Yes, that really is my dog, Riley, with his nose stuck in a glass up to his eyebrows...
To say he's spoiled doesn't begin to paint an adequate picture. Let's just say he has his humans well trained.
I love him very much and most of the time don't mind that he's a lap dog. He loves to snuggle and loves being held so much that sometimes he will follow me around the house just waiting for me to sit down so he can jump up. Most of the time it's cute, but sometimes - like when I've tripped over him for the tenth time in as many minutes - it can be aggravating. He's such an attention seeker.
I got to thinking one day - or maybe it was God' Spirit speaking to my heart - that I could learn from Riley. What if...
- I had his persistence in seeking the company and attention of God
- I Loved being with God more than anything else in the world
- it distressed me to be away from God too long
- my greatest joy was to be with Him. Not doing anything in particular, just being with Him.
- I lived in the moment - every moment - with God.
- I trusted Him for my every need.
- I wanted more than anything else to please Him
Now I don't want to over-simplify things. Riley doesn't worry about the future because he's a dog and doesn't think about it. It's not right in front of him yet, so why worry? Oh, wait a minute... isn't there something in Matthew 6 about the birds of the air not worrying? Yes, I think there is. Consider that...
If my word for this year is Freedom, then I can take a lesson from Riley; a reminder that worrying about the future is pointless and a joy killer. The birds simply do what they were created to do. So does Riley.
I was created for fellowship with God. To know Him, love Him, worship Him. Everything else that I do must come from that relationship or it is meaningless.
The story that I'm writing right now, the things I will do at work today, the way I deal with a total stranger this week, all of these things must take a back seat to time I spend sitting in the lap of Jesus, listening to Him speak, feeling how much He loves me just the way I am.
My journey is not about what I will do for God. It is about what I will allow Him to do in me and through me. Why is that so hard to remember?
Maybe we should stop trying to be "good" and just keep our focus on our Creator. The rest will take care of itself - He promised.
I hope this new year is beginning well for you, and that you are starting it in the lap of Jesus. If not, then do it now. There's no time like the present and there's always room. Seek Him not to ask for things, just to be with Him. He'll take care of everything else.
Following the plan,