“For I know the plans I have for you – this is the Lord’s declaration – place for our welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11
L & L Cafe’! That was the name of mine and my best friend’s backyard make believe cafe’. Her name was Lori, I’m Lisa, and the name just seemed to fit. I loved that place! It was actually my family’s small greenhouse, but to two little girls,…it was THE neighborhood cafe’. We created mud, I mean… delicious chocolate pies and the most gourmet salads you’ve ever seen from tree and shrub leaves — and it was all just too much fun for me!
I loved wiping off the counter in the greenhouse, because in my mind it was “the counter” of a most quaint cafe’ that had the soft light of the setting sun pouring through the slide glass window. To others it may have smelled just like Miracle Grow and potting soil, but to me it was full of the aromas from Bigmama’s kitchen. Bigmama was my great-grandmother and I hardly recall every seeing her without an apron on while serving her family delicious food. I can remember acting her out while putting a “cake pan” in a pretend oven out in that tiny little kitchen. Well, the oven was an ole’ crate and the kitchen was just half of the greenhouse. But like I said, to me…it was perfect!
Once I entered into that small greenhouse, in my imagination, I was immediately in a wonderful place to serve. And when my mother called me to the dinner table, I would walk out of that cafe’ going straight to our garden house to wash all the “rich brown cocoa powder” off my hands. Having fed a place in my spirit that God put there – the most childlike need to serve – I would walk away from that garden house … contented. Happy.
It’s no different today as an adult. Being in places and situations where I’m allowed to live in a mental apron just causes me to come to life! And I recognize that….I recognize that only the Lord could have created me to absolutely love serving. I recognize that God really does have a plan! And that plan has its roots in His word.
God said in His Word in Jeremiah 1:5: “I chose you before I formed you in the womb; I set you apart before you were born.” Then in Jeremiah 29:11 it says, “For I know the plans I have for you – this is the Lord’s declaration – place for our welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
I’m deeply grateful for my day job where I can serve my boss and those in the office. I love being home where I can serve my husband and family. And the privilege of sweet friendships where Rip and I can go to their homes and help them in some way that means something to them, well, that is one of the reasons God has us on this planet.
Knowing God chose you before He formed you, why not take a closer inventory of your life, too. Take notice of the times, places and ways that you recall experiencing great happiness and fulfillment. What brings a smile to your face when you know you “get to” do something you enjoy. Something you love. Be specific. Write down the things you just love to do…start there. If you need a little more encouragement in making that list, then ask yourself this one question:
What makes me come to life?
As a Christian, the Holy Spirit indwells you, and He is always working at leading you into the abundant PLANS God has for your life. And those plans will not venture off from those “delights and desires” He places in you that just always seem to get your motor going.
I’m happiest in an apron – literally and figuratively! As I have grown from a child playing “Cafe'”, now, as an adult, I know that some of the “plans He has for me” includes living hospitable.
Serving others the Bread of Life.
Serving others the Living Water.
Serving others the nourishments for their soul found only in the agape’ love of God.
Knowing those three “plans” keeps me from saying “Yes” to many things.
If you are miserable with where you are currently working, could it be because there are certain aspects of your place of work that you are not “seeing” as a way to express the gifts and calling He has equipped you with in serving Him? Pray and ask the Father to help you to know, help you to see how you can carry out His plans for your life right where you are. Thank Him for the work you currently have. Thank Him for providing that work. But also ask Him to show you if He has other plans. Other work. Other opportunities in mind for your life. Then trust that He will answer. Often times, when we are not feeling fulfilled in our work, it can be a simple prayer away asking the Lord, with thanksgiving, to show us where we may be missing His divine hand of guidance in our life.
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