This has been a week of great anticipation for me! When you work on a project for several months and are finally standing at the moment when you reveal it to the world you should feel a tremendous amount of joy right? I’d be a liar if I said I was feeling super joyful at this moment. It is amazing how the moment you set your heart to go to a new place in the Lord everything seems to turn against you, to push you in the opposite direction from His will for your life. I determined I was going to live a life of joy, prayer and thankfulness and the last three months have me comparing my life to a poorly written country song.
I won’t go into the specifics, oh, no, that’s another live stream, blog or book. Needless to say, when you commit to encourage others to live a life of joy no matter what, you have to expect situations to come along that challenge you in that regard. I should have known better… I’m the one always preaching about dangerous prayers and if you pray for patience you won’t get patience, you’ll get situations that will force you to be patient. Why would praying for joy be any different?
It feels like the Lord is saying, you want joy on the journey no matter what and you want to share with others how to do it as well? Well then you better learn to have joy in every situation regardless of how you feel! You want to pray with power? Well I guess you need to experience more situations that cause you to drop to your knees… And you want to be thankful, well let me show you how blessed you truly are even in the midst of your current situations. The flood of trials, losses and setbacks that have hit this week, the week when I launch a new part of the dream the Lord gave me has been so overwhelming that I feel like I am groping in the dark. Lost in a crowd, blinded by the many obstacles that seem to obscure my view.
And then I came across this blog I wrote back in 2014…
Go Climb A Tree
I can’t see much right now. It’s one of those times in my life where it seems like I can’t see what the Lord is doing and my only choices are to trust and to worship. And it can be a challenge to trust and to worship when you feel isolated and shrouded in darkness. We are always taught to press through these times, forget about what’s going on and focus on the Lord and what He has done in the past. We pull out those platitudes that while true are quoted to placate us in times of trouble. The ones like, “God is never late, He’s always on time!” or “He did it before, He will do it again!” Like I said, true, but not always what you want to hear when you’re so crowded by troubles and issues that you can’t even see a glimpse of the hope that you know can and will deliver you.
At times like these, you just gotta climb a tree. I loved to climb trees when I was younger although I didn’t climb to many growing up in the Bronx. And I never went very high when I did because I was always afraid of heights. But when I did get a chance, I would clamber up as far as I dared to get a different perspective of the world below. So that’s what I’m going to do now, climb a tree.
In Luke 19, Verse 1-10 Zacchaeus the tax collector climbed a tree because he was too short to see Jesus through the crowd. Zacchaeus was so determined to see the Lord that he even ran ahead of the crowd and climbed the tree. And Jesus saw him in the tree, called him down by name and came to his home blessing him with his presence and with salvation. Zacchaeus’s entire life was changed because he climbed the tree. He changed his outlook on life and changed his actual behavior because he met Jesus when he climbed a tree.
Well, I can’t literally climb a tree and wait for Jesus to pass by. But what I can do is go higher and change my perspective about what is going on. I can believe that Jesus will see me when he passes by. Going higher simply means that no matter how I feel, I should worship more, I should trust more, I should read my word more, I should serve Him even more. I have to change my perspective and trust that at the end of this trial I will be changed. I am going to hang out up high so I can see Jesus when He passes by. And even more importantly because I’m hanging in a tree trying to get a glimpse of Him, I believe He will look up, call my name and my life will be changed forever.
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