The Lampstand, August 2016~Julie
“This time has been set apart and the Spirit says, ‘I will meet you here.’” Linda Edwards shared these words with us as she opened up in leading worship for our August gathering. We gathered with a small group (but an abundance of children!), and Linda explained that in the Jewish watches of the night, 6-9 pm is set as the first watch of the night. Since we are meeting from 6-9, she encouraged us that the Lord is meeting with us as we set ourselves to seek Him in the first watch.
I was so overwhelmed with gratitude again for all of the various worship leaders who have come and shared their hearts with us. It was like as Linda played and sang, I saw that each person or group who have come have their own “flavor.” And, that the Lord loves all of these unique expressions of worship. I believe it is truly delightful to Him when we bring an offering of praise and adoration. And, we certainly don’t want to try to be like someone else in our outpouring of love to Him! We want our worship to flow from our hearts in the unique way that He has designed each of us.
What a blessing to be part of any group that is lifting up the name of Jesus! These times in our home have truly been a gift.
Matthew asked me to share at this meeting about stability. This is a critical aspect of having oil in that we want to have a stable, steady flame that won’t go out when winds of challenge blow. Stability has been a word that keeps coming to mind lately. So many things in the world are shaking and so unstable, and it has been the kindness of the Lord to keep bringing the word stability to mind and to remind me that He can give me stability no matter the circumstances around me.
We talked about what stability is NOT; it is not being stuck or an unwillingness to grow or change.
We talked about what stability is: steadfastness, faithfulness, perseverance, endurance, confidence, courage, resolve. The input from the group was great: firm, balance, focus, strong, trust, consistent, constant, security, deep roots, being still, rock.
We talked about the need for it in so many different areas of our lives: our faith, our minds, our hearts, our decisions.
So where do we find stability? We were created with a deep desire for it, and there are a lot of places we CANNOT find it. For example, our culture, our friends, our families, even within ourselves. These might be sources of stability for us at times, but ultimately they can shift or change or let us down.
What truly stabilizes us? Jesus, His presence, the Spirit at work in us. One KEY to stability is REMEMBERING. When we remember God’s steadfast nature and His inability to change, for the worse or for the better, then we are encouraged. We looked at Psalm 77 and how God renewed the strength of His people as they remembered His great works. Hebrews 10 is another passage that highlights the unwavering confidence we can have through what Christ has accomplished on the cross.
How then do we access the stability we need?
We followed up the teaching time with a practical exercise. We took about 15 minutes while Linda played quietly to walk through topics and Scriptures that would help us recall God’s steadfastness. We repented for any lack of trust or unbelief in His faithfulness and asked for renewed grace to remain steady in Him.
What a blessing to hear what God shared among us as we took this time to be still. We prayed for each person to be encouraged in stability in the Lord.
We are so grateful that the Lord really is the stability of our times, and that He is a constant source of strength and “fuel” for our hearts to keep us shining brightly in dark times.
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