Friday, May 30, 2014

Repurposed Christians

Several years ago a friend of my husband’s gave us a small charcoal barbecue grill.  It had been ages since we had one like this, because we switched to gas.  His friend was going to throw it out since they replaced it with a larger one, but decided to give it to us.

The hand-me-down grill had seen some serious barbecuing, and its days for working as it was intended only lasted one season.  No longer using it for food we started burning bits of mail with personal information.  I loved the idea that we could recycle the ashes into the garden and re-purpose the grill.

Eventually there was a big hole in the bottom so we couldn’t use it for burning any more.  Now what?  Was it time to give it the old heave-ho?  Can something outlive its purpose?

Welcome new friends this week from:

New on DFB –Venezuela; Estonia; Lebanon; Cayman Islands; Jamaica; Brunei; Latvia; Morocco; Nigeria; Belgium; Singapore; Brazil; Sweden; Poland; Malaysia; Kenya; Japan.

USA: Thank you faithful ones.

God has sent us visits from so many countries.  What a blessing to meet you and share this Inner Journey together on Daily Favor.  (DFB - Daily Favor Blog)

Feel free to leave your comments or prayer requests.  I would love to hear from you and how Daily Favor has worked in your life.

You have made a difference by sharing this challenge with others. Thank you so much for your faithfulness.

Don’t miss out on this week’s challenge (below).  Q & A

Re-purposed Grill Flower Box
By now I think you are getting a good idea of what I’m like and know I didn’t chuck the old worn out grill, but actually turned it into something it wasn’t made for originally. 

Thinking about this week’s challenge the Lord reminded me of an area I had a hard time dealing with in the past…
“What good am I anymore if my purpose in life has changed?”

When I first started to write I really wanted to call this “Recycled Christians”, but didn’t think it would go over big.  What do you think?  It’s sort of how I feel at times and a feeling I had to deal with if God was to use me for His glory.

My life was all planned out – by me.  I was doing what I wanted teaching special needs children, lived in a great home, traveled, family was nearby, had a good income and basically did whatever I felt like that fell in the boundaries of  a “good” Christian.  My life had purpose … you could say it was a “purpose driven life” so to speak, where I was extremely blessed and favored by God doing wonderful things for Him.  So why did it have to change?

I Didn't Expect This

Have you ever felt like everything you worked for was for nothing?  Maybe you were employed at the same place for years when they decided to let you go by downsizing. 
What about those relationships that you thought would last a life time and poof, it was over?  Did you ever reach a dream only to have it snatched away from you?  I’ve got something to say on those situations: 

The bad thing about life is that it changes!

The good thing about life is that it changes!

Going over my notes I got a revelation about myself and all believers.  What God showed me concerning our grill is that it was a vessel for whatever I needed and never stopped being a vessel.  The only thing that changed was its purpose, and that was because I decided to change its use.  Vessels get repurposed according to the need.

God revealed to me that He moves people (His vessels) for His purpose.  We don’t always have to be broken to be used if we are already in His will.  Sometimes He moves us when we are no longer needed in certain areas or positions.   What looks like a bad change is in reality a good change only we haven’t recognized it as such.

This was made perfectly clear to us when we moved to a new neighborhood.  The old location we fed 65-120 people every week, but where we are now food programs aren’t an issue.  Our service of feeding people changed and we became vessels God could use for feeding rescue animals with special needs.

Now that might seem strange and not a godly thing, but it fell right into place.  I can’t remember a time when we haven’t fed people and it seemed natural to make meals.  What you don’t know is that God knew the desires of my husband’s heart. 

Faithfulness Brings Favor 

Since childhood he wanted to become a veterinarian, but was never given the opportunity to go to college for it.  Now he is in position to work with various clinics and animals, discovering a world he thought was out of reach to him. 

Although our life is extremely different, it’s never dull and we are exposed to things that we wouldn’t have experienced if we stayed in the same place and remained unchanged.

Seriously, how many of us have gotten the opportunity to work on an alligator, put an IV in a cat, create an instrument for the doctor in surgery or hold a tumor from a dog?  My husband has.  There are some things I really don’t need to know the details of, you know what I mean?

My husband is still a vessel God uses, but he has been re-purposed and re-positioned to be in a place the Lord needs him.  I didn’t understand this at first, but it wasn’t long before I realized why God moved my husband into a new area using the same skills he had.

Allowing God to re-purpose our lives for His use opened doors for me as well in teaching far beyond a regular classroom into college levels and in travel.  With my new vessel assignment God has allowed me to pursue other interests that I didn’t have time for working in the school systems. 

