When you barbecue, most times, you prep the meat by seasoning it and letting it marinate. You are careful to get the fire just right and you watch it to be sure the food won’t burn. When baking a cake from scratch, you prepare by allowing the eggs and butter to sit out of the refrigerator until they are room temperature. You
place the ingredients in one at a time…dry ingredients first…so that they blend perfectly to create the perfect cake. When preparing to host a dinner party, you prepare by getting a final head count, a complete menu, and a location.
Alright…I’m not just trying to make you hungry (although I probably did myself in at 10:08 p.m.), but I’m trying to get you focused on preparation. Prep work is important to ANY process….it’s the means by which you get to the final product. Without preparing your food to cook or even your location to meet the needs of your guests, you’re in trouble. You see, with all the short cuts to take, the preparation process is not one that you should skim on. It is something that you gotta give full attention to, or your final presentation will be lacking.
Okay……how is that relevant??? In life, we all have a purpose…..a destiny; we also have different milestones and destinations that we are meant to get to. Without proper preparation, we could ruin everything without any effort at all. In fact, that’s where the challenge lies…it takes effort to prepare. But we MUST prepare for what is to come. God hears us when we pray and ask Him for things, what we must realize though, is that He won’t just give things to us if we aren’t ready. Psalms 37:4 says, “Delight thyself in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” It’s God’s word, so of course it’s true, and He wants to; but we gotta know that in order for Him to grant us those desires, He will allow us to go through certain processes in order to get where we can handle the manifestation of them.
Just because we ask for it, doesn’t mean we’re ready for it. And God wants us to be ready! I don’t know about you but I want to be ready for what is coming to me! You see, when you get what you want and you can’t handle it, you won’t take care of it. It’s like Christmas time, w
hen some parents buy their children EVERYTHING they think they want and later realize they weren’t ready for all that (they could’ve saved a couple hundred dollars). Too many toys to handle so they end up in a closet, neglected. They were never prepared to handle that much at once. Or it can even be likened to buying a child a puppy and they never walk it or feed it and the parents end up with all the responsibility. That child needs to be prepared to handle that challenge. Or those Jordans that were purchased for a 4 year old that were ruined on the playground…..NOT READY! So often, we THINK we are “ready to receive” but we are just living in “wishful thinking”. Not that we can’t get there…we’re just not there yet. That is why preparation is key.
It’s the same concept with us and the blessings of God. He wants us to be prepared to handle them. For instance, if you never get the oil changed in your car, never take it for a tune up or vacuum it out, why would He bless you with a new car? If you can’t wash a dish, clean the bathroom, or keep the laundry off the floor of your apartment, why would God bless you with a house??? You can’t run a marathon without first preparing your body! Nope…YOU’LL DIE!!! (Okay…too dramatic? Sorry, but you get it) Prep work! It’s SO NECESSARY! It’s a lesson that I am currently learning. God is preparing me for some things, and in order to be ready, I MUST PREPARE. I have also LEARNED that God is VERY SPECIFIC in the instruction He gives to prepare us. But, God has ALWAYS been specific…He knows what He wants and requires. You can even see it in the way He instructed His people to present sacrifices to Him. “Thou shalt daily prepare a burnt offering unto the Lord of lamb of the first year without blemish; thou shalt prepare it every morning.” (Ezekiel 46:13) He was even specific on WHEN to prepare the sacrifice. This means that we can’t just be on one day and off the next. Nu uh…we must be consistent! “Thus shall they prepare the lamb, and the meat offering, and the oil, every morning for a continual burnt offering.” (Ezekiel 46:15)
PREPARATION TAKES OBEDIENCE! Say it with me, “Preparation takes obedience!” Liiiiiiiikkkkkkke there are days…..moments….that I just don’t feel like it. Better yet, I JUST DON’T WANNA!!! But God is checking for my obedience during this process. Will I do that one little thing He instructed me to do, or will I sit here on my couch? Will I get up an hour earlier to pray, or will I snatch up that extra hour of sleep? Will I seek Him and stay in His presence, or will I take that time to run a few errands??? It takes obedience…..and DISCIPLINE! Taking care of that car and apartment are no walk in the park, you must allow yourself time do develop the discipline to do so. Getting up early to pray and read the word of God takes discipline. And not necessarily because we don’t want to do it, but more often because we let the time slip away from us. Often, discipline is developed out of habit. Get in the habit of washing dishes, and it won’t be a problem later. Get in the HABIT of waking up early to pray instead of pushing snooze. Get in the habit of sitting still before the Lord and waiting on Him to speak.
An act of both obedience and discipline is seeking God. The bible tells us that if we do so, we won’t have to worry about anything else. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33) And please understand that seeking God is the ONLY detail that we are instructed to handle. LEAVE THE DETAILS TO GOD! Soooo……He had to tell me that the other day…. “Leave the details to Me Baby Girl!” And I’ve had to allow Him to settle my spirit and let Him handle it. My mom always says, “take care of God’s business and He will take care of yours.” And it’s the truth. I have learned (STILL LEARNING), through life situations AND reading the word of God, that there is not one small intricate detail that He leaves unhandled. I mean…..He takes care of EVERYTHING! My ONLY job………your ONLY job is to LET HIM!!!
Another lesson I’m learning….”DON’T FREAK OUT!!!” Being anxious is SO EASY to do but I’m learning to be more intentional in my trusting God and these past couple weeks have made me cling
to 1 Peter 5:7 like never before; “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” I can trust Him with it because He actually cares about it. God cares that I’m anxious…a little nervous…kinda scared…ALL DAT (yes…I meant to type “dat”). In the NKJV version of the bible, Philippians 4:6 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;” Let Him know what you’re feeling…..yes He already knows, but He’s waiting on you to turn it over to Him. Pray about it and thank Him for handling it. He’s got you covered. Yep…He had to tell me that as well…”Baby Girl, I got you covered! Let me handle it.” So…I’ve vowed to let Him. And I am being intentional in keeping that vow.
So…….you get to prepping……leave the details to God!
Love y’all!!! (I REALLY do!)