When you just need an ear…

It always seems as if the enemy is gaining in the war on sin. With every attack his only goal is to knock us down, to shake our foundation, to shatter our faith (steal, kill, destroy). When the unthinkable happens my first thought is..why, Lord?

I tell myself it’s not God that makes mistakes. It’s His children that make bad choices, that choose not to be obedient. I inevitably question my own walk, my own committment to the living God. Ultimately, I ask myself…”Did I not impress upon my loved ones the ways of God sufficiently to have avoided this horrible incident?” 

(RM) “Sometimes my life makes no sense!” That’s what I say. When I read that

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose (Rom 8:26-28).”

Hearing the news…I cry out, Lord, I don’t know what to pray. 

The world does not know what it wants! It’s quite evident in the lives of many individuals. Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of the impenitent sin of the people, complete deviation. Our society is heading south very quickly and moral absolutes are no more. 

Rich Mullins sang, “I am ready for the storm…” As I sit and listen to him sing this song, I am telling myself…”NO, I am not ready for this storm! Lord. 

The storms of life can be devastating on so many levels.  As believers we turn to our God knowing full well that the battle has already been won. The enemy has been destroyed. He may try to shake our foundation, but the Lord is our rock and He is not shaken. He is not moved.

We are in this world, but we are not of this world, and though we must confront the enemy we hold on to the promise of God that He will never leave us, nor forsake us. Still, we need to confess our doubts and fears, and our unbelief so that the Lord can minister to us, so the Lord can work in us and through us, so the Lord can meet us where we are and give us peace.  

Oh Lord…guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. 

Deep Waters? Trust in Jesus…

beach6There are times when my Christian walk feels like I am out in the middle of the ocean caught in a tumultuous storm, no boat, no floating device, just my body tossed to and fro by thrashing winds, waves crashing in on me, rain and thunder so loud I can’t even hear the sound of my own screams for help. But my God, He is so awesome! He opens my eyes and allows me to see His hand at work in my life-and He gives me peace. And the feeling passes. A momentary lapse of faith that comes when I focus on the circumstances in my life, and on my inability to change them… rather than trusting in the Living God… that He is working all things out for His purpose. It is not just a platitude. God really is working in the lives of those He has chosen, in those He knows by name. When I consider that God knows me and calls me by name…I am left speechless and in total awe that the Living God thinks about me all day long. Who am I, that the Living God would give me so much thought? I am no one special, but I am His child. I am the child of the King and if you are so blessed to be a child of the King…Praise God! Pity that Christian that sees a blessing only in material things, but rejoice with the one that finds contentment in the things of God.

There are many that call themselves Christians that He will turn away. The world mocks us because it refuses to believe in God, and rejects the love and salvation of Jesus. The things of God are foolishness to those that perish. I pray for those He calls by name, because…gosh…to be like Jesus and love like Jesus is not easy…but He never leaves us alone…Praise God!

Rich Mullins sang long ago…these lyrics…song titled “Elijah”

The Jordan is waiting for me to cross through
My heart is aging I can tell
So Lord, I’m begging
For one last favor from You
Here’s my heart take it where You will

This life has shown me how we’re mended
And how we’re torn
How it’s okay to be lonely as long as you’re free
Sometimes my ground was stoney
And sometimes covered up with thorns
And only You could make it what it had to be
And now that it’s done
Well, if they dressed me like a pauper
Or if they dined me like a prince
If they lay me with my fathers
Or if my ashes scatter on the wind
I don’t care…

This is one of my favorite Rich Mullins songs…Elijah.

 

Desert Storm

So, my one year-old grandson has been down with a stomach virus the last few days. My little guy is just miserable. He has not had much of appetite, so we have been giving him clear liquids, dry crackers, and some Pedialyte to replace his electrolytes. Anyway, he is really miserable. This morning, as I watched him walkabout, crying, fussing, kinda rubbing his tummy and stumbling…just inconsolable. I wanted to hold him and comfort him and so I extended open arms, but he would just turn away, fussily. Even when I picked him up to comfort him, he fought me to put him down. There was just no consoling him. Well, I let him walk around, going in and out of the room fussing, stumbling, crying, every once in a while he let out a giggle that quickly turned to tears. I followed him, always near to catch him if he fell and make sure he did not hurt himself. That went on for a couple of hours. After a long morning, I noticed he was getting tired and so I picked him up, put him over my shoulders, still a bit fussy, but he finally fell into a sweet slumber. He was tired from not feeling well, but like when your’e sick…you just feel so bad you can’t sleep, well…babies are no different. The stomach bug was getting the best of him, but the doctor, as always said the virus had to run its course. Just keep him hydrated, which is what we are doing. My little fella. I feel bad because there is little I can do to comfort him and even when I try to provide comfort, it gets rejected. As a grandma, it hits the heart. I put him to bed and the little guy is still sleeping.

Well, the Lord is so gracious. Through this first trial with my grandson experiencing his first bug, the Lord uses the moment to show me some truth.

As children of the Living God, we get hurt, we ache, we moan and groan, we cry, we stumble, sometimes it’s because of some of the choices we mad, good, or bad, and other times through no fault of ours. In either circumstance, the Lord is always there to hold us, to comfort us and like my little fella that rejects my offer of comfort, so we reject the One that reaches out to comfort us.

And even more the Lord reveals He knows our pain. We, as humans can sympathize with someone suffering from the cold or the flu, for how many among us have never experienced a bad cold. I don’t know of anyone. And how many can feel the pain of someone suffering with cancer, not just the physical pain, but the mental anguish? Perhaps there is someone out there that has never had even a slightly sick day in their life, perhaps…pity him.

How many of us can know what is in the heart of any man. None of us. No one can truly know the pain in anyone’s heart. But here we have a Living God that created us, that knows our every thought, our every need, holds our tears in His hand and He wants to comfort us, yet at every turn, we reject Him. We, like a stumbling infant don’t know any better. And as adults, we believe we know best. We know how to fix what ails us. We turn to worldly solutions, forever finding the cure, but never being cured. My grandson can see me. He knows me and he may not understand that I am only trying to comfort him (because of his age), but he knows I am there for him whenever he is ready to let me comfort him…he reaches out his arms. And when he sees his mother, well she provides the comfort only a mother can provide. How much more can the Creator offer to His children? He wants to do for us what I want to do for my grandson, only He as the Creator of man can comfort beyond human ability. But like my grandson, we have to allow the Comforter to hold us.  Otherwise, it’s not until we finally get so tired we just collapse we reach out to the Father, and the Father is right there to pick us up and hold us in His arms, to shelter us in the shadow of His wings. How awesome is that!!! Image

I have a friend that deals with illness upon illness. She is on Kidney Dialysis. She had diabetes. She broke both ankles, at different times, so badly, she now finds it difficult to walk unsupported. Now, the doctors tell her she might have cancer. I try to comfort her, but it’s hard to find the right words, so I pray for her. I ask God to shelter her in the shadow of His wings, so the Lord carries her. She is seeing a psychiatrist to deal with her depression and suicidal tendencies…an effect of the various drugs she must take and then well…just the situation. It does not help, she says. The Lord, however, waits. His hands are outstretched and they never tire. It’s hard to reach for something you can’t see, so faith is a tremendous thing to have…