LIVE UP God's Dream 2

If we want God's dreams, we got to LIVE UP.

To live up is to do life with the aim of moving on to a higher ground.

To live up is to intentionally be full of life despite circumstances or people pulling us down.

To live up is to come alive and remain alive in God's truth, His presence, His power.

To live up is to know and believe that our help only comes from above, that our blessings can only flow out from the good heart of God, and our very lives come from His own poured out life.

LIVE UP

L - Lean, Listen and Learn. God's dreams are exceptionally better than ours. They are greater, deeper, grander. But they can never be fulfilled apart from Him. We have to do His dreams His way. We have to live up to the dreams He has for us. Lean on Him. Humbly surrender. Listen to Him. We have to train ourselves to hear His voice and love His Word. Learn of Him. He is meek. He is lowly. We have to have the same attitude that Jesus has (Philippians 2:5).

I - Infuse Reality with Grace.  To live up to God's dreams for us, we have to examine whether we are living in reality or fantasy or illusion, and to understand that it is only our present condition, not our past, not even the future, that God can use to bless us. It is in reality, our today, that He moves. "Today, if only you would hear His voice, do not harden your hearts" (Psalm 95:7,8).

Living up to God's dreams for me...
However, for many of us, our reality is not what we call our ideal. It is not idyllic, and for some of us, may not even be comfortable. In short, we think, our reality is not the dream. We strive for perfection and fail. We struggle to love and care for other people, and in the struggling, we get discouraged. Oh, how we need grace. Grace for ourselves. Grace to give to others.

I'm a mother of three and with the chaos that I encounter in my home everyday, I sometimes wonder if I ever get to fulfill any dream with all the daily cycle of insane mornings, dirty socks, menus, and kids' birthdays. At times I think that I would be in a ward if not for God's grace. One can only handle enough stress without buckling under the pressure. But I have found that God's saving grace extends to every area, even to the minutest of details of my life.

Take for example any day that my fuse gets shorter as I try to keep the kids educated without messing the house up, and getting something ready for their little stomachs at the same time. I could easily let myself go without a thought of what the kids think. But I unintentionally find myself going inside my room and throw myself at the Lord's feet, crying and begging for Him to help me pull my tattered ends together back again. The kids knock on the door. A few minutes later, I emerge, calmer, stronger, more loving. The kids don't see the war underneath the skin. All they see is a smiling woman, gracious and loving towards them. One who talks to them, not shout. One who lets their accidental spills during mealtime pass by without a reprimand because she knows everyone can make a mistake like that. One who patiently teaches them to hold the spoon in a way that there would be less accidents.

And I'm grateful to God for such moments of grace.

To live God's dream is to realize that we are recepients of God's grace and to give that same grace generously. This points us to the greatest commandment: to love God with all our hearts. Second is, to love others similarly as we have received God's grace.

Being a recepient of God's grace means that having been loved by Him, we can love others without fear of rejection, fear of being judged or misunderstood, fear of being drained, devalued or dominated. We are free to love because God first loved us. We forgive because we were forgiven. We give, even of ourselves, because He gave all. We can care, even to the point of denying our very selves, because we know that our Heavenly Father will never leave us alone and will always take care of us. We are well taken cared of. We can be gracious to others, including ourselves, because God has been gracious to us.

Whatever is our reality, nothing is too tough or far or too impossible that God's grace can't flow through it. We must infuse every corner of our lives with His grace and we will find that we are living up (and loving it!) God's dreams for us. In our reality. In our present. God dreams that we live in His amazing grace today. Right now. His grace is sufficient for us. It is enough for our every situation, and condition, and needs right at this moment. "The Lord said, 'My grace is all you need'" (2 Corinthians 12:9, ERV).

If you haven't enjoyed the experience of God's grace in your life, it is not yet too late. Talk to God and believe that He gave His Son so you can have, not just this shadow of a life, but the eternal life He is offering to you. Let His grace cover your sins, your imperfections, your past. Let His grace fill you with new life. Let His grace use your reality to bless you.  Let Him infuse your life with all the blessings that fulfills His dreams in you.

V - Voice out Truth. To live up to God's dream, is to only have one reality--- the truth, rooted in His Word. God's Word has to be our only standard of absolute truth. All experiences and knowledge must be tested against the backdrop of heaven--- of who God is and what His will is.

Oftentimes, we heed to the voices in us and around us. Some are lies. Some may be true. To be sure, we need to test it against God's Word. After the Haiyan storm, without news of what happened to my family for three long agonizing days, and seeing only videos of my devastated beloved hometown, Tacloban, I hear whispers that God couldn't hear my prayers. And after finding out about my parents' disappearance, whispers that God doesn't care bombarded my waking moments. (And I was awake for most of the time as I couldn't sleep.)

I wonder if Joseph went through the same agony when he was thrown in that dark prison after steadfastly obeying God. He must have heard whispers of lies against God and His love for him. But thankfully, he dwelt on the truth about God. God loves him and has not forsaken him.

It is with the same deep gratitude to God that He has anchored me on His Word as the waves of uncertainty, fear and sorrow swept through me after the Haiyan storm. And as God has been with His servants of old, He has been with me during that painful process. Whatever I go through, works in me His purposes (Romans 7:28). His love abides (Romans 7:37-39). His mercy is great (Psalm 108:4).

And it was with certainty on God's wisdom, as opposed to my own feelings and other people's opinions, that I answered my child-survivor, Angelika, as she asked me why Jesus didn't answer her prayer. She prayed during the storm, "Lord, please stop this storm!" After asking God for His wisdom, I answered as absolute truth, that God does what is best for us, though we may not understand it in our own limited thinking. God answered my daughter's prayer by saving her in that storm. A five-year-old, who knows not how to swim, small and helpless, was able to survive the cruel elements of that day. And in God's saving, His power and glory is shown through the limitations and weakness of my daughter.

Our circumstances may be pretty grim just as the Jews were in Jeremiah's time, that they may even have thought that God had turned against them and abandoned them (Book of Jeremiah). I read this when I was waiting for news and received news of my parents going missing. Then I got to chapter 29. There is a 'but'. Verse 11, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." And God said further (verse 12), "Then you will call upon me, and you will go and pray unto me, and I will hear you," (verse 13) "And you will seek me, and find me, and when you search for me with all your heart," (verse 14) "And I will be found of you..." God hears, saves, despite of us. This is the truth.

Live up to God's dream by staying on His Word. Stay obedient, even if circumstances dictate otherwise. Stay steadfast, despite feelings and overwhelming opinions of others. Stay grounded on God's promises and His character of love, despite of hate... and grow in faith, hope and love as you stay. Voice out truth as you walk in the path of righteousness, in darkness and even in the valley of death. Voice it out to others. Voice it out to God. And let His Word come alive in your life, fulfilling His dreams in you.

Next post: LIVE UP God's dream 3. Yay! The last.




You may also like to read...

LIVE UP God's Dream 1
Living God's Dream

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