This morning as I read the book of Nehemiah and study the building of the wall, the relentless pleading of his friends for him to come down is so apparent. While translating this to modern day challenges, I soon recognize the more my desire to do God’s will, the more seductive my friends become in the guise of doubt, dismay, judgment, criticism and discouragement. By putting God first, error or evil becomes a bald imposition.
James 4:7 and the first line of 8, reads, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.”
When experiencing a challenge of whatever nature, it is easy to want to work it out through force and human will. By humbly turning to God and becoming grateful in knowing God is working it out, we release the fear and chaos in our thinking. Then, and only then, can we begin to see perfection and harmony right where the upset was! Psalm 112:7 states, “He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord.”
With God’s help and guidance, I will do this today!
If one really wants to be humbled and in awe, he needs to contemplate the power of God, from finite to infinite. As I was looking out my window at my plants growing toward the light, a flock of birds flew over in perfect formation. Even as they change directions, they are aligned. The one God governs All and how can we ever doubt that Truth. Often we think we are alone with our challenges, but how can that be if you look out at nature? Joshua 1:5 reads, “No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.” To me, that is very clear and reassures me of my protection. Either God is all or nothing. I choose All!
It is easy when things are going as planned to think we had something to do with it. When there are challenges, we are more willing to give it to God, but actually, He is always in charge! How arrogant we are at times when our next breath is dependent on Him!
Isaiah 55:9-11 reads, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth; It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”
Our heart should stay filled to the brim with gratitude and humility!
As I look back over this past year, my heart fills with gratitude for the proof of God’s Love in sparing my husband among other challenges. The spiritual growth I have experienced due to the challenges has been vast and I am reminded of Isaiah 43:2 which states, “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Psalms 66:12 reads, “We went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place.”
This has been so true for me in this past year and I feel very blessed. I wish each and everyone a blessed Happy New Year!
Every day brings new blessings. Some may appear to be challenges, when actually, they bring us out of the complacency and mesmerism of this world. Others will reveal God’s presence as birds singing, flowers blooming, family and friends. All things Good are from God. Colossians 2:2-3 reads, “My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”
Over the week-end, we went to see Star Wars and were vastly entertained. When Hans Solo was killed, though, it took me a minute for it to register that it was only a movie, because I felt sadness and grief. I later thought how similar it feels when it seems my feelings are hurt, or disappointment surfaces when my plans are thwarted.
The experience I felt in the movie may feel exactly the same! But am I viewing an illusion?
The photo below looks like a reflection of a tree with leaves, when in reality, it is only Texas wild rice growing in the river and a tree on the bank with no leaves. Do you see the correlation as you view certain challenges that may appear real?