Restoring the Lost Petal

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Stop Waiting For the Future, Now Should Be Your Best Days

I was given a copy of Glory Days from Family Christian for this review. All opinions are my own.

Your salvation was a moment of great significance. The day you were grafted into the Kingdom of God was not an end but a beginning. That moment was not the icing on the cake but the foundation of a spiritual rejuvenation that you should still be experiencing today. Once you accepted Christ you don’t just sit back and ride the train to Glory. You’re here. Right now, today for a reason and today shouldn’t look like yesterday and tomorrow shouldn’t look like today.

Can you have a thriving life on Earth

Just the other day an acquaintance on Facebook said something like this, “God isn’t a vending machine. We can name our request and after it drops out, claim it.”

I really had to think about that as I was in the middle of reading Glory Days, a new book by Max Lucado. The title could lead one to immediately think, name it, claim it.

But then I recalled many times in my life when the Lord has reminded me to stand firm on the promises He has given to me be them from the Bible or personal revelation during my prayer time.

As I searched the internet for commentary about the name it, claim it movement and all it entails I found some wild stories retold like one of a man who would claim a house as his and that his bank account was full yet he ended up all but homeless with a repossessed car. Or the sadder stories of people rejecting medical treatments claiming their healing by faith and their children dying as a result.

These things can leave a person wondering, how do we exercise our faith responsibly as to give God the glory and yet not follow blindly behind someone else’s flawed teachings? 

A Bit of Biblical Sense Please

I’m sure the world thought Noah was a fool, a nut case, an idiot and whatever out cultural demeaning names were about at that time. Had he exercise common sense he wouldn’t have built an ark at all. After all, who builds a boat when it isn’t raining?

Yet he heeded God’s voice and built anyway. He as sure of God’s commands about the boat that he built in faith no common sense. Now did he exercise common sense in the building of the boat? I can’t imagine it any other way. The Bible doesn’t say the boat miraculously appeared out of thin air. No, Noah had to construct the boat. The construction process took biblical common sense. His driving force was the word God gave him which lead to day to day, minute by  minute choices that reflected good sense based on what God told him. 

Genesis 6:22 tells us, “And Noah did all that the Lord commanded him.”  From selecting the trees to shutting the door, Noah had to mix common sense with God’s instruction.

When I talk about living our best life now, not riding the passivity train to Heaven, I’m not talking about naming and claiming random desires of the flesh. I’m talking about knowing the power we have as followers of Jesus, seeking His will for our lives and standing firm on those promises.

Name it, claim it had a bad rap – and I can see why. Claiming God’s promises has been abused by those in authority within the Church and it’s been negligently used by followers of Christ. It’s said to have New Age roots but living a prosperous life is not New Age. Sure, the New Age movement may be a verbalize and visualize school but remember, the Devil only counterfeits that which is real and of value. 

In the Wilderness or in the Promise Land

Since Wyatt has been in school, I readily admit I’ve had had a hard time adjusting. Life has gotten busier, not easier yet I feel unproductive and stretched in too many directions. Yet, it seems this is where the Lord has led us for this season. So now the choice is up to me. You can either live in the wilderness with doubt, wandering around waiting for a miracle to “fix” what you don’t like or, you can choose to press into what is ahead, fixing my eyes on what God has promised: That you can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

This doesn’t mean you fix your eyes on a new BMW because the neighbor got one. It doesn’t mean fixing your eyes on your friend’s marriage because yours seems dysfunctional. It means fixing your eyes on Jesus. It means not trying to fix your family but recognizing your shortcomings, giving them to God and allowing Him to work on them.

You can be patient. You can be more compassionate. You can make good financial decisions. The wilderness mentality looks at the physical situation while Promise Land people see in faith what God had said to be true.

As a personal budget coach, I have talked to hundreds of people, most of whom hate the debt they have and want free of it. They recognize the problem, which is just a sliver of the process. They can name it and claim it and maybe one day they’ll win the lottery or, they can apply biblical common sense to their lives and finances and achieve freedom from their debts. What can they claim? They can name and claim the promise that God will lead them into all truth. They can name and claim that they have a sound mind to make wise decisions. They can heed the Proverbs that tell us seeking wise counsel is a good practice.

It doesn’t matter what you used to or how you use to do it. What matters is that as a child of God you have His promises for your life now.

The Past Redeemed

Don't waste your failures

We all have a past. My past shaped the landscape of the early years of my marriage. Yours might hinder your parenting, shade your finances or control every move you make. It doesn’t have to be that way. Our past experiences, self-inflicted or not, are a chance to learn, grow and let God’s glory shine.

In Max Lucado’s book, Glory Days he walks through the book of Joshua and the experiences of the Israelites. Joshua believed in God’s promise, acted at His commands and walked into the Promise Land. Along the way, the people faced doubts, giants and a woman whose sex life makes my past look like a day at the park. The players of the game had shortcomings. Yet God used them.

why wait for heaven

We aren’t to ride the passenger train to Heaven nor are we to live in our past. We can and should see changes in our life. Changes that make us look more like Christ. After all, that is our job in these earth suits – being Christ’s ambassadors; a light in a dark world. Call it name it, claim it if want. I call it living in the fullness of all God’s glory gives us….here and forevermore.

Glory Days sheds light on life we are supposed to live. I love that Max gives real-life examples of people who have and have not unpacked in the here and now to live the life God planned for them. It’s not about fame, fortune or even spectacular health. It’s about knowing who God is and who you are a child of God.

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