Thank you for those of you who had prayed for me regarding this change and my continued request for a reasonable accommodation for my managers to allow me to work, not exceeding 8 hours per shift. Please keep me in your prayers and thank you from my heart for remembering.
When it comes to worries, it’s still not easy to not somehow get a little anxious when faced with a new challenge. My priority was always to care for my family as I had enjoyed being off on weekdays. I was able to keep the house, cook more nutritious meals, prepare lunches for my husband and son, and just be there to drop off or pick up my child to and from school. But now, things will change. Priorities will definitely change.
As I had a quiet time with the Lord tonight after dinner, I had been at peace about this change since the last few days. I know that everything has a purpose in Him. As I consulted Him about this change, He reminded me how pressures, demands, or tasks can assault our schedules. Somehow, we tend to run out of energy and time in the long run. Until there is little to give from our part. Everything is a rush! And the truth is….we often leave behind those priorities that truly matter the most.
I have been working weekend nights enjoying this schedule and same agenda for many years. And now with this change, it’s actually awesome that the Lord is bringing me back to reflect on what should matter the most in my heart. Being off on the weekends now, I can truly give priorities to Him as number 1 and secondly, I will actually enjoy my time more with my family as my husband is always off on the weekends. How often I talked about the Lord in my previous posts, and yet I somehow put Him and categorized Him as one of my “to-do” lists.
God showed me the short book of Haggai to reflect more about Him. Centuries ago, Haggai, the prophet, challenged God’s people to set and do the right priorities. The people of Judah were exiled to Babylon and Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed. Under Cyrus, the king of Persia, the Jews were allowed to return to Judah and rebuild their Temple.
Through Haggai, the Lord said, “Why are you living in luxurious houses while my house lies in ruins? This is what the Lord Almighty says: Consider how things are going for you! You have planted much but harvested little. You have food to eat, but not enough to fill you up. You have wine to drink, but not enough to satisfy your thirst. You have clothing to wear, but not enough to keep you warm. Your wages disappear as though you were putting them in pockets filled with holes!” – Haggai 1:6 [LAB]
How true that Haggai’s message still applies for us today! We put our energies into those things that do not give back any value to us. But if we put God first, He provides for all of our needs and sometimes, it’s more than we can handle.
“Take courage and work, for I am with you, says the Lord Almighty.” Haggai 2:4
God is truly with us with that wonderful promise!
As this new schedule begins, I know I must set my priorities on returning to the Lord. Putting Him number 1 in my life. It’s time to work. It’s time to not allow these changes bother me, but it’s time for me to be the one to make changes. At home. At my workplace. With church family. With those I meet anywhere. Even through this blog land. God wants to change the world. Through me. Through you.
It's time to rebuild this temple [my heart] and make it beautiful by making His presence known.
The Attacker (5/15/09)
The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies.
Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.
Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.
All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.
When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.
The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.
When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himseld and ended up injuring his attacker severely.
[Source: Life Application Bible]:
We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.
“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14
Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].
Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.
Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.
Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].