Set Your Heart On Things Above

Valerie Woerner
Originally published on March 20, 2020

Set your heart on things above

When I started to process the idea of a month at home with the girls off school and the majority of things shutting down, after some obvious panic was a hope for what this unique time can bring. Never before in my life (and I assume most of ours) has there been an empty month, much less a week, of places to be and things to do.
So in the midst of grief, uncertainty and lots of disappointments, I see a ray of hope at what this quarantined time CAN be. We're fresh off Pastor Dennis' series on Margin and I can't help but think we've been primed for such a time as this. If you listened intently wondering how in the world to make a little breathing room in your life...
Here it is. 
It's not at all what I would have expected. And I'm not saying it will be easy. We've got a lot of other things vying for our time and attention like worry, "staying informed" (i.e. hours of scrolling news stories) or trying to create alternate plans that regain some of our control. But my prayer is that, faced with the choice to spend time glued to the news and overcome with worry or to get quiet and embrace a slower pace with Jesus and margin we could have never imagined, we'd choose Jesus. 
Corrie ten Boom said "If the devil cannot make us bad, he will make us busy.”
Can we make a firm collective resistance right now against the enemy's plan? 
What if the alternative was a month of fervent, mountain-moving prayers, soul-deep rest and presence and intentionality with the ones in our home?
We serve a God who makes this possible. 
James 4:7, is a well-known passage about resisting the enemy. 
"Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
But it's sandwiched between two lines I think we can't skip. 
1. Submit yourselves, then, to God.
2. Come near to God. 
We can't resist the devil without submitting ourselves to God, realizing HIS sovereignty over everything AND our humanity. That last part I forget more often than I'd like to admit, but remembering it simply means I embrace the limits God gave me and operate within his margins. I can experience His rest when I'm not trying to be godlike. The second part? We have to come near to God. We aren't the ones who scare the enemy off. It's God's authority that does it. So draw near to Him.
As we look back on this current season, may it have been a time not full of uncertainty and fear but one where we rediscovered God by making room for Him.

Valerie Metrejean Woerner