I am beautifully broken, perfectly imperfect, beautiful in my flaws. All together I am a disaster, made beautiful by and through the love of Jesus and unending grace of God.
Without the rain there is no beauty in the summer. Rain gives depth, it gives beauty and it gives roots. If a plant is only exposed to sun and no rain, it becomes dry, flimsy, and dead. Too many times we curse the rain in our lives – suffering, trials, hardships – but the truth is without rain nothing grows ~ Jefferson Bethke
Words that rang true and nailed what this series, “Into Every Life,” is about at it’s core. The days when the sun is shining and everything just seems to fall into place are wonderful. These are the easy days. But they are only part of the equation, it’s the rain that cultivates deeper roots. The days where as Abraham Lincoln so poignantly said, “I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me, seemed insufficient for the day.” These are the days when we are driven deeper into dependance on, and the care of, Jesus. These are the days your roots are deepened, your faith is given a chance to blossom.
6 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. 7 These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. (1 Peter 1:6-7 NLT, emphasis mine)
Half the joy of life is in the little things taken on the run. Let us run if we must – even the sands do that – but let us keep our hearts young and our eyes open that nothing worth our while shall escape us. And everything is worth its while if we only grasp it and its significance. ~Victor Cherbuliez
Open my eyes so I can see what you show me of your miracle-wonders. (Psalm 119:18)
This week as you work, cook, clean, drive, dream, cry, laugh, grumble, complain, sit, stand, run…and be still. Take a moment to breathe it all in and acknowledge God. Find your stillness amidst the running.
I believe in the sun even if it isn’t shining.
I believe in love even when I am alone.
I believe in God even when He is silent.
Faith is not shelter against difficulties,
but belief in the face of all contradictions.
So keep a firm grip on the faith…It’s won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ…will have you put together and on your feet for good. (1 Peter 5:9-10)
Today I want to encourage you to hold onto your faith, even when it doesn’t make sense, for it is just beyond reason where true faith is found.
To build in darkness does require faith. But one day the light returns and you discover you have become a fortress; you may even find yourself, sought by others as a beacon in their dark. ~Olga Rosmanith
God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4, NLT)
This is what Run and Be Still is all about. This is my cause. This is God as a refuge. This is a purpose in pain.
When you find yourself in survival mode, when you feel like giving up, you need to find a refuge. THE refuge. There are times when we need to just get away, to be still. Take a break from the pressures of life and enter the refuge of God.
O God, listen to my cry! Hear my prayer! From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. (Psalms 61:1-3 NLT)
Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will not be shaken. My victory and honor come from God alone. He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. O my people, trust in him at all times. Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge. (Psalms 62:5-8 NLT)
Nothing can stand against our God. Whatever you face in life, if you will hold your peace and remain at rest, God promises to fight your battles for you. He will make a way even when you don’t see one. Through Him, you can overcome and become a fortress of comfort for others.
There are two kinds of Christians: those who say to God “Thy will be done” and then those who say to God, “All right then, have it your way.”
This was based off of a C.S. Lewis quote that I misread yesterday. As I was preparing to share it this morning I realized that I had read it wrong. Because the wrong version really struck a chord with me I have shared my version. It made me stop and think, what do we say to God, what message does our attitude and action convey, when we are faced with situations or circumstances that we don’t like? For just a moment today think about how you would answer that question. What is the condition of my heart, that of a humble servant or that of a spoiled child?
“I used to pray that God would feed the hungry, or do this or that, but now I pray that he will guide me to do whatever I’m supposed to do, what I can do. I used to pray for answers, but now I’m praying for strength. I used to believe that prayer changes things, but now I know that prayer changes us and we change things.” Mother Teresa
This week’s challenge…be the change.
“The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today is Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips and walk out the door and deny Him with their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.” DC Talk
…the introduction to “What if I Stumble” and a challenging thought…to live as I claim to believe…ALWAYS!