We awoke to a world covered in snow, and as I went for a walk with our Alaskan Malamute pup, I tried to soak in the beauty of it all. Benny, our pup, went buck wild racing around with his ears pressed back.
It’s the perfect weather to find a warm corner in the house and be still. And while I sit with coffee cupped in my hands listening to the winds outside, my mind has a hard time being still. Uncompleted tasks; urgent demands keep popping up.
And I find that entering that quiet place where you can hear the Holy Spirit is not as easy to do. It’s not something that I can just switch on.
I show up to meet with my Maker and I cry out for the faith I need just for today to overcome. I need new strength and grace to make it through today.
One of the wild horses that’s yanked me around for far too long is my addiction to information – to being plugged in. If I were addicted to marijuana and I saw that it was not only harming me but my husband and children, then I’d get professional help at a heartbeat.
Turns out that being plugged-in, constantly checking e-mail and browsing the Web throughout the day produces the same brain pattern as being high on drugs. No wonder I have a hard time focusing in my quiet times and being fully present with my family. It’s like I’m on a high and as with any addiction, it needs to be constantly fed.
I fell into the addiction again this morning. I willingly got sucked into e-mail and Web browsing. Mind you, it was all good stuff. I set the timer for 15 minutes but I turned it off and kept going. And finally an hour later, I got off.
Changing the habit patterns in my mind is not going to be easy. But I know with God’s help I can. I repent and I look up and not down on another failed attempt. His mercies are anew each day.
I can make the choice to offer my mind and thoughts to my Heavenly Father as a sacrifice.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Ro. 12:2
And this Word of God is an antidote – something I can mull over in my mind again and again when temptation strikes. Here’s another one:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Gal. 5:22, 23
And a really good one to pray in the mornings before everything starts:
“LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress.” Is. 33:2
Taking flight and soaring for the glory of God has to start by entering that quiet place and being still. And as we do, God’s Word says, He will renew our strength and we will soar on wings as eagles.
Or as Matthew Henry’s puts it, “They shall renew their strength as their work is renewed, as there is new occasion; they shall be anointed, and their lamps supplied, with fresh oil.”
And it’s that fresh oil coming from the Holy Spirit I need to make it through today. I need renewed strength to resist temptations and distractions so readily abundant in this world.
To soar, we must look up to our Maker. I like the image of the eagle soaring high above the clouds. It’s as the old hymn says — fix your thoughts on Jesus and look heavenward and the distractions of this world grow dim.
As we do this, God promises:
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
And that’s my prayer to be able to walk in the way of God’s commandments and in His plans for me. He is my final destination and I want to run with all that I am for His glory.
Thank you for these encouraging words, Hulda, and the reminder to keep looking heavenward. Blessings on you and yours this New Year.
Thanks Sharon and Happy New Year to you as well! So glad we are in this writing journey together!