Posts Tagged ‘trust’

Sleep

I am encased by this deep fear.
Night after night sleep evades me.
I seek peace but I cannot reach it.
An enemy chases me that I cannot see.

I call out to my Father, but I don’t know if He hears me.
I am wandering this dark forest alone with no one to guide me.
I ask for direction and all I hear is silence.
I seek love and help from those who dwell on this earth with me,
but their aid is lost just as quickly as it was found.

The journey overwhelms me. I fall, and there is no one to catch me.

I call to my Father in hope that He help me.
That He heed my plight.

I want to give up on hearing His voice.
To claim that He isn’t there,
that He doesn’t care.

But I know He is there.
Standing quietly,
looking on lovingly.
Telling me that the night doesn’t last forever.
That light and relief come with the morning.

So I bide my time and wait.
When I can no longer form words,
and a cry is on my lips,
I just call His name,
Jesus, Jesus,
and I find the peace I need to sleep.

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The Prodigal son returns (too long)

(This has also been sitting in my drafts for too long.)

 

 

I want to scream but no words come out

Not for lack of things to say

But an absence of words that could be accepted

I want to fall into your arms and cry

But I won’t because you’ll probably ask why

I would run to you

But you’re no longer there
my arms outstretched

grasping at thin air

I would speak, you promised to listen

But I face judgment, rebuke, and derision

It’s been hard, for too long.

 

 

Hope, hurts. Faith fails. Love breaks.

But moments of pain are buffeted by songs of hope

Words of love

Moment of peace

Reminders that you are not alone

It’s those small moments

Those tiny victorys

Those glimpses of light

And I remember he is still there

 

I find him when I’m no longer looking

I hear him when I’m barely listening

I feel Him when my hands are tied

 

I don’t know why but He hears

I can’t understand but He cares

I can’t fathom how

But He’s there

He sees me, falls on me and tells me to come home

It’s been, too long.

 

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Find Him (!)

To me the most amazing thing about the bible, is that it’s real. The people on the pages of this ‘book’ are not just ideal paragons of virtue. They are human. People that we can relate to.

 

If the bible wasn’t filled with people like David, Sampson, Jonah, Job, or Peter; I think I may have lost hope. Or rather I would not have regained hope.


Often times when the weight of the world gets too heavy and we feel alone and hopeless, our hearts grab hold of God. No longer do our minds find God to be an idea or simply a concept, instead he becomes real and a whole lot more relevant.

 

Today I picked up my bible just looking for a snippet. A tidbit. A few words, nothing too time consuming. Just something to help me hold it together and muddle through another moment, another day.

I ended up flipping to Job chapter 23.

 

Then Job replied:

“Even today my complaint is bitter;
    his hand is heavy in spite of my groaning.
If only I knew where to find him;
    if only I could go to his dwelling!
I would state my case before him
    and fill my mouth with arguments.

Ahh, my good buddy Job. I have to say, I love how he keeps it 100%. His complaint is bitter! And there’s no hiding it. He’s had his fill of the struggle and he’s about ready to go toe to toe with God.


Job has some questions, and he needs some answers. Ever at the ready, he’s prepared his case and he’s not afraid of arguing it! But first, he needs to figure out where God is.

I would find out what he would answer me,
    and consider what he would say to me.
Would he vigorously oppose me?
    No, he would not press charges against me.
There the upright can establish their innocence before him,
and there I would be delivered forever from my judge.

 

Hmm, Job isn’t worried. He knows God is good, so if he approaches God, he knows(!) he is gonna be delivered.

 

“But if I go to the east, he is not there;
    if I go to the west, I do not find him.
When he is at work in the north, I do not see him;
  when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him.

 

Dang, but a brother still can’t find him though. I mean if he could just find God things would be cool. They could chat, Job could get a few things off his chest. And God would clear up the misunderstanding. Everything goes back to normal.

10 But he knows the way that I take;
    when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.
11 My feet have closely followed his steps;
    I have kept to his way without turning aside.
12 I have not departed from the commands of his lips;
    I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.

 

Ya know, I was following Job up to this point. Then I got lost. And fast. I mean Job is here talking about coming out as gold after being tried, and I’m sitting here just hoping I come out. To say I’ve reached that gold standard would be such a stretch. I mean Job says he hasn’t departed from God’s commands. He says he has treasured God’s word more than bread!


