When discouragement attempts to sneak in at anytime, Joseph immediately comes to thought. It seemed he had one challenge after another and he continued to grow spiritually. Anyone familiar with this story knows that the same brothers that had plotted to kill him but sold him into slavery instead, later in life they owed their very existence to him. They had to come to him for food. I never read this without going to Romans 8:28 which reads “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
Every challenge he faced was necessary for his growth, but he was never separated from God and neither are we. Whenever I feel I am stuck, I simply remind myself that I just cannot see the entire picture yet, but I know it is always good since my life is guided by God and it will soon be revealed to me.
This afternoon my niece called from another city while visiting her mother, my sister. She put the telephone up to her ear and I was able to tell her that I love her! She has not known me for over five years but my niece said that she smiled a big smile. In my heart I believe she recognized my voice and that call has made my day. Gratitude and humility are filling my spirit as I bask in God’s Love. Psalm 16:11 reads “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fulness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
There is always something to be grateful for and they seem to multiply when we become conscious of them.
While at my desk studying and praying, I received a frantic call from someone in another state asking me to pray about the weather since the predictions do not look good. The verse to a Hymn we sing at Church came to mind:
“In heavenly Love abiding, No change my heart shall fear;
And safe is such confiding, For nothing changes here.
The storm may roar without me, My heart may low be laid;
But God is round about me, And can I be dismayed?”
Isaiah 41:10 states “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” These words appear to me to be a promise and I will take them as such.
This is almost embarrassing to share and I think I will anyway. Since I bank online, my credit score is available with one click. From time to time, I will check it. It is always very, very high and I am glad of that, but today it had dropped almost 100 points. Then I found myself wondering what could have happened. Nothing had changed and I did spend some time questioning this.
It is wise to keep up with bills, etc. but to let it effect your self-worth may need to be addressed. My self-worth has nothing to do with my bank account, price of my home or car or credit rating. Nobody’s true identity depends upon that information. Job 22:21 states “Submit to God and be at peace with Him; in this way prosperity will come to you.”
My heart fills with humility as I think about spending thirty minutes trying to figure something like that out humanly. At the same time, I am filled with gratitude to see how far I have come! Thank you, Father that I caught my thinking earlier than I would have years ago.
As I studied the 13th Chapter of John when Jesus washed His disciples’ feet, I saw how much Peter resisted this show of kindness and love. Peter is so easy to relate to for you can see so much humanness and willfulness in him. It reminded me of how much easier it is for me to give than receive. Jesus was stern with Peter as He told him he would have no part with Him if this were the case. Giving and receiving are equally important! Sometimes the little ego tries to enter where giving is concerned. It becomes evident just how important receiving is as we pray for an answer to a problem. Don’t we need to be receptive and expectant of an answer?
John 15:11 states “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”
The day before yesterday while talking with a friend, he told me of a call his wife had earlier that morning while they were studying their Bible Lesson together. Her daughter had called from another state where they were going to be for about six weeks. They had recently purchased a home in the same city where my friend lives. She asked her mother if she would find a pest control company to exterminate their home while they were away and my friend’s wife replied she would later that day.
After hanging up, she resumed studying with my friend. As soon as they finished the doorbell rang and when she opened the door, it was a pest control salesman going door to door in the neighborhood looking for business. If he had come thirty minutes earlier, she would have thanked him and sent him on his way, but she gave him her daughter’s number instead. God’s timing is always perfect.
This was not a coincidence but God in action. As we begin to see God, He shows up everywhere. Psalm 20:7 states “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.”
Several days ago, I was thinking about someone who sometimes displayed a quality that certainly was not from God. This morning as I was praying, this person came into my thought and at the exact time, I was led to turn to look out my back window. There is a large tree that I noticed a piece of bark sticking straight out. As I examined closer, it was not bark, but a lizard that blended exactly into the trunk of the tree. Then I realized no matter how much this looked like it was a part of the tree, it was not. It had nothing to do with the tree itself.
Once again, I thought of the person with the ungodlike quality and realized that was not part of his true identity as a child of God. At the same time, I looked and the lizard had scurried down the tree and out into the grass. Love filled my heart as I thought of God’s real child, perfect and unblemished.
1 Corinthians 13:12 states “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”