I just looked at my last post and I see that it has been exactly four months since my last post. So much has happened in those four months that I do not even know where to begin. Suffice it to say that since my last post my life has changed tremendously. I am beginning to see the world and everything in it in a new light. But I also continue to view it with the same Light, which is the light of the Word of God. I have had to lean on some of the most precious passages of scripture to keep myself encouraged:
“Call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not…” Jeremiah 33:3
There are times in life when we go through difficult trials. But the fact that the LORD God of heaven says that we can call unto Him makes all the difference in the world. What do people do who do not have the Spirit of God to rely on? What do they do when their marriage falls apart, they are unemployed or underemployed, raising children, caring for aging parents, aging themselves, dealing with health issues, and they cannot bow their knee to their Maker to ask for His help, His mercy, His compassion? What do they do?
For obvious reasons, this passage is my favorite in the entire Bible. I love thinking of how I can call on my Father and He will actually ANSWER me. Now, don’t get me wrong: He doesn’t always answer when I want or in the manner in which I want. Sometimes He allows the situation to go on longer than I want, or He doesn’t give my offender the justice that I think they deserve, or He lets me feel more pain than I think I should feel. But He always answers. He answers through the peace I feel in my heart and mind when things are topsy turvy. He answers through the love and tenderness that I receive through my children, who are sensitive to those moments when Mommy is burdened beyond description. He answers through that friend who calls when I have not heard from her in weeks and she tells me that I have been on her mind, and that she is praying for me. He answers me via that stranger who approaches me in the grocery store and tells me that they want to bless me for whatever reason. He answers me when I walk into my Sunday School class and sit amongst 20+ women of God who all have their own trials and burdens and cares, but love me enough to sit and listen to me moan about mine. He answers me every morning when I open His Word and read His exceeding great and precious promises, knowing that they are all yea and amen in Christ Jesus.
“For I know the plans I have for you, saith the LORD; plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you an expected end….” Jeremiah 29:11
This is my second favorite passage of scripture. I remember back about 20 years ago, a good friend of mine gave me that scripture when I was going through a difficult period. I had never read the book of Jeremiah, and when she quoted those words out loud to me, I remember thinking how sweet those words sounded coming into my ears. I needed to hear that the LORD had a plan for me, because at that time, I thought that I was going to die in my situation. I needed to know that the LORD had plans for me…a little nobody, nothing girl from the country. The God of the universe was thinking about me. How profound those words were for me at that time. I know now, more than ever, that He does have a plan for me, and that plan consists of a future and a hope. God is so good.
“When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Isaiah 43:2
It was an ordinary Sunday morning, and I had been going through my ordinary trials of life, so numb to what was happening that I think I was just going through the motions. I walked into my Sunday School class and there on the dry erase board in the back were these words from Isaiah 43. I fought back tears because I needed that encouragement. I needed to hear my Father say that He would be with me. I needed Him to love me and rescue me and help me at that present moment. This passage was the reminder that I needed that He was there for all of that. My Sunday School teacher told me that she wrote that passage on the board for me. I cannot even describe what that felt like. I felt the love of God all over me, so much so that I had chills. For several weeks after that, I would walk into the class and that passage was still there. Each time, I took it as a reminder that He was still with me. Thank You, Father…
God’s Word is encouraging. All of the world’s self-help material and self-help practices and advice from self-help gurus and life coaches cannot hold a candle to the Word of God and the effect that it can have on our lives if we take it in and soak it up and eat it daily. Matthew 4:4 says “…It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” The Word of God will keep us from sin. Psalm 119:104-106 says, “Through Thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” John 17:17 says, “Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.”
There is so much more that I could say about God’s Word. Nothing speaks for God’s Word as well as God’s Word itself.