Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Psalms

The Lord is always teaching His children something new. This week I've been bombarded by much turmoil, confusion, questions, and fear. When I first detected a hint of "something brewing" I came before the throne of Christ asking for guidance, for peace, for understanding, for patience, and for grace in my actions that were to follow. As I've been studing God's word today I've been highly encouraged by a number of the Psalms. Specifically Psalm 102:1-2:

"Hear my prayer, O LORD; let my cry for help come to you. Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly."

These verses have been my hearts desire today as I look at the confusion of my life currently, and try to figure out what God's best is for me. God speaks in amazing ways, and within this verse it shows that even in my suffering and days of trials, our requests are still heard by the Lord. In my own life, he speaks to me in a still small voice - almost a whisper in the wind. But He prompts my heart to action or to wisdom in doing so. He shows me His unsurpassing grace and dignity, and teaches me the ways in which I should go. Sometimes He does not answer quicky, but he is still there - whispering in the 1st seconds of waking up or in the silent moments of prayer and studying God's Word. He is there, even when we don't feel Him or see Him and His plans.

This last Sunday there was a sermon at Mars Hill Church by Mark Driscoll in which he specifically describes a Christian's reaction to Suffering. As said in I Peter 3:8-17: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=I%20peter%203;&version=31

Peter describes how a Christian should act during their times of suffering. And Suffering can be something affecting our lives either relationally, emotionally, physically, financially, or even mentally. God never said life on earth would be easy, but He did say that He loves us and will carry us through the trying times with His strength and everlasting love. However, suffering causes people to think of themselves more than others - almost allowing people to sin in the process.

I find that when I'm in the midst of trials and tribulations that the only thing I can do is rely 100% on the Lord for guidance. Going to Him first and most for support, love, and healing. At the same time, it's also vitally important for me to get out - interact with people - and love on others in a big way even though I don't necessarily feel like sharing love at that point in time. Through this, God teaches us patience and wisdom - He speaks and leads our lives, and makes us realize that the few items in our own life that are causing us so much fear and strain, are really nothing in light of eternity.

There will always be someone who suffers more than you. There will always be someone who suffers less. And there is always an opportunity to bless others in every circumstance of life -sharing the light and love of Christ along the way.

I pray Lord, that you would always use my life to help light the way for other's to come to an understanding of and relationship with you. That my life would be for your eternal glory - and that opportunities would come knocking at the right time and place.

Suffer knowing that Christ is all, knows all, and loves all.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Act to React

Recently, I've been reminded of the incredible grace and love that the Lord has over his children. Even though we constantly mess up and disappoint Him, He's still standing beside us encouraging us to take one more step. It's funny, so often we don't realize the impact a choice has on our lives until it's too late...

Your actions have consequences… and sometimes those consequences will torture,torment, and haunt your memory for life. Lately I've been bombarded by decisions I made reluctantly, knowing it was not right for me. My memories swarm around the choices I've made that will be those little things that torment me for life... just the stupid decisions that are made selfishly, irrationally. Yes I'm human, yes I'm selfish, and yes I'm a sinner. Why is it so hard sometimes, to live the lives we dream of?? I can only come back to realize that I need to...

Think before I act.

Pray before I decide.

Hold my tongue when tempted to react.

See myself from another person’s point of view, and make your decisions knowing they will positively or negatively affect you… forever.

Don’t Speak.

Listen and learn...