by: Ellene Meece
God's voice through Philippians 2:15 The Message: "Go out into the world uncorrupted, a breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God."
Go out . . . live large! Abandon self-centered absorption, small thinking, settling for only a tiny footprint on this earth. After all, God so loved the world!
Eugene Peterson, author of Run With The Horses, reminds us, "We cannot grow an oak tree in a barrel; it needs acres of earth under it and oceans of sky above it. Neither can we grow a human being in a narrow sect, a ghettoized religion. The larger the world we live in, the larger our lives develop in response."
"Living Large" could include:
I'm reminded that a light in the darkness is usually a soft glow, a constant twinkle, a reflection of hope. Providing people with a "glimpse of good living and of the living God" doesn't necessarily include a booming voice or aggressive action. It is more often than not, a kind word, a helping hand, a genuine concern in hard times . . . everywhere you go in this world.
- Taking time to listen to your employees or co-workers, then responding with God's love.
- Considering volunteering time at your local nursing home, soup kitchen or a giving organization.
- Opening up your mind to believe God could even send you on a mission to another state or country, allowing God's creative direction in being a "breath of fresh air" in any sad, God-forgotten culture.
As Dave Duell, co-founder of Faith Ministries International Network, often says, "Love opens doors anywhere you go." And it is true. I've watched skeptical faces turn to wonder, hard eyes suddenly fill with tears, and crusty hearts melt in the light of God's love . . . in the wake of Dave's own unconditional love.
Once in France, I witnessed a room full of "religious" folks gather for a sermon from Dave, the visiting minister from the United States. Their body language of folded arms and non-smiling faces told the story that they were not in the mood to hear a good news message of hope. But, Dave acted like he didn't even see this and commenced with his humor and love into the best news of all: God loved them unconditionally! As the message progressed, their arms relaxed and occasionally a glimmer of a smile would appear on some of their faces. By the end of the message, there was uninhibited laughter and open arms receiving God's love!
Take love . . . God's love . . . anywhere is this big, wide world. Live large without fear or inhibitions or thought to how your light will affect those around you. Living large is God's plan for you.
Ellene Meece lives in Meeker, Colorado and works with her husband in their natural resource company while running her own online store, Grandma's Treasures Online. Currently, she oversees the marketing for the FMIN Workplace Leaders Network.
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