Tag Archives: worry

Even now. Even here.

The following is a declaration of faith – the start to a prayer you can pray when things are difficult. I have learned that even in the waiting, wishing, and hoping, and even in the pain, confusion, and chaos, the Lord is with us.

Even now. Even here.

I will abide, even now. I will trust you, even now. I will believe, even now. Because you are working. You never grow weak or weary.

I will pray and seek you, even now. I know that you are leading me by your Holy Spirit, and shedding light onto my path. At every turn, you are with me. In everything, you are right beside me. When the heights are higher than I can climb, you sustain me.

Even though the fig trees have no blossoms,
    and there are no grapes on the vines;
even though the olive crop fails,
    and the fields lie empty and barren;
even though the flocks die in the fields,
    and the cattle barns are empty,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
    I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
    He makes me as surefooted as a deer,
    able to tread upon the heights.
Habakkuk 3:17-19

So even here, I will praise you. Even here, I will bless your name. I trust that you will teach me and show me your best way. I can face my fears, because you are with me.

There is nothing you do not know, and nothing escapes your eye.

I will bless the Lord who guides me;
    even at night my heart instructs me.
I know the Lord is always with me.
    I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.
Psalm 16:7-9

 

Bring everything to the Lord

Maybe when you woke up this morning, you felt an underlying current of worry, nervousness, or unease. Maybe as the morning progressed, the feelings began to intensify. Maybe you didn’t even have a reason. Maybe you had many.

This morning I struggled with this – feeling like too much weight was on my shoulders and there were too many things on my to-do list. I even felt pressure for all that’s on my husband’s plate. As I left for work, I began to get frustrated and started getting angry at God that these feelings exist.

But the moment I went to open my mouth so my complaints could pour forth, I felt in my spirit that I needed to stop, and be wise with my words. I felt the Spirit remind me who it is I am about to complain to.

Who am I to get angry at God?

jeff-rodgers-341029-unsplash

So I closed my mouth, and righted my thinking. I know that God isn’t the cause of these feelings.

That’s when I was reminded of two passages in the Bible.

The first was Luke 10:38-42 (nlt), which says:

As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”

But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”

I didn’t have my Bible with me in the car, but I remembered what Jesus said to Martha: My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her. I saw so much of myself in Martha this morning – worried and fretting over so many details. But I felt an invitation to just sit at Jesus’s feet and learn from him.

That’s when I was reminded of the second passage in Philipians 4:6-7 (nlt):

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

After that, what could I do but bring my worries to the Lord?

I spent the remainder of my drive pouring forth my worries to the Lord. I gave him everything…what was on my mind, why, and how it made me feel. I felt peace as I began to do so. I was reminded that God is powerful, and he cares for me.

Imagine this – Jesus himself walks up to you and says, why are you worried? Cast your cares on me. I care for you. I know the number of hairs on your head. I knit you together. You are mine. Find your refuge in me. I am powerful, mighty, and able to do above and beyond anything you could ever hope or imagine.

Instead of letting our hearts be overwhelmed, let’s try what Jesus says. Let’s not worry about anything, but bring everything to the Lord.

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
1 Peter 5:7 (nlt)

 

 

9/18/18 | Psalm 1

Oh, the joys of those who do not
    follow the advice of the wicked,
    or stand around with sinners,
    or join in with mockers.

But they delight in the law of the Lord,
    meditating on it day and night.

They are like trees planted along the riverbank,
    bearing fruit each season.
Their leaves never wither,
    and they prosper in all they do.

But not the wicked!
They are like worthless chaff, scattered by the wind.

They will be condemned at the time of judgment.
Sinners will have no place among the godly.

For the Lord watches over the path of the godly,
but the path of the wicked leads to destruction.
Psalm 1 NLT

Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked. How interesting is it that the book of Psalms opens with this? It instructs us not to follow the ungodly or the world or our culture – we’re to follow the Lord. This ties into how God’s way is the best way. His designs, his purposes, his plans, his reasons and ideas. This entire psalm speaks to this! When you google wicked online it tells us that it means evil or morally wrong. So do not follow those who are evil or those who are morally wrong. Do not learn from them or mimic their ways. Learn from the Lord.

But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. They are like trees planted along a riverbank. Doesn’t this sound like what Jesus was talking about when he was telling us to abide in him? This is talking about how we are when we meditate on the law of the Lord. When we meditate on his ways, we are abiding. As we spend daily time in the Bible we are rooting ourselves in Christ. As we do this, we’ll bear fruit in each season. We’ll bear fruit in every season of life. That doesn’t just mean summer. It means fall, winter, and spring as well. Imagine a tree flourishing even in the winter, when everything is dead.

Imagine flourishing and even bearing fruit during the most difficult times of your life – that’s what the Word is saying here. This is what is promised as we abide in Christ. You won’t just experience joy and peace when all is right in your life – you’ll also experience it when all is wrong.

Their leaves will never cease to flourish*, and they will succeed* in all they do.

For the Lord watches over the path of the godly, but the path of the wicked leads to destruction.

What a stark difference the Bible shows us between following the world/culture/morally wrong, and following the Lord. The instruction here is to delight in Word of the Lord and to meditate on it day and night. The blessing is being like a constantly thriving tree.

Recommended reading:

  • Psalm 1
  • John 15: 1-11
  • Galatians 5

*edit mine, alternate definition of “wither” and “prosper”