Tag Archive | He is faithful

More on longing..

Everything I am reading this week seems to direct me back to the word “longing.” It reminds me of my childhood and the deep desire I had for God. He was not acknowledged in my home but I knew He was real. The culture was different..more people openly acknowledged God in a way that has disappeared. This only deepened my longing for Him. I never heard the gospel and had no idea how to connect with this God, but my heart was being drawn by movies, music, and Christmas trees, something was happening that I could never quite understand.

He was pursuing me and I was longing for Him..looking back I can see how He planted seeds in my heart throughout the 29 years without Him. Finally we were introduced and I was free to live life fully knowing He loved me and wanted this connection as much as I did. Over 30 years have passed since that time and I still long for more of Him. Advent may be the season of longing, but our entire lives can be filled with that same desire..that same sense of anticipation.. as we live knowing that He is with us and His kingdom is here now.

We cannot see Him, but His fingerprints are unmistakable. As we look back we see how He has appeared over and over again in our lives..there are rescues, interventions, and miracles we experience in our daily lives. We need eyes that see, ears that hear, and hearts that remember.

My prayer for you is that this season increases your desire to grow closer to Him.. to see His mighty hand at work in our world. We all need that hope that only He can give. Let’s ask Him to help us live in the “already” and the “not yet”..to embrace this season as He prepares us more fully for the next. Our hope is in Him as we wait for all those things that He has prepared for us.. both in this world and the next.

“I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord. With my whole being, body and soul, I will shout joyfully to the living God.”

 

 

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Church

I recently commented on the Her.meneutics blog. The post was on the church. A very hot topic. One that brings out the preachiness in certain people. Are we really experts on what God intends church to be? I know that I’m not. The comments on this post were both interesting and confusing. What was church intended to be in the beginning? What has it become? A very weighty topic if you ask me.

I’ve had my share of church disappointments and as a counselor I hear stories that I wish I could erase from my mind. Many people have been disappointed and wounded in church situations. This includes those in the congregation and leaders.. no one escapes. Our culture is intense and the problems we face in the 21st century are huge. No church can meet the needs of all the people.. all the time. A few issues come to mind.. people have been abused, molested, manipulated, abandoned,deceived, over-worked, ignored, addicted, used, ruined, deprived..the list could go on and on.

No.. church is not going to be everything we want it to be. We may not find our best friends in church, our pastor may not be the one who should counsel us.. our bible study group may not be the place to share our deepest needs. Our church community is just that.. a community that meets together to acknowledge our relationship with God.

God is the center and He is the one who can lead us to other resources when we need them. He is the one who has a plan for our lives and directs our steps. He will never fail us. He is our closest friend and our counselor. He accepts us fully and embraces us in our weakness. Our faith in Him will take us through our darkest hours and our deepest valleys.

God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.
   You have bedded me down in lush meadows,
      you find me quiet pools to drink from.
   True to your word,
      you let me catch my breath
      and send me in the right direction. 

  Even when the way goes through
      Death Valley,
   I’m not afraid
      when you walk at my side.
   Your trusty shepherd’s crook
      makes me feel secure. 

  You serve me a six-course dinner
      right in front of my enemies.
   You revive my drooping head;
      my cup brims with blessing. 

  Your beauty and love chase after me
      every day of my life.
   I’m back home in the house of God
      for the rest of my life.