Confession. I’ve gone through more days without God’s word than I’ve gone without ‘bread.’ And yeah, I’m still feeling those after effects.
 

 


Sometimes we make ourselves so busy that we leave no time for God.
We have problems and we need to solve them.
We have issues that won’t fix themselves.
We have struggles that won’t go away.
And we have sins which feel like they are here to stay.
But to treasure God? To make him something we value? Something that is our food? Can we say we’ve done that?

 

The past few days I’ve been fasting, and my reasons for it are not that laudable so I will skip out on that. But what I realized is that food is ever on my mind. Without it I get tired, depressed, and weak. But spiritually that’s how I am without God. I am spiritually drained. I am hopeless. Discouraged. Selfish. and Lost.


I need him. I need God. I need him to be my living water. My bread of life.
I–like Job–am not finding him, but simply because I haven’t been looking. 

 

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Wake Up


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“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” -Romans 5:3-5

I sit silently. Here in the pouring rain. Happy at last.

I’ve found it.
Or maybe it found me.

A true covering for this pain.

Now I cry, and the world cries with me.

It seems fitting.

On this long journey I searched for one thing. Validation. Proof that I was intelligent, worthy, capable, valued. For years I was stumbling in the dark for words of praise I never found. My efforts were in vain—my cries were in vain. My self-induced misery was for naught. I was beside myself with grief. Yet, I myself, created the hell I lived in.

My hope hardened. It resigned itself to a mere existence of should-of, would-of, could-of… but didn’t. I lost myself in despair, until to despair itself was the norm. But one day, I woke up. The nightmare was self-perpetuating, and I realized that I, myself, was not powerless. Sleep could only hold me for as long as I let it. So, I woke up.

But still that thing I longed for was beyond reach.

I scrambled for crumbs.

I stood idly by like the woman in the bible. Nameless.

———————————–
Jesus withdrew to Tyre.
A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out,
“Lord, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”

Jesus answered her not a word.

The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
————————

Misery is no respecter of persons. Jesus came first to the Jews, and she a Gentile, sought Jesus at an inopportune time in an inconvenient place. There were people with greater burdens than her own. Her issue—not insignificant, but at such a time—impertinent.

Yet, like Jacob wrestling with the Angel, she fought with Jesus. She cried out to him in a loud voice. In her distress, strength filled her voice. It was her daughter. And as a mother, the pain could not have been greater than if it was she herself.

Yet Jesus answered not a word.

We are so fond of thinking of God as unhearing and unfeeling. But His silence speaks louder than words. What is He trying to tell you?

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“…Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”
————————

Even she, a Gentile. Unworthy, sinful, desperate. Yet she knew of her condition. She did not bow down in shame. She did not seek the validation of the Jews. But she came to the one person who could look past all outward appearances and conditions to examine her heart. Jesus read her need. He saw her struggle. He saw her faith. And when no one else would validate her—Jesus did.

———————-
Jesus’ disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
—-
Jesus spoke to her, “Woman. You have great faith! Your request is granted.”

And at that moment, her daughter was healed.
———————-

Despite her struggles, pain and burdens, In Him she found her help.

She found relief.

Wake up. Your help is here. He is here.

Let God fight for you -Morning Devotion

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David chose the stone.

David walked on the battlefield.

David aimed the sling.

David slung the stone. But who killed Goliath?

According to David… God did.  (1 Samuel 17:46-47).

What battles or struggles are you facing? Your own strength will surely fail. Trust God to work for you today. Encourage yourself! God is with you. He will fight for you.

Hope. Less?

Your life experiences make you who you are. The good, the bad, the success, the failure, the happy moments, and the lonely nights. All these moments help grow you and shape you into the person you are today. Nevertheless, sometimes when we look at the times when we were at out lowest moments, when we felt that we could not go on, when there was no hope in sight, we often turn to God and ask: “Why??” “Why did you let it happen?” “Why weren’t you there to protect me?” “Is this what I get for serving you?” “Where were you when I was going through the worst moments of my life? I couldn’t see you. I couldn’t hear you…”

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And it is at those moments that God turns, and says to His children, “In your darkest moments, when you turned to your left and to your right, and you still couldn’t see me… know that I was right behind you. I was behind you making sure that the stark realities of life did not break you, but that they developed you to make you into the person you are today: stronger, more compassionate, and more loving. I took the horrible things in your life and I used it to turn you into a precious pearl. It is because of your past, not despite it, that you are strong enough to take a step of faith wherever I lead you.

