Run to God

we-do-not-knowLife can feel out of control at times making it difficult to know what to do or where to turn.  Tragedy strikes, loved ones get sick, betrayal destroys relationships, finances crumble, and many more battles can leave us feeling frightened and discouraged.

The night of my husband’s accident, my life suddenly felt completely out of control.  He did not come home and did not answer his phone when I called which is very unlike him.  I feared that something was terribly wrong, so I got dressed and began driving towards his place of employment.  I didn’t know where to go, but knew I needed to find him.

 A few miles from the house I met my cousin, a deputy, who was coming to get me.  When he pulled me over, he didn’t give me any details, just said that I needed to follow him.  I was alone in my car following him to the hospital, not knowing what the future held.  I could not even gather my thoughts enough to call family members.  I could only pray.  Pray that the situation wasn’t as bad as I imagined.  Pray that my husband was alive.  Pray for God to give me strength to face this battle.  I ran to God because I didn’t know what else to do. 

2 Chronicles 20:15 says, “Do not be afraid or discouraged.  For the battle is not yours, but God’s”.  This has often been an encouraging scripture that reminds me that no matter the struggle I am not alone, but knowing the background information makes it even more powerful to me.  Earlier in chapter 20, it says that King Jehoshaphat was told that an immense army was coming to wage war against them.  It seemed they had nowhere to run, but Jehoshaphat ran to God.  In verse twelve he says, “We do not know what to do, but we look to you.” 

God then instructed the people to stand firm and wait for God’s deliverance.  As the people sang and praised God, their enemies began to destroy one another.  Jehoshaphat and his army simply stood still and watched God at work!

My husband’s accident was, like Jehoshaphat’s, a battle that I could not fight.  There was nothing I could do to change the outcome.  All I could do was look to God and trust Him.  Praise God my husband’s injuries were not as extensive as I imagined, but it has been a difficult few months as he recovers from a traumatic brain injury.  The battle isn’t over, and we are both trying to continue standing firm and praising God as we watch and wait expectantly.  We have already seen God at work many times through this and know He isn’t finished!

When your life feels completely out of control and you don’t know what to do, remember that God is bigger than your problem.  All you have to do is look to Him and follow Jehoshaphat’s example.  Run to God.  Do not be afraid or discouraged.  Stand firm.  Watch God at work.   

Don’t Give Up On Me

“Don’t give up on me”… those are the words my husband used as he struggled with the recent changes in his life following an accident. I quickly responded with, “How could I ever give up on you? I love you too much to give up!”

When we are struggling with life, temptation, and sin,  Satan will try to convince us that God has or will give up on us and that we aren’t worthy of His love. But we must focus on the knowledge that God won’t give up on us. Instead He’s saying, “Child, I love you too much to give up on you!”

The Lord is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and His faithfulness continues. Psalms 100:5

God our Savior showed his kindness and love. He saved us, not because of the good things we did, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins and gave us a new life through the Holy Spirit. Titus 3:4-5

Dear Father, I ask that you reassure all who are struggling today. Remind them of your precious love and faithfulness. Carry them through and place people in their path to reaffirm your love and encourage them through the difficulties. 

I Miss You

My husband recently suffered a traumatic brain injury. I am  writing this as I sit in a hospital bed beside his and will probably share more of our journey as we go through it.

Soon after his accident, he knew me which was a huge blessing. I’ve barely left my husband’s side throughout his hospital stay and rehab.  During the first two weeks his conversation was very limited, and most of it made very little sense.

I can remember thinking how much I missed him (and still do at times) even though I was right there by his side every day. I’ve missed deep conversations which include more than short discussions regarding his comfort and care.  I’ve missed sharing old memories and laughing about new ones. I’ve missed that twinkle in his eye as he gives me a hard time.

But I also remember thinking about how our Heavenly Father must feel that way about me at times.  Is He saying, “I miss you”? I talk to him daily. I pray often as I go through my day about things that I need and about the needs of others. But does He long for more?

Unfortunately, I have to admit that I get busy with the distractions of life and a lot of my conversations with God are possibly nothing more than babbling to His ears. He has used these moments with my husband to help me realize that God is saying, “I miss you.  Slow down and really talk to me.”  I need to spend more time in meaningful conversations praising Him for all that He has done, reading my Bible, and actually listening to what He has to say. How about you?  Is God saying, “I miss you”?

The Lord is with you, mighty warrior. Judges 6:12
Battles are raging all around. I see many friends struggling with the distress of situations that seem too much to bear. These disheartening battles include cancer, heart disease, injuries, mental illness, financial difficulties, addictions, lawsuits, false accusations, broken families, and fighting an actual war. Our children aren’t even immune. Their struggles include peer pressure, eating disorders, bullies, anxiety, and even terminal illness. The list goes on and on.
The Israelites experienced many difficulties. In Judges chapter six, they faced oppression from the Midianites who, during a seven year period, often destroyed the crops, livestock, and homes of the Israelites. God appointed Gideon to deliver Israel from the hand of Midian, but Gideon was afraid and confused about how that was possible when his people were the weakest in the land. God assured him in verse 16: “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites together.”
We all have battles which God has called us to fight, but like Gideon, we can be certain that God is with us. Often we feel weak and think our struggles are more than we can bear. Realistically, without the strength that can only be given by God, we probably couldn’t handle such situations on our own. What a blessing to know that he will be with us through the battles of life.
Deuteronomy 31:6 says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you.”
It doesn’t matter what we are going through, God will give us the power to overcome it through His strength! Find courage today in knowing that God will be with you through the battles of life. You are a mighty warrior through Him!

