Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Preparation and One Thousand Gifts...Days 261 ~ 280

It's been a full couple of weeks.  I realize more and more that my days...weeks...months do not often go as planned and that this life that I have been given to live is a preparation for that glorious time when there will be a new heaven and a new earth and God will dwell with His people.  He will wipe every tear from our eyes and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things will have passed away and everything will have been made new.

Every struggle I come against is used for the preparing of this heart of mine.  I must say I'm not always so good at this "preparing" thing but I am learning.  It can be painfully hard when life suddenly throws you a curve ball.  I think I have things figured out, life is going along smoothly and then it comes to a grinding halt.  The path I was on suddenly seems to become a different path, what I saw up ahead is no longer visible, it's gone, disappearing into some giant sink hole and I feel like I can't move forward.

Has the path really changed or is it just my view of the path and what I expected it to be.  I'm reminded of Proverbs 16: 9, "In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps." The LORD determines my steps, so how will I take them, grudgingly when they don't seem to go my way...will I give up thinking I can't do it or will I continue to push forward stepping into the difficult things as well.  Knowing in my heart that this God I serve, this God who loves me is a God I can trust. He is a God who holds me in His hands, and in His hands is strength and protection.

I've been reading through the book of Psalms and I'm amazed with how much David trusted the LORD.  He depended completely on the LORD and knew of His sovereignty.  David knew deep in his heart that the LORD was for him and that no matter where the LORD directed his steps He was right there with him.  

I love Psalm 18: 30 - 36, "As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless.  He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.  For who is God besides the LORD?  And who is the Rock except our God?  It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect.  He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights.  He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze.  You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great.  You broaden the path beneath me, so that my ankles do not turn."

What a great passage.  So often when I find myself coming to those so called "sink holes" in the road I tend to curl up within myself thinking that I have to solve things on my own and that I stand alone in this desperate place.  The circumstance can seem and feel so big that I just shut this heart of mine.  Yet what I learn from David in the Psalms is that I am not alone, that God is with me, that He is trustworthy and He is sovereign.

My life is safe in His hands.  It doesn't mean that the journey I take will be easy but it does mean that if I stick close to Him, He will guide me through, He will be my source of strength and my comfort in times of trouble.

One Thousand Gifts journaled for days 261 ~ 280

781. Father/son chats
782. The warmth of the sunshine
783. Grateful to be a mom
784. God who pursues relentlessly
785. A drive and chat with my husband
786. Jocelyne doing the grocery shopping :-) (I haven't grocery shopped in two months)
787. Memories
788. New opportunities for the youngest
789. Celebrating Matt's 18th birthday
790. The changing colours of Fall
791. A day of rain
792. Beautiful Fall day
793. Gorgeous moon
794. Chai tea with honey
795. Bed sheets hung out to dry on the clothes line
796. The beauty of dew drops up close
797. The small details in God's creation - the tiniest spider web covered in dew

This web was the size of my thumb.

798. Heat from the wood stove
799. Beautiful evening for a family photo shoot
800. The earth is the LORD's and everything in it
801. Amazing, ginormous potatoes from my dad and mom's garden

802. To be able to bless a family
803. Matt looking forward to getting his grade 12 at Loyalist
804. Beautiful colours in the country side

805. My bed at the end of a full day
806. Gorgeous Fall day
807. Biting into a fresh apple
808. Dinner out with my husband
809. A visit with a friend who's dying ~ we do not weep as the world weeps
810. Beautiful drive in the country with good friends

These little fish followed us as we walked along the water.

Enjoying the beautiful Fall weather.

811. God's beautiful creation
812. Fellowship with God's people
813. Message on faithfulness
814. May He increase and I decrease
815. Encouragement from my husband
816. Splashes of red, orange and yellow driving to town
817. Hanging with Jocelyne and Matt tonight ~ laughter
818. Psalm 27
819. Mountains into mole hills
820. Dinner with friends
821. My parents
822. The crunch of leaves as I walk
823. Harvest time
824. That a friend no longer suffers ~ we do not weep as the world weeps
825. A husband/father who believes in his son
826. One day at a time
827. God is bigger than our difficulties
828. Spontaneous drive out north with the kids ~ good for the heart

Aren't they beautiful ;-)

829. My husband ~ a good man
830. Father and son working together
831. Celebrating with my church community
832. Kindness and concern from a young woman for something we're struggling with
833. For all those who give during our church services ~ often they go unnoticed
834. Wood stove started by the eldest ~ nice to come home to
835. Chatting in the family room with the kids and my husband
836. In the midst of our difficulties God is still in control and sees the big picture
837. Celebrating the life of a godly man who was loved much
838. My husband...
839. Laying a friend to rest with the glory and beauty of God's creation all around us
840. A nice walk with my husband

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