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The truth is, we live in troubled times. Marriages fail, jobs are lost, natural disasters reek havoc, and an uncertain future surrounds us all. And yes, it is so easy to lose hope. In fact, it’s human. Job, Moses, Jonah, Jeremiah, Elijah. All men of God, and all utterly hopeless at multiple points in their walk with God. Yet, consider this. Hope is defined as “expecting with confidence.” Likewise the biblical definition of hope is not a ‘hope-so’ but a ‘know-so.’  It’s the “assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hope is certain. Our hope in God is surer than the sun rising in the morning. It is more sure than cold in the winter and heat in the summer. When we read God’s word we can know for certain that we have a hope for the future. God will never allow us to suffer anything beyond our ability to handle it.  God will never leave us nor will He ever forsake us.  He is our anchor in the present, and our hope for the future.

Sometimes the only way to survive adversity and struggles is to just keep moving forward. If you can’t run, you walk. And if you can’t walk, you crawl. But you have to keep moving. God will walk you through storms, through trials, and through adversity. Storms never last, but people do. You will make it through. If you can hold on and get through today, God will give you strength to get through tomorrow.

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When we are God’s children, it doesn’t matter that we are not perfect. Yes you may not have the best credit, you may not be smart enough, nor have the best résumé for the job. You may be single, broken, and desperate for a companion, or you may be despairing of achieving your goals. But God will see you through—even when you fall short.

True love is this: when we come to God after we have messed up, and we are filthy, broken, and hopeless. And instead of turning us away as we deserve. God runs out to us while we are still crawling our way back to Him, and He lifts us up out of our filth and embraces us. He cleans us. He renews us. Yes, He makes us “new.” The devil tries to trap us in our guilt and shame, but our strength is in our Lord. In His forgiveness and in His love. Every time you lose something you get a little tougher. Every time you suffer a setback you get a little stronger. Your past humbles you, so you know that your coming success is not because you are so good, but because God is so great. People will come and go in your life, but God is faithful, He will never leave you. Don’t lose hope!

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Where is God

This year I have committed to read through the Bible chronologically. Today’s passage comes from Job 17:

“My spirit is crushed, and I am near death. The grave is ready to receive me. I am surrounded by mockers. I watch how bitterly they taunt me. My eyes are dim with weeping, and I am but a shadow of my former self. My days are over. My hopes have disappeared. My heart’s desires are broken. I might go to the grave and make my bed in darkness. And I might call the grave my father, and the worm my mother and my sister. But where then is my hope? Can anyone find it? No, my hope will go down with me to the grave.”

We all know what it is like to feel hopeless. In the midst of our circumstance, sometimes we see no way out. We have no help. We have no joy. We question God’s presence in our lives. We forget how He has led us in the past.

But whenever I am reading Job and find myself questioning God: I quickly skip to the end of the story. I skip to God’s answer.

Job 38:

“Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind: “Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorant words? Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you know so much. Have you ever commanded the morning to appear and caused the dawn to rise in the east? Have you made daylight spread to the ends of the earth, to bring an end to the night’s wickedness?”

Our God is a great God. We may not understand our circumstance. But its not ours to question God. Instead we trust His ways, which are above our own.

“Sometimes we ask God to fix things, that He is not going to fix. Change things that He is not going to change. We ask Him to move things that He is not going to move. He may not change your circumstances, but He will give the grace to bear it. He may not move your problem, but He will give you the grace to stand it. God may not take you out of the fire, but He will be a thermostat in the furnace, so that the flames of trials and despair will not scorch you, but refine you into pure gold. When there is no way left for you to try, when all your plans have failed, and you see no way of relief, God says: Here I am. My strength is made perfect in your weakness.”

God is still God in the middle of your trial. He will never leave you or forsake you.

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