Journal Entry ~ 09/20/17

19 Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out,
20 that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, - Acts 3:19-20

I know so many people in my life who are struggling to get out from under their burdens, their schedules, their responsibilities long enough to experience the times of refreshing. Life can overwhelm you with all it can throw at you at one time - it can be hard to catch your breath some days. You have to know the enemy seeks to destroy us. He knows our weakness, and as ruler of this world, he is quite capable of throwing anything at us that will keep us from our time with Him. That's his goal. The enemy will take over our priority list in such a subtle way that we don't even notice we're handing it over. I shudder to think about all the times I've done this in my life. As a busy person who often takes on way more than I should at any given time, I have been caught in this trap countless times in my life. My 'to do' list grows, and time with Him shrinks. The challenge for me is that the things on my 'to do' list are always of great value or importance, and generally not even for me.  I am always serving and working for other people, so my list frequently fills up with things I've committed or want to do for other people. There are very few things that make it on to my list for me - and that's where the enemy always gets me. Or my list fills with work or family responsibilities - very rarely does my list full with things for me.  The problem with this is that it's super easy to justify everything on my list as important. But I have to get this done, this person needs me, I'd be in trouble if I don't take care of this...and herein lies one of my greatest sin-confess-repeat cycles. My life is a story of finding my value and my identity in the things of this world, or the things on that to do list, my job, my family, my education, and God knocking me down and reprioritizing that list for me. I'd confess, I'd prioritize Him again for awhile, then slowly the enemy would creep back in and take over again. But I wasn't finding freedom from the cycle because I wasn't repenting. 

The times of refreshing are there for us to grab a hold of if we just let Him in. I'm so thankful for this diagnosis for allowing me to see so much more of the bigger picture. Nothing comes before my God. Nothing. I know my God would never create or allow me to walk in to a schedule that doesn't allow for plenty of time with Him.  God doesn't do that - the enemy does. The thing is God constantly allows us to walk in to situations where we place Him before the priorities of this world because He wants to grow our faith Choose Him. Repent and choose Him, every time. That's when you will experience the times of refreshing. 

Press on ~ you are loved 💗

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