Last week I wrote about our lives being like a magnet to the Favour of God…some things about our lives can attract and others can repel the Favour of God and this week’s blog is a great follow up to that. This week’s blog is written by another one of our gorgeous Hills women, Cathy Scott. Cathy is one of the most endearing, warm and enjoyable women to be around. If you ever get ot hear her story you will come away inspired by her faith and tenacity and her ability to dig deep in the greatest of adversity and challenges. She is someone you can both laugh and cry with and come away refreshed by her wit or her wisdom depending on what it is you need most. Cathy is married to Dave and has had 5 children and one grandchild. She has a passionate love for God , her family and her local church and a huge heart for humanity….
I write the following as a part of my story.As I look back over the past couple of generations in my family, I see that our family is not by far, a perfect family – it has it’s fair share of dysfunction. But I can see that right choices made in years gone by, are giving me favour now.
Both sets of my grandparents were Christians. And so were my parents. They raised us in a Christian home where we went to church every week and were all involved in church activities and the community, with Dad pastoring for a while too. I have many memories of my Gran and my mum reading their Bibles.
Dave and I got married and his upbringing was different… being dropped off at Sunday school from a young age, – both his parents giving their hearts to the Lord years later.
We didn’t start off ideally. I was 3 months pregnant. Realizing we’d disadvantaged ourselves through our choices, we had to make some important decisions and choices for our future. Some of these decisions way back then were things like making choices that woudl build our marriage and make our marriage work. We also made the choice to get into God and become involved in a church. We decided that we would never threaten divorce and that it wasn’t an option for us. Any distraction or temptation that lured us away from what we knew to be right, we would to walk away from. It has not always been easy to make those decisions! However, because we did, we now have our own family of four kids, a son-in-law and grand-daughter. As I reflect back over the years, I can see the right choices we made and the result of God’s favour.
There were many times on and off through my youth, that I didn’t feel like going to church or tagging along with my parents to another meeting or church event. However, we were never given the choice. We were expected to be in church, no ifs or buts. Sadly, my parents had to deal with a lot of complaining and winging about church life from me and being the daughter of a pastor added another twist! However, I remember their steadfast faithfulness and that they neverwavered in their resolve to raise us to love God and be the best parents they could be.
Dave and I too, have had just the odd occasion with each of our kids, when they have not wished to join us at church for some reason – but we too, have been insistent that we go to church as a family and there are only rare exceptions. It is a legacy that was passed down to me from generations past and there is no greater joy for Dave and I, than to see our kids loving being in the House of God and now having a granddaughter in the House too!
So often we are inclined to think of favour as something that is linked to finance or status or some worldly measure. I think at Hills we are learning that God’s favour is so much more than that – we have God’s favour and we flourish!
When we choose to make Jesus our Lord, we immediately have His favour – His grace, mercy, forgiveness and love, show us such amazing favour!
I have also noticed that favour often shows itself after a long time of faithfulness and obedience. It’s the small things that add up to make the big things.
Everyday, we make choices. Some of those choices end up requiring His grace and forgiveness, and the consequences of those choices may affect us throughout our lives. Some are little choices to do the right thing – and consistently doing the right thing = FAVOUR.
As I write this, I realize I am abundantly blessed with favour, some of which comes as a result of the generations before me who made right choices. It shows me how important those choices I make are and how they have long lasting effects. I know we all come from different backgrounds and circumstances and it makes me realize that I am blessed to have the heritage I do, but I know that even if you haven’t had what I have had, you can choose to change the course for your family now.
We had a Pastor once who used to say “It’s right to do what it’s right to do!” I believe that’s true and is what brings favour. I am not saying that our works bring favour, but right choices bring favour.
I believe that we have the FAVOUR of God in our family, because of my Grandparent’s faithfulness to Him and because of my Mum and Dad’s faithfulness, even when I’d much rather have stayed in bed and read my book or slept in, they made me go to church.
My prayer is that this legacy will continue through the next generation and so on. Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian – however positioning yourself in a community of other Christians and growing in a personal relationship with God is one of those decisions which attracts the favour of God We are also favoured when we show favour to others. This is part of the Sisterhood mandate.
Favour is the sum of all those little instances of obedience – even in the midst of difficulty – it’s faithfulness and the fruit of that faithfulness that is FAVOUR.
Perhaps you were not blessed to have the background I have. Each of us, no matter what, when we choose God, immediately have His favour. Our choices and faithfulness keep us flourishing even in difficult circumstances and experiencing the amazing favour of God in our lives in spite of those circumstances, because He is faithful and trustworthy.
My prayer is that we continue to FLOURISH as we choose what is right and that we walk confidently in His FAVOUR, consistently showing His favour to others and the world will see God’s favour and be drawn to Him too.