|Photo from The Birmingham News|
God was faithful to us. God is faithful to us. We are assured that God will continue to be faithful to us. And loving. And kind. And good. And True. And the source of our peace.
We cling to that assurance, not as frantic people who are trying to make something be real by believing in it, but as people who have seen and continue to see His faithfulness and goodness and mercy in ALL circumstances and situations. Since going through the storm (my oldest nephew had a VERY large tree on his house), we have been through relocations, a diagnosis of mental illness and subsequent hospitalizations, deaths of fathers, miscarriage, a stroke, cancer diagnoses and surgery and chemotherapy and recurrences, a motorcycle wreck, another tree accident, a premature birth with a baby being life-flighted away from his Mama, illnesses, hospitalizations, a heart attack, death, more death, and always dealing with our sinful state and its consequences. Through every step of this, when life has been at its darkest, we have felt the presence and comfort of God.
When my father was writing his book about the killing of Jesus, he called me one day and we were talking about the chapter he had just finished. He said it had occurred to him while writing it that when Jesus said to His disciples, "My peace I give unto you", he was literally letting go of HIS peace in order to give it to His disciples. Shortly after that we see Him in the garden praying in great agony.
His peace sustains us through all our trials and sorrows and troubles. His peace sustains us when life is going great. Over and over in the past few years as I have been reading the Bible looking for descriptions of God, I have come across the phrase "With us". Yes. Yes, He is. No matter the situation, the circumstances, the heart-ache, the pain, the trial. God is always with His people.
That is our comfort.
That is our peace.
As you pray today and this week, please remember the following:
- Pray for those who are grieving over loss today. Pray for their comfort. Ask God to put His people around them today to speak His truth to them.
- Praise God for the work that He continues to do in the lives of our family through the circumstances of life.
- Please pray for Baby Ava and her family. Her life is expected to be brief; pray that God will continue to use her to show His purpose and love through her family, and that they will be faithful stewards of the time that they have.
- Chris is making remarkable improvement since his heart transplant. Thank you so much for your faithful prayer for him. Please continue!
- Pray for those battling cancer. Specifically, please pray for Nancy, Sandy, Maria, and Sandra.
- Pray for those recovering from surgery. Please include Pat and Hazel.
- Pray for the mothers and fathers whose children are questioning faith in God, and walking away from the church and their families. Pray for wisdom in these conversations.
- Praise God with our family for the safe arrival of Logan. He is an answer to many prayers!
- The people around you are dealing with all kinds of different heartaches and struggles today. Please ask God to give you His eyes to see their needs, fill you with His love for them, and give you the courage and boldness to reach out and be a source of His comfort and peace to them.
- Pray for your pastor! Pray for your pastor! Pray for your pastor! And don't forget his family!!
His peace to your hearts and homes.