​​Shattered​

I love Fall. Don’t you? I love the colors, the smells, and the slight chill in the air. It’s just all so beautiful and rejuvenating.

Come September 1st, Fall fever begins for me. It’s the beginning of school, football, and the hope for a near end to long hot Summer days. Don’t get me wrong, I love Summer too but by September, I’m ready for a change.

Considering I’ve just spent an entire Summer dealing with breast cancer and breast cancer treatment, I am definitely ready for a new season and a little Fall fun.

I usually manage to postpone my Fall decorating until September 15th. I know that’s not the official start of Fall but I think I’m doing very well in being able to wait that long.

Recently, while doing my much-anticipated Fall decorating, I had a little mishap. With an item in one hand, I tried to remove a larger item with the other hand. In doing so, I managed to knock over my favorite vase.

As I stood there, staring at the shattered pieces of my precious vase, I felt so much regret. If only I had put the less meaningful item down and used two hands to remove the larger item, my vase would still be intact. Ugh!

Sometimes in life, we have a tendency to do that very same thing. While trying to hold on to something trivial or meaningless, we may be recklessly destroying something priceless and irreplaceable.

In the Bible, Lot’s wife had trouble letting go of her past, therefore destroying her future [Genesis 19:26]. In Haman’s refusal to release racism, his life and the lives of his family were annihilated [Esther 3-9].

Solomon’s unwillingness to lay down his lust for passion and women damaged his relationship with the Lord and the future of his kingdom [1 Kings 11].

While Jesus was here on the earth, the Pharisees, refusing to abandon their traditions and pride, murdered their own long-awaited messiah [Matthew 26].

For years I held onto bitterness and unforgiveness that was hindering my relationship with the Lord, destroying my relationship with my family, and eating me up inside. I was angry and resentful.

Thankfully, I came to my senses before it was too late. By the power of God’s word and His Spirit, I have been set free.

What things are you holding on to that may be destroying the most meaningful things in your life?

Maybe you’re hanging on to the unforgiveness that is shattering your relationships and your health.

Maybe, like Lot’s wife, you are having trouble letting go of your negative past and it’s hindering you from enjoying your present or killing your hopes for a positive future.

Maybe, like Haman, you’re gripping racism and hate while decimating other’s characters. Ultimately destroying your own life and the lives of your family by obsessing over destroying other’s lives.

Maybe, like Solomon, you are holding on to an illicit relationship or an addiction that is ruining your family and your reputation.

Or maybe like the Pharisees, you’re embracing stale traditions and religious pride so tightly that you are demolishing any opportunity for the newness of life that is standing right in front of you.

Don’t be the one who ends up staring at the shattered pieces of your life, relationships, and potential in regret. Let go of the unimportant and grab hold of the most important before it’s too late.

Hebrews 12:1-2a Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer, and perfecter of faith.

~Patrice Maguire

Prayer for salvation: Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Trees are not Worried

This past Saturday was the first day of Fall. I get excited about Fall. I love the colors, the smells, and the cooler temperatures. Actually, I just love everything about it. Living in Louisiana, it’s nice to get a little break from the heat. Don’t get me wrong, I love the heat but we all need a change every now and then.

On that day, being excited about Fall, I decided to search for some Fall quotes. I found the usual ones about “the beauty in death” and “the beauty in change.” Then, in the large pile of Fall quotes, I found one unique quote that was more beautiful than the rest.

Maybe you’ve read it or heard it before but I hadn’t. “All the trees are losing their leaves, and not one of them is worried.” Isn’t it great! This quote really gets you thinking right! Well, it did me.

The trees are losing their leaves and they are not worried. Why are they not worried? Because they know that, at an appointed time, their leaves will return. New life will come! They have no control over the loss of their leaves.

There are many circumstances that occur causing the trees to lose their leaves. But they aren’t worried because they know that the God who made them will take care of them and provide for their every need. They aren’t worried they are just trusting.

Are there things in your life that you’ve lost? Maybe it’s your health or your wealth. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one to a disease or an accident. Maybe your spouse or someone you love very much has left you. Or maybe you’ve lost your job or your home.

It could be anything. These things may all be due to circumstances that are out of your control. Whatever the situation, you can know that the God who made you will take care of you and will provide for your every need.

Life is painful sometimes and doesn’t always seem fair but there is a God who sees you and knows what you are going through and He cares about you very much.

There is a man in the Bible that lost everything. His name was Job. He lost livestock, his children, employees, his health and his wealth. Even his friends and his wife turned against him.

In all of his pain and suffering, he never blamed God. He didn’t worry about how he was going to get everything and everyone he had lost back. He only trusted the One who created him and the One who would take care of Him and provide for all of his needs.

And just like the trees get their leaves back and bud forth new life in due season so did Job. God gave him back all that he had lost and more.

I just want to encourage you to be like those trees that are losing all of their leaves right now. They aren’t worried because they know that things will get better. They have to go through the winter but come spring there will be new life to be enjoyed.

The same is true for you. You may have to go through a rough season but be assured that God is working on your behalf and He is making all things new.

Revelation 21:5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!

You may not see it now but just you wait. Spring is coming!

Matthew 6:25,28-32  “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you-you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.”

~Patrice Maguire