Life, Faith & Running
". . . let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."
(Hebrews 12:1, NIV)
(Hebrews 12:1, NIV)
Reading the IF:Equip study of Nehehmiah 11:25-12:26 and listening to the commentary with Rebekah Lyons and Jennie Allen on first day of school morning gave me a new perspective on the entire book of Nehemiah.
As I sit here with my kids gone to school (one in 2nd grade, the other in kindergarten) I am considering what stories their lives will intersect today. They will encounter classmates, teachers, cooks, janitors and others. And their stories will in little ways begin being written into other people's lives and vice versa. My kids are growing up and that means they are in the early stages of letting God be their guide and recognizing that He is the author of their lives. Viewing their lives from this perspective helps to remind me that my kids are just blessings on loan to me. They are God's craftsmanship and he has an orderly and purposed plan for their lives. He knows them more intimately than I ever will and he will use their uniquenesses to bring glory to his name, and I pray people to his kingdom.
There are a lot of things I can do as a parent to help my kids "grow-up" and know about Jesus. But I cannot control their hearts and I don't get to write their stories--only God has the power and wisdom enough to do that. Hallelujah!
Instead, I get to be their Nehemiah! I get to help them figure out what part of the Wall God has designed them to build. I get to help them know the Word of God and rejoice with them when they obey and mourn with them when they do not. And help them to seek Him when they don't know how to get everything straight and right again. I get to (try my best) to be an example of unconditional love for them, allowing them to know that no matter what they are loved! That there is no place they can escape from the amazing love of a Father who cares more deeply for them than I even have a capacity for. Also, I get to teach them through the ups and downs of life that God is always leading and God is always able to work all things for the good. And that the truest compass for life is His Word.
And I am not alone in this! Hallelujah, again!
These kids have a team of amazing Christian adults from around the world (literally) who have helped (and continue to help) Mike and I show our kids Jesus. And today, I know that they are beginning to build stories with more amazing educators and friends who will not only teach them subjects, but will also help them to build hearts that are turned toward the love of God.
And I am so grateful!
Today I stand amazed at how God can use a book about Nehemiah to help me understand my role as a Mom. Today I am grateful that God is building stories into my life and the lives of my kids that will help us to know him better, love him more and rejoice in his faithfulness.
Please be with all the students, parents, teachers, coaches and other school staff who are beginning this trek down the road of the 2015-16 school year. Help each of them to sense your calling on their hearts and guide them to the parts of the wall you have set aside for them to work on. Help them not to turn to the left or the right and choose to let comparison guide their lives. Instead, give them your ever-present help and voice that their hearts may be guided by your truth and love, today and always. We know the year will not be without struggle, so help us all to see your faithfulness in times of doubt and challenge. Help us to believe the the Truth of your word: that you are building stories into our lives that help us to know you better and love you more. Help us to see that the blessings and the obstacles are equally able to bring us closer to you and enable us to meet the needs of this hurting world.
Would you join me in lifting up this prayer? Today, while our kids are at school, seemingly away from our reach, we still have opportunity to be involved in their day through the intercession provided by prayer. We still have a place at the Wall. Hallelujah!
Her family and friends know her as, Jaci. She is the wife of a pastor, a mom of four, writing and communications education instructor, a visionary and an avid runner. As a firm believer in the power and effectiveness of the body of Christ united together to live out the Great Commission, she holds fast to this verse, "Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19). Of equal importance to her are these words, "...let us run with endurance the race that is set before us" (Hebrews 12:1).
Posts in the Run for Your Life, series: