Tag Results For :: "rest"




Away

August 21st, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Who will give me wings,” I ask—
“wings like a dove?”
Get me out of here on dove wings;
I want some peace and quiet.
I want a walk in the country,
I want a cabin in the woods.

— Psalm 55:6, The Message

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Sometimes, I still picture this: Sitting out on Mission Peninsula, surrounded by the greens and blues of northern Michigan, where the cool clear day and a glass of iced tea brought a moment’s respite from real life—the place where I actually live.

The thing about being away is that you don’t belong there. It’s great while it lasts. But it doesn’t last.

So, instead I think I’ll aim to live here:

I call to God;
God will help me.
At dusk, dawn, and noon I sigh
deep sighs—he hears, he rescues.
My life is well and whole, secure
in the middle of danger
Even while thousands
are lined up against me.

— Psalm 55:16, The Message

Lord, I’m looking to You today, waiting on Your help and direction, drawing close to Your promises and peace. Show me the way ahead in the midst of this day’s surroundings—in Christ, I pray.

Pile your troubles on God’s shoulders—
he’ll carry your load, he’ll help you out.

— Psalm 55:22, The Message



Real Wealth, Rich Simplicity

August 21st, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Be good to your servant, God;
    be as good as your Word.
Train me in good common sense;
    I’m thoroughly committed to living your way.
Before I learned to answer you, I wandered all over the place,
    but now I’m in step with your Word.
You are good, and the source of good;
    train me in your goodness.
The godless spread lies about me,
    but I focus my attention on what you are saying;
They’re bland as a bucket of lard,
    while I dance to the tune of your revelation.
My troubles turned out all for the best—
    they forced me to learn from your textbook.
Truth from your mouth means more to me
    than striking it rich in a gold mine.
— Psalm 119:65-72, The Message
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A devout life does bring wealth, but it’s the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. — 1 Timothy 6:7a, The Message

What current activity or opportunity might be distracting you from enjoying this kind of simplicity in your life? When you see unmet needs for leadership and/or service around you—in your job or community, at home, school, or church, among your friends, family, and co-workers—do you want to respond and try to meet the need according to a list of “shoulds” instead of focusing on what God has specifically called you to do?

What goes? What stays? What needs adding?

Our natural inclination when we’re under pressure is to turn away from God’s peace. Notice the symptoms: Anxiety, upset, worry, irritability, comparisons, anger, and resentment. “Lord, don’t you care?” Choosing to wait upon the Lord and trust Him with our concerns isn’t easy or automatic. We can choose to turn toward Life as we seek Christ’s help and direction, wherever we find ourselves.

What comes to mind as you ask God for discernment about distractions in your life today?



Woven Into Love

May 11th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I want you woven into a tapestry of love, in touch with everything there is to know of God. Then you will have minds confident and at rest, focused on Christ, God’s great mystery.

—Colossians 2:2, MSG

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Seeing this stack of expertly made blankets at a farmer’s market in New Mexico invites closer inspection. You can’t help noticing the vivid variety of patterns, textures, and colors on display.

Many of us have heard the comparison made between a person’s life and a hand-woven tapestry. When thinking about this on a larger scale—viewing our lives not only from a solitary standpoint but from the perspective that God is weaving us together into his love—what else do we see?

Lord, let my first thought each morning direct my heart to Your love. As I focus on You, help me to see my life and the coming day as an integral part of Your unfolding design, in which every moment becomes an opportunity for me to receive and respond to your love—in Christ, I pray.  

 

Do you know what hurts so very much? It’s love. Love is the strongest force in the world, and when it is blocked that means pain. There are two things we can do when this happens. We can kill that love so that it stops hurting. But then of course part of us dies, too. Or we can ask God to open up another route for that love to travel.

— Corrie ten Boom



Not As the World Gives

April 10th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.
— John 14:27, NASB

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Come unto Me, ye weary, and I will give you rest.
O Blessed voice of Jesus, which comes to hearts oppressed!
It tells of benediction, of pardon, grace, and peace,
Of joy that hath no ending, of love which cannot cease.

— William C. Dix (1837-1898), “Come Unto Me, Ye Weary”

 

For the thirsty, the hungry, and the distracted, the message of Christ is the same. Jesus speaks of pardon and forgiveness, of joy and peace, given freely to all who look to him to satisfy their innermost needs. Are you trusting the Lord with your heart today? Can you accept he is bringing you ever closer to being conformed to his own character and image? We can live in hopeful expectation believing he will complete the work he has begun.



Real and Eternal

April 5th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Jesus said these things. Then, raising his eyes in prayer, he said: “Father, it’s time. Display the bright splendor of your Son so the Son in turn may show your bright splendor. You put him in charge of everything human so he might give real and eternal life to all in his charge. And this is the real and eternal life: That they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent.” — John 17:1-3, MSG

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Is it not truly amazing how simple it is to impose limits on God’s immeasurable love for us without even realizing what we are doing?

When our Savior’s love seems remote, we may sometimes find ourselves discounting His promises as we push ourselves harder and harder to prove that we are worthy of the Lord’s forgiveness and acceptance. We may somehow think that the love of Christ can be bartered for—earned in exchange for our good works and godly behavior.

The Bible assures us that the Lord’s love for us is permanently dependable—solid, secure, and unshakable. Believing this truth opens up our life in Christ in remarkable and unforeseen ways.

The Savior who invites us to abide in Him also makes it possible for us to draw near to Him by covering our weakness and bearing our pain with and for us. But we must choose: Surrendering our heart to Christ requires our cooperation with the Holy Spirit’s bondage-breaking, liberating, life-giving power.

When rugged circumstances cause the ground beneath us to feel as if the earth is going to slip away, when we know for certain that we cannot stand up by ourselves any longer, when we realize we do not have enough strength or wisdom to cope with our current situation, where will we look for help?

 



Stillness

April 5th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , ,

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“The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”

— Exodus 14:14, NLT

Do you have reminders in your life that help you remember to sit down, take a deep breath, and wait upon the help God alone can give? Is there a particular place you associate with spending time with the Lord, away from all the usual distractions?