Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
One day, I lost my necklace. Now, this necklace had a special meaning to me and so I was disappointed. I prayed to God to help me to find the necklace – but I didn’t. Months later, on a Monday morning, I decided to ask God again. This time, my energy was a bit different. With boldness, I told God I needed to find the necklace. Truthfully, I wanted a small miracle because I needed God to show me – He was still present.
My mind immediately went back to the last day I had it, and where I had it. I then walked into my bathroom, opened the third drawer on the right-hand side, and started pulling out items to reach the back of the drawer. My choice didn’t seem logical, but it felt right. As I continued removing items, there was my necklace. I grabbed it in disbelief. At that moment, I thought – God, I see You, and I know You see me. Thank You for showing me that You’re still present.
A Living Testimony to Self
I am thankful to God for every moment where He has shown up in miraculous ways. These are the moments, both big and small, when I know divine intervention has taken place. When I acknowledge the hand of God working in my life, I am able to create building blocks of faith. When this happens for us, our spirits grow brighter. Our hearts are lifted, and we then spread that light to others. I am always surprised at how we can positively impact each other when we choose to reflect the character of Christ. Such instances remind me that our actions matter – for ourselves and for others.
Yet, we cannot be a living testimony to others if we aren’t first a testimony to ourselves. How so? Think of Queen Esther in the Bible, who was at first reluctant to speak on behalf of the Jews to save their lives, because it put her own life at risk. Once her cousin Mordecai convinced her to have a change of heart, she spent three days in fasting before going to the King. Queen Esther understood the power of steading her own mind and connecting with God before she could successfully help others.
Then there is Joseph.
He went from being betrayed by his brothers, to spending years in prison, continuing to serve God and eventually becoming a powerful leader in Egypt. While as a slave and then in prison, Joseph had to make a daily choice to remain committed to God. He had to stand strong in his faith, even when he was standing alone. God built Joseph up internally, and then externally. Once in his newly appointed position, Joseph was able to save his family from famine, as well as those living in Egypt. The story of Joseph reminds us that we cannot skip to the end of our journeys. There is work to be done on our characters, our resolve, and our connection with God that will result in blessings for ourselves, and then to others. As difficult as it will be, we must respect the process:
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ…1 Peter 1:6-7
Is God at the Center?
As inspiring as Bible stories are, I know they are not ours. To read these experiences can help to build faith, but to live them is an entirely different experience. It takes courage to believe in God when your logic, your family, or your circumstances say otherwise. I believe it takes bravery to be authentic to who we are, and to face our struggles with dignity. Even on our best days, we sometimes get lost in trying to be a light for others, forgetting to spiritually nurture ourselves. God deserves our best, and our best starts with our personal time with Him.
Remember, if we want to be a living testimony to others, our lives must first be a testimony to ourselves. It is our own belief and our own faith that leads to personal experiences which bring us closer to Christ. It’s important to take time to nurture our relationship with God. The inspiration we spread becomes the positive side effect of our connection with Him. Our gratitude becomes the testimony we give to ourselves, and then to others. I’m thankful for the light that God has placed inside of me. Though some days are dark, and my vision gets cloudy, His grace forever leads me home, and for that – I am most thankful.Print This Devotional