Much like your parents attic, treasured memories lay within. So, wipe the dust off my ruminations and remembrances, sit back and enjoy!

What If...Indeed!

What an awesome entry Hon! (see Lisa's BLOG entry from earlier today). God is NOT a cruel god. He wants to bless those who lean on Him, trust Him and rely upon His perfect wisdom! He doesn’t bless us with something (each other) and then take it away…that would go against His very nature. Yes, we live in a fallen world (because of original sin…Adam and Eve) and I am sure that we will face struggles and ‘growing’ pains along our path. But like I have told you before, I have NO doubt in my mind that we will weather each and every one because neither of us will be alone…we will have each other to rely upon! And more importantly, we together will have God to lean on and seek guidance from. Ecclesiastes 4:12 says ‘Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not easily broken’. With Christ at the center of our relationship…our very home…we WILL be a cord of three strands! Romans 8:31b says this ‘…if God is for us, who can be against us?’ I too have had my moments of ‘what if’s?’ What if Lisa’s boy’s don’t like me? What if this is too much of a change to Lisa’s life and what she’s grown accustom to? When are we going to have time to ourselves to grow as a couple? And the thing I have found is this…if we are truly seeking God’s peace and guidance in these, or ANY area of our lives, how can we hear Him if our minds are preoccupied with thoughts such as these? Fear, worry, doubt, etc. are ALL distractions and take our focus off from where it should be…the things and worship of God. God tells us in Psalm 46:10 ‘Be still and know that I am God.’ In this rapid paced, pedal to the metal world we live in, God tells us to ‘Be still…’ slow down, calm down, quit your planning and positioning, quiet your mind and empty it of thought. Now listen for His voice…His voice is pure and His wisdom perfect…His ideas are right on the money and He will NOT mislead you. Then KNOW that He is God…I mean, do you really, honestly believe He is God? If we KNEW Him and BELIEVED, why worry at all? That’s like seeing a fireman all dressed and ready to fight a fire and then doubting he will help extinguish the blaze. God is faithful in the face of our faithlessness. God is wise in the face of our foolishness. God is trustworthy in the face of our unreliability. God is merciful in the face of our selfish, sinful nature.

If that isn’t pure love, I don’t know what is…

In the course of my life
I see God’s faithfulness in different ways

It’s like the rose the blooms every spring
It’s like the air that I’m breathing everyday
It’s like the sun that rises every morning

But what if the sun refuses to shine,
and the stars concealed by dark clouds?
What if the storm comes, and the wind blows away all that I have?
Does God's faithfulness still linger?
Are His words still true?

I only think on this a moment, then I look to the cross
And the price He chose to pay instead of me
I look at the blood that ran down His broken and battered body;
the very same that washes away my sin
I look at His wounds and the sickening scourging;
and know that by His stripes He heals me from my disease

He teaches the bird to fly;
and teaches me to walk
He clothes the lilies of the field;
And supplies my every need

He knows the very strands of my hair;
And because I am fearfully and wonderfully made,
He knit me together in my mother’s womb

Indeed, I know that in every way God is faithful...
He has been, is and always will remain faithful!!!

~ V

Does He Really Understand?

Nervousness, anticipation, worry…these are a few of the issues we have been handling with the kids lately. Nervousness over expectations, anticipation over how personalities and attitudes will flow, and worry over friendships and starting afresh. As we are preparing to come together as a family in a few short months, it’s a lot to chew on as an adult, but when you’re a kid…yeah. So, we are doing what any loving, caring parents would do. We listen to them, assure them that they aren’t alone in their fears and that we (as parents) will be there for them. Then Lisa and I talk about it. At first we were both hesitant in coming to each other with these issues as we were uh…nervous, anxious and worrisome (Wow! Imagine that, as adults, we too deal with similar issues!), as to how the other would interpret the situation. I am SO thankful and praise God that we are comfortable enough and close enough with each other that we feel safe in openly discussing all issues as they appear! I have witnessed too many couples struggle with communication. They think that if they just avoid an issue it will go away…in reality, all it does is create a LONG list of subjects that are never resolved and can’t be discussed. Can you imagine that? If they’re married long enough, eventually every subject will be taboo and they’ll have nothing left that they can talk about! So, along with God’s help and guidance, we’ll be there with them and for them each step along the way. And that’s really the point isn’t it? Listen, discuss, pray, act…
Listen, and I mean really listen. Shut off your mouth, turn off your thoughts and turn up your ears. Becoming fully engaged in listening shows you are interested and compassionate.
Discuss, clarifying the issue and walking each other through a situation shows each other that you deeply care, want to help, are seeking common ground. But most importantly you’re doing it together.
Pray, some of your may say, ‘Well, sure for the big things of course I pray.’ But scripture tells us in Ephesians 6:18a ‘And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.’ Some of us even wonder if God understands our pain…our sorrow. If He cares that we have stress and worry every day…of course He does! Hebrews 4:15 says this ‘For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are - yet was without sin.’ Remember, Jesus came down from glory and humbled Himself in everyway, even unto death! J.B. Phillips, a writer and New Testament translator, translated the verse this way, ‘For we have no superhuman High Priest to whom our weaknesses are unintelligible – He Himself has shared fully in ALL of our experiences of temptation, except that He never sinned.’
It’s as if the writer knows that we will say to God…”God, it’s easy for you up there. You don’t know how hard it is for us down here!” So he boldly proclaims Jesus’ ability to understand. Look at that verse again…
He Himself…not an angel…not a heavenly ambassador or emissary, but Jesus himself.
Shared fully…not partially or nearly. Not to some degree, but entirely! He shared FULLY.
In ALL of our experience…every heartache…each hurt…all of the nervousness, anxiety and worry. NO EXCEPTIONS. No shortcuts or substitutes, Jesus experienced it ALL!
But why? Why would He allow Himself to experience this? John 15:13 says this ‘Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.’ He did this so he could sympathize with our weaknesses…with our pain…with our worry. He did this so He could identify with us, so that when we pray, who better to intercede to the Father than He who has experienced it first hand?
Act, through listening, discussing and receiving guidance and peace through prayer, we can confidently more forward knowing that we’re seeking God’s will and the kids will feel better knowing we care.

Is it always going to be easy? If it wasn’t for God’s Son, why would we think life would be any easier for us? But as life deals us good and bad, heartache and rejoicing, easy or difficult…we can approach the throne of grace with confidence knowing He truly understands and can empathize fully with whatever comes our way! And we know by reading 2 Corinthians 4:17 that ‘…our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.’

In and for Him!

~ V