Graze: To feed on growing grasses.

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul.

-Ps. 23:1-6

Growing up on a farm, I used to watch the cows, sheep & horses graze in the pasture. Each morning we would open the gate to the barnyard and they knew there was freedom from that small pen they were in. They also knew there was nice green grass beyond the barnyard. Once the gate was open, look out because those animals wanted to get where the tall, green grass grew – the pasture! They would take off sometimes even running up the old fenced lane that went up over the hill through the cornfield to the lush green pasture on the other side of the farm. There they would graze for a while then lay down and rest for a while then graze some more. They did this all day long. Come evening we would go over to the pasture’s edge and call the cows – 'come boss, 'come boss. They would gather at the pasture gate. Sometimes we would have to go round up a few stragglers and when all were accounted for, we’d open the lane gate and back over the hill they would go to the barnyard for the night. The next morning was the same routine, day after day.
What a life, huh?!

Oh that we could just graze and rest in shady green pastures all day long! But we can rest and graze in God’s green pastures and restore our souls . . . The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. (Ps. 23:1) I believe God wants us to slow down and “rest” and “graze” and “feed” on His Word. Life throws so many things our way and we are so busy – busy doing good things. But are we running on empty a good share of the time? Are we feeling stretched to extreme? Are we content with who we are in God’s divine providence? Slow down and take some time to just leisurely graze, rest a while, then graze and feed on the good things God has provided for you. Graze, rest, and enjoy the “shady green pastures” of God’s abundant love, grace, and mercy.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Morning Motivation

When I woke up this morning lying in bed,
I was asking myself;
What are some of the secrets of success in life?
I found the answer right there, in my very room.

The fan said . . . Be cool.
The ceiling said . . . Aim high.
The window said . . . See the world.
The clock said . . . Every minute is precious.
The mirror said . . . Reflect before you act.
The calendar said . . . Be up-to-date.
The door said . . . Push hard for your goals.
And not to be forgotten . . . The carpet said . . .
        . . . Kneel down and pray.

• Carry a Heart that Never Hates.
• Carry a Smile that Never Fades.
• Carry a Touch that Never Hurts.

Whoever, wrote the above article has certainly learned the secret of looking at life & everything in it & really seeing it as it is! I am learning to look at everything in my life - seeing more meaning, even in the little things, than meets the eye. What’s this all about . . . I sometimes ask myself. Sometimes it is so obvious & I see it right away – a no-brainer! But sometimes, I have to look long & hard to see what it is really all about. What is God trying to show me? How is He trying to motivate me to see & understand His purpose & plan? Maybe it is through other people, other things, through a simple smile, a tear, a sunset, a flat tire, a fan, clock, mirror, etc. Our “perspective” on things, people, problems, solutions, heartache, blessings, etc. makes all the difference in the world. All of these things in life can motivate me to move on up the “mountain of life” or they can motivate me to stay where I am comfortable down in the “valley of life”. It is nice to be “comfortable” – it is so much easier! I don’t have to think or even exert much effort. I can slough-off & be lazy! Kind of like a “no-brainer lifestyle". I can just go through my everyday routine day after day without much thought or even much planning. (Ho-Hum!! Twiddle-Dee!!!) But I guess I’d rather be motivated to move on, to step it up, to cross the bridge, to graze in the plush, green pastures of God’s grace & mercy & see the amazing things God is doing all around me!

I would rather get up in the morning & look at the fan and be cool no matter what my situation or where my station in life takes me; to see the ceiling & “aim high” – stretching myself to look & see beyond myself; to look at the clock & realize that “every minute really is precious” – more precious than I can ever realize; to look in the mirror & “reflect before I react”- to think before I pass judgment or speak – & realize I need to look beyond the outer shell that I see before me; to look at my calendar & be “where” I am suppose to be for that particular minute in time; to look at the door & realize that sometimes I may have to “push really hard” to reach my goals & to realize that it is possible; & most important of all to look at the floor & know that my time with God in prayer is the absolute most important thing I can ever do to be motivated for my day.

What motivates you? Is it the things that only money can buy that will be here today & gone tomorrow or is it things that will live on forever in our hearts and minds? What are the important things in life that we should be motivated towards? Sometimes my motivation waivers but its then that I ask God to show me something “new” – to give me a “glimpse” of someone or something that will encourage & motivate me to reach out & see things in His perspective, in His time, & in His way.

Ecc 3:1-11 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven” . . .


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