This month has been very full and very busy. It’s easy at times like this to get focused on all the happenings, on my fatigue, or the hardships, and overlook all the wonders of my God. When I stopped to consider what He has done, I came up with quite a list!
With the splendor of fall’s colors at every turn, I’ve certainly seen His beauty, His Creative hand, and His majesty!
I’ve also seen God’s providence. After being with my parents for seven days, I came home and my heart wanted to stay there. But in God’s providence, He had my husband scheduled to speak at the Senior Adult Conference at The Wilds of North Carolina. More than wanting to be home, I wanted to be there to support Dale in the ministry that God has called him to. So, we happily packed our bags and headed south on Tuesday. God knew exactly what I really needed. If you’ve ever had the blessing of attending camp at The Wilds, you know what refreshment it brings to your heart and life. When we arrived, we had already been “Ooo-ing” and “Ahhh-ing” over the fall colors, but the campsite was breathtaking.
Before the first meal, we were invited to take a selfie at this cute display.
One of my husband’s ways to engage in sharing the Gospel when we’re at a restaurant is to ask the waitress how we can pray for her as we thank the Lord for our meal. It is always so interesting to hear how people answer that question. So many say something like,
“Everything’s good right now. I really don’t need anything!”
To them, God is like a genie in a bottle, waiting to grant their whims and wishes, or to fix the current financial or physical crisis in their life. Those issues are often God’s way of drawing us to Him. We realize how desperate we are without Him when a crisis comes. I recently came across a verse about prayer that reminded me that, as our heavenly Father, He loves to answer our longings when those longings are from a righteous heart (a heart right with Him) – not merely a heart that wants some thing.
The desire of the righteous shall be granted.
As we walk with Him, and allow him to direct our desires (Ps 37), our longings will be things that please Him, and that He delights in answering because He is a loving Father!
Psalm 73:25, 26
Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.
The happiness of the righteous will never end. Our God will never disappoint us or let us down. He always wins. Because He wins, we win. Don’t be downhearted.
If Christ’s desires are your desires He will grant them.
The answer is first in coming to know Him. Don’t look at Him as a god who grants wishes. See Him as your heavenly Father who delights in You as you delight in Him!
We never know what a day holds. My days have been very full of helping to care for my father who has been hospitalized for over a week now. I’ve made the trip to central Kentucky to assist my family as we rotate staying with him. When vision and hearing are so minimal, it’s crucial to have someone there to be your ears and eyes.
We’ve watched the Lord strengthen him and though there’s been a bit of a set back today due to a sleeping medication that really put him out, we are hopeful that he will awaken soon and continue to progress.
These are days when my theology is put into practice. What I know to be true about my God is what stabilizes me, strengthens my heart, and gives me hope for whatever the future holds.
One truth I’ve cling to is that God is sovereign. He is ruling over my limited ability to help or to know what to do. He is ruling over my finiteness and He is here even when I cannot be present. I can trust my God to work out His will in my life, and the life of my father.
I’ve also had to remind myself to only think about TODAY. That is Philippians 4:8 thinking. The past cannot be changed and the future is uncertain, but there is grace for today.
If you are in uncertain times and situations, remind yourself truth about the character of God. You can trust an almighty, sovereign, loving God with your life.
I’ll be back here when time allows. I’m needed here and happy to do so. It’s a blessing to honor my parents and care for them.
We won’t always understand God’s reasons for what He’s doing. Sometimes God is silent. I think of Job’s trial when God asked him in Job 38 ~
Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Hast thou perceived the breadth of the earth? declare if thou knowest it all.19 Where is the way where light dwelleth? and as for darkness, where is the place thereof,
At those times (and there are lots of them in Scripture and in our lives), we simply trust God. How can we trust Him? We come to know Him.
My dad didn’t owe me an explanation; he was father! He did what was best for me. Sometimes he did indeed surprise me by stopping into that custard stand, but there were more times when he drove right on by.
