help guide you in daily interactions with people.

Again, I wish I was able to articulate this better! Here's where getting together for coffee would be so great!

Joyce said...

After having slept on it, I wanted to add a couple of thoughts.

If you think about what worship is, it's really just a recognition of who we are in comparison to who God is. If that strikes awe in you, you will worship by praising God for who He is and thanking Him for what He does, and you will want to respond to His love by obeying Him and attempting to emulate Him, just as children respond to loving parents.

So I guess when I say I am daily trying to make my whole life an act of worship, that's what it would look like, in general. But I have a long way to go in terms of doing this moment by moment. Right now I'm only successful at maybe being mindful of this for a small part of each day. I'd like to grow in that area.

Rachelle said...

Thank you Joyce, for both of your responses. They make a lot of sense and have given me much to think about.

Wishing you a wonderful day