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Be Sure to Take Something With You

Our little Raegan continues to keep us entertained and amazed at the things she does. In a few days she will be celebrating her third birthday, and it has been a life-changing three years for Gale and me as we have watched her grow and learn so much in such a short amount of time.

When she had her first birthday, we were all camping out together at our house with no electricity except for what we could get out of one generator that drank huge volumes of gasoline. Hurricane Michael had left us and our entire community in quite a mess, but Raegan had no idea that anything was amiss; she had no reason to worry as the rest of us took care of her needs. We could all benefit from worrying less and trusting God more; if a one year old has that kind of trust, we should too. I like what 1 Peter 5:7 directs us to do with the anxieties of life: “Cast all your anxiety on Him [God] because He cares for you” (New International Version).

Among the things that make us smile about Raegan is her desire to take things home with her from our house. It’s not that she sneaks things out of the house, but she usually makes it known that she is going to take something with her. And what she often chooses to take is the mostly unlikely of things. A few weeks ago she decided to take a chair home with her. Why she wanted to take a folding chair from our house to hers is beyond me, but I think the most bizarre thing she took with her was a rubber floor protector that had come from under the leg of our recliner. It was just a small square piece of rubber that didn’t do anything except keep the floor from getting scratched. But not only did she take it home, her mother found her sleeping with the thing in her bed! What attracted her to that? I am open to suggestions, but maybe it was just a reassurance to her since it came from Nana’s and Papa’s house.

If we only had that much desire to take something home with us when we leave church, it would be a life game changer. I do not mean taking church chairs from the sanctuary or rugs from the front foyer, or helping oneself to the offering plate as it is passed around, but taking spiritual truths home to reflect upon and apply to everyday life throughout the week. That same idea should be applied to our personal time with God at home. As we pray and read the Bible (and I hope you do so outside of church on Sundays!), it should be our goal to take something with us from that personal time with God that will nourish and enrich our spiritual lives and cause us to become more effective in our service for Him.

One of the great men of the Old Testament, Nehemiah, had a powerful and effective prayer life. When he realized a great need in Jerusalem, he turned to God in prayer for guidance and favor. As he prepared to approach the king to ask for permission to go to Jerusalem to rebuild its broken down walls his first priority was prayer: “Then I prayed to the God of Heaven” (Nehemiah 2:4). What did he take with him from that prayer? Boldness to approach the king: “And I answered the king” (v. 5). The result was that he was given the green light to go and do the work that so desperately needed to be done.

When you leave church and when you leave your place of personal time with God, be sure to take something with you. He wants you to take some boldness out into the harsh world that we live in and he wants you to take some encouragement and reassurance as you face each day. He wants you to take some fresh determination to achieve what He has called you to no matter how foreboding it might look through human eyes.