I I’m writing this shortly after spending three days with a bunch of monks. I was the first of many to come who will stay in the newly dedicated spiritual retreat center. Starting the following week www.MepkinAbbey.org a Monastery located in Moncks Corner, SC will be booked for the next three months solid. Obviously, you don’t have to be a monk to plan a retreat. Men or women are allowed. There you will feel miles away from normal, everyday, busy life. No television, no internet, no demands, and no crowds. Many areas don’t even allow conversation. You have provided for you a nice room with a huge open window view, meals, and many beautiful places to meet quietly with God. This was my third time in the last few years to stay on the property. Here are some key things I took home from this experience.
1. God gave me a warning that I’m At least Halfway Done. Statistics prove and scripture says I will be very blessed to live 80 years on this earth. I don’t plan on wasting any of my remaining years or days ahead. I took some much needed time to make sure my life was in proper perspective. Periodic pit stops are much needed to renew my strength, rekindle my faith, and refocus my life. Luke 5:16 says, “Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
2. God gave me a Renewed Perspective. LIFE IS A DIVINE JOURNEY. We don’t orchestrate it, but we are called to surrender and trust God our creator who has pre-ordained all the days of our lives. It is not my job to figure everything out or question God’s divine plans. One day I will look back and see how God was building a masterpiece. Until I reach the end of this life I will take up my cross daily and follow Christ. Romans 12:2 “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
3. God gave me a New World Order. God wrote it deep in my heart that this must always be the order of my life here on this earth.
(A) FAITH – My faith life will always impact every area of my life. My marriage, my kids, and all I come in contact will be impacted by my healthy or unhealthy relationship with God. When things aren’t right with God, nothing is right in my life. I must stay clean and close to God’s heart. Listening for His voice and obeying His commands. This will lead to health in all other areas of my life.
John 15:5 “Jesus says, I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
(B) FAMILY– Scripture is very clear to us all that anyone who does seek to love and care for his own family, his religion is worthless. My family will not get leftovers anymore as I will fight daily to keep things in proper order. Before I know it my kids will be all grown up with families of their own. My prayer is that I teach them how to treat a lady and how to love & lead a family. These guys are my first priority in ministry and I pray that I never forget it. Preachers & Believers listen up to these words.
1 Timothy 3:5 “If anyone does not know to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church.”
1 Timothy 5:8 “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worth than an unbeliever.
(C) SERVICE – With the moments I have, the breaths God gives, and the days I have left on this earth I plan to be a living sacrifice. I can’t worry about what is going on around me, but I can seek to be a blessing to the world around me. It doesn’t matter where I am or what job I have at the time. I will choose to love deeply, go the extra mile, and give God all the glory for all He has done in my life.
Matthew 20:28 “Jesus, the Son of Man did come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
LOOKING FOR A CHURCH HOME? Join me at www.RefugeChurch.org starting on September 15th at 6p.m. We begin a brand new series of messages entitled “Finding Peace”. We’ll talk about how peace can be found at home, at work, and even in this crazy, uncertain world.