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Saturday, March 31, 2007

God's Best China

“In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work”. 2 Timothy 2:20-21

My mother-in-law can cook like nobody’s business and one of her specialties is good ‘ole southern potato salad. She has this special Strawberry Bowl that the potato salad goes in. Always.

Point being, special occasions warrant special dishes and spiritually speaking, you are God’s best china. The thing we always don’t understand is why God seems to overlook us for periods of time while someone else is being “used” on a regular basis. The same way we pull out a round cakestand for a carrot cake or a platter for the turkey, God will use us when we are the perfect fit. We all have our set of issues God has used to shape the women we have become. It is not enough, girls, to keep all that grace to ourselves. When He chooses to pull us out, we have to be prepared.

The same concept can be found in the life of Moses. Consider Stephen's testimony in Acts 7:20, "At that time Moses was born, and he was no ordinary child." The time Moses was referring to was the fulfillment of the 400 years of Israelite bondage in Egypt God had revealed to Abraham. The Greek word for 'time' used here signifies a set time in which a specific task must be accomplished. Moses was not just one of a generation that happened to suit God's purpose. He was placed on purpose to be God's chosen deliverer however reluctant Moses may have initially been.

See another fascinating example. The Hebrew equivalent of this same 'time' word gives the definition of "the appropriate time for an unrecurring incident." The Hebrew word is "Eth". Do you see whose name you can make out of that word? Esther. "For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father's family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?" Esther 4:14

Both of these examples show people who experienced waiting and questioned why they were placed in the positions they were in. Be sure to notice that in both these instances, just as in our own, there are unrecurring events that will be placed before us that will require a resolved 'yes'. Yes, Lord, I'll obey you even if the future is uncertain. Yes, Lord, You can trust me with your Name. It is when we are willing to disappear into Him that He is made all the more visible to the world around us.

Our God given tasks may begin as something which appears small. God knows when our faith has been built enough to trust us with opportunities for greater impact. He is always able, but just like Moses and Esther, there is a period of preparation He graciously gives us before we are led into the Red Sea or the King's Court. Be found faithful in looking for those opportunities to be the china He pulls out of the cabinet.

In response, how is God using you lately? Are you in a preparation period? If you don’t feel God is at work in you, will you commit to look for the opportunity? Will you ask Him to reveal how your circumstances are shaping you for His fame? If you will, I can promise He will not leave you on the shelf.

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Blogger Crystal said...

Wow this post spoke directly to me today......I am starting to resent the preparation period I am in....and I have always know that this is what it is.....but I am impatient, wanting to run ahead of God......thanks for reminding me to slow down....present myself the best I can for Jesus right now.

March 31, 2007 at 11:17 AM  
Anonymous Jen said...

This year I have gotten inot Gods word more than ever before. It is a blessing and changing me

March 31, 2007 at 2:13 PM  
Anonymous Lynn Donovan said...

This is a great story. I feel like I have been in your mom-in-laws kitchen sneaking a taste of the potato salad. Yum! This message is just for me. Thank you. Waiting is not one of my better strengths.

God will use us when we are the perfect fit.... I am reminded today to wait for Him to fit me to His purpose! Fantastic!!!

March 31, 2007 at 2:54 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

I am currently looking (daily) for what God wants me to do for him via serving others, etc. I don't always see it, but I'm trusting that I'm in a preparation time after reading this post. Thanks, Lisa!

March 31, 2007 at 5:27 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

I really enjoyed this post, it really spoke to my heart.

March 31, 2007 at 8:28 PM  
Blogger Laurel Wreath said...

Sometimes I feel God is not using me and I hear a firm, "Be Still" almost like a hand pushing me down. Then there are times, where God is using me a lot and I sometimes wonder when my break is coming.

But I have the most difficult time during the "be still" time, but that is when I seem to learn the most.

Lisa I loved this post. Thank you.

March 31, 2007 at 10:02 PM  
Blogger Darlene said...

How did you come up with that last line? When you wrap up an article so perfectly like that, you just know it's a God thing. :)

I sooooo want to be a useful dish waiting at arms reach for the Father.

April 1, 2007 at 12:26 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

I went through a period when I thought God didn't have much use for me, or even faith in me, to accomplish big things. Those thoughts were dispelled soon afterward and I have since enjoyed seasons of fruit-bearing and other times of pruning. All in God's timing! I love how you said, "God will use us when we are the perfect fit". Great line!!

April 1, 2007 at 8:08 PM  
Blogger janiswrites said...

I myself am going through a time of preparation. I am excited for how He is going to use me, though! Wonderful thoughts and post! Thanks!

April 4, 2007 at 7:43 PM  
Blogger Macromoments said...

Lisa, the older I get, the more I realize that God is the orchestrator of opportunities. Your post highlights that very thought--how He trusts us first with small-but-important tasks, in preparation for bigger work. Being found faithful is my goal.

I love your way with words! God has really gifted you.

April 11, 2007 at 2:19 PM  

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