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Posts Tagged ‘#trustgod’

I think it was Oreos that said the best was in the middle (or maybe it was a middle school …).

Not long ago I heard the perfect story about the middle, at the perfect time.

The story goes like this …

  • the middle of the Bible is the Psalms
  • the middle of the book of the Psalms is chapter 118
  • Psalms 117 has the smallest number of verses (2)
  • Psalms 119 has the largest number of verses (176)
  • There are 594 chapters before Psalm 118, and 594 after it
  • 594X2=1188
  • Psalm 118:8 is the middle of the Bible
  • Psalm 118:8 tells us”

“It is better to take refuge in the Lord
   than to trust in man.”

So cool, right? What a beautiful story of God ensuring that the the very middle of his Word be such a significant verse.

Except that it may not actually be the center of the Bible, as there is the Catholic canon and the Protestant canon, some versions end up with a different middle and, well … the numbering of verses is not necessarily original.

So, it’s a cool story, but maybe not one to put too much stock into … except …

Except that I was introduced to this story when I was was struggling with the issue of trust.

So, Psalm 118:8 may not be the center of the Bible, but it is definitely the central message that God had waiting for me.

We (when I say ‘we’ I really mean ‘I’) often and so easily put our trust in all the wrong things … all the temporary things. We put our trust in our wealth, our health, our friendships, our family, our spouses, our jobs, our abilities our (name it … it’s right there on the tip of your tongue).

The thing is that there is only one solid, unwavering, always loving us, trustable one, and that is God.

After being reminded of this verse, I found myself asking of myself:

“can I trust in God alone?
can I trust in God if the ‘ifs’ of life happen?
can I trust in God if he is all I have?”

He is my middle, my center … I might need to say this on repeat for the rest of my days, but the best really is in the middle.

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change3
Change is hard, and not always comfortable.

As I write today, I am sitting in my comfortable chair, feet up, coffee beside me, the Wonderdog snoring at my feet and the sky slowly lightening with the rising sun. I am delightfully comfortable, and I like it.

To change is to accept that we might be uncomfortable.

If I change chairs, it might not be as cozy.

If I try a new food at a restaurant, it might not be as tasty.

If I get a new hair style, it might not suit me as much.

This month I left what was known, safe and comfortable for a new job. As people have asked how I like the new job, I have opted to be completely honest …

“It has been good and bad, encouraging and frustrating … overall, change is hard when you are older.”

The first week of my new job I was frustrated with my commute and  lonely for familiar faces … specific familiar faces of students and staff. The second week I was growing in affection for the new faces, the delightful team I get to work with and the students whose names I started to know. The third week I had figured out the commute, had a student initiate playing chicken in the hallway, began to revel in getting to help students with math (a personal love) and started praying for my co-workers.

I have also realized something about change …

change is hard, change is uncomfortable, but maybe we are not created to be comfortable.

In the there are numerous accounts of Jesus telling people to GO.

  • in the Great Commission, Jesus says, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” (Mark 16:15)
  • Jesus told an adulterous woman to, “Go, and sin no more.” John 8:11
  • after healing the man with leprosy, Jesus told him to “go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded.” Luke 5:14
  • to the woman who was healed from many years of bleeding, by, through faith, touching his cloak, he said, “your faith has healed you. Go in peace. You are free from your suffering.”  Mark 5:34

And in Isaiah, when commissioned as prophet, by the Lord, Isaiah showed how to respond to the call to go:

“Then I heard the Lord’s voice, saying, “Who can I send? Who will go for us?”
So I said, “Here I am. Send me!”
(Isaiah 6:8)

We are called and commissioned to go.

Though this job change is uncomfortable, I am coming to realize that is is good to be uncomfortable, challenged and even a bit lonely. These experiences give new insights, and prompt reliance on the God who promises to already be where we are going.

“Have I not commanded you?
Be strong and courageous.
Do not be afraid;
do not be discouraged,
for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:9

 

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I sat in my morning chair, enjoying that the time change again allows me to soak in the visual beauty of the deep orange leaves on my neighbor’s tree. This, our eleventh autumn living in this house, was the first that I had ever noticed this tree. My eyes glanced back to my device with the red-lettered ‘wind warning’.

An hour later, with phone in hand I stepped outside to take a picture of that eye-catching tree, knowing that that day would be the last day of morning beauty for my eyes.

Throughout the day, whenever I looked outside and saw the trees swaying, I envisioned orange leaves being battered from the tree and to the ground below.

When I returned home that evening, I was preoccupied with preparing dinner, policing the completion of homework, and preparing again for the next day to come.

The following day, I grabbed my coffee, and headed to my chair, with regret for the loss of my beautiful view.

What I saw surprised me, as the tree looked just as it had the previous morning. I was so surprised I even got our my phone to compare the before photo to the exact replica before my eyes.

I sat in delightful surprise, in awe of, not only the beauty, but the resilience in front of me. Despite gale winds, the tree held her beauty. The wind may indeed have battered her, but somehow she held on.

As I looked, in awe and wonder, I was reminded of Hebrews 10:23,

“Let us hold tightly without wavering
to the hope we affirm,
for God can be trusted to keep his promise.”
Hebrews 10:23

We all have seasons when we are battered by the winds, some of them gale force winds, of life.

when families struggle to love each other.

when jobs do not fulfill us, or are lost due to cut backs.

when marriage is not smooth, or is ended.

when our health is failing, or our life is.

when we have to live with hurt, betrayal, disobedience, illness, worry, change, death,

and anything else that is battering our souls.

But, if we hold tightly, without wavering, to the hope that is Christ, He will not let us fall. We might get blown around, like those orange leaves on the tree, but we just need to hold on, to the One who can be trusted.

 

 

 

 

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