Our Unexpected Journey

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Floyd’s week started well with him being peacefull and content.  One of the therapists mentioned that he's even seemed to enjoy his therapy times - which is not always the case.  

But in the last few days he has appeared to be feeling unwell.  It's always so hard when he can't communicate!  His chest seems a bit congested, and he just seems to be rather miserable.  

I'm always so grateful for the good days.  I continually pray for the spirit of peace to be with him.  

When I've asked the Lord for a breakthrough for Floyd - and said to the Lord it can be "healing or heaven" - I've also asked the Lord to please keep him from suffering any further.  If God chooses to take him home, I'm trusting it will be a gentle passing.  I never know from day to day what is ahead.  I continually tell the Lord that Floyd is in His hands.

I have shared a number of times on this long unexpected journey things that the Lord has been teaching me about trust.  I often think I'm learning the lessons and doing what God is showing me......and then the message of learning about trust cycles back around.  I've come to realize that the journey of trust is never-ending!  God keeps taking me to deeper levels of trust.  It seems there is always something new and different that I need to trust Him about!

There have been things, situations, people in my life that I've thought I could depend on - and it turned out differently.  The only thing I can absolutely, 100% trust in is Jesus!!  He is my Rock, my strong tower, my strength, my security, my friend, my counselor, my provider, my healer, my source of comfort and grace, and so much more!  He is by my side continually.  He is holding my hand.  He is closer than the air I breathe.  He never, ever leaves me alone - never leaves my side.

As we go through life, we put our time and energy into so many things - our work, our ministry, our family, our friendships, travel, fun, sports, entertainment.  On this journey I've realized that first and foremost I need to put all my energy into trusting the Lord.  Everything else will flow out of that.  And, as I said, He just keeps taking me deeper and deeper into that trust.  Some of that trust has had me walking through "the valley of the shadow of death," but He has been with me each step of the way.

"Sovereign Lord, you are God!  Your covenant is trustworthy, and you have promised good things to your servant."  2 Samuel 7:28

"I trust in your unfailing love."  Psalm 13:5

"Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God."  Psalm 20:7

"Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you."  Psalm 9:10

"Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe."  Proverbs 29:25

"When I am afraid, I put my trust in you."  Psalm 56:3

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight."  Proverbs 3:5,6

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."  Romans 15:13

A friend recently sent me Romans 8:17 - "And since we are His children, we are His heirs.  In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God's glory.  But if we are to share in His glory, we must also share in His sufferings."

The commentary my friend read said that our inheritance in Christ includes both His glory and His suffering.  Our suffering now is proof that we will also share in Christ's glory.  That gives us strength to endure.

I'm not a fan of the suffering part!  But this gave me fresh hope, encouragement, and perspective.  I'm so grateful we don't have to go through the hard times, the trials, and the suffering alone.  Jesus is right by our side helping us to make it through them!

"For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison."  2 Corinthians 4:17

Our time on this earth is just a "blip" in comparison to the eternity we will have with Him.  The things He is working in our lives now are preparing us for that eternity with Him.  I'm grateful for His help during this preparation time!

I've had a couple situations recently that have been very draining.  I was explaining this to the Lord in my quiet time.  I had a picture in my mind of a jug that was dry - bone dry.  There was nothing left in the jug to pour out.

As I waited in His presence in worship, I felt the Lord saying that He was refilling the jug.  I saw Him pouring clean, cool, refreshing water into the jug - filling it up to the brim.  I'm so grateful that I can come to Him in my emptiness.  He doesn't turn me away.  He doesn't rebuke me for being empty.  He just gently says "I'll refill you."  What a good God He is.  He "restores my soul."

And He faithfully helps me get through each trial.  I could have never survived all these months without His help, His grace, His strength.  How awesome He is!

Again and again I'm reminded that the best response to trials, to losses, to suffering, and to thwarted hopes is to worship and praise Him.  It gets my focus turned in the right direction.  I need to let go of things and look to Him - but never let go of His hand!  As I worship Him, things get back into balance.

This past Sunday on Mother's Day I had a few sad moments.  I was missing Floyd.  He always made the day so special for me.  As I lifted my sadness to the Lord in worship, the weight lifted and refreshing joy flooded my soul.  Worship is so very powerful!  I know it's a "tool" God has given us.  We lift up His name in worship - and He, in turn, ministers so deeply to our hearts.  Only God could do that!