Do people outlive their purpose?  Absolutely not, but they can be re-purposed for something even more exciting if they allow God to use them for His plan. 

Maybe your life has changed dramatically and you can’t find a reason or purpose for being on Earth, let me remind you of what God has said in Genesis 1:31 (NLT).

 “Then God looked over all He had made (including you & me),
and saw that it was very good! (How good? Very good.)”

When God makes a vessel for His use, He may redesign, remold, rebuild, recast, recycle or re-purpose it, but you can be sure it’s never discarded or destroyed.  As long as the vessel is willing to remain a vessel, there is always a purpose for its existence. 

“… and the vessel that He made of clay was marred in the hand of the Potter; so He made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the Potter to make.”(Jeremiah 18:4 NKJV)

So maybe we’re going through a bit of reshaping, that’s OK.  Think of it as a spiritual makeover with God footing the bill.  The “newer” vessel is going to be better than the last, do greater things and be more effective.

Vessels of Honor

On this part of our journey back to Jesus we need to take a look at the vessel God wants to use for His glory and to fulfill His promise of giving us a good end.  

“Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity (sin).  But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 

Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter (dishonor), he will be a vessel of honor, sanctified and useful for the Master (Jesus), prepared for every good work.” (2 Timothy 2: 19-21 NKJV)

When I came to terms with God re-purposing me so He could still use this vessel, I spent most of my time in His Word and prayer.  There really wasn’t much else to do without furniture, television, car or computer.  In the beginning it was a house with walls and a yard … not much to keep one occupied.

That “down time” or what some may say “small beginnings” was exactly what I needed.  It allowed me to develop skills I had, apply them to new ways changing me into a versatile vessel that could be used in so many more areas along my journey.  This is where God is leading us.

 “Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work.” (Titus 3:1 NKJV)

Remember the envelope from step 1 in last week’s challenge where you had to list things that changed your life that you couldn’t let go or forget?  No, don’t go get it.  You know what it says.  Anyway, you gave it to God so no peeking.

Looking back on those things, pick the one that really changed your life.  You no longer have that burden, but are letting God repurpose it for your good.  What has the Lord done since that time to turn the situation around?  If you don’t see anything happening it’s time to resubmit the vessel!

Challenge of the Week:
Re-purposed into Vessels of Honor

Last week we learned that we needed to let go of some things in our past so God could do something in our present and future. (See last week's challenge.)  

Our challenge this week is to identify the things that may seem to be bad situations and let God re-purpose them making us vessels of honor He can use for every good work.  
We’re going to do 2 things to accomplish this task in one week.

1) Become a prayer vessel throughout our study time.

2) Re-purpose our vessel by volunteering. 

Need some examples?  Let suppose you lost your job and had to go on government assistance. It’s embarrassing, your pride is hurt and you don’t want anyone to know.

Prayer Vessel: How can God use this situation for good so that you become a vessel of honor?  This is a great opportunity to be humbled giving insight and compassion for something you never understood.  Instead of taking this personally, take it globally praying Matthew 6:9-13 for others in the same situation.
Re-purpose Vessel: Volunteer your skills.  Remember that vessels get re-purposed according to other people’s needs, not our own. 

If you were in sales you know how to deal with people.  Use those people skills for an event or program in your community such as fundraisers. 

Are you a builder or contractor?  Commit one day to making minor repairs for seniors or widows housing needs.  Fix a sign for someone, nail something back in place, change a light bulb … whatever it takes to get you out of the house and take your mind off of the problem.  

Broken relationship? Build one for someone else by introducing people of like interests. A child without grandparents or friends can be matched with people who have lost loved ones.

If you are a teacher who didn’t get asked back for next year, don’t volunteer to teach something around the same age level or subject you taught.  Use those talents for age levels higher or much lower and not for school related things. 

By seeking God and allowing Him to re-purpose your life, you will be overwhelmed by the favor He shows you because of your submissive spirit.

Heavenly Father,

Make me a Vessel of Honor for You.
Mold me so I become all that You want me to be.
Manifest the patience of the Holy Spirit in me,
Help me so that I’ll stay and not run.
I submit my vessel; finish the work that You started in me...
Please click on the music video links of the week to encourage your faith.

 Until next time, become a vessel God can favor.

What's New this Week:  Go Green – Recycle What You Have 

Maybe you don’t know the Living God that I know, but would like to have this kind of favor in your life also.  Click on the above tab “Tell Me About Jesus” for more information on becoming a child of the Savior. 

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Scripture reference was taken from the New King James Bible Version provide by Bible Gateway.
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