On Mondays and Fridays I send out a little encouragement to remind us that even though this world can give us troubles, we have an advocate to help us traverse these trials. I pull in scripture with pictures for these encouragements because they help me visualize better. Today I want to remind all of our deliverer.
Good evening friends. What a glorious day today we had here in the midwest. It was a true reprieve. Webster describes reprieve as : to give relief or deliverance for a time. And today with the little bit of rain we got Sunday and the front finally moving through, it gave us a much needed but short reprieve – after all it is June and legally summer for the northern hemisphere. It was 72 when I left the office today – 72!! This time two weeks ago it was 92 . Thank you, I will take this short deliverance from the heat. Deliverance is an interesting word. We think of getting something delivered to us or delivered away from us that makes us relieved in some way. I like to think of the quiet but powerful deliverance we get from God. The Psalms are full of the messages of deliverance from the troubles of this world. God protects us – I picture a cleft in a rock or a cave with Jesus standing protectively in front of that opening. Nothing harmful is getting past Him to us.
We are delivered…for all time. Hard times, difficult times and sad time still come but we are given peace to survive them.
The only thing is, it requires trust. And for some, that can be a hard thing. Sometimes our lives blow up in our faces so much we have little trust to give. But if we can get there, it is the most surprising thing to feel and comprehend. There is not anything you can compare it to here on earth for it is not from earth – it’s from heaven.
So trust in Him, believe He loves you, even when we may not seem loveable – He still loves us. He loves us when we feel on top of the world and when we are shattered and scattered across the floor. He is always close at hand, you just have to reach out to Him and he reaches down to you.
His hand is always reaching for your hand, regardless of where you are in your walk with Him. At the beginning, in the middle…wherever you are.
So be encouraged that you don’t have to do this alone. You have an advocate to walk beside you. There are even times He will carry you because you just don’t have the strength. He will never leave you.
Remember his profound kindness to you and try to always be kind for others who are struggling.
I wanted to share the words of my devotional this morning from “My Utmost for His Highest” by Oswald Chambers. We sometime have life forces pounding on us that seem more than we can stand. We are moaning “enough”. But Oswald reminds us…
Perseverance means more than endurance, more than simply holding on until the end. Oswald Chambers
Revelations is a book of hope reminding us that we can survive this life if we just hold o and trust Him.
“A person’s life is in the hands of God like a bow and arrow in the hands of an archer. God is aiming at something we can not see, but our Lord continues stretching until His purpose is in sight, then he lets the arrow fly.” Oswald Chambers
Even though we feel we can take no more, if we continue to maintain an intimate relationship with Christ our faith in Him will help us persevere.
“Faith is not some weak and pitiful emotion. It is a strong and vigorous confidence built on God’s love for us.” Oswald Chambers
“The real meaning of eternal life is a life that can face anything it has to face without wavering.” Oswald Chambers
So as you face the trials of this life, raise and uplifted hand above and I promise He has a hand reaching down to you to help you survive. He never puts more on us than we can tolerate.
And in closing I remind us all of the power of kindness. Kindness has a power of strength that can not be measured and it can sometimes be the one thing that helps us survive, whether we give it or receive it.
You know how some words sound funny when you hear them or when you speak them. Yeah, I know I am from the south and a lot of my words sound funny to those around me now here in the midwest but do you have those words that you over enunciate because they are fun to say. Linda Hill has challenged us to day with Stream of Consciousness Saturday to use a word we had to look up.
For me, one of those is in scripture and while it may sound different, it has a powerful meaning – propitiation. That’s a 5 syllable word, at least it is in the south. It’s a word that has tripped me up a bit because for a long time I didn’t really understand its significance. A devotion I read the other day with Oswald Chambers spoke about it in 1 John 2:2.
Webster’s defines propitiation “1 – the act of gaining the favor or goodwill for someone or something, something that appeases; 2 – an atoning sacrifice.”
An atoning sacrifice, that is a phrase I fully understand. Jesus sacrificed himself to satisfy the wrath of God so that we would not have to. Wow. Intellectually I understand that but my humanness asks the age old question…“WHY”.
That’s why. It is a gift of grace. Something we don’t deserve or have the ability to earn.
His love for us can not be shaken, destroyed or matched.
There are some of us who are hurting today in some form or fashion, or we have family or friends who are hurting and scared. I encourage you today to hang on to His outstretched hand. The road you are on is hard, bumpy and filled with holes but God’s love for you is strong, smooth and everlasting. And remember, it’s only temporary and He is always walking right beside you.
So feel His love and surrounding peace today. I promise the Holy Spirit inside of you knows exactly how you feel and He is letting God know even when you can’t tell Him. Take a deep breath of His love and relax in His grace. And as you go along your journey, remember to always be kind. It is a reflection of Christ in your inner being.
I missed church yesterday. Bummer. I walked out to the car, got in, drove to the corner and noticed it didn’t feel right. THEN I noticed the light was on telling me I had tire pressure issues. We get so intent on our task sometimes, we totally miss the warning signs given us. Sure enough, when I got out and looked I saw the driver side front tire was flat. So I drove around to the alley and parked in the driveway to change the tire(which in itself was a nightmare). I usually park out front because that keeps me on one level with no stairs. Stairs and I are not good friends anymore, due to that thing we call aging. So today I took the tire to Blain’s for review because I have road hazard insurance with them since that is where I bought those tires. A great thing to have by the way as I got a new $139 tire for $15. While there I found out that the hole was in the sidewall. How in the world did that happen so I asked to see it. This is what it looked like. The angle of the cut was …well…
My daughter says I was having a conspiracy theorist moment thinking why someone would do that on one tire. But after the spray paint issue of last year, yeah I believe it. Then when I get home, my neighbor has the auto club changing their drivers side front tire. Coincidence?? Maybe…but here is what I do know. It really doesn’t matter because God is in full control and He is good all the time. I was safe in my home and not on the road when this hole suddenly appeared.
We have life exploding all around us and a lot of it we don’t even see in our visual realm.
But John reminds us we have someone who is ever watchful in all we do; protecting, loving and nurturing.
The bible is filled with encouragement to help us when we get scared and unsure of what is happening. He is always reminding us that He is close by.
To think that He sings over me. How awesome is that. So we can be ASSURED of His love and it strengthens us with faith and hope.
I think that sometimes we get so consumed with what is going on around us, we forget WHO lives in us. Even when things are going good, we forget that. So let us close our eyes in grateful praise to Him above who is mindful of everything that comes our way.
And remember to allow the goodness we feel to shine outward to those who need a taste of it and be kind. Kindness has a beauty all its own.