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Friday, March 28, 2014

Obedience Leads to Clarity {20 of 40 Stories}

Click here for the backstory.
A bit from my journal...
1 John 5:4: For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith.

I know from 2 Peter 1:5-11 that the path to faith is...

Love for Everyone  
which enhances
Brotherly Love  
which enhances
Godliness
which enhances
Patient Endurance
which enhances
Self-Control
which enhances
Knowledge
which enhances
Moral Excellence  
which enhances
FAITH.

If I'm going to have faith, it begins with loving people. This Radical Faith I'm after, it starts with loving more.

1 Corinthians 13:2 -- If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God's secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn't love others, I would be nothing.

*****

I collected these thoughts in the first few weeks of 2014. Then I wrote this question in my notebook: What am I made to do?

The answer both surprised and comforted me --
{Be a SOUL-Nourisher.}

I love this and am wondering how it would work as a tagline on a business card:
Ruth Ayres, Soul-Nourisher

What does a SOUL-Nourisher do? you may ask. I know the answer because I made a list back in January.
A Soul-Nourisher
Encourages
Inspires
Supports
Challenges
Loves

At the time I closed my notebook and sat for a moment, wishing I could be more Soul-Nourisher and less soul-drainer. I realized this inkling of a dream wasn't so much about what I do, but about being obedient to the One who created souls. This obedience rests on faith, not on a goal or a dream.

I felt completely clueless about what I was supposed to do.Then I realized, I don't have to know where I'm going to know how to be obedient. Obedience is about the state of heart, not about the steps of a journey to get to a dream.

For the past three months I've been in training in order to learn to obey wholeheartedly and immediately. I've learned rapid obedience. I've learned to hold on to my convictions even when it's hard. I've learned to obey when I don't wanna. (I'm sorry for the whine.) It hasn't been easy and it is uncomfortable.

It is also necessary. I need to be the kind of person God can trust. Of course this is going to be a lifetime training as I become the person I was created to be.

But I'm happy to find myself in a place where the obedience has led to clarity. I'm standing where I'm able to see a little bit around the bend in the road. I see how it might be true, I might be able to be more SOUL-Nourisher.

Join me tomorrow for CELEBRATE This Week as I share a new dream.