Today’s Quote: “Nothing on Earth is like fully engaging with God. Nothing. Once you’ve tasted what I’ve tasted, nothing in the physical realm can touch it. Yet everything in the physical realm takes on brilliant color because of it.” –Beth Moore
Today’s Song: “Call on Jesus” -Nicole C. Mullen
Welcome to Phase II! The start of a new chapter in our journey, and hopefully in our lives.
I hope you are excited and anticipating big things for yourself. I know I am.
In Phase I you were challenged to see God through brand new eyes and connect with Him in a brand new, more personal way. That relationship with your maker is the absolute foundation of your faith and wellbeing. Not only does He make sure that you have the head-knowledge you need for life, He is also the only one capable of taking that knowledge and truth and sewing it into your being. The places you live from.
He alone can give you what you need, and so you need to stay closely connected to Him. But if you’re anything like I was, you’re not really sure how to connect with Him on a regular basis.
Maybe prayer just seems awkward or distant, or if you’re like me, you just find your mind wandering off to the land of new hairstyles, or Mexican food, or sleep. After all, God knows our hearts, doesn’t He?
Well yes, of course He does- but prayer is so much more than that. It’s intimacy. It’s you coming close to Him by opening yourself up to Him, and Him coming close to tend to your heart and speak into your life. Intimacy.
So today I want to teach you a little technique that helped me SO MUCH to really start engaging with God. It’s not a formula. It’s just something that drastically helped me in my prayer life, and maybe it could help you too.
It is really so simple, but for some reason picturing it this way helps so much.
I want you to picture your heart as a water canister. Just going through life every day makes all of the water in your canister very dirty and murky.
What we have talked a lot about so far is pouring our stuff out to God, just spilling our guts to him in every way, shape and form. I want you to think of this as pouring out all of the dirty water in your canister. (sorry beer was the only picture I could find)
Just dumping that nasty thing out.
Anything that is going on inside of you from your day..
any unclean thing,
just a real pouring out of your heart to God.
He’s the only one who truly cares about and truly understands all of that stuff anyway!
I also use this time to pour out concerns, decisions I have to make, just things that are on the forefront of my life. I just take it all to Him. This outpouring is so necessary for me because my life just seems to naturally produce a lot of dirt. So my water doesn’t take very long to become filthy.
This is also the perfect time for confession. Confess your sins: rotten deeds, thoughts and attitudes, to the Lord. Say them out loud and ask for his forgiveness. Tell on anyone who’s hurt you! Tell Him about anyone you’re having trouble forgiving and pray for His help. Just anything that you want to bring to Him.
Nothing is too big or too small. He cares about it all.
Just let it all fall out onto the ground at His feet.
(I literally get on my knees with my head on the ground and imagine that I’m literally dumping everything out at His feet.)
Just spill that dirty water all out!!!
Oh my goodness talk about a literal weight coming off of your shoulders!
I have never felt so "light" as after pouring out and confessing all of my stuff to God.
This alone feels so great!
But now we need to be filled…
And what we want is for God to fill that clean canister(your heart) back up with his pure water. Crystal-clear spring water. The kind that you can have a pure, joyful, wholesome and productive day on.
The kind that you can offer to other people.
The kind that you can offer to other people.
And the way to do this is by allowing God some time to pour back into you.
Allowing him time to speak his pureness into your heart. To fill you with His spirit and His truths.
I do this through quiet reflection and reading his word. First, I ask Him to fill me afresh with His Spirit- and I sit at His feet just taking in his goodness and love. Then, I open His word.
The Bible is God’s main form of communication to us, and where we will glean the majority of our insight from him on how to live. It is full of the most insightful and practical information that you need for your life, and just requires that you read it.
If reading God’s word seems boring to you, I want to challenge you to give it another try using this new “empty canister” technique.
Meaning, first, pour out everything that is in your heart to God, then ask God to fill you with His spirit, then approach your reading time with a fresh and clean heart and a fresh filling of His spirit.
It changes everything!
Beth compares God’s Spirit in you to being like gasoline, and His word like a match."You better believe there’ll be a fire!!"
Time Out: If you’re not familiar with the concept of The Holy Spirit don’t worry, we’ll talk more in depth about this soon. And also, if you’re not sure where to start on reading your bible- I would recommend any book in the New Testament- maybe John or Galatians. Read just a little bit at a time and allow yourself some time to reflect. I suspect that with this new approach those words are going to jump right off of that page and onto the roadway of your life!
Prayer is so powerful and so awesome.
In essence it is communication with the one who holds the keys to everything that our heart is seeking in life and for eternity! God is the source of real life, and intimate time with Him is how we receive that life.
Setting aside a regular prayer time changes everything.
And usually that change begins in your own heart, as He brings more clear direction to your life than you ever realized possible.
So my prayer for you today is that you would taste the goodness and wholeness that comes from intimate prayer with our Lord. And that you would keep coming back to him day after day after day. Amen.
“Create in me a clean heart oh God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”~ Psalm51:10
Today's Dare: For the remainder of this journey, I want you to really try and have a daily prayer time. Whether it be in your bedroom, outside somewhere, or even in your car if that's the only private space you have. With or without your journal- create a regular time and space for you and God.
Start today, and practice using the "Pour Out, Fill Up" approach.
I'm going to begin putting a "POFU"(pour out, fill up) in your dares, each day as a reminder.
And I would challenge you to write that acronym in any place that you find yourself gravitating to when you're depressed or hungering for something, but you can't figure out what.