Do you ever think about all the people that have come and gone in your life? Do you ever think about the marks they left on your heart and the ones you left on theirs?
There was a time I didn’t give it much thought of the different seasons that brought different people into my life. It was more of a “that’s just life” mentality. Then….I became involved in a relationship with God. I soon learned that old mentality was compiled by my own foolish thoughts.
I often ponder on the many different paths that crossed with mine, and mine with theirs. I often wonder, Did I leave a mark on their hearts? What mark did they leave on mine? Whether they are scars or hand and footprints, they are still imprints left with the intention to recognize God’s intervention with each one. Each person that comes into my life is a new opportunity to Love them the way God does. Not all seasons will be pleasant, but He is still present during each one. He tests our Faith and waits for us to acknowledge His involvement in our lives. Are we quick to dismiss someone from our lives? Are we tempted? Intrigued? Grateful? Forgiving? How do we respond to how people impact us?
Do you ever think about those people who enter our lives for short seasons, but leave deeper marks on our hearts than others who have been here for many? Why is that? What is it about human connection that binds our hearts to one another so intimately and profoundly?
I’d like us to take a walk through our own hearts and review the imprints left behind by the travelers who passed through. I’d like us to take a deeper look into what these marks mean and how they fit into the palm of God’s hands. I’d also like us to think about the marks we leave behind on others and how our roles in their lives could be the seeds to a whole new season for them.
Sometimes God brings people into our lives for us to imprint friendship into their hearts.
We are used as footprints along their path as a guide for their continued journey.
We have many pit stops along the way, where God veers us into the hearts of His people. Rather than us seeing them as just flesh and blood, we ought to internalize the fact that God is indeed using us as a vessel to communicate to others.
It is especially important for us to extend our friendship to others the way God extends His. Our hearts, intentions and Love ought to diffuse the brokenness of another. Whether that brokenness comes in the form of loneliness, heartbreak, addiction, etc. The person God brings to us is in need of the friendship God has instilled in us. Maybe this person will show appreciation, maybe they won’t- and is no certainty of how long they will stay; it is our job to imprint the heart of God into theirs. It is not our job to dictate the hands of time.
Have you been that friend? Have others moved along walking in the footprints of God? Or have they moved on in a worsen condition than from when they arrived?
“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.
How difficult is this verse to internalize? If it were easy, hypocrisy wouldn’t exist right? God tells us how we ought to treat others. If it’s anything less, then we need to recognize and reconcile.
People are cruel. People are selfish. People are deceitful; self-loathing and bitter. People are broken; even more so without Christ in their lives.
Are you someone who leaves behind an imprint that has broken a heart? Maybe several? Are you careless with their feelings? Do you find escape by making excuses for the mark you leave?
Regardless of the reasons, please realize you aren’t just hurting a person, but an object of God’s Love. You are ignoring the essence of God’s heart and listening to your own. Do you not know the heart is wicked? Deceitful? God’s very word is the moral compass to all we do. Without it, we are led to treat others carelessly, causing damage that can potentially weaken their journey for an extreme amount of time.
There is no excuse to not be gentle with someone’s heart, regardless of how they are treating you or your circumstances. You always have another choice.
The imprint you leave on others matters. You are a piece of their journey, so be mindful of where you step.
God will indeed draw close to the brokenhearted and bind their wounds, but that doesn’t clear us from hurting them.
Romans 8:24-25 “But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.”
Our souls need refueling. There are times where we run dangerously low on the Faith, Hope and Love required to keep us going. God knows when our tanks are running on fumes, and He often sends us down the paths of His people.
When someone comes into your life in pieces of hopelessness, it is your duty to recognize t…he task God has assigned to you. It is your duty to provide the hope they need to continue on. We cannot refuel them on our own; for it is God’s spirit that works mightily through us.
Are you being that arrow of Hope to them? Are you investing the time needed to fill their hearts with the word of God? Are you equipping them with the truth?
Hope is not seen. It’s the wounds that haven’t healed yet. It’s the blessings not received yet. It’s the future unlived yet.
For those who enter your life discouraged and dismayed by their circumstances, give them the promise of God. Imprint it upon their paths, so that they may be refueled by the very essence of Him. Be that messenger of Hope God is calling you to be.
“For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace.”
There will be times God brings you someone who is thirsty for His fullness. To be full on His truth is a steady flow of pure grace. Some don’t have that-they don’t know they need that. Your heart out to be prepared and equipped to be that fountain of flowing grace God has instilled in you.
Do you ignore their thirst? Selfishly seeking your own agenda? Do you contribute to their withering well or are you that hose that fills them?
Don’t leave others alone. Don’t neglect their emptiness with more emptiness. Don’t seclude them from the abundance of Love God abides in you.
“Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust, who does not turn to the proud, to those who go astray after a lie.”
When God places a task before you to accompany another in trust, how do you respond to that task?
So many people are lost; are wandering life in darkness and dismay. They have been led astray towards a path of constant lies. Your job is to lead them to truth. They may come to you blindfolded from the truth of God; seeking and searching for the path that will unveil their blindness.
Be aware of the delicacy of a task such as this. You have an opportunity to lead; to take the hand of another and help them understand where their trust needs to be.
It’s your job to plant those seeds by being that reflection of God’s trusting nature. Be careful to not lead them farther from truth, but rather right into the heart of it.
If God chooses you, then He has already equipped you with the words and guidance you need to guide that person. He pursues the broken and lost, and relies on His people to go forth the work He has established for us.
Be gentle and be that light of trust, so they may see between the broken fragments of this dark world. If you continue to trust the Lord, He will continue to lead you, and you can continue to lead them straight into His arms.
2 Timothy 4:2
“Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
Whatever the task God assigns you; whoever He brings you, know it is all for purposes to teach and lead others to truth.
ThBe prepared for in any season you could be placed right in the center of God’s work.
Be mindful of what He is asking you to do and humbly embrace the opportunity.
Be watchful of the lessons and be geared to use the gifts God has instilled in you.
Be gentle. Be Kind. Be bold in truth. Others should leave you better than their condition walking in.
The seeds in which you plant ought to take root. Even if you don’t see the full bloom, be focused on the soil in which you plant.
Others should draw closer to God through you, see His heart and be made aware of His unfailing and merciful Love.
The spirit which dwells within you has power, strength and wisdom. Be guided through and within Him.
Leave others marked with an imprint of God, so as you watch them leave, the faded hand and footprints you see are those of God.