Today I began my journey through the Live Dead Journal (www.live-dead.org) to kick off the new year. It's a 30 day journal and prayer book for unreached peoples particularly in East Africa. A couple of friends mentioned this book to me a few weeks ago and are also taking the challenge. I thought it would be good to do it together...but here's what I found...and I'm glad I committed before I knew...I have committed 2.5 hours a day for prayer, the Word, worship and listening time. Granted, I need this...we all do. But if you're like me, I tend to not operate well under "rules and regulations". However, this does not feel that way to me, I want to do it. As I started today, part of my commitment is to blog about this as I go through it as a type of open journal.
As we have launched One Child, over the past 2 years the most valuable commodity has been time. It's a gross understatement. Here's the first thing I learned today...though I know time in the Word and prayer is very important...I never viewed it as they put it in the journal. For the next 30 days, I'm tithing 2.5 hours of my day and I believe that God will make the rest of my day in the office and with my family that much more productive. I'm learning the important of taking my hands off and allowing Him to move - keeps the motivation of my heart in check.
Since time is my most valuable commodity, today, I'm realizing that it gives me that much more reason to give it. I'm learning to rest and slowly am breaking the habit of "works" and that's where I'm beginning to thrive. That's my goal for this year...learning to abide. I'm a branch and I cannot bear fruit by myself. I've tried. Lots. All I ended up with was sickness, stress, frustration and exhaustion. I need the Vine primarily, but today the thought crossed my mind that I needed the other branches. The visual picture of a vineyard with a whole lot of vines with just one branch each is awkward. Right?! I need the branches that are plugged into the same vine to that like minded, I need community. Not forced community, but community that is part of the fabric of my every day life.
John 15 communicates that God chose us. Us! It wasn't default, it was a choice. We can only find appropriate self worth and confidence and love in light of our redemption. Without a deep knowledge of redemption, we cannot exist holistically. He chose us to bear fruit...not to create fruit by works alone...He does the work through and around us. Abiding in Him, keeps us living simply and single minded...tapped into all of God's resources. Today is the beginning of a 30 day challenge, one that encourages extravagant time with Jesus, daily.
Unreached People Group that I'm praying for today are the Bedouin Rashaida, a desert people of more than 100,000.
One Child Campaign is a ministry outreach of Faith Central Ministries. The vision of the Orphan Awareness and Vision trips is to create a united effort of ministries to give voice to the over 5.5 million orphans in Ethiopia and around the world. This will be accomplished through sponsorship, empowerment and discipleship that will meet the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the children. This trip will immerse you into the lives of orphans and street kids. It will create an experience that will raise awareness not only to the orphan, but also for the body of Christ to realize the impact it can have through advocacy and adoption. An important part of our ministry is to provide resources for adoptive families. This is a mission to raise up a generation with selfless faith. Together, we can breathe hope into the orphan crisis.