Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I asked, God gave

Everything I Need…
author uknown

I asked for strength,
And God gave me difficulties to make me strong;

I asked for wisdom,
And God gave me problems to learn to solve;

I asked for prosperity,
And God gave me brain and brawn to work;

I asked for courage,
And God gave me dangers to overcome;

I asked for love,
And God gave me people to help;

I asked for favors,
And God gave me opportunities.

I received nothing I wanted – I received everything I needed.
My prayer has been answered!

Have you ever heard this poem? After the last month of my life, I can’t stop thinking about it. You see, it wasn’t too long ago that I was lying in bed and confessed to the Lord that I felt distant from Him. I asked Him to draw me closer to Him and bring me back to that place I knew I needed to be, but felt like I couldn’t get to on my own.

I asked God to draw me closer to Him…

Well, it wasn’t too long after that that I …
-lost my job (my means for monetary survival)
-my car broke down and needed a new transmission (my means for getting from place to place in my busy life)
-moved (my place to call home)
-gave myself a third degree burn whilst baking (an absolute favorite pastime and the thing I do when I’m overwhelmed to de-stress)

…and He distanced me from the many other idols in my life until there was just Him.

Enter the clever, sweet, gentle nudge from the Lord.

He got me to a place where my One and Only Constant was Him and then reminded me of that large (yet, at the time, seemingly insignificant) prayer.

Oh, how He loves me so.

to be continued…

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Laid Off

Yesterday, I became a part of a constantly growing statistic. Without much ado, I was let go from my job. Albeit shocked, I can honestly say that relief has overpowered me.

There are so many things that I have wanted to say, think, or do in the past 24 hours. Emotions that have welled up and have taken effort to tamper down. Frustrations that I have kept in for too long and were ready to come escalading out of my mouth. Fear of the unknown; sadness of what I’ve left behind; pain of the reality…

There are also those few things that have been said, thought, or done that have brought hope, closure, and peace. Reminders spoken to me from wise mouths, hopeful words that have slipped out of my mouth from an overflowing Life Source deep within me, and peace that has been washing over me every time I commit my every thought, word, and action to the Lord.

The underlying theme here is that I am a bag of mixed emotions.

I am hurt and confused. I’m hurt because human nature isn’t God’s nature and yet, I allow human nature to affect me more than I allow God’s nature to have it’s effect on me. I’m confused because I allowed my human nature to surmise an ending to this chapter and yet, the ultimate conclusion wasn’t even an option in my small mind. God’s ways are never my own ways and yet…I always forget and end up confused when I have to be reminded of it.

"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. - Isa 55:8-9 NKJV

I am relieved and peaceful. I am relieved because of the burden and stress that has been lifted off me. Burdens aren’t meant to be carried on our human shoulders. They are meant to be laid down and forgotten at the cross of Jesus Christ. This burden I picked up didn’t seem so bad when I first picked it up but as time moved on, I grew immune to the weight. When I was forced to lay it down, I was amazed at how heavy it had become. I am peaceful because I know that this was God’s plan. Walking away from this now past-season of my life, I have only utmost peace and I know that that can only come from the Lord.

"But you, Israel, are My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, The descendants of Abraham My friend. You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, And called from its farthest regions, And said to you, 'You are My servant, I have chosen you and have not cast you away: Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.' - Isa 41:8-10 NKJV

I am anxious and excited. I am anxious when I look to the future through my own lens and don’t know what to expect. I’m excited when I look to the future through the Lord’s lens and know that whatever will come next is going to be only the best for me.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. - Jer 29:11-13 NKJV