I just noticed I haven’t posted anything in the month of September so far…and for that I apologize! The other day, I received an e-mail confirming my speaking to a women’s group in October, and at first, I thought, “Well, that’s still a long way off…”
Well, no ma’am, it is not! October is just around the corner! Time sure does fly, doesn’t it?
We get so bogged down in everything we have to ‘take care of’ and before we know it, a week…two…three have passed by. In today’s world, where everything whizzes by in an instant, we have to be intentional about our time, and make the best use of what we have been given.
Now, I don’t say this because I am a particularly good steward of my time, but it is certainly something I am working on!
Several weeks ago, Craig and I went to see ‘War Room’…and it was so moving and heart-wrenching, I saw it a second time with one of my best friends. Once again, I was deeply affected by the film, and if you have been in my vicinity in the past couple of weeks, you have been urged, begged and pleaded with to go and see this movie! (And here I go again, “GO SEE WAR ROOM!!! It is worth the noise and crowds of the theatre. It is worth the cost of the ticket, Diet Coke and popcorn! The Holy Spirit will speak to you in that theatre, so be prepared with a box of tissues. You will NOT be sad or feel you have wasted your evening. I promise.)
And therein lies my whole point about being intentional with your time.
In John 21, beginning with verse 15, Jesus is speaking with Peter:
When they had finished eating, Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love Me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” He answered, “You know I love You.”
Jesus replied, “Feed My lambs.”
Jesus asked a second time, “Simon son of John, do you love Me?”
“Yes, Lord,” he answered, “You know I love You.”
Jesus told him, “Shepherd My sheep.”
Jesus asked a third time, “Simon son of John, do you love Me?”
Peter was deeply hurt that Jesus had asked him a third time, “Do you love Me?”
“Lord, You know all things;” he replied, “You know I love You.”
Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep.
Truly, truly, I tell you, when you were young, you dressed yourself and walked where you wanted; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God.
After He had said this, He told him, “Follow Me.” John 21:15-20
This scripture says more to me than what it appears on the surface. Jesus is saying here, if you want to follow me; if you want to be a Christian (AKA Christ-follower, which is what that means literally); if you love me, your life is about more than just living. Your life is about more than just attending church on Sunday, saying a prayer before bed, reading your ‘Jesus Calling’ first thing in the morning. Your entire life and being should be intentionally devoted to your walk with Christ.
When we saw ‘War Room’, one thing that struck me was the intentional time being set aside for prayer. I don’t want to ruin the movie for any of you who haven’t seen it (because I know you are going to finish reading this and immediately purchase a ticket to see it tonight), but Jesus tells us in the Gospels:
“But when you pray, go into your inner room, shut your door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:6 (Berean Study Bible)
I know that much of the time, I get up in the morning, quickly read my devotion and rush to get ready and head out the door to work. I listen to sermons, praise and worship music, and/or Victory 91.5 on my way to work. And honestly, by the time I get home in the evenings I am dog-tired – right alongside our precious pups, who always seem to be dog-tired, no matter how little they’ve done all day! I lay on the couch in front of the television, scrolling through Facebook and Instagram. I may do a few dishes or a load or two of laundry, but my evenings are always haphazard. By the time Craig and I have our evening phone call before bed, our prayer together is only half-conscious being that we are both so exhausted.
Since seeing the movie, I have a strong desire to make my life more intentional. Ecclesiastes tells us:
“Everything has its own time, and there is a specific time for every activity under heaven…” Ecclesiastes 3:1
Nothing God does is coincidence. Everything has a purpose and a plan, and I think then, if we are striving to follow Him and become more Christ-like, so should our lives. I know I do better at the office if I plan my day, so how about my evening?
What if I returned home from work, fed my pups, changed into comfy clothes, ate dinner and then retreated to my war room? What if I was as intentional about prayer and spiritual warfare as I am about making sure I feed myself and my fur-kids?
How much would my life change from this one intentional addition?
Would He give me the strength and the means and the opportunity and time to serve Him with my whole heart, to feed His sheep, to shepherd His sheep if I only made room for Him in the way He asks me in my busy schedule?
2 thoughts on “Intentional Living”
Thanks for the reminder about Ecclesiastes chapter 3. I re-read it this morning thanks to your post! It’s your anniversary today…so I would say that calls for: a time to laugh; a time to dance; a time to embrace; a time to keep; a time to love…. He has made everything appropriate to its time. Be glad and do well 🙂
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You are such a blessing, Jenna!! We love you!! Hope we get to see you for a second in MN next month!!