On a much higher plane, when we come to know Who God is in the pages of His Word, we will learn that whether He does what we want, or if He does something we don’t understand, we can trust Him! We wouldn’t complain or shake our finger in God’s face if we could understand that He was protecting us from danger, or preparing us for something even more difficult in the future.
The Egyptians who chased after the Israelites didn’t have the blessing of the pillar of fire or the cloud to guide them; it was darkness to them. God will reveal Himself to those that seek Him, but scoffers and accusers stumble in their darkness.
Today when I think of someone when I have ice cream you know who it is? It’s my dad! What a giver of good gifts. But God is even greater! Can God stop the virus? Of course. Why hasn’t He yet? I don’t know, but HE does, and I trust His character to do what is best for me.
Friend, you may be wondering why God is allowing some other kind of trial to go on in your life, you may have a question about His ways, but the answers shared above all apply. Open your Bible. See His character and trust Him as your Father who loves you more than you can ever imagine.
Refresh your trust in a loving, providential and righteous God.
You may have heard me say this before, but I was blessed with a wonderful dad. However, he did disappoint me from time to time. I don’t know how he could’ve done it, but that’s the truth. He just disappointed me!
When I was a child, there were times when I was sure he was going to take our family up to the frozen custard stand where we would all get sweet treats. But I can’t tell you the number of times when we were in the car and I was sure he would pull into the little parking lot of that building, and he would drive right on by! How could he do that to a child?
As a little girl I could’ve come up with two conclusions –
He didn’t have the power to do it. No money for a 50 cent cone? Nope. That wasn’t true. He had a good job and was wise with his finances.
He didn’t love me and didn’t care that I would suffer without that custard. Nope. That wasn’t true. He proved his love for me in much greater ways by his sacrifice for my real needs.
I never did accuse my dad of either one of those things. You know why? I knew him. I had spent time with him. I learned what he was like, and he was neither powerless nor unloving. I simply learned that I could trust him. I learned that in the time that he knew was best for me and my family, he would take us to get ice cream. If he didn’t do it now, I knew there was a better reason, and I was okay with that, simply because I knew him.
I recently had someone accuse God of those two accusations in regards to the Coronavirus, saying that: He either can’t stop it, or He doesn’t care about people suffering.
The only answer to give a scoffer of God is God’s Word – the written explanation of Who He is. He has the Words of life.
There are so many explanations I could share, but I just read this passage in Exodus 13,
When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter.
“No, of course He didn’t lead them the shorter path,” an scoffer might say!
“He took them out to the wilderness where they would wander and not have food and water! He doesn’t care! He loves to see people suffer! Or maybe He isn’t able to help.!”
Any time we come to a question about God, why He’s doing something or doing nothing, we must look to His character for the answers. We have to learn what He is like. Is He just mean-hearted? Is He not powerful enough to change things?
In this situation, we need to keep reading. The next verse says, For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.[
Did you catch it? There was danger on that closer/easier path! It would have been easy for the Israelites to think that the Via Maris was the best way to go; but the dangers of the way were too great, though they could not see them. It was the road where Egypt’s military outposts were. God knew the people of Israel were not ready to face this yet (lest perhaps the people change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt).
God anticipated the dangers they could not see.
Based on that verse, what do we learn about our God?
He is providential! He saw to things ahead of time and protected them from those dangers that they weren’t even aware of!
He is a God of love. A God who didn’t love them would’ve let them get entangled in any kind of danger.
He is righteous. He led them correctly. He cannot do a wrong thing or have the wrong motive as you and I would! Why? Because He is righteous.
Refresh your trust in a loving, providential and righteous God. As a child, I could trust my father because I knew him. We can’t trust a God we don’t know. Draw to Him and learn of Him. We might not understand His ways, but we can come to know His heart.
Next week I’m going to expand on that last sentence. I hope you’ll come back for the conclusion!
In the meantime, wash you hands and remember He is in control.