Yep, if you are following this, you might notice that I am REALLY SLOW to get this posted today. My practice is showing, eh? For whatever struggles I am walking in today, I am determined that God is showing me some hard things by the daily discipline of writing these notes.
As I look at all the different dictionary definitions of practice, I just keep thinking of athletes (specifially baseball players, must be the weather today) who practice their skills from the very littlest T-ball players to the professional baseball players who still begin with a few months of preseason training and PRACTICE before the games that really count begin!
Their outcomes (practices, how they do) is based on their preparation (training practices, what they do).
But God is not looking for the same outcomes that we are, we tend to to look at outward victories (wins on a teams record or personal statistics) and He is looking at the effort we put into learning and applying (our hearts and our lives lived for Him in the process)
I want to share another verse with you from the beattitudes,
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied" Matthew 5:6 (NIV)
You see as Jesus spoke about our desire to PRACTICE righteousness, what does he say we have to do to achieve satisfaction? Do we have to accomplish it? NO! We simply are blessed for hungering and thirsting for it!
When we hunger and thirst for something we try to taste it, perhaps we don't get it all right, but we are TRYING!
I have just one question for you today as you go out to practice what you want to practice - in other's words do what we day we want to do.....
Who gets more enjoyment of of playing baseball;a first year T-Ball player or a retired Major League player?
This obviously could be a loaded question. I tend to think that the satisifaction of the pure joy of the game continues for a lifetime. I got to take my nephew to his traveling league workout the other week. I usually only see him at games with a serious "game on" look and watch him (usually) with the precision of a surgeon as he positions his glove or bat and gets the job done.
Waching him field and hit that night, I saw the delight of someone who loves to play and wants to keep trying, all while knowing how hard it is to get better and better.
My nephew is not settling for a easy game, he keeps practicing and learning and when I commenting to him about what I saw that evening He smiled and just said, "yep, I had a great time!"
This throws the legalistic works bandwagon out the window. But the key to our satisfaction is our humility of heart as we practice our practice.
God just wants us to want him! That is what He want us to practice and practice and practice - wanting more of Him!
None of us will ever be able to fully acomplish this on earth, but yet as Paul wrote we learn to "be content" in all kinds of situations as we simply practice wanting to love and obey Him.
So friends - as you go out this day - may be you blessed as you practice and practice and practice and May God see the your practice of LOVE on this 'hike o life"