Saturday, April 6, 2013

Preparing Our Hearts

It’s April 6th.  We leave June 6th.  That gives us just two months to finish preparing for our trip to India.  We will be getting numerous immunizations and starting our malaria pills.  We will have to make sure our suitcases fit the airline guidelines for both size and weight.  We will make sure that the clothes we are packing are suitable to an eastern culture and we will take into consideration the 100+ degree temperatures.  We will need to pack protein bars and other snacks in metal containers (to keep the rodents out).  We will have fun picking out gifts to bring for Pastor Wilson, his family, and the children…then we’ll have to sit on our luggage to make sure it all fits.  We have a lot to do in preparation for a trip like this.  We can make a list and check them off one by one.  That we know how to do, but how do we prepare our hearts?

When preparing for a marathon, you have to start months ahead (so I hear).  Deciding on the run and getting the right shoes are only the beginning.  You have to start slow and gradually add miles to your training.  To try to run the 26.2 miles at the beginning would only lead to defeat.  So is our walk with the Lord.  It requires training and practice.  We must exercise our hearts by the Word of God and prayer to increase our faith and to be good servants of Jesus Christ. 

In an article titled Spiritual Muscle Development by Paul Tripp, he says it like this:
“What is the equipment of God’s gym of faith?  Here are the things that he has designed for you to build the muscles of your heart and strengthen your resolve:  the regular study of his Word; consistent godly fellowship; looking for God’s glory in creation every day; putting yourself under excellent preaching and teaching of Scripture; investing your quiet mental time in meditating on the goodness of God (e.g., as you are going off to sleep); reading excellent Christian books; and spending ample time in prayer.  All of these will result in spiritual strength and vitality.”

As Luke and I prepare for a journey that may be one the most difficult of our lives, we will focus on these areas, knowing full well that it is the Lord that will give the increase.  Please continue to be with us in prayer.  You might want to also pray for Luke as he goes for his immunizations.  :/  He is quite certain this will be the most difficult part of the trip!  Says the boy that has never been farther than Florida…

1 Timothy 4:6-10
If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed.  Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance. For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe.