Thursday, October 18, 2012

Walking Psalm-like through Difficulty

Rejoicing doesn't ignore the pain.  It is not plastic.  It is not inhuman.  Those "plastic people" that I so despised in high school which said all was well but were torn to a million sheds inside.

But it does hope in God.
And He is big enough.  He can handle our doubts, our fears, the fact we just plain loathe the circumstances.  He can handle our questions, even if voiced to others would sound so.....profane.

There is a pattern in Psalms.
Expression of who God is.
Reaffirmation of the character of God and His working in our lives.

Try to follow that pattern when coming to Him with your deepest hurts, regrets, frustrations.

He loves you and understands.

And try out Sons of Korah, signing the Psalms.  These young men surely will help your hope in God to be renewed.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

What if's

Today I have been given permission to repost a phenomenal meditation:

What if…
…things don’t change,
…you don’t feel better,
…the person who hurt you never apologizes,
…your dream doesn’t come true,
…people don’t understand you,
…you feel like you haven’t been successful,
…hard work doesn’t pay off,
…your family isn’t your closest ally,
…you feel unprepared for current circumstances,
…your loved ones reject Christ,
…your heart gets broken,
…life’s harder than you thought it would be.
You can choose to respond in Truth:
see the entire entry here

Thursday, October 11, 2012

"You don't know what it is to rejoice in the Lord unless you are suffering"

I was listening to this little video while I checked this and that on the computer.
This literally stopped me in my tracks:

"I tell you you don't know what it is to rejoice in the Lord unless you are suffering....put your roots down in a way that you haven't done before....... Not the lack of pain, not the lack of grief, but the overwhelming glory and joy that comes up.  His hand upholds me....... its not about controlling your enviroment.  It's about controlling your allegiances."  Tim Keller

You see, I'd been experiencing some pain.  That internal type.  And while I am cognizant of this lesson the Father is teaching me on rejoicing, I'm barely crawling when it comes to practicing it.  And somehow, I was thinking that my pain immobilized my rejoicing.  Truly, it ought to mobilize it!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Jaunt into Sadness

So when things are dark.  It may be circumstances.  It may be hormones, or mental illness.  It may be that time of the year that brings darkness to your heart.

Recently, I was sad.  I didn't know why, then was reminded of the significance of that date.  But it spiraled from there.  Someone in my life didn't respond as I'd hoped, and I was left feeling deserted.  sad. alone. and like the circumstances were hopeless.

I've been a believer for a long time.  I know better.  My inbox was inundated with encouraging posts and blogs.  I knew they were true.  I reread  things on  this blog!  But my heart remained torn, the tears kept coming.  The pain beyond tears tore my heart for a week.   And worse yet, a situation that I had looked forward to and longed for was tainted by unexpected obligations and duties that others should have carried out, but didn't.

Truly, I tried to surround myself with music and words from the Word.  My heart cried out to God in psalm-like fashion.  But the sadness would not leave.

Then the lifting came-in  sharing the joy of others, listening to others that I loved laugh.  And smiling to myself.  And remembering the work that God was doing in their lives to bring about such a delightful sound.

Remember.  God tells us to remember.  He tells us to rejoice.  I failed in this this go-round, but I suspect that unless the Father calls me home, I will have another opportunity and soon. So I need to ask forgiveness, and purpose in my heart to, by grace, be obedient next time.

What has helped rise your heart when walking through darkness?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Whenever We Need Help

Hebrews 4:14 Therefore since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavensJesus the Son of Godlet us hold fast to our confession.4:15 For we do not have a high priest incapable of sympathizing with our weaknessesbut one who has been tempted in every way just as we are,yet without sin. 4:16 Therefore let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help. 15 

In listening to a message recently the last part of verse 16 grabbed me. ...   "to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help."  whenever we need help.

We need help continually.  Sometimes we are more aware than usual that our heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, and that outside of Christ, no truly good thing dwells in us.  Oh, but we so hope we actually deserve kindness!  The closer we draw to the Light, the more we see, and are horrified, by our own wickedness.  The more we fail, the more we see our need . We can try to ignore it or cover it up.  Then we do not increase in godliness, we are not more like Him, we are simply better actors.  But when, by God's grace we persist in acknowledging the awful truth. we find, truly, we need Him every hour, every minute, every second, every circumstance.

The help does not come grudgingly.  The verses before this tell us our great High Priest has been tempted in every way and sympathizes with us!  The definition of "every way" means "some of every kind".  He gets it.  He's been there, done that.  He remembers we are but dust.  While the Lord Jesus Christ is King  of the Universe, He feels sympathy for us.  Not only does He experience sympathy for us, but He grants grace, whenever we need it (continually).  He does not give grudgingly, but eagerly.

Oh that our failings, or even our desires to do good would drive us to dwell in his unfailing, unending mercy.  And thankfully experiencing that mercy, we may rejoice in Him!

1) grace 1a) that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech 2) good will, loving-kindness, favour 2a) of the merciful kindness by which God, exerting his holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, keeps, strengthens, increases them in Christian faith, knowledge, affection, and kindles them to the exercise of the Christian virtues 3) what is due to grace 3a) the spiritual condition of one governed by the power of divine grace 3b) the token or proof of grace, benefit 3b1) a gift of grace 3b2) benefit, bounty 4) thanks, (for benefits, services, favours), recompense, reward

from 5463; graciousness (as gratifying), of manner or act (abstract or concrete; literal, figurative or spiritual; especially the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life; including gratitude):-acceptable, benefit, favour, gift, grace(- ious), joy, liberality, pleasure, thank(-s, -worthy). see GREEK for 5463