Hello, beautiful people. How are you all doing? It’s okay, go ahead and answer. If you’re like the multitude of people I encounter most days, your response would be something like, “Okay, I guess.” Or “I’m upright.” You might also fall into the category of “I’m good” but the grim lines and downcast shoulders tell the truth.
So, how many of you actually said, “I’m good” and meant it? How many of you got out of bed ready to meet the day with joy and with intentional purpose? Something beyond “I have to go to work” or “I have to run errands”?
Psalm 118:24 This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
After being a stay at home mom and a housewife for almost 28 years, I found myself thrust into the work force. Since I hadn’t worked for almost three decades and my skills were limited. I honestly believed that I would have to start at the bottom rung of the ladder. And, in a way I sort of did, but God blessed me with a decent wage.
Anyhow, in the course of a conversation I remember telling someone that I had to work. Holy Spirit halted me. I didn’t have to go to work. I could choose to stay home. I could choose to lose my house. Choose to let the utilities get shut off. But I didn’t choose those things, I chose to go to work. I get to go to work. It is an honor and a privilege to go to work.
I’m sensing some eyerolling, and that is okay. I may not be walking in your shoes, but I am walking in mine, and… I must say, sometimes it feels like the soles are missing and I’m walking on thorns, but I’m not going to allow that to bump my joy. I know pain, I know grief, I know what it’s like to have a few pennies to my name, I know what it’s like to have both vehicles break down and no means to fix them, I know what it’s like to have my publisher close the line where I make 95% of my income. I know what it’s like to lose the love of my life to cancer, and let me tell you, not even his passing could steal my joy and peace.
Why? Because we are called to a higher purpose, and that is to keep our minds on things above and not on the earthly fleshy things. The Pharisees, who by the way were actively looking for the Messiah, sought from a flesh mindset and not a kingdom mindset. They weren't looking for God to encounter them on their level, rather looking for a man to lead them and I don’t want to be guilty of doing the same.
Bear with me a moment, I hope to tie this all together. I have spent a lot of alone time with the Lord over the last few months, this last year without my husband helping me decipher revelatory epiphanies, and Holy Spirit has shown me many things. One of the most recent territories I've been allowed to step in is that of a cashier (bottom rung on the ladder) where I sell cigarettes and alcohol. This is something I never would have considered a year ago, or even a few months ago. How dare I sell anything that might be considered a sin. That means I’m facilitating it, right? And partaking, right? ;)
But what is the higher thing here? I'm in the position of honor, a position of being able to speak life into hurting hearts. I'm able to sit at their table, so to speak, and affect change because my own personal convictions and the judgmental walls I carried are down and only the love of the Father stands. I can fully encounter them with kindness and joy because I understand that the flesh is not the temple of the Holy Spirit, but rather the heart of the man is the temple, and if I condemn him for what he is feeding the flesh, then I risk further wounding his spirit. The higher thing is the soul and its eternal destination, and God wishes that no man should perish but have everlasting life.
Everything God does is about the eternal. And we, as His heirs, need to set our minds on things above, not on earthly things. Who am I to say how God chooses to reach the heart of a man?
So, you see, I get to go on assignment. Every day I wake up I have an assignment, whether it is taking my daughter to work at 4 a.m., watching my grandson from 5:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. while his mama earns her paycheck, spending time with my mother-in-law, helping my mother do laundry, going to work, writing books, or even blog posts. Every day I get to choose whether to trudge through the day or rejoice for it is the day the Lord has made. It’s my choice. And no matter my choice, I affect people around me. I change their atmosphere. I would much rather leak joy into their lives, even if only for a few minutes, then add to their heap pile of depressed, self-pity, wouldn’t you?
Bernadette Chambers has one last assignment before graduating Harris-Spotchnet’s Finishing School of the Peculiar Kind, and unfortunately, she’ll need more than her training has prepared her for when it comes to being a governess to a small child who witnessed her father’s kidnapping, but her lack of preparedness with the child is nothing compared to the sparks ignited by the child’s uncle and his desperate desire to keep his niece safe.
Retired Society Agent Isaac Clanton Willoughby, knew his brother was on the verge of a scientific breakthrough to cure a disease that took his late wife when he disappeared days before the cure was to be unveiled at Andropogon’s Worlds Fair. Now it’s up to him to discern his brother’s secret codes, find out who took him, and ensure his niece’s well-being by hiring the perfect governess without becoming distracted by her beauty and intelligence. But when he discovers nothing is as it seems, can he push past his reservations and trust the woman to help him unravel the mystery left by his brother before it is too late?
Christina Rich is a mother of four children, a grandmother of one, a romance author with Love Inspired Historical, Forget Me Not Romances, a photographer, and a painter, and she is currently working on several non-fiction books. You can connect with her on Facebook at Author Christina Rich and on Twitter @Christinainspy Threefoldstrand.com