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The River…

There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High. ~Psalm 46:4

I find comfort in being out in nature. When I was in high school, we lived in a home on the river for about 6 years. I can’t begin to count the number of times I sat in the back yard or on the dock and watched the water. Watching the river as it moved along relaxed me. Often, I could feel my stress level going down as I sat there. There was quite a strong current at times, but by just watching you didn’t really notice it. The water held a strength in it as it moved along. It was active, always moving, yet the vastness of it comforted me. The river was a constant in my life. When I sought it out, it was there.

When I think about it, in quite the same way God is reflected in the characteristics of that river. Always active, always moving, but always present. God’s strength and nearness is a comfort to me when I need it most. When I take the time to focus on God and draw near to Him my heart is glad. My stress levels go down and I rest in the one who is unchanging and always constant. Knowing this, it is up to me to daily seek His presence, and watch closely what He is doing for God is always active.

#psalm46challenge

Blessings to you.

A Busy Summer Indeed

Is anybody out there? Yoohoo? I know corny use of an opening. I bet you think I have forgotten about you, but that is not the case. My summer has been one that went into busy super drive. I pause to catch my breath. The good thing is I have been studying and writing. The bad thing is that it has not happened here. This Summer I have been leading a weekly ladies Bible study. I long for the moment when I will have my act together to such a degree that I can accomplish both. Until then… I will identify with Mary, “she has done what she could!”

I will say that of late that Psalm 46 is becoming more and more dear to me. I love verse 1, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” This verse fills me with comfort and hope to know that He is there when I need Him most. There is also beauty in the verse because He is there all the time even when I don’t think I need Him. His refuge and strength is not conditional on me. I know however in my heart I need Him all the time, in every situation. My head often is the problem. It sometimes wants to do what I think is best rather than what God thinks is best for me. So, I repent, and recognize, “God Is…” In the midst of all the busy, “God is my refuge.” God is “my strength.” God is “a very present help in trouble.” Our pastor issued a challenge to read Psalm 46 every day during the month of September and post what God is teaching us about Psalm 46 so I reckon you may be hearing from me quite a bit more as God teaches me. For now I rest in the God who is my refuge! Thanks for reading.

#psalm46challenge

Blessings to you all!

An Attitude of Restfulness

Ok, to begin. I was tired! I was very anxious, and unsettled, yet all of these did not seem to actually convey how I really felt. It went much deeper. I was already reaching for my inner “panic button”. I was waiting and praying for an answer to a need that I had. Deep down I knew that the Lord would take care of it, and I knew He would be with me even when the deadline for the answer was on the way.  Yet, Here I was doing everything but trusting. I was out of sorts and these feelings lead to frustration on my part. Why am I doing this to myself? Though I am an anxious person by nature, can I really use this as an excuse? These feelings that I have are real. I’m at an impasse. I’m tired and I need rest not only in my physical body, but also in my heart and in my soul. So I run to my Heavenly Father, confess I cannot handle this, confess my failure to trust, and ask for the rest that is only found in Him.

At the end of what we know as the Lord’s Prayer (after the Amen) in Matthew 6, Jesus continues to speak. He speaks of forgiveness, fasting, reward, and God’s care of you! Verses 25-29 read, “Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” God is taking care of the most basic of your needs. In doing this, will he not also take care of any other needs you and I may have? I am learning daily that God wants me to rest when I lay down, of course, but He also wants me to rest when I am going about my days activities. God wants me to cultivate an attitude of restfulness. So you may ask, what does this look like practically speaking? Have you ever seen someone in a situation where you know everything around them was going sideways, yet they have a peaceful smile, they are moving about deliberately doing what they have to do, and they have a calm about them that is not “normal”. This is someone who is relying on God for their next breath, next step, and next moment in time. They exhibit an attitude of restfulness. My heart’s cry is to rest and trust like that!!!

