Saturday, April 13, 2013

There's Only So Long One Can Stray From the Path Before They Lose It All Together

     When I do my devotions daily, I tend to live more fully for God. Makes sense: constant reminders and direction tend to keep us on the right path. Sometimes though, I drift away from my devotions for a few days. Then those few days become a week or so. And time keeps lengthening. In the first few days I'll feel a bit of guilt, always meaning to get around to them. Then the guilt is slowly forgotten, but there's still a miserable feeling that I usually shrug off as having to do with something else. Deep down, though, I know that miserable feeling is because I'm not actively seeking God but rather drifting away.
     Likewise, once I slow down on giving thanks and being content, I become discontent and miserable. Giving thanks brings joy, as does living for God. Thursday was a day that God brought me back, thankfully. I had been writing off my miserableness as being from the rain (which is indeed very miserable), but there was another reason I was miserable: I hadn't done devotions in almost a week. Awful, right! In the past I wouldn't have thought much about it, but this time, I wasn't going down without a fight. Due to an upcoming missions trip, we have to do devotions everyday. After a few weeks, it really makes a difference to take even one day off.
     I've learned that there are times where we have to choose what we want or what God wants for us. Sometimes we convince ourselves that we always want what God wants for us, but often we let ourselves follow different directions. Doing devotions daily, responding in love to my siblings every time, honoring and obeying my parents. Those are all things that I struggle with daily. It's hard to make the right choice every time, but it really makes a difference to be trying or not trying.
     This day I reflected on a lot of things. Funny enough, I wrote for number 109, "Reflections, they're beautiful". At the time I was talking about reflections on water, but life reflections are beautiful too. Often times the results of them are far more beautiful if you let them change you.

April 11, 2013
105. A flooded back yard
106. Rings forming on the water with every drop of water off the trees into the massive puddle (aka a mini pond) in our backyard
107. Big, black birds hunting for worms in the backyard. Suddenly, the light catches their feathers around their necks and a beautiful blue appears before my eyes
108. A great, big strawberry. The first bite always reminds me of summer
109. Reflections, they're beautiful
110. A father that reprimands me and points out my flaws and points me towards God's Word
111. A mother that keeps trudging, even when she feels like quitting because it's so hard
112. For the awful feeling when I'm not doing what I'm supposed to be doing, when I've ignored God too long, or when I'm slipping back into my old way of life or haven't been actively seeking God. That awful, sick feeling brings me back to seeking God because there is only ever one things to do: read the Bible. Life has so much more meaning when I seek God's will and to live a life in obedience and honor of Him, sometimes I forget, I wander down a path of not doing my devotions and then not caring and getting depressed. Getting back in God's Word is always what I know I need to do. It's nice coming back, and I have to thank God for the Holy Spirit which provides that awful, guilty feeling when I start to stray.
113. The Holy Spirit
114. Reminder that this journal is keeping track of what I first offer thanks to God. I pray I keep that the focus and keep giving God the thanks (for everything)
115. My mom's modest whisper, "Oops, scuse me. That might smell." after her quiet, airy fart
116. Laughter with my mom (see above incident)
117. I have put my life in the hands of a beautiful God. His power and the awe I have in the face of his creation. I serve a mighty God.

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