Keeping Jesus center stage

1964911_622824764457792_383708099_nCircumstances can turn on a dime.  One minute you can be at the top of your game and the next feeling lost and confused. I see it in the lives of so many biblical characters as well as in my own life.

These past few weeks have held many highs and lows for me. Some of the amazing things were:

  • The opportunity to go to Nashville and work with an amazing team of editors, producers, camera and sound technicians, and teach from the book of Jeremiah some of the truths God has been working out in my life.
  • The support of great friends and family who prayed fervently and others who traveled long distances to come and smile at me in the studio audience.
  • Hearing my 13 year old daughter who is losing her hair give her testimony in church about her struggle with alopecia and asking for prayer.

Some of the tough things included:

  • Exhaustion and anxiety in preparing to do and say all God wants to communicate through me.
  • Texts from my daughter while I was away about new patches of hair-loss and aching to be with her.
  • Carrying burdens of close friends and family battling cancer, job loss, and pain. They often tug at the corners of my mind with all they are enduring.

As I’ve been reading through Job over the past month, I see Job experiencing some very significant highs and lows.  At one point, his high list looked something like this from Job 29: 

  • God’s friendship was felt in my home. (4)
  • My children were around me.  (5)
  • I have lots of cows and olive oil. (6) (i.e. I was rich.)
  • I was an honored leader (7)
  • People praised me and spoke well of me. (11)
  • Everyone respected my counsel. (22)
  • My look of approval was precious to people. (24)

Now his low list is too long to catalog, but some of his problems included:

  • I cry out, ‘Help!’ but no one answers me. (19:7)
  • My relatives stay far away, and my friends have turned against me. (19:13)
  • My breath is repulsive to my wife. I am rejected by my own family. (19:17)
  • I have been reduced to skin and bones and have escaped death by the skin of my teeth. (19:20)
  • God has made me sick at heart. (23:16)
  • Darkness is all around me. (23:17)

Job certainly questioned God about his highs and lows.  However, here are some lessons we can learn from him.

  • He spent more time thinking about God and talking to Him then slamming the fair weather friends who attacked him.
  • He responded humbly to God when God did speak to him and remind Job of His Sovereignty.
  • He kept God at the center stage in His life whether it was praising and sacrificing to Him during his high time, or working through his questions during his low times.

So how about you?  Are you in the high time of your life? Are you giving Jesus center stage and giving Him glory for the blessings and respect you are currently experiencing.

Or are you in the lows… battling physical illness, financial losses, or the loss of respect from your family and friends? Even in these times, God wants us to keep our focus on Him and work through our questions and ultimately trust in His Sovereignty.

As I walk through my own highs and lows this week, month and year ahead, I want to give Jesus center stage.  I pray you will too!

Colossians 1:18 “He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything.”

 

 

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