Oct 19, 2011

Help my unbelief!

Something has healed in me.   As I sat in church this past Sunday morning, it was just one of those times when God broke through and touched something deep inside.  

Being as old as I am and having been in the church my entire life, there are some things about being a Christian that I take for granted.  I know God is everywhere and is able to do anything.  I know Jesus paid an awful cost to seal my redemption.  I know there is an eternity beyond this life and though much of that is a mystery, I rest in knowing I will be there and it will be good.  

If I'm honest, I also know there is a lot about God that my heart just doesn't fully comprehend, claim, or appropriate.  In my mind, Christianity is a package deal, and I'm sold.  When I read the words of Scripture, I know every one is trustworthy and true.  But somehow there are still truths and promises that I block my soul from fully receiving.  Why, I do not know.  I have no trouble claiming them for others.  I have a sneaky suspicion I may not be alone in this.

But as I was worshipping last Sunday, the familiar 23rd Psalm came to my mind.  And this is how the words played:

"The Lord is MY Shepherd, I~SHALL~NOT~WANT" 
"He maketh ME to lie down in green pastures"
"He restoreth MY soul"
"He leadeth ME in the paths of righteousness..."

on and on and finally...

"Surely GOODNESS and MERCY shall follow ME... ALL~THE~DAYS~OF~MY~LIFE..."

Friends, I've been living in the valley for a while now.  It's so easy to become discouraged when I'm feeling weak, tired and worn out by the storms of life.  Circumstances these past months have taken me almost to the breaking point at times when I've allowed myself to indulge in self-pity and worry.  With my head I fully have known there are so many others in much dire life situations, yet my heart still cried out "how much longer, Lord?  How many more roller coaster rides before things normalize again?"

Don't get me wrong.  The temptation to look at circumstances and fall into a sea of despair is still there.  I don't see any hard evidence our economy is getting any better.  Every time I turn around it seems someone else I know has lost their job~and all too often it seems that older employees have a target on their backs.  It's easy to lose hope...


we turn our focus back to the One who is all about goodness and mercy, and take hold of the truth of His Word.  That's where hope is found.  Thank you God for reminding me again.

"Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me." ~Philippians 3:12


Rebecca said...

He leads....goodness and mercy follow.

(Somehow I just saw the "lead" and "follow" in relationship to each other while reading your post.)

Thanking God for your healing in this area of your life, Jacquelyn. He's got you covered! Front AND back.

Anonymous said...

Don't usually comment on blogs but friends of ours was just in the same situation. Our ages and lost a job after 20 some years of work. He was out 22 months and within of the next 2 months his unemployment would run out. He found a job and close to home! We live toward canton oh so know how the job picture is. The times they went through and the questions they asked God but he was always there...the only one who moved was them never God. Nothing ever went unpaid....lots of lessons learned by them and us who did alot of praying for them. The other commenter is right...He has your back!

Dee said...

I am reminded that we are week but HE is strong and He is "always' nigh....reach up and He reaches down...Thank you for sharing...HUGS.

Walking on Sunshine... said...

Aren't you glad that when you "walk through the valley" God is WITH YOU! This was a beautiful post! Thank you!!!

Jess said...

Oh Jacque,

JESUS is so personal! I love how the Holy Spirit was personalizing the 23 Psalm in your heart!
HE knows and cares. May you continue to experience the peace that only HE can give...you are tucked snugly under HIS wings!
Love you~

Hilary said...

You and Bob have been on my mind so much lately ... Aaron and I are praying for you! Isn't it wonderful that even through loss, we can trust that the Lord alone is sufficient.

Pat said...

You are so right in suspecting that others, including myself have felt the same way. We know the word and promises of God and believe them for others, but sometimes fail to apply them to our own lives. Thanks for the personal and precious reminder that WE are the sheep of his pasture!