The Art of Pouring Oneself Out

In our world of brokenness and chaos, there seems to be an abundance of people needing to experience love and grace. Each person needs to be recognized as a person not a project and therefore deserving of an investment of time. Time and energy. In Isaiah 58 we read,

“…if you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday. And the LORD will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to dwell in.”

It is a glorious calling to pour yourself out on behalf of others – it can also become all consuming and leave you wondering if you are spread too thin. The question is, “How do you prioritize how you spend your time and energy?” I.e. how and to whom will you pour yourself out? Admittedly, this is an area that I seem to fail in and the recipients of this most often tends to be family. There is definitely a balance that is needed and even healthy boundaries in place for every person you encounter but the art-form takes years and massive spiritual maturity and dependency upon God to guide. When I look at Jesus I see that he did NOT invest in EVERY person. He took time for himself to recharge and time for his closest friends. His discernment came through being connected to the Father in lengthy times of prayer. I believe that is where I am lacking. Though I pray often, it isn’t a predetermined place, time and amount of time. This bears more reflection as I truly believe that should I follow Christ more closely in this relationship with God the Father, I will be more effective as his ambassador and when I pour myself out it will be better balanced. Amen.

Stewards of God’s Grace

Today I sat down to start my day of by reading 1 Peter. Peter writes about how we are born again, being built up into the people of God to the glory of God, needing to submit to authority and even to suffer well as Jesus did. Then we arrive at 1 Peter 4:10 , “As each has recieved a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewarts of God’s varied grace.” A steward is defined as “a person who manages another’s property or financial affairs; one who administers anything as the agent of another or others.” So often we can become self-centered as recipients of God’s grace that we forget that it is a gift we experience and are entrusted with to dispense as God dispenses His grace. In serving one another in love we bless each other and show to others watching what God’s grace looks like. God’s grace isn’t to put into our personal bank and to keep for a personal rainy day. It’s to be invested broadly to others just as God decadently shares it with us. May this cause you to understand more clearly your purpose as a Christ-follower and exhort you to action in our world.