Your reaction may be, “NO way can I do that?”. Sometimes I feel it too, but it is in these moments we have to look beyond our situation and ourselves, and focus on Jesus, the only true source of rest for the heart and soul. Walking with Jesus is not running ahead and getting out of breath. Walking with Jesus is when He takes a step we take one too. Step by step, moment by moment, resting in His presence is the only way to live. This is what an attitude of restfulness looks like. We can embrace this way of living, but not alone. It is a daily partnership, between the Almighty and me! My dear friend, restfulness is a prayer away. When feelings want to claim your calm, lean on the Savior and let Him support you through it all. When we seek Him first, we will find the rest we need.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” Matthew 6:33-34

Resting on the Run

Today, my friends, begins a new chapter in my life. After several years of working two jobs, I find myself at a new place. I didn’t have to go into work this morning. Whew, thought it would be a very long time before I would say that, but that is my reality this morning. I wrapped up my job as church secretary at First Baptist Church and I am getting ready to move to a new town, to a new house, and a new ministry.  Back in November, My husband was called as pastor at a new church about 40 minutes from where we live. So today my first official day not having to work and I have a to-go-do list a mile long. I have to catch up on all I have been putting off. So before I literally run out the door. I stopped to take a breath, and check in with the faithful few that have been with me and this blog since the  beginning.

I heard a phrase this weekend at the Minister’s Wives Retreat that I go to every year and this morning it resonates with me. We, Minister’s Wives, probably will have very few days that we are not off and running from the morning to the evening. Rest comes mostly when we crash in the evenings with our Minister husbands. So how do we really find the rest that we need to make it through the days until Jesus comes back? This weekend was all about rest and renewal. I thought excellent that is just what I need. I need to rest. I have found the true rest that can only satisfy our souls is rest that we find in the Lord. “Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him…” How many verses have been written about resting in Jesus? Probably more than I can count are available to us. I digress. The phrase I grabbed on to this weekend. We need to learn to “Rest on the Run!” There will always be running involved with our lives so take time to carve out some minutes on the run to stop and rest. Carry verses with you to read over while you are waiting in line. Stop and pray while you are going to the next place on your list. (Disclaimer: Keep your eyes open if you are driving. lol) Just Kidding. This is something we all can do. Learn to rest on the run. It will take discipline to train your mind. To not do this is to let the devil distract you while you are on the run. So My Friends, take a moment to take a deep breath, “Be still and Know He is God”, and find sweet rest in who He is and His promises.

See you Soon! I will wave in passing!

Amy

Strength for a Weary Soul

Here it is! Wednesday they call it. This day is also known as “Hump Day”. It’s time to get excited, folks. We are halfway through the week, and, yet… I am tired. I need a great dose of strength. In my ramblings, I am reminded of a story I came across several years ago. Let me share it with you!

A young boy was on a hike through the woods with his father when he came upon a mid-size boulder.

“Dad,” he asked, “Do you think I can move that boulder?”

The father replied, “Yes, son, you can move that boulder if you use all of your strength.”

The boy pushed with all that was in him. He pushed and grunted and pushed some more, but the boulder would not budge. Frustrated, he said, “You were wrong, Dad, I can’t move it.”

The father replied, “You could have moved it if you used all of your strength, but you didn’t use all of your strength because you didn’t ask me for help.”

Many times in life we get weary, tired, and weak in God’s service. In my own life, when I become weary I have to go to the One who has endless strength. God is the only One who never tires, or grows weary. He has strength readily available to lift us up and sustain us. We can find rest for our body and soul at His feet. I have to admit that when I feel myself growing weary many times it is because I have not leaned on the Lord and gained the strength I need from Him. So I go! I go to Him. I sit beside Him and let Him teach me. I find comfort in His words and strength to continue with Him through my day.

Psalm 18:1-2 reads, “I will love thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust.”

Why do you suppose that David began this Psalm in this way?  By reading in the forward of the Psalm, you will find that this Psalm was written when David was being pursued by an angry Saul who wanted to kill him. David was living on the run, hiding in caves, sleeping on the ground and just trying to survive.  We can certainly see how weary and tired David had become physically and emotionally.  In this state, He chose to praise and declare his love to the one who was his daily strength. David may have been running, but he knew who to run to for the strength and encouragement that he needed.

Are you weary today? my friend. I know someone who has strength for your weary soul. Don’t wait. Sit with Him. Jesus has all the strength you need.