“Lord help me to understand the call You have on my life. Take away any discouragement I may feel and replace it with joyful anticipation of what You are going to do through me. Use me as Your instrument to make a positive difference in the lives of those whom You put in my path.” Power of a Praying Woman, Stormie Omartian
Power of a Praying Woman, Stormie Omartian
Lord help me to understand the call… take away my discouragement… fill me with joyful anticipation… and make me a positive instrument. Words that stared me down upon my desk. That tiny desk flippy thing that I barely look at any more grabbed my attention. As I sat there glaring at it, I realized these words were a combination of many of my prayers lately.
I think we get to a place in our journey when we finally realize that our lives are not about self-gratification. At least pure joy isn’t. There is only one place we can anticipate a joy that will satiate our hunger and thirst to fulfillment. That joy is found in our participation in God’s call to our hearts’ deepest desire for relationship – in relationship with Him through prayer and His creation. Many of us may find great joy and peace in the presence of nature but most of us will find it in relationship with people.
When we interact with others, there is a great exchange of God’s presence. You may be aware or you may not.
God brings people into our lives for a moment, a season and a lifetime. Some of these relationships may bear pain, others a reminder of our purpose and some a companion to walk beside us. We experience each in its own unique way. Some teach us lessons, such as humility, patience and presence. Others show the impact of a simple gesture of love. No matter how big or how small, each has a purpose in understanding our call.
Thinking back through my own life, I look at the relationships that bore great pain in my life. God used these people as instruments in my life to bring forth the most impactful positive changes. I also crossed paths with many other people some who were in my life for a moment and others a season. Some taught me kindness and charity through simple gestures like a smile or fetching a jar that was too high for me to reach at the grocery store (yes short people appreciate this grand gesture). Others were listeners and guiders, pointing me to a deeper relationship with Christ.
The more I reflect on the words from the small flippy thing on my desk, I realized that it only takes a small act to create a large ripple. The Holy Spirit gives us little nudges throughout our day. It may be that feeling or little voice to pick up the bag of noodles that the little old lady dropped right next to you as you are getting pasta for your family’s dinner. Or the smile of understanding when you meet a mom with two screaming kiddos wanting candy or the cheaply made contraption that they strategically place at the checkout counter. Perhaps it’s the friend who calls late at night sobbing just needing someone to listen.
“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.”St Teresa of Calcutta
I remember years ago, I was at morning Mass. I was sobbing in the pew as I prayed for the soul of my grandmother and grandfather who had recently passed away. My family was celebrating their lives in Louisiana that day and I was in Texas unable to attend due to some other issues going on in my life. After Mass a lady I didn’t know, turned to me and simply asked if she could pray for me. This moment was a small gesture that had a great impact on me. She heard God call her to pour love into me through a simple offer of prayer. If life were social media, she would get a million hearts from me that day.
The enemy does everything in his power to discourage us. Tell us lies that we can’t make an impact, we can’t be God’s instrument. That we are too busy, in a hurry, aren’t good enough, can’t help so that we won’t respond to the nudges we feel or small voice we hear. Heck in some cases, he plays the drum in our ears so loud we can’t hear the Holy Spirit calling us.
Will we continue to let him keep us from hearing and following what God is calling us to in each moment of our lives? Will we allow him to trick us with his lies? Or will we allow God to tune His instrument being the light in the darkness?
One of my recent classmates described moments in our lives where God transforms us as fire flies lighting the darkness in our lives. I think we can say the same about people in our lives. Many will be like fire flies captured in our hearts, illuminating it so that we can see, feel, touch, hear and taste the presence of Christ in our lives.
I invite you to fine tune your day to hearing the whisper of the Holy Spirit, feeling His nudge to participate in the symphony God is calling you to impact positively in someone else’s life.
Lord, make me an instrument of Your love. May I be a fire fly in someone’s heart, lighting their darkness. May I await in joyful anticipation the things You will do through me today and tomorrow. Amen