Monday, July 29, 2013

Slipping feet?

My husband is a hard-working man, for which I'm very grateful, but for which I sometimes get frustrated as well.  My concern is usually that he works too hard, and doesn't take enough time off.  Summer is his busiest time of year, so it's absolutely crazy.  For him, work weeks can be 6 and sometimes 7 days long.  Most days begin before dawn and end after dusk.  Sometimes he even comes in after it's been dark for a while, having worked with a headlamp clipped to his ball cap.
In an effort to get my husband to take time off every once in a while, we made the decision to purchase a used pontoon.  We saved up for it, and were able to get it this summer.  Having sat without being used for a year, the motor needed quite a bit of work, something that was unexpected and for which we weren't prepared.  If you've ever owned a boat, you know that any motor work on them quickly gets expensive.  When the boat was ready and I found out the amount of the bill, I didn't know how we'd get it paid.  We had cashed in our change jar and it wasn't the amount needed.  Then my husband remembered he had some tool-related items he no longer needed.  He asked if the boat repairman would barter for the difference.  The Lord answered again as the repairman said yes, and we were ready to go!
My husband spent most of the day on the boat, and we joined him for some much-needed family time in the afternoon.  It was nice to have that time for fun and relaxation on the lake, and it was wonderful to see him take time off for himself.  The investment has already been worthwhile, and it will continue to be each time we are on the lake.
When I was awakened this morning I didn't feel well, and began the day grumpy.  While at church, I found myself a bit emotional, as I worshiped our great God, and humbly thanked Him, feeling unworthy of His grace and provision.  During the invitation I spent time in prayer with Him, asking His forgiveness for the times I've failed him.  At the end of the day I found myself teary-eyed at the heart-tugging moments of a few television shows, not certain why they affected me so strongly. 
Each time the emotions swept over me, I'd ask the Lord to help me remember the joy, strength and peace He so willingly has available for me.  To say that I'm a bit emotional today is a bit of an understatement.  Whether it is the reduction in medication, or an overwhelming sense of humbled gratitude is a toss up.  Even though I don't know the exact reason, the Lord does, and I'm sure He has it all in the progression of His plan.  
You see, the Lord is always here for us, and when we rely on Him, He provides what we need to keep from falling down completely.  On this I rely, especially on emotional days like today.  While my feet may have slipped in the lake, my spiritual 'feet' were held steady by God.  He is our protector, our comforter, and remains vigilant at all times.
Psalm 121:3 (HSCB) "He will not allow your foot to slip; your Protector will not slumber."
Thank you Lord, for being my foothold, my Protector, and my ever-present, ever-vigilant God!

Friday, July 19, 2013

My Help Comes From The Lord

In the last post, I mentioned a situation I asked people to pray about.  The good news is that the Lord has worked it out, and all is well.  God is so good, even to lowly me.  When I cried out to the Lord, He not only heard me, He answered.   It may seem that my request was small, but to me it was enormous.

When we cry out to the Lord, we can be assured that He hears us.  If we pray according to His will, we know that our prayer will be answered.  When it comes to relationships, clarification and peace are definitely in accordance with His will.  Not only because of the evidence given in the testimony of those around us today, (and of mine above), but most importantly because of the promise God made to all of us in His Holy Word.

1 John 5:14-15 (HCSB)
14 Now this is the confidence we have before Him: Whenever we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears whatever we ask, we know that we have what we have asked Him for.

How blessed are we?  Incredibly blessed beyond measure.  That is why I'm so thrilled that my help comes from the Lord!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

I Lift My Eyes

While it's been a rough go of it these past few weeks, the Lord has helped me endure taking one of my medications every other day instead of every day.  At this point I'm not sure if my emotions have been heightened by this, or if they have been heightened by a long-standing issue of feeling rejected by someone close.  This weekend we hope to resolve that by revealing our emotions to see if they are justified or if we've misinterpreted the situation.  I don't want to go into details to keep you from being bored, and to save the relationship.  May the Lord be with us as we have the conversation.
With that out of the way, it's always a toss up to try to figure out why my pain level has increased, and what to do about it.  There are so many options, and so little clarity.  Since the goal is to get off of prescription medications, taking more of them to reduce pain would be counter-productive. 
This is where a LOT of prayer comes in.  Yes, I know that sometimes the Lord chooses not to heal people no matter how much they pray, I do know that praying helps emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually.  My post on facebook this morning was an unspoken prayer request.  How very thankful I am that many of my friends lifted that to the Lord for me.  It's truly an honor when someone can pray with/for me, and truly humbling when they pray for me without even knowing the specifics.  My gratefulness for this can never be expressed in mere words.
As for me, with everything going on in our lives right now, I spent a good part of the day crying tears of confusion, hurt, sadness, frustration, and disappointment.  Through those tears I also cried out loud.  I began with recognizing and confessing my own sins, asking for forgiveness, and once again asking for His grace.  These are things I know without a doubt God is delighted to hear and extend.  Then I continued by explaining the situation, asking the Lord for clarity, healing, joy, peace and understanding (to name a few).  [Yes - I know God already knows the situation, but I also know that He wants to hear me explain it myself, so I own it and acknowledge it.  All a part of the healing process.]  Anyone who may have walked by the house and heard me probably thought I was losing my mind.  (Those of you who already know me know that's impossible because I lost my mind years ago!)
As the first line goes: "I lift my eyes to the mountains".  I lifted my eyes to the mountains set before me, not wondering, but KNOWING where my help comes from.  It most certainly comes from the Lord.  How blessed a reassurance that is.  So, onward toward those mountains I go, with God by my side, in front of me, and behind me.
By the way, I did stop crying.  Just so you know.  (Insert a wink and a smile here.)