What’s in Your Cup?

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by Calven Celliers

Consider for just a minute that you are holding a cup of coffee and someone comes along and bumps into you, making you spill your coffee everywhere. If I then asked you, “Why did you spill your coffee?” you may very well be irritated and tempted to reply, “Well because someone bumped into me, of course!” But another way of looking at it is that you spilled coffee because there was coffee in your cup. Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea. Whatever is inside the cup, is what will spill out. Now think about what happens when life comes along and bumps you; it stands to reason that whatever is inside of you will come out of you. It’s easy to fake it, until you get rattled.

Today I’d like for you to reflect on the question, “What’s in my cup? When life gets tough, what spills over?” If the wrong kind of stuff spills over, then realistically you have to consider that you have been filling yourself up with the wrong kind of stuff. I am constantly challenged to be intentional about spending time with God, allowing Him to fill those desperately empty places inside my soul with all the good stuff He has to offer. Otherwise, the world will fill those gaps up with anything but good stuff.

In the Gospel of Matthew 12 Jesus put it like this, 34 …For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. 35 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.” (Matthew 12: 34 & 35NIV

Jesus stresses that what you say is an accurate indicator of what is in your heart. If your words bless and encourage others, they give evidence of a compassionate heart. If you often share the good news about Christ, you demonstrate a heart that is grateful for your own salvation. When others are in a crisis, do they know they will find peace and comfort in your words? Do you frequently and spontaneously offer prayers for others? Do your words and the manner in which you say them reveal a patient heart? All of these behaviours indicate a heart that is like the heart of the Father. Or do you often regret your words? Are there people even now who are hurt or angry because of something you have said? Do you enjoy gossip? Do you tend to criticize others? Do you feel that you are not responsible for what comes out of your mouth when you are angry? Does your mouth spew negativity, grumbling and complaints?

Having a full cup takes dedication. I want to encourage you to set aside time throughout the day to let the Lord love on you. If we are not allowing God to first fill our cup, our human nature is to strive to fill it in other ways. But if we feast on God’s Word and hide it in our hearts, meditating on it, then our responses to people and situations will be a great deal more graceful and representative of the God we love.

Let’s pay close attention to what spills out of us when we’re “bumped”.

 

What’s filling YOU up today?

 

God bless,

Calven

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Way Maker

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by Calven Celliers

Last Sunday in Church I was really blessed by Mia and the Worship Team’s beautiful rendition of Leeland’s song, Way Maker. I’ve had the lyrics swirling through my mind all week – “You are way maker, miracle worker, promise keeper, light in the darkness, my God, that is who You are.”

As I contemplated this awesome song, I sensed the Holy Spirit nudging me, almost urging me to read Isaiah 43: 18 & 19

18 Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”

As I read those verses, I saw something I’d never really taken note of before. It was written at a time when Judah was suffering under Babylonian exile. The prophet Isaiah was reminding them of what God had done in the past, alluding to the great Exodus of Israel from Egypt. At the same time, Isaiah discouraged them from being stuck in the past and admonished God’s chosen people to look forward with expectation of the new thing He would do.

This was a wilderness promise! God told them, “I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” This promise was tailor-made for their dry, barren, wilderness season. The word for wilderness in the original Hebrew text is “Yeshimon” (pronounced yesh-ee-mone’), which literally means a place that is utterly barren; it denotes a total wasteland, where there is nothing but dryness and fruitlessness. It was totally desolate. There was no hint of prosperity, abundance or provision. And it’s right there, in a place of hopelessness, that God chose to make this amazing promise.

One of the greatest lies ever told is that “It’s too late!” At some point in our lives, we may all feel like we’ve missed our chance because we’ve messed up. We can even be tempted to believe that we’ve disqualified ourselves from having a great future, that our best days are behind us. If this is you, then I want you to hear something loud and clear: With God on your side, it’s never too late. Isn’t it wonderful to know that some of the best days of your life still lie ahead of you?

While God Himself never changes, He is a God of change. He is always doing a new thing and working behind the scenes in our lives to bring about new beginnings. Where we see failure, God sees potential for something new. He is without a doubt the WAY MAKER. God wants you to know that it’s never too late to begin again and have a great life. He is on your side and, if need be, He can even “put a road in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.”

In order to cooperate with God’s plan for our lives we need to stay focused and determined. I’ve learned that when you feel discouraged, when others doubt or criticize you, and when your dreams seem like they’re just never going to happen, that’s when you need to keep your eyes on Jesus, and keep moving forward!

Everyone gets “down to nothing” at some point in life, whether in relationships, finances, vision and courage for the future, physical or emotional exhaustion, or disappointment with God; everybody at some time comes to the end of their rope. It’s exactly at those points that God does His best work. As the old saying goes, “When we’re down to nothing, God is up to something.” Ironically, we’re often most tempted to quit when our breakthrough is right around the corner. But if we’ll just keep moving forward — if we’ll remain steadfast and refuse to give up — we will reach our goal and walk in God’s promises. With God, it’s never too late. He’s the God of fresh starts, do-overs, new beginnings and great finishes.

Your situation may be as hot and barren as a desert or as forlorn and meaningless as a wasteland. I’m not sure where you are today. I don’t know what disappointments or setbacks you’ve endured. You may be tempted to think “There’s no way things could ever change!” But I do know this: It’s not over. God loves you, He sees you, and He has a plan. God has been doing “a new thing” in places like drab deserts and wintry wastelands since the days of old.

Are you ready, are you expectant, are you prepared? God will make a way!

 

God bless,

Calven

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