A Week’s Reflection
This week, the following scriptures have been repeating in my mind and heart as I work in a unit where people can be filled with despair and loneliness.
John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled: you believe in God, believe also in me.”
Revelation 2:2-4 “I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance. I know that you cannot tolerate evildoers; you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them to be false. I also know that you are enduring patiently and bearing up for the sake of my name, and that you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.” And
Hebrews 4:12 “Indeed, the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
As I reflect on what these scriptures demand of me, I have but one rule and authority, and in order to follow Christ, who is that rule and authority, I am to question my motives. It is not the actions that describe the honesty and integrity of a person, it is the motives behind the actions. Am I working and laboring in love or am I working for a paycheck? Am I working to be an example of Christ, or am I working that I may be seen and praised? If I am to be honest with myself and with God, I have to be honest about the motives and purposes that drive me into action on a daily basis.
This does not mean that difficult days did not occur; this does not mean that I failures did not occur or that I knew how to face every decision or that I faced every decision correctly. However, it does mean that I reflect on these decisions and repent where needed. Every day we are faced with two choices: hope in God or live in self.
People need us to give the hope of God above all else. It is that hope that keeps us, gives us peace, and comforts us in our times of trouble. But if we work falsely and do not allow God to direct our actions, thoughts, and motives, we are unable to share that hope with the world around us and fall short of the first calling God lays upon us when we accept Christ into our lives as Lord and Savior. We are His ambassadors and need to be peacemakers by shining hope in the daily darkness that arises.
Allow Psalm 139 to be your Hymn of reflection and meditation today and this week.
"For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
You have searched me, LORD, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, LORD, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you. If only you, God, would slay the wicked! Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty! They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name. Do I not hate those who hate you, LORD, and abhor those who are in rebellion against you? I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies. Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."