Even If

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Have you ever had a time that a theme in life just keeps popping up at the oddest moments? Well for the last few weeks that has been  happening to me.

Our pastor has started  a new series entitled “Shattered”. It is based on the book of Job. How his life was fantastic one minute and the next everything was gone.

Then as I read a blog of a friend this morning it was about “Broken” and how we are ALL broken at one time or another.

Got an email from a friend that is suffering in all areas of her life.

In my life there are things that weigh heavy like a mountain on my chest.

Broken.

Shattered.

In the blog my friend shared this song by Mercy Me. Perhaps you have already heard it but take a few minutes and listen to the words once again.

Everyone has troubles, is broken, shattered at sometime in their life. Probably more than one time. But did you notice that the words said, “I know your able, I know you can.” We seem to know that God is all powerful, he is more than able. We know there is nothing he can’t do. But is that enough? Is that helping your struggles right now? Do you trust him to be enough?

Listen to the very next words. “But even if you don’t, my HOPE is you alone!” Did you catch that?

Even if you don’t. Even if God doesn’t take away the pain. Even if God doesn’t “fix” the problem. Can we get to the place where we can say, “My Hope is YOU alone”?

When Job lost all his possessions, family, and wealth. He was broken, shattered, but he was able to state the fact that all he had was from God. Then he worshiped God. God WAS his hope.

We need to get to the place where God is our hope alone.

Not what we can achieve.

Not our finances.

He is able. Even if is seems He doesn’t answer the way we want.

Trust him.

Seek him.

Then you can say just like the song,

“IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL.”

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Now Where?

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escape-9When I was in the 7th grade there was a class that I had to take called, “The New Math”. I didn’t get along with the old math so well, so to enter this class was very terrifying for me. Just the word math can get my palms to sweat. Can anyone relate?

In this class the teacher, who had a pocket protector and had his chalk in a metal tube, would put equations on the board and then he would turn to the class and say, “don’t you see?” Well for the longest time I just sat there and in my head was saying, “NO, I don’t see!” We tried to learn base 10, base 2 and so many other crazy things. UGH! what a horrific year.

However, now that I have had lots of time to study, and also teach this subject, it is making sense to me. It took a great deal of time and lots of effort on my part to make math fun and try to explain it in a new and different way to my students. I never used the words, “don’t you see” though. I was able to recognize that look on the faces of my students that no, indeed, they did not see.

Lately I have been going through a study with a few women on our “Identity In Christ”, and just before that we had study Proverbs. Proverbs talks a lot about wisdom and how to get it. (don’t you see?) It is amazing me how all these things are coming together. I know you are one of those who really “does see”. It has just taken me a bit longer.

Things like what I read today, God provides a way out of temptations. Just like the door in the picture above. I have read that many times before and saw a door or a window of escape but never thought about what was on the other side. Today is dawned on me, Jesus is on the other side! Hmm.

When we are tempted to not do the right thing, or weighed down by trials to heavy for anyone to carry we need to go through that door. There is the light of the world, the way maker, the chain breaker, Jesus. He has his arms open wide.  If we will let him, he will hold us, comfort us and restore to joy.

I am not going to ask, “Don’t you see?” I am just going to invite  you to check it out for yourself. Look in the Bible and see all the ways the LORD wants to be your God and have you as his very own child. It all comes together the more you search.

Go through the door and find him.

Everyone is Going Through Something

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storm-21We all have something in our lives causing us upheaval. Perhaps, like one friend, the whole family has sinus, coughing, and are just not feeling great. Maybe, like another friend, they are living daily with the possibility of her husband being let go because the company he works for is cutting back and letting long time employees go. Maybe, your going through the possibility of upcoming surgery.

The song Ryan Stevenson shares today, “THE EYE OF THE STORM” seems to speak to hard times. Listen as he reminds us who is in control.

It seems so hard to think of anything but what you are going through. Just as Peter, when he took his eyes of Jesus and began to sink into the water. The circumstances seemed to overwhelm him. He cried out to the only one that could take care of the situation, Jesus!

When you are going through circumstances beyond your control remember, “in the middle of the war, You guard my soul.” God alone “is the anchor who guards your soul.”

God is our only hope, and we need to put all our trust in him.

He is always available. He loves you and will see you through any and all storms.

He has a tight grip on you and he will “keep holding on.”

You and God will go through the storms together. Keep your eyes on Him and not the storm.

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The Sparrow Knows. Do You?

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As I sit in the hospital waiting for my husband, the words of Jason Gray’s song, Sparrow plays in my head. Listen to the hope filled words.

The words, “There’s not a single star that’s out of place, nothing broken He can’t remake” tumble around in my head and I remember 4 years ago.

We had just retired and we were looking forward to traveling in our motor home and doing fun jobs to supplement our fixed income. We pretty much had things planned out.

Things never seem to go quite as planned do they? My husband started to notice a slight weakness, but we are both getting older, right? Not long after this we were coming home early as he was very tired. We got to our front door and he went up the first of three steps, turned to me with slight panic and said, “I can’t go any farther!” To say I felt some panic is an understatement! I wasn’t strong enough to carry him up 2 more stairs.

Our brand new neighbor saw us and ran over to grab my husband’s belt and picked him up and helped him to a chair in our little home.

After a few doctor appointments and a barrage of tests they came up with a diagnosis, Gillian-Barre’. It is not “fixable” for him but they have made it livable.

We go to the hospital 2 days a month. The treatments help him to continue to live a fairly active life.

Through all of this we could have given up, asked God, “Where are you?”, or worried ourselves into a state, BUT GOD, (don’t you love those two words?) was in this with us and we were not going to give in to self pity.

Worry really does nothing for you, You can play that “what if” game all day but that let’s trouble win. We went to our church family (very new church family I might add) and asked for prayer God was in the whole deal with us.

If you have planned things out and all of a sudden there is a wrench thrown into the works, don’t let the trouble win!

God is right there with you. “He holds the world and he can most certainly hold this moment!”

“Look at the Sparrow.”

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