11.22.2008

Experiencing SOLO for myself

I'm into a new devotional the past couple of weeks, SOLO: The Uncommon Devotional by Eugene Peterson. It's been a good source for me. I'm challenged by the simple focus of each day. Some insights from my journal...

(day 1) One of the items I noticed on day 1 is how much God is truly the father/parent to us. When I sin I'm like a child so much of the time - I try to hide and figure out life on my own. God knows it all and he's patiently waiting for my return to His plan.

[Picture God walking in the Garden after Adam and Eve's initial sin. It's like playing hide and seek with children. Have you ever done it? Don't know if you realized it or not, but most children are terrible at hide and seek. They hide right out in the open, cover their eyes and think, "You can't find me!" In the Garden God said, "Where are you?" but He knew right where they were. I think he was right there for them, but just like a good daddy He wanted them to know His love for them - just like His love for us.]

(day 2) So often I want to be blessed and I totally miss the point - right relationship with the Father God is the blessing. There's nothing else. Anything less is not really blessing, in fact the other stuff can often become a curse.

(day 3) "Let not the needy, O Lord, be forgotten; nor the hope of the poor be taken away." ~ Book of Common Prayer (1979)

(day 5) Not my will, O Lord, but yours.

["Made in the image of God...": That phrase really struck me this week, I am like God's art (we all are). A photograph of painting of His life - sort of like a self-portrait. It's only through Him, The Great Artist, that I have real value, purpose and meaning. Apart from His signature I have/am nothing.]

(day 8) In the old covenant I would have brought an animal sacrifice as a substitute for my own sin. I realize how difficult that would have been. To take the animal's life with my own hand and then go through the process of removing all the fat...the whole time knowing the reason for the kill was me. It would have revealed to me the importance and value of redemption. I equate it to deer hunting and dressing out the kill...it's not easy, clean or fun. It's messy, smelly work.

(day 10) As I read and prayed today's passage I was aware of God's love for His people. The Levitical laws have always seemed so harsh (and foreign); rigorous rules to be followed without reason. Today a new light burned bright. I saw how God is like a loving parent teaching His children how to access His power. We tell our kids, "Don't stick anything in a power outlet...except a plug designed to fit...when you have it right it works great!" Of course that's a loving message, full of protection and effectiveness.