Hi, I'm Kaylyn. After 4 years of "training" on how to serve in ministry, I'm living it out day-to-day within my family and community. But, I'm still learning what it means to serve and not be served. I love my baby ladies and my husband more than I thought I could, and am thankful for the uncompromising love Christ has for me.
Most Sundays, I like church for all the different aspects that compile the service: Communion, worship, music, the sermon and prayer. To be honest, rarely will the sermon be my favorite part. However, the past 6 months have been different for me. We’ve been going through the Bible in a year (CASKET EMPTY) and have a reading plan to help the congregation (ahem, me) process what we’ll be focusing on more in-depth each coming Sunday.
The reading plan (can be found here) has helped me read the Bible more since it gives me the opportunity to ask questions. Two weeks ago, Pastor Tom was preaching on the Book of Ezra, a part of his sermon struck me and made me think even more about God’s word. He told us Ezra was a prophet and scribe in the Old Testament who wrote down the historical timeline of God’s people coming back and rebuilding Jerusalem after the period of exile.
Now, with all of the history stuff aside, their purpose of rebuilding Jerusalem was for its own sake - to rebuild the Temple (the place where God’s presence abided in the Old Testament). This rebuilding plan made the people excited for God’s promises to be realized in their lifetime. However, as it is today, God’s timing is often different than our own, so the twist comes: God’s presence never returns to the Temple building. Instead, God's presence returned in the form of His Son, Jesus Christ. And after Jesus’ death and resurrection, His presence came in the form of the Holy Spirit to dwell in each and every believer after a person accepts Jesus Christ as their Savior. Now, think about how you would feel if you were spending a large period of your life rebuilding/working toward a goal God told you to and the outcome was WAY different than what you thought it was going to be (and you never experienced it in your lifetime)?
With that being said, God knew something more than his people who were rebuilding the temple. He knew His people would continue on and there would be an even better way for God to be in relationship with His people...His creation. Now, we are the new “temple”. We are the place God dwells! This is what struck me in the sermon 2 weeks ago.
All along God had bigger plans that included me (before there was a “me”).
Now, the ball doesn’t stop there, God’s plan includes me, but it also includes you. As Esther 4:14 says, “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 your royal position for such a time as this?” In Esther’s case, God didn’t need to use Esther, but He chose to. Esther had the choice to be used by God. She had the choice to believe God created her for the time period and circumstance she was in at that very moment.
Thinking about Esther and applying it to our lives, God created us for each and every moment we’re in. He’s present in each and every one of those moments. God knew we’d need Him to be present in our lives. God had bigger plans than simply rebuilding the Temple. He had plans for us! Let’s allow God to use us for His BIG plans, not our idea of God’s plans. After all, God’s plan of redemption has held up thus far, who’s to say He’s done?
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