Facing My Fear

when i am afraid

What scares you?  I mean really scares you…to the point of being physically ill and unable to think of anything else.  How do you deal with fear that grips your body, mind, and spirit?  Do you curl up in a ball and just give up or do you dig down deep and find the courage to face that fear head on?

I am facing one of my greatest fears…flying.  I’ve never flown and never planned to fly because the thought of it terrifies me.  I fully comprehend the fact that it’s safer than my daily drive to work.  I am not afraid of dying.  I know that if I die I am going to my heavenly home because I have accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior.

So why am I so frightened by something that people do every day?  I really don’t know.  Maybe it’s that sense of having no control or simply getting out of my comfort zone.  I can’t nudge the pilot to get his/her attention about something ahead.  I can’t cry out for him/her to slow down or watch out!  I won’t have any idea of what is normal and what is truly something to be alarmed about.  I just have so many questions and there are so many unknowns.  I have searched the internet to gain as much knowledge as possible, but I still worry that my fear will take over what my heart knows:  God is in control, and He will be with me every step of the way.

We all experience times in our lives in which we face great fear and uncertainty.  Moments when we feel we have absolutely no control.  Moments when we aren’t sure what the future holds.  And moments when there are many unanswered questions.  It doesn’t matter if you are facing something as insignificant as doing something for the first time or if you are facing something life changing.  The same fear can creep in and make you miserable.  Faith can help us learn to face these fears with a peace that only God can provide.

If you are living in fear and uncertainty today, I’m going to offer you the same advice I’ve been giving myself over the last few days.

  • Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.  Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.  His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:6-7  Keep praying!
  • I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13  With His strength, I can do this!
  • She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future. Proverbs 31:25 NLT  I want to be so prepared spiritually that I can laugh and enjoy every moment with no fear!

Remembering that God is control will help you to face your fears.  There is nothing that will happen that you can’t handle with His help.  Also trust that He will be with you every step of the way sitting beside you, holding your hand, and even carrying you through when necessary.  You may not always feel His presence but know trust that He is there.  Finally, pray.  Be honest with God about your anxiety and share your deepest fears and concern with Him.  So put your trust in Him and face your fear with the strength only He can provide!

 

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wait for the lord

Have you ever called 911?  Unfortunately, help is not always immediately available, and those who need to be rescued from water, fire, or any other danger must wait.  It may only be a matter of minutes before help arrives, but it can seem like an eternity as you wait anxiously for that much needed help.

The call for help must be dispatched out to rescuers who quickly prepare for the situation by gathering whatever special equipment may be necessary for rescue.  When we are drowning in life’s problems, we expect God to instantly deliver us once we call out for help, but the reality is sometimes we may find ourselves waiting.   Psalms 34:17 says, “The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help.  He rescues them from all their troubles.”  It doesn’t say that God will immediately remove us from the situation.  It says He will hear our cry, and He will rescue us. Just as in calling 911, God’s help doesn’t always come as quickly as we would like.  Sometimes He must make preparations for our rescue.  Maybe our heart or the hearts of others need to be prepared before our rescue is completed.  So we must wait for His timing.

After receiving the call and preparing for the situation, the rescuers must get to the victim.  Unfortunately, sometimes we make it hard for God to reach us.  Like a drowning victim who may push down their rescuer, we actually push God away as he reaches for us.  We want His help but our instinct to survive causes us to thrash in the water.  For example, when He tries to deliver us, we insist on doing things our own way because we don’t like His plan or aren’t willing to wait for His rescue plans to be revealed.  Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6NIV Wait for His plan to be revealed. 

We expect God’s rescue to immediately remove every difficulty from our lives.  However, keep in mind that when a victim is rescued from danger, there are often injuries that require medical attention and healing.  After God rescues us from our troubles, we too may have issues that require His attention and time for healing.  We must allow Him to care for our wounds and not push Him away as soon as we are rescued.  God can heal our heart and pain, but the healing process takes time. And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6 Wait for His complete healing in your life.  

Psalms 34 continues with “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those who are crushed in spirit” (v18).  This does not say that He heals the broken heart, but instead He is near…like a mother is near to comfort us in our pain.  A mother may not always fix the problem, but having her near definitely generates strength and comfort in most any circumstance.  God’s plan doesn’t always including removing our problem, but we can trust that He will always be near to give strength and peace while easing our suffering.  But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31  Trust that He is close when you’re crushed by the struggles of life.

So in times of trouble, remember to wait for His timing, wait for His plan to be revealed, wait for healing, and finally trust that He is near.

 

 

 

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After having my first chiropractic adjustment this week, I was reminded of this post. Since I’ve also experienced some life adjustments lately, I wanted to share this for others who may be feeling the pressure of spiritual adjustments.

Strength Renewed

Yesterday I hesitantly went with my daughter for her first visit to the chiropractor due to back pain.  I sat in the corner of the room preferring to be in the waiting room or shopping, but because she wanted me there, I went.  I recoiled as I watched him apply pressure, twist, and jerk her body.  Joints popped and her body twisted abnormally as the chiropractor made adjustments.  He assured me it looked much worse than it felt, but I don’t think he will ever be seeing me again!  My daughter however was astonished at the difference it made in the way she felt.  The adjustment appeared to be uncomfortable to say the least, but the results were worth it to her.

Often we must go through uncomfortable adjustments in life to get everything lined up just as God desires it to be. Those adjustments often come in the form…

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