Peace of My Heart

An encouraging voice to drown out the noise

~What is the assignment?~ January 11, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — Valerie Rutledge @ 8:31 am
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I’ve been homeschooling the kiddos for just about a month and half. While I believe we are finally beginning to navigate the new waters, every single day, Emma will inevitably ask me “what am I supposed to do?”

Each day I write out their assignments for every subject along with any special instruction needed.  I try to make it so they’re able to be self sufficient, learning to work at their own pace and be held accountable for their class schedule. Each time Emma asks the question that I know is coming, my response is always, “what is the assignment?” She hates that, by the way. She’d much rather I walked over and held her hand, so to speak, giving her direction and correction at every turn because she doubts her ability to do it alone, but I won’t. I want her to do her assignment, as instructed, and go over it with her to see where she still needs improvement and where she excels. She would prefer I do it with her to ensure she is answering each question correctly as she goes.

This morning while reading my devotion from the First Five app, I was reminded of how I do the same thing with my assignments in life. It spoke to me so loudly, I wanted to share with you but my technology-challenged self can’t seem to link it to this page. I can share the image…..

 

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In this short devotion, Lysa shares the story of Moses and his reluctance to approach Pharaoh to let the Lord’s people go. He felt inadequate to handle what felt like a huge assignment. As Lysa points out, “The resistant way Moses responds lets me know he misunderstood his assignment. Moses thought he was to bring enough power in his words to convince Pharaoh. And since his words lacked power before, it’s no wonder he thought this was a terrible strategy. But God never told Moses to bring the power. Moses was simply told to bring the words. Moses’ job was to be obedient to God. God’s job was everything else.”

Just like my Emma, it seems we often get caught up in the end result causing us to shift our focus from the task at hand. We center our thoughts around what should happen, allowing doubt to creep in making us question our ability to simply perform the task that’s been given.

I’ll leave you with one final example. Let’s say your assignment is to pray for others. Instead of focusing on the Holy Spirit and what He prompts you to pray, you worry about the impact your words will have on the one you’re praying for. “Will they receive salvation? What if this prayer goes unanswered, will they doubt God? What if my words are lackluster?” You’re assignment isn’t to save them or provide the answer to their prayer, that’s God’s part. You’re job is to pray with sincerity and allow God to speak to them through you.

“Trust the Lord completely, and don’t depend on your own knowledge. With every step you take, think about what he wants, and he will help you go the right way.” (Prov 3:5-6 ERV)

 

~Enough~ March 12, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Valerie Rutledge @ 10:49 pm
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“O God, I beg two favors from you; let me have them before I die.  First, help me never to tell a lie.  Second, give me neither poverty or riches!  Give me just enough to satisfy my needs.  For if I grow rich, I many deny you and say, “Who is the Lord?  And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name.”  (Proverbs 30:7-9 NLT)

In a world where it seems that everybody is constantly seeking more; more money, more recognition, more time; and at times will stop at nothing to “have it all,” maybe we could learn a little something from Agur here in Proverbs.

These two favors that he asks of the Lord really sum up a simple life of obedience. His desire to always be honest and to be known for such, is honorable. How often do we catch ourselves telling little lies and later thinking, “I shouldn’t have done that.” It could be someone asks you to be involved in something that is really of no interest to you but instead of just telling them that, you come up with some elaborate excuse for why you can’t…lie. Maybe your kid wants you to chaperone a field trip but you really can’t stand this other parent that you know will go so you tell little Susie that Mommy already has plans that day….lie. Or is it a request from your spouse to spend a romantic evening alone when you’d rather sit glued to your computer playing one of your fave games, “Sorry honey, I’m not feeling so hot.”…lie.

You get my drift. It is just as easy to lie as it is to tell the truth but the truth doesn’t make you feel like a heaping pile of junk when you reflect on it later.

His second request is spot on. This man has discovered a truth that escapes so many of us-a life of simple abundance is enough. I’m not saying that riches destroy everyone, some people have learned how to use their success for the good of many rather than being so consumed with their wealth that they lose touch with humanity.  There are those who have become so confident in their own abilities because of their prosperity that they feel no need for God and therefor deny his existence, after all, they are self-made, no God’s work here.  Then there is the opposite end of the spectrum, where the lack is so severe that the one struggling starts to believe there can’t be a God, because if He did exist, how could he allow this to happen?

One of my favorite verses of Scripture in regards to giving is Peter 3:6 “Silver and Gold have I none, but such as I have I give thee.” The richest people in the world are those who have learned that money has little to do with true success or happiness.  Wealth comes from knowledge of the Lord and trust in His provision for you and yours.  Maybe you don’t live with excess and you go week-by-week like we do, that’s fine with me because I know that God knows just what I need and He will never leave the righteous out begging for bread.phil 419

 

~Yes!~ July 12, 2013

yes to GodYesterday I posted, “Why do I write” then I received my devotion via email from Proverbs31 ministries and this little exert jumped out at me:

“You may be thinking, my yes can’t affect others like this. I don’t have that kind of influence. But we cannot even begin to understand the plans God has for us. There is always a far-reaching ripple effect when a woman says yes to God. We don’t have to see the spread of the influence to know it’s there. The power of saying yes to God is beyond anything we could ever imagine.” -Lysa Terkeurst

Confirmation is one of the best gifts God can ever give us.  Self-doubt can be your worst enemy, I know it is mine.  I have really struggled with continuing to write on my blog because I don’t know that it makes a difference.  I have battled my mind when it is screaming that no one really cares what I have to say so why bother?!  Why bother??  Because God called me to do it!  I may never know the effects that my writing has on another, if any effect at all.  What I do know is that it isn’t about me anyway, it’s all about Jesus and what He is able to do in and through us when we are willing.

So I am going to keep saying yes to God when He pulls me to put my fingers to the keys and tell about His goodness.  I will give the devil a resounding no when he uses my weaknesses to attempt to shut me up.  Will you join with me today and say yes to something God has placed in your heart?

“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.

(Galatians 6:9 NLT)