Our Unexpected Journey

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Floyd's condition seems to swing up and down.  One day he seems to be doing fairly good - the next day he seems quite miserable.  A number of friends have written about specific things they have felt led to pray for Floyd.  I find that encouraging.  It reminds me of God's love and care for him in detailed ways.

Floyd continues to be very tender hearted.  As always, I pray for the sweet comfort of the Holy Spirit for his heart.  

We've been having lots of autumn/early winter fog these days in the area where we live.  Sometimes it is so very thick.  Usually it's just there and I can look out and see the almost impenetrable fog.  At other times it is moving right in front of my eyes - big, thick, rolling waves of it pouring in off the ocean.  I feel like I could almost reach out and touch it.  It's quite spectacular actually.

I sat watching it one day through the window and began to reflect on what I was seeing.  As is often the case, my thoughts began to drift to how the creation reflects the Creator.

Most of the time, God is just "there."  I know He's with me, around me, very much present.  I don't see anything in particular, but I rely on the truth of His word that He is with us.

At other times, I can see His hand at work in the everyday things of my life.  I can almost reach out and touch Him.  I can vividly "feel" His presence.  Sometimes it seems like there are "waves" of His Spirit washing over me.

One of the things I have come to appreciate at a much deeper level than ever before in my life is how God sends these waves of His grace pouring into my heart on difficult days.  I wouldn't even know how to count the number of days during the last 3+ years when I wondered if I could keep going.  At times I have felt weak, weary, alone, and my heart has hurt so deeply from the things that have been lost.  When these moments hit, I cry out to God for His grace, strength, and mercy.

Time and time again He has washed over me with His love and grace.  I can't see it like I have been able to see the waves of fog coming in off the ocean - but I have felt His ministry to me, experienced it in every part of my being.  He has been more than sufficient for every need.  He has met me and helped me in the tiniest details of what I've faced.  Now, because of the rolling waves of fog, I have a vivid visual image to go with what He has done for me!

"He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me."  2 Corinthians 12:9

"Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord."  2 Peter 1:2

"Let us then approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."  Hebrews 4:16

"Out of the fullness of His grace He has blessed us all, giving us one blessing after another."  John 1:16

"The grace of our Lord was more than abundant."  1 Timothy 1:14 

How grateful I am for the unending waves of His strength, mercy, and grace!  

It would be nice if we knew exactly what God is going to do in some of our life circumstances.  Sometimes we think we know, and then it doesn't go that way.  We're disappointed, maybe even hurt.  Sometimes we get angry.  We can feel like God has failed us or let us down.

I was recently talking to some people who felt they had heard from the Lord......but things didn't go quite the way they thought they would.  When this happens, we're in a vulnerable situation.  I've found myself in this position before.  We need to be extra careful how we respond.

God reveals things to us, but our human thoughts and desires can get in the way.  We have to be so careful to not let our hearts become hard if things aren't what we thought they would be.  We can't always predict what God will do.  We can't control Him.  We can't bargain with Him.  We can't hope or wish things into being.

What we can do is trust!  He is absolutely trustworthy - even when we don't understand.  His ways are definitely different from ours!  If I'm puzzled, disappointed, not sure what God is up to......my response should always be to trust.  I find it helpful to speak it out - to declare it - and to remind myself of what my response needs to be.  Saying "I trust you Lord.  I trust you Lord.  I trust you Lord."  leaves no foothold for the enemy to exploit whatever situation we're walking through.

The challenge for my heart is to trust the Lord whatever comes my way.  It's sometimes easier said than done.  But it's definitely the right choice.  

" 'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,' declares the Lord.  'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.' "  Isaiah 55:8,9

"You asked, 'Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?' It is I - and I was talking about things I knew nothing about, things far too wonderful for me."  Job 42:3

"Oh, how great are God's riches and wisdom and knowledge!  How impossible it is for us to understand His decisions and His ways."  Romans 11:33

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding."  Proverbs 3:5

"He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord."  Psalm 112:7

There is much about our unexpected journey that I don't understand, but my heart has chosen to trust the Lord each step of the way.  He has lovingly, faithfully helped me do that.