The wind shakes my windows
Startles my focus
Makes my heart shiver…
The wind shakes my windows
She lived a simple life. She wasn’t flamboyant; she wasn’t boisterous. She loved a good man, and their modest plans for a life together filled her waking moments. She had a happy past, a joyful present and a bright future.
And then her life was turned upside down.
In John chapter 5, we read of another miracle of Jesus Christ. The setting was the pool of Bethesda, a place of miracles as an angel came at a certain season to trouble the water which would heal the person who first jumped into the pool. As one could imagine, the area was always crowded with all sorts of infirm folks, waiting for that troubling of the water. Jesus came by one day and in His infinite wisdom and knowledge of all hearts, spoke to one man in particular.
“But he promised,” she whispered. “I know he’s going to come.”
There are few things as sweet as a little girl’s trust in her loving father. When she has a daddy who has cared for her and is extra careful to always tell the truth and always keep his promises, in her mind, there is nothing her daddy cannot do. She doesn’t understand that even fathers have limitations. He might make a promise, and circumstances out of his control would prevent him from keeping that promise, no matter how he tried. That is the limitation of being only human.
Have you ever felt like some looming circumstance was preventing you from doing what God wanted you to do? Have you ever felt second-rate, just because you didn’t have a marital status? Have you ever wondered how you can be an influence when you don’t have a child? Have you ever felt you couldn’t be a witness when you don’t have a secular workplace?
“All I want is to feel safe and secure.”
Have you ever heard that before? Have you ever said that before? We value our security; as Americans we pride ourselves in it. Security can be found in independence (I can meet all my own needs) and it is also found in dependence (I will trust this person to meet all my needs). I think, as women in particular, we value our security in life (knowing that everything is going to work out okay in the end). But what exactly is security and how does it relate to my relationship with God?
Do you have a favorite verse that depicts the Christmas season? I have one verse that has been coming to mind as we’ve been preparing for this December. It’s not very typically quoted as a Christmas verse, but it was the one that the Lord has been bringing back to my mind. Perhaps a deeper study would be in order!
In every turn of the day, I can sense Him there, waiting. Waiting for me. I busy myself, doing those things I know I should do. He stands off in the shadows, patient. I hurry to the next thing, anxious to move in and accomplish. He must sometimes sigh when I push Him off once again, deeming those other things more important.
Often we hear the excuses – lies really, shrouded in a cloak of assumed innocence. “If only I could know God’s will.” “I just don’t know what to do in this situation.”
The truth is that God will be as near and as close as you allow Him to be.
A simple phrase, no long words and easy to understand on the surface. But a complex phrase, full of deep meaning with incomprehensible truth.
Ann Judson. Ever since I read a biography about her in high school, she has been my hero. The more I read about her and study her life, the more I like her! Her life wasn’t easy – not by any stretch – but she loved God, loved her husband, and did what was right.
With a quick look around and a sharp intake of breath, Joan slipped into the shadows of the passageway and bent over. Pulling up the hem of her skirt, she loosened the bounds of a cord tied around her ankle. With one swift motion, she picked up the little parcel that had fallen and straightened, flashing a smile around in case anyone caught sight of her strange action.
I recently read a quip someone made about space not being that far away and inaccessible as we think it is. After all, it is only an hour’s drive away if your car could go straight up. An hour’s drive is no big deal…many people make that every day to go to work or go to the store. But there is still that all-determining ‘if.’
Just a poor, beggar girl I am, deserving of nothing. He is so great and so far above me, like a Grand Prince over all – fine, educated, rich, handsome, kind. So far above me – wretched, dirty, stubborn, ugly, stupid me. “What about your self-image?” you might say. And this is my self-image – that I am a dog, that I am a sinner, and that I was incurable.
Things happen that I would not approve of for my life. If I was walking through a store of “Choices for Rachel’s Life,” I would not take those things off the shelf to put into my cart. I would leave them there! No, surely it is better to leave them there.
Rachel’s father has been in the Gospel ministry her whole life and thus, by some, she might be considered a good girl. It wasn’t until she was twelve years old …
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