Page 119 was a day to sleep in and allow my mind and body to catch up on some rest. Once I was awake and had my coffee started, I began the day by doing the writing of yesterday’s page. There are times lately when I think the writing of these daily pages has run its course and I ought to quit doing them. I’m not sure where that thought originates, but as I write I continue to be reminded of lessons that God teaches me through each day’s activities so I keep writing. It is my belief that many of the lessons that we learn from God each day are not just for us, but are designed to help others grow as we share them. So I will continue to write and share as I pray that God uses my daily lessons to strengthen and encourage others as well as myself.
After yesterday’s page was written, I spent some time meditating and reflecting on the sermon outline and texts for tomorrow. A part of my sermon preparation process is to be prepared and then let all of the preparation simmer as God refines it in my mind. Some may say I over-prepare, but I view it as being fully prepared and letting God refine the preparation until the chaff is blown away and the pure grain is left to feed upon.
The afternoon was spent at a birthday party for a one year old. Our nephew’s wife had asked MJ to take photos for her son’s first birthday so we took our cameras and teamed up to capture the joy of the day. One of those photos made today’s page as another nephew came to the table with a plate of cake and cupcakes that made it appear he couldn’t decide what he wanted. Actually his claim was that it was for his kids, but I never really did see who ate it. 🙂 I appreciated the beauty found in the variety of the colors, but also in the differences in tastes and preference that people have when it comes to cake. When it came down to it, while the birthday cake appeared to be a central part of the celebration, it really only had a supporting role. The important part of the day was the gathering of family and the celebration of the life of a one year old. It made me think about how often we get sidetracked by good things that aren’t really the main thing.
I’ll finish out the day in a manner similar to how it started — writing a day’s page and allowing the message for tomorrow to simmer longer in my mind.
As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:
- The mind affects the weariness of the body and the body affects the clarity of the mind. Many times they both need rest in order to find peace for the soul.
- God teaches us for our benefit and so that we are a benefit to others. We must learn to share so both of those things can take place.
- If we are faithful in using the gifts God puts in our life, He often uses them in ways we may never see or understand — be faithful anyway.
- Some preparation has immediate purpose, some preparation has future purpose, and some preparation has purpose beyond our time. Prepare fully and let God use your preparations in His time.
- Celebrations are wonderful things if we stay focused on what we’re celebrating.
- Our worship gatherings ought to be celebrations of Jesus and the relationship we have with Him.
- Too often we allow the “decorations” of our worship gatherings to become more important than the One that ought to be the focus of our worship.
- When our focus is kept on Jesus, a lot of the relational distractions that exist between people no longer have the importance they once had.