Showing posts with the label Provision

Open, Open, Open!

  God, the one and only— I’ll wait as long as he says. Everything I need comes from him, so why not? He’s solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul, An impregnable castle: I’m set for life. (Psalm 62:1) How many times have we found it hard to wait for God's timing in our lives? The more we wait, the harder it seems to await whatever it is we are waiting on. Unable to wait longer, we can jump ahead of his timing, bringing disaster to bear in our lives. Been there, done that, and even wore out the t-shirt! Our psalmist puts things in perspective for those of us who have had to wait a little longer than we might have liked: "Everything I need comes from - so why not wait"? He is our solid rock - a firm foundation upon which we can base our trust. He gives us a chance to rest in him - breathing room for our souls, so we don't jump ahead of him. He is that impregnable castle - a word picture for not only the capability he has to keep us in our times of waiting,

A barren place

  God—you’re my God! I can’t get enough of you! I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God, traveling across dry and weary deserts. (Psalm 63:1) Why do we find ourselves in the desert places anyway? If you are like me, you chose to live in one! If we wanted to wax a little philosophical this morning, we could all say we get ourselves into some pretty 'dry and barren' places at times? Those dry and barren places are likely a result of our choices - yup - I've gone meddling again. Here's the thing I want us to consider today - do we get hungry and thirsty when we are in a place of ample nourishment and quenching? Not likely! We get the hungriest when there is no food in sight, and the thirstiest when our demand for fluids is not met with an equal provision of the refreshing stuff. It is in the dry and weary deserts where we find we have a need or two that honestly cannot be met any other way than by God's provision. When we are in the lush valleys, green meadows, a

What is in the house?

What is a break-through? We hear that terms a lot of the time, but we don't always know how to define it in our particular circumstance. For example, if we need a 'financial break-through', we may say we need to be out from under some oppressive debt. If we need a 'physical break-through', we may say we need to be healed of a life-altering disease. These are easier 'break-through' types to define, but there are a whole lot of emotional, spiritual, and even relational break-through moments that we don't always know how to define. They are a little more elusive because they really rely upon us being open and honest about things. Sometimes we just need to acknowledge what we have, then allow God to do what he will do with what we have - then in some way God allows a break-through. Now the wife of the son of one of the men who tell what will happen in the future cried out to Elisha, “Your servant, my husband, is dead. You know that your servant honored the L

No dime store provisions here

Then he said to all, “Anyone who wants to follow me must put aside his own desires and conveniences and carry his cross with him every day and keep close to me! Whoever loses his life for my sake will save it, but whoever insists on keeping his life will lose it; and what profit is there in gaining the whole world when it means forfeiting one’s self? ( Luke 9:23-25 TLB ) A few years ago, I had the privilege of being given access to some very expensive tools through an estate sale situation. Prior to this offering, I had a couple of power tools inherited from dad, or some that I had picked up along the way when the need arose. They were inexpensive ones and 'did the job' such as drilling a hole or sanding a rough spot out of some wood, but they were definitely not high quality tools. My neighbor was a professional woodworker, having both a small shop in his backyard and a much larger one for his business venture in town. The chance to pick up some very nice tools at a ridicu

I'm hungry again!

Jesus replied, “I am the Bread of Life. No one coming to me will ever be hungry again. Those believing in me will never thirst." ( John 6:35   TLB ) What makes you hungry? As I catch the fragrant aroma of baking cookies or fresh bread, I get hungry! Walk into the putrid smell of old pine cleaner in a musty bathroom and that appetite just takes a hit in the old nostrils! It is amazing how we can be so hungry one moment and then have that hunger almost turn to a sour stomach in such a short period of time. How it is that happens? In the natural sense, hunger is made up of many 'senses' - smell, taste, texture, not to mention hormones triggering the desire to eat, etc. We can realize tremendous hunger, and then there are times we can ignore that hunger to the point it becomes a devastating thing to our physical bodies. In a spiritual sense, it is possible to ignore hunger so long we just don't realize we are becoming malnourished! Hunger is satisfied as we partake -

Cover me!

To take refuge, one must move into what has been provided as "cover".  In the terms of a hunter, they set up a small tent of sorts, creating an illusion of "belonging" in the surroundings.  The illusion is meant to fool those animals who frequent the area, giving them a sense of security, but not alerting them to the intruders in their midst.  God's refuge is unlike that of the hunters - for it is never an illusion, never meant to trick, and does not disguise those who would attempt to intrude upon its security.  Yet his refuge is a place of "cover" for those who avail themselves of it.  Not a place to "duck and cover", but a place of protective covering, free of worry and harassment.  But you’ll welcome us with open arms   when we run for cover to you.   Let the party last all night!   Stand guard over our celebration.   You are famous,  God , for welcoming God-seekers,  for decking us out in delight. (Psalm 5:11-12 MSG) Some things

Another wilderness journey?

Have you ever really considered the lessons you have learned because of the experience of another?  You know, the stuff you just never really explore because you see how the exploration of another left them kind of unfulfilled, reasonably sane, but just so not excited about their experience?  Well, I think this is all part of God's plan for us in life - to learn from the experiences of those who go before us.  The first astronaut into space paved the way for all the others who came behind.  The first one to fly above the earth had a whole lot of failures before there was truly lift-off.  The experiences of the first made an example of both what not to do and what to do in the midst of the experiences of the many who followed.  I think the same is true in our spiritual lives - we learn a great deal about what not to do and what really is the best path for us simply by looking at those who've gone before us. When  God , your God, ushers you into the land he promised through you

Honest prayer yields God's bounty

Bountiful:  liberally, generously, or abundantly; providing or having ample supply.  When I look at my bank account, I hope to see "ample" supply for every purchase I need to make - don't you?  When I examine the contents of the pantry, I want to see an abundance of the "good stuff" which seems to satisfy both my cravings and my hunger.  When I am down in the dumps, I call upon God's generous grace because I know it will be what pulls me to my feet again.  When God "deals" with me, I want him to do it with liberal grace, generous love, and abundant power.  How about you? Deal bountifully with Your servant, that I may live; and I will observe Your word [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying it].  (Psalm 119:17 AMP) Here our psalmist begins this section of our psalm with the intention of God's "dealing" with him - so he may observe God's word.  In other words, he doesn't expect God to deal with him so he can continue to li

And the hunt is on!

I love this psalm of David because of the sincerity of heart I see expressed in each stanza.  Here we find thoughts such as God lifts us out of the deep ditches, the sticky places, or what it is like when we come to see the world as a huge stockpile of God-wonders.  Eyes open, heart eager to respond, thoughts turned to God - David stands ready for God's intervention.  Yet, the most truthful words of this psalm are about in the middle - where David calls out to God to deal with his amassed guilt - the very guilt he had accumulated through many wrong choices.  He describes his condition of spirit and soul:  " I was so swamped by guilt  I couldn’t see my way clear.   More guilt in my heart than hair on my head,  so heavy the guilt that my heart gave out."  (vs. 12)  Not knowing about you all I can do is account for my own realization of having stood exactly where David stood that day - bogged down in the mire of my wrong choices, stuck squarely in the middle of my mess.  In