Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Intentional, With Grace

As I shared last week, my #oneword365 is intentional. It was suggested somewhere that I write a poem about the word, and I chose an acrostic, because I thought it might be fun. Using each letter of the word as the first line I wrote about what being intentional might do for me this year. Hope you enjoy!

Intended to bring order
Needed for my sanity
Thoughtful planning
Energizing my schedule
Noteworthy accomplishments
Tenaciously working
Ideally motivated
Open to changes
Numbered list to check off
Advisedly helpful
Love to cover all

(sunset through the woods)

I realize that being intentional does not mean I will always have it together or that my days will go smoothly. I do need to make plans, and I need to be disciplined in order to carry out those plans. This does not insure they will always work out. Proverbs 16:9 says:

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.

Some days will have interruptions. There will be times when it seems I am being pulled in many different directions at once. It would be so easy to let those cause me stress and react to them in a way that would leave me frazzled. Believe me, that has happened plenty of times, but God is loving and patient and offers forgiveness. There is grace for me and I don't have to fall into a puddle of misery and shame.


Hebrews 4:14,15 reminds me that Jesus, our high priest is able to sympathize with us because he has been tempted just like we have, only without sin. Because of that we are told in verse 16 of that same chapter:

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

When my best intentions seem to go awry I need to remember that God directs my paths. Those interruptions may be just what I need to keep my focus on Him and not on myself, to realize that He is the one who gives me strength. I must lean on Him and trust that He knows best.

(first page in my 2015 Art Journal)

When I remember that He is with me in every situation, it makes it possible to go forward knowing that He will ultimately work things out for good. That does not mean it will be easy or that I will not have pain or sadness. What it does mean is that I can still have peace and a joy that goes deep knowing that He is walking with me through it.

I will still try to be intentional. I will make my plans to systematically de-clutter my house as I mentioned last week. When the interruptions come to keep me from my task, I will do my best to be intentional about meeting them with grace and extending grace to whoever needs me at that time.

What about you? What do you do when your plans crumble and your best intentions go wrong? I pray that we will all remember the words Paul gives us in II Corinthians 12:9,10:

But he said to me, “my grace is sufficient for you,
for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses,
so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses,
insults, hardships, persecutions and calamities.
For when I am weak, then I am strong.

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