During the past few weeks, I have frequently heard the comment, regarding our locked down situation, as that “we are all in the same boat”. To begin with I agreed and repeated it several times myself. Then I read in one commentary that we are actually not in the same boat, “we are in the same storm”.
That second statement really resonated with me and gave me food for thought. As I began to look at my situation and varying circumstances in the lives of family and friends, I acknowledged our boats are very different. But, we are in the same storm and I know for sure that God will be speaking to us all in our individual circumstances.
For some of us there may be life changing decisions to make. For others it could be considering how we live. What we spend our money on, where we invest our time, the pace of life we keep up week by week and the things we give priority to. Or it could be that God is touching into somethings in our lives which restrict us from living in freedom, a habit, mind-set or stronghold. The list is probably endless.
Over the past weeks we have seen many good and positives examples of human courage, strength and community spirit. Stories and evidence of ways in which lockdown has altered our lives and it has personally prompted me to seriously review the way I live.
Please don’t misunderstand me at this point…I fully appreciate that for many people and families Covid 19 and lockdown has presented huge challenges, pressures and for some, great losses and there is a deep longing for things to return to normal. But it also presents us with a unique moment in time to pause and consider how we ‘do life’. I personally do not just want to go back ‘normal life’.
Having had time and space. I thank God that I have recognised that I need to look, listen, hear and understand His voice above all others. I don’t want to miss one word He speaks and pray God will quiet all our hearts that we may hear His still small voice, speaking clearly and directly into our lives.
Hebrews 3 v 13 tells us to ‘encourage one another daily’. Another version says ‘you must warn each other every day, while it is still today, so that none of us will be deceived’. When Jesus was speaking to the crowds in the parable of the sower, He said that some people would be seeing but not perceiving…hearing, but not understanding. (Matt 13)
What a tremendous pity it would be if we somehow fail to recognise the times we are in and don’t make the most of this opportunity. We need to be living not as unwise, but as wise. (Eph 5 v 15)
Paul taught that God has determined the times set for man and the exact places where they should live and that He did this so that men would seek Him and reach out and find Him, even though He is not far from each one of us. Is this a wake-up call folks??
God is in my boat with me and in your boat with you. He is right with us, right now, and He is speaking. Ephesians 5 v 14 says “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead”. This verse was written to the Christians in Ephesus, not to unsaved, but to the saved.
Jesus explained to His disciples, in the parable of the sower that there are four types of hearts. Hard hearts, hollow hearts, half hearts and whole hearts. I pray for myself and for all of you that we will be those with Whole Hearts and that our response, in this season, will be to pick up the oars in our boats and begin to row.
My heart felt desire is that not one of us would fail to recognise the days we are in and the voice of our Father as He speaks to us, His children.
No one ‘drifts’ to heaven. We have to row our boats, all the way home.
The apostle Paul said “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”
I pray we would follow his great example.
– Lyn Parkes