Psalm 104:14

He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth. 
 
The Lord is ever our provider!  Never shall our souls stand in need of any necessity. When God’s child lacks strength in time of trouble, the Lord shall supply it.  When Abraham’s son is beaten down under worldly woe, his heavenly Father shall certainly revive him. When the believer’s soul is parched and dry, then shall the High King of Heaven fill him to overflowing with rivers of living water.
 
Courtesy of Blue Letter Bible
 

Jehovah-Jirah - Our Provider

 

Excuses

“I’m not perfect.”
“I have all kinds of problems.”
“I don’t know the Bible well enough.”
“I have no ability. I don’t have any gifts.”
“I’m limited.”
“I’m just not worthy…”

Well, did you know that….
  Moses stuttered.
  David’s armor didn’t fit.
  John Mark deserted Paul.
  Timothy had ulcers.
  Hosea’s wife was a prostitute.
  Amos’ only training was in the school of fig-tree pruning.
  Jacob was a liar.
  David had an affair.
  Abraham was too old.
  David was too young.
  Peter was afraid of death.
  Lazarus was dead.
  John was self-righteous.
  Naomi was a widow.
  Paul was a persecutor of the church.
  Moses was a murderer.
  Jonah ran from God’s will.
  Miriam was a gossip.
  Gideon and Thomas both doubted.
  Jeremiah was depressed and suicidal.
  Elijah was burned out.
  John the Baptist was a loudmouth.
  Martha was a worry-wart.
  Did I mention that Moses had a short fuse?
  So did Peter, Paul – well, lots of folks did.

God doesn’t require a job interview for salvation. He’s our Heavenly Father. He doesn’t check our bank statement or credit rating or our IQ before He uses us.  He’s not prejudiced or partial, not judging, grudging, not deaf to our cry, not blind to our need. He knows who we are and what we are and loves us in spite of ourselves.

Satan says, “You’re not worthy”
Jesus says, “So what?  I am!”

Satan looks back and sees our mistakes.
God looks back and sees the cross.

There are lots of reasons why God shouldn’t call us. But if we are in love with Him, if we hunger for Him, He’ll use us in spite of who we are, where we’ve been, what we have done, or the fact that we are not perfect!

Jesus says, “Ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you will find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; For every one that asks will receive; and he that seeks will find; and to him that knocks it shall be opened”  (Matthew 7:7-8)

Author unknown

Galatians 2:19

It is no longer I who lives, but it is Christ who lives in me.

Little by little we are changed by this daily crucifixion of the will.  Changed, not like a tornado changes things, but like a grain of sand in an oyster changes things.  New graces emerge, new ability to cast all our care upon God, new joy at the success of others, new hope in a God who is good.  God is not destroying the will but transforming it so that over a process of time and experience we can freely will what God wills.

-Richard Foster –

Prayer, Finding the Heart’s True Home

 

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward [man] is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding [and] eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen [are] temporal; but the things which are not seen [are] eternal.
Our struggles, our battles, our daily toiling against the forces of this present darkness are naught compared with the marvellous riches and captivating glory to which we are called and in which we will soon partake. What matter our suffering? What matter our failures? What matter any measure of suffering when held against the surpassing beauty and permanence of our heavenly hope!
 
Courtesy of the Blue Letter Bible
 

Romans 8:38-39

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
 
Heavenly Father, I am so grateful for Your abundant love and grace. The strong hold You have on my life is incomprehensible!  Thank You for the promise that nothing can separate me from Your love.  Neither spiritual nor physical forces—nothing—will ever be remotely able to separate me from Your love, O God, which is found in Christ Jesus, Your Son. Continue to make me appreciative of such mercy.
 
 
 

The Master Weaver

As many of you may know, I love genealogy.  Today I found out that my German great-grandfather was a “master weaver” by profession.  While doing some research on what that was I stumbled across this poem.  I love it – hope you do as well:

The Plan Of The Master Weaver

Our lives are but fine weavings,
That God and we prepare,
Each life becomes a fabric planned
And fashioned in His care.
We may not always see just how
The weavings intertwine,
But we must trust the Master’s hand
And follow His design,
For He can view the pattern
From the upper side,
While we must look from underneath
And trust in Him to guide.

Sometimes a strand of sorrow
Is added to His plan,
And though it’s difficult for us,
We still must understand
That it’s He who fills the shuttle,
It’s He who knows what’s best,
So we must weave in patience
And leave to Him the rest…

Not till the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly
Shall God unroll the canvas
And explain the reason why—
The dark threads are as needed
In the Weaver’s skillful hand
And the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned.

–Anonymous

Pit Stop

The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head.  To the roots of the mountains I sank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever.  But you brought my life up from the pit, O’Lord, my God.  When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple.  Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs.  But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you.  What I have vowed I will make good.  Salvation comes from the Lord.

The Pit – those dark places, gloomy hours and crushing trials that come upon every life.  To me – the pit should not be viewed as our enemy.  Yes, I’ve had a few trials in my lifetime.  Prior to my becoming a Christ follower – the trials would paralyze me with fear.  Then later, as a young Christian, the trials would knock me down, and they would keep me down for a long periods of time.  Now when the trials come – and they do come – they still knock me to my knees – but only momentarily. 

Being in the pit should be used as an opportunity to spend time reflecting on who you will listen to – the Lord or the liar.  It would be to your benefit to remain teachable during trials – He wants to grow you – He has something he wants to show you.  If instead, you turn and run, you will silence the Word of God – and it will be a trial wasted.  When you are in that place of darkness – listen to God’s voice.  Use the lesson – it is a gift from Him.  Don’t become bitter at the hand you have been dealt – become better.  His grace is sufficient.  For me personally, every pit experience has left me loving God even more than I did before!

Back to Jonah – He had come to a place where he knew he could not help himself – he was in bondage in the pit.  When Jonah finally comes to his senses and turns back to God – he gives full credit for his deliverance to God (v.6).  Hopeless and helpless – lost – dying – none of us have crawled out of the pit on our own strength or ability.  Jonah’s theme – and in fact – the entire theme of the Bible – GOD SAVES.  Amen?!

It is a lie that you can shut God out of your life.  God’s way is the best way, even when you can’t see it in your circumstances.  His desire is not to strip you – but to add to you!  If you will trust and follow God’s calling for your life, He will lead you to your highest and your best.