LEARN, LEAN, and LIVE!
Many of you don’t know that I recently suffered from 2 blood clots in my only working lung and for the last 2 weeks it has been doctor visit after doctor visit, phone calls with various trips to the drug store and other health care suppliers. However today I am fine ( thank you Jesus). I brought this up to say during all the visits and long moments waiting to conclude my reason for being there, God decided to show me something old in a new light. I couldn’t help but notice the dependence people actually have for each other when there is no other way. I saw tons of old people (and I can say that because I am one) depending on people to push their wheelchairs, I witnessed people holding onto others to keep from falling, there were children hanging onto parents to feel secure and I saw a couple where the man was caring for his wife and could barely get around himself. I ask God what He wanted me to do with or about seeing these things. Then I wondered how many were Jesus believers and had 2 Corinthians 4:16 (NLT), That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. It was then I realized, “hope always dwells where Jesus lives!!!”
Although every situation mentioned in these few examples sounds handpicked, they all randomly represent the exact same thing, every one of us has needed, needs now, or will need, someone to lean on. I’m reminded of the song recorded in April 1972 "Lean on Me" by singer-songwriter Bill Withers. It explains the perfect purpose for leaning and being leaned on. God gives us His order in which we are to lean then provides a bold warning in Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT), 5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Lean not on yourself, as we are highly unstable with all the fleshly trimmings. While waiting, God gave me the challenge to examine my understanding with an honest eye and I found it to be blind with desires and wants; crippled with pride and self-sufficiency; tainted with the past, and built on a foundation of flesh. I am in process of being restored to the truths and promises of God.
I have had a keen sense as to what God is doing in my life ever since that night beside the flagpole at Catawba Valley Medical Center. I had just finished a session of study (if you will) for out-patience addiction and was standing there smoking while waiting on the bus to take me home when God had me to turn around and look at all the windows representing beds with people. Then He hit me right between the eyes, with a light pole loaded with this thought, look at all those people who are up there fighting for their last breath, and you’re standing down here wasting yours. That stuck! I couldn’t explain it or drink enough for it to go away. It was gnawing at my soul, and messing with my mind, His words were actually haunting me. After a few months of this, I surrendered to His understanding, and He has meticulously moved me from one person, place, or thing, to another teaching me how to lean and learn. He gave me Psalm 62:1-2 (NLT), 1 I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him. 2 He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken. Lean on Him!
The hard part, I was warned about turned out to be the fun and exciting part for me, which is going where He leads and being a part of whatever He leads me into. FYI: Following Jesus is not a spectator sport, every follower is a player and must participate fully to receive the joy, peace, and excitement that is found in following Jesus. I love meeting people that God has lined up for me to enjoy and receive what He has given them for me. As my late Pastor Joe would say, “everyone you meet, knows someone or something that you don’t and the same holds true for you.” It’s true, I watched him prove it for 25 years and learned to love it myself. I have found in my life, if I am busy following the path Jesus has for me, I have to lean on Him more for strength than problems or situations. He is amazing at opening doors to people that are out of our reach, because He has left something with them that I need. This can only be if we believe and operate in John 15:5 (NLT), “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Connected all things are possible after we learn to lean on Him to live!
Father, my prayer this week is Hebrews 10:24-25 (NLT), 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near. Lord, help us to get out of our understanding and realize through yours that this passage is your heart for your people. May each of us find little reminders as we go through each day to draw you to our surface so others may get a glimpse of your love and compassion for them. It is my desire Lord, for each of us to be a brightly lit billboard for your kingdom that we may be someone’s leaning post. May everything we do come from learning of and leaning on, you, your word, and your family. Bless us Lord that we may be pleasing to you, in our representation of you. We lean on you, that others may lean on us. Amen
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!