MESA WOMEN: Setting The Table | New Beginnings

Hello Ladies,

As January comes to a close, we urge you to hold onto the newness of 2023 and the promise this fresh start brings!

Now, we welcome words from Lettie Cowie in a three-part series we will release over the next few months. Lettie has a long history of work in ministry, business, education, and non-profit work...among many other things.

Please, enjoy!

New Beginnings

The new year is often a time of reflection, setting new goals, and checking in on goals-in-progress. Yay! We all like a do-over now and then. A new year lets us reset and make something of the time before us.

Pastor Jordan kicked off 2023 with a New Year’s Day sermon based on Proverbs 16:3.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed (vs. 3).
In our hearts we plan a course, but the Lord determines the steps (vs. 9).

Ok, that sounds good, but how do we do that?  

“Commit” requires an action on our part, and then it says there will be an action on God’s part.  

We have all hoped for things that we really wanted to happen a certain way, and we prayed about them.  But in the end, they didn’t go down the way we wanted.  We were disappointed.  So, this scripture cannot be saying that if we commit something to the Lord in prayer it will inevitably succeed, or that if we plan a course and walk down it, it will happen how we planned it.  If that is what you think this is saying, you may be in for some disappointment.

I have experienced in my life that God does determine our steps.  He is faithful, even when time has passed and we have forgotten our prayer. He continues to work on it (Is. 64:4; Phil. 1:6). I have complete confidence in this scripture and its promise.  

What we need to do is unpack that term: “commit.” Then, we can understand our part in this.  When you look up “commit” in the dictionary, the first definition is: to carry into action deliberately.  The two examples given are to commit a crime or to commit a sin.  I would rather be known for committing a blessing, or an act of kindness, or committing a service to someone in need.  When we commit something, we intentionally cause it to happen.  This scripture encourages us to commit our plans and actions to God.

Now, this also assumes that we are in a relationship and dialogue with God.

Having accepted Jesus as my Savior and His forgiveness for my sinfulness, I can now converse with God (Heb. 4:14-16).  My daily dialogue with God, for many years, has begun with the question, “Is there anything in my life that displeases you?”  If I have sinned without acknowledging it or asking for forgiveness, or if I am behaving in a way that displeases God, I want to know (Ps. 139:23-24). I want to bring it to the foot of the cross and leave it there, where I can receive forgiveness and a restored relationship with God (1 John 1:9).  So, I prayerfully ask, and then I wait quietly to see if God brings anything to mind.

If something does come to mind, the first needed commitment is to deal with it!  If you need to ask for forgiveness, do it.  If you need to change your attitude, ask God to help you - to show you.  If you need to go ask forgiveness of someone else, well that’s the hardest, but it needs to be part of the commitment - evidence that you are willing to make things right (Colossians 3:13).  Fortunately, doing this a few times will help inoculate you, as you will pause before you commit to doing things that displease God.

It has been my experience that God does not bombard you with things, especially if you are checking in with Him daily.  He will show you something, and you deal with it.  Another day, He will bring up something else.  Some days, it is even a time of Him saying, “You are good; I have taken care of it.  Be blessed!”

This type of daily commitment allows God to, over time, align your will with His will.  You begin to want the things that He wants for your life, and begin to understand what He wants from you (Romans 12:2). The communion becomes sweeter and sweeter.
Stay tuned! In the next blog, we will discuss Committing to the Lord Whatever We Do.

ALSO, on Setting the Table...

Don't miss encouragement and reflections on fasting, shared by Eunice Pimentel: Hold Fast!
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