It’s Friday and time to join the Five Minute Friday writing community. Each week, Kate Motaung gives a prompt and for five minutes we do free and unedited writing on the week’s topic. Today’s prompt is: COLLECT
As a child, I lived near the beach and enjoyed collecting sea shells. I once had a large collection, but only a few extra special ones went with me into my married life.
As an adult, I began collecting photos and small models of lighthouses. I atill enjoy looking at my lighthoses, which remind me that Jesus is the Light of the World.
But recently I’ve been thinking of beginning a new kind of collection – a collection of answers to prayer. This isn’t an original idea. It was suggested in The Battle Plan for Prayer Bible study video series, which we are currently watching in our Sunday School class. What a great idea!
There are lots of ways to do this. The Kendrick brothers who produced War Room on which this series is based have a Memory Wall of photos of prayers God has answered. Answers to prayer kept in a journal is another idea. The idea is to have some form of answered prayer collection that I can look at and remember what God has done for me in the past in answer to prayer. Remembering what God has done for us in the past is one of the best faith builders when new problems arise and we commit them to prayer.
Today is a pain day. Every once in awhile, they creep up. The pain is severe and uncontrollable and obviously, unwelcome. I have had people ask me why God doesn’t heal me. I’ve had people ask me if I have even asked for healing. I have had people ask me if I believe He can do it.
Yes, I do believe He can. But right now, I do believe He won’t.
I don’t believe He doesn’t heal people – I know He does. I have seen it happen before with my own eyes. I just believe it is not the time for me to be healed. Sometimes healing doesn’t happen. But I believe healing doesn’t happen because God has a different plan for you.
When it is just you and pain, you join with Christ for relief. Even if there is no healing. Sometimes He allows the pain to…
“In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.” 1 Peter 1:6-7 NIV
In forty-five years of walking with Jesus, I’ve suffered grief in all kinds of trials. Losing our firstborn daughter in an automobile accident. A miscarriage. A severely handicapped son who is totally dependent upon others to meet all his needs. Alzheimer’s touching our lives twice. My own long list of chronic illnesses. None of these circumstances have been easy to walk through.
Yet God’s purposes are being accomplished in and through my life. As I look back over my life, even I can see how much my faith has grown. According to human logic, faith grows as we experience miracles and are blessed. But according to God’s reasoning, faith grows as it is refined by fire. It may not make sense to me, but I know it is true.
And as I reflect back on my life, I can only reach one conclusion. The more I’ve gone through, the more my faith and love for my Lord has grown. Lord, You are worth it all!
The following is a short devotional I wrote on Psalm 55, to share with a group I work with. I decided to also share it on my blog today, since it is a subject many ladies with chronic illness struggle with.
Few things are more painful than the betrayal of a close friend. The pain of unfaithfulness by someone we trust is difficult to deal with, and though Psalm 55 does not give us any details on what had happened we can feel David’s hurt.
In this situation, David knew what to do. In his distress, he cried out to the Lord for help. Three things stood out to me in these verses.
1. David honestly expressed the pain he was feeling, pouring out the anguish of his heart to God.
2. David also prayed in faith, expecting the Lord to hear and respond.
3. This was not a one time prayer: evening, morning and noon David cried out the his God for help. Apparently, peace did not come the first time David prayed, so he continued praying until he was confident that God was in control and would help him.
Victory over worry isn’t always a quick and easy process. But honestly telling the Lord (and sometimes others whom we trust) what we are facing is a key to winning over worry. Pray in both honesty and trust, and keep praying until you sense breakthrough. No matter what you are facing today, apply these three steps of prayer to have victory over worry.
O God, you are my God; I earnestly search for you. My soul thirsts for you: my whole body longs for you in this parched and weary land where there is no water. -Psalm 63:1 NLT
Dry. Hot. Weary. Thirsty. Oh, so thirsty.
I have never been or had the desire to go to a desert. However, I know what it’s like to be really dry and thirsty on a hot summer’s day. All I want at this point is a very large glass of water. Until I get one, I complain about the heat and the thirst and fuss about things until I get that glass of water.
When I finally get a glass of water. I guzzle it down instead of sipping. I don’t enjoy it. I am just desperate to be hydrated. I’m so thirsty, I don’t’ savour the water. I just get it down my throat…
According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, to expect is:
to anticipate or look forward to the coming or occurrence of
to consider probable or certain
That sounds just like the biblical definition of hope, which is my Word of the Year for 2017. And hope is exactly what I’m needing to hold onto today.
This has been a difficult week for our family, a week of problems that in ourselves we have no solution for. But it has also been a week of choosing to hold onto hope. Hope that our problems, while they seem huge to us, are not too big for God.
This has been a week of expectancy, of believing that God is able to meet the needs we have no way to handle on our own. Of expecting His help. It has been a time of wondering how God is going to come through for us this time, but still trusting that He will.
When we fail to stand in hope in the midst of difficult circumstances, fear and anxiety invade our hearts. My decision this week has been to win over worry and fear by holding onto God’s Word.
“There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.”
Proverbs 23:18 NIV
“We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.”
Psalm 33:20 NIV
“Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.”
Psalm 27:14 NIV