Sunday, June 14, 2009

Why Are You Here?

My all-time favorite scripture is Acts 17: 24-27. It says:

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:

These scriptures contain such a wealth of information and give me such a good look at who God is, but there is one part that has always meant the most to me and I’ve always held close, and I’ve thought about it a lot lately. It’s this part: and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him (one translation says grope for him), and find him, though he be not far from every one of us.

When I lived in Chicago, in Uptown, God gave me this scripture and it was one of those eye-opening revelations that just never leaves you. Uptown was not like anything most of the people that read this blog could ever really imagine without experiencing it in person. It was the most densely populated 2-square miles in the country and the most ethnically diverse 2-square miles in the country. There were a lot of people from a lot of different places packed like sardines into this neighborhood. I longed to see the glory of God flow through those streets!

My previous marriage was never easy, not from the beginning, but when I would pray and ask God why, I’d get this scripture. He put me where I was, when I was, so that I would grope for Him, seek Him, and when I did, I would find Him. It worked. I spent more time on my face before God during those years than any time before or after. I groped for God, daily. I knew why I was there. Though He had a ministry for me there, with those people, He showed me in the scripture that He didn’t *need* me there. He needed me after Him.

With the pending changes in our lives currently and trying to figure out what is best in terms of selling this house or staying in it, I’ve determined that God knows the boundaries of my dwelling. He knows where He wants me. I struggle weighing the pros and the cons of being here or back in Ark City and cannot determine which is best because I don’t know what the future holds.

I do know that God has put me here for right now. Our house will be off the market in just a couple of weeks and we will make the final decision to stay here, if God doesn’t sell it first. I will know that God has done it for a purpose and it has nothing to do with my neighbors, the amount of entertainment Wichita offers, the schools, our families, or any other possible thing out there. It has to do with the fact that this is where God knows we will most seek Him because He wants to be found by us. I’m determined to do just that. Instead of longing for what is in Ark City, I will seek God.

Why do you live where you live? Is it convenience? Is it because of financial reasons? Is it family? Is it your neighbors? Is it culture? Does it have to do with population, income, education? Do you realize why God has you where you are? It’s not because your ministry is so important. This scripture starts out talking about how God created everything. He doesn’t need you where you are. You can be replaced. He wants you there though so that you will seek Him and find Him. So, I encourage you, with me, to determine to fulfill the ministry God has laid before you where you are and to seek Him wholeheartedly.

That is until He moves you and you start again. :)


Kim Peri said...

I think this is my MOST favorite post you've ever written. Why? Because you can FEEL the Holy Spirit in your words. JUST BECAUSE I read this....I am going to go outside and spend some time with HIM and seek Him out a little tonite before I got to bed.

It IS hard to determine the right path...but I am SURE when you seek, you find. And the doors you need to open will open and those that don't....won't.

Mandy said...

Thanks Kim! This has been burning in heart for a while now and it was good to finally take the time to write it.