With the New Year sneaking up on us (as it does every year), I figured there’s no better time to set a new goal for myself. I’ve decided my goal/New Years resolution is to write a weekly blog post. After attending church on Sunday mornings, I will set aside some time to write about that morning’s sermon. My hope is to use these posts as a way to think about and reflect on the topic discussed during the service. While I know some topics will be easier for me to relate to and share about than others, I willingly except the challenge. Honestly, I’m looking forward to it! I think overcoming challenges plays an important role in shaping who we are. Over the past several weeks, I’ve been nudging myself to step out of my comfort zone, which is something I am definitely not good at. Sharing my thoughts and feelings about my faith and journey with Christ is a big step for me. With that being said, I encourage anyone reading this post to take a leap and do something out of your comfort zone. And yes, I’m talking to those of you who, like myself, are hesitant to take that first step.
Today’s sermon was about love, and loving all. Not simply loving those we are fond of, but loving everyone. Yeah, I know… That’s a difficult task. Philippians 2:3-5 says “Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had”.
“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others”… This passage speaks directly to the part of me that has always been somewhat concerned with what others think. However, as I get older and become more confident in the woman I’m becoming, I care less about other’s opinions of me. While most of us hate to admit it, I think most of us care about what others think of us …some more than others. For me, what you see is what you get - take it or leave it. To be honest, I now care more about what Jesus thinks of me. While I can truthfully and openly say that now, it has taken me many years to reach this point. I’m proud to be a woman after God’s own heart. My hope is that this post will help some of you gain the courage to be who you truly are, regardless of what others will think. Once you become comfortable in your own skin and truly love yourself, you are able to love those around you. Sounds sappy, I know… But, bear with me.
Consider the second part of the passage, “Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had”. Christ wants us to love everyone, not only our family and friends. While we are in the midst of the holiday season, I think I can assume that the majority of us are extra joyful… I mean all the wonderful food and drinks, Christmas music, great company, and festive decorations, it’s hard to be a grinch among all the holiday cheer! So, I encourage you to take advantage of this time of year and make that first baby step. Show love to all those you encounter, even though it may be a difficult task. Think of it this way - you never know the impact you may have on someone’s life, simply by showing a little love.
Our pastor spoke briefly about the biblical character, Simeon. And I think its important to share the about the kind of man he was. Simeon embodied three character traits that I believe we should all strive to embrace.
With that being said, here’s something I want you to consider:
“The 10 Second Rule” Challenge
Over the next 5 days, pay close attention to the Holy Spirit, and listen. Do the next thing you are reasonably certain Jesus wants you to do and do it immediately before you change your mind. However, the words “reasonably certain” are not very clarifying, huh? Here’s how our pastor defined them: a strong impression that feels right and doesn't contradict the scriptures.
I am excited to participate in this challenge, myself. I know there are many opportunities that the Holy Spirit has planned for me and I fully intend to pursue each one. If you want to join in the challenge, I would love to hear about your experiences. Feel free to privately email me, or comment below!