Tag Archives: afraid

One More Time!

I listen to doctors dictate and type what they say (medical transcription).  Sometimes the doctors are wonderful speakers and the job is easy.  Others are difficult to understand due to language barriers, mumbling.  To make matters worse sometimes they’re shuffling papers, not speaking into the microphone clearly, they’re in loud places and many other contributing factors.

I listened to a dictation over and over again and for the life of me, I couldn’t understand what he was saying.  Especially to those of us who have been in this profession for a long time, nothing is more frustrating.  I listened for 25 minutes, over and over again!  That’s a long time in the production world of transcription!

After I finished relistening to the entire dictation, I was going to send it to QA and let them figure it out.  Because I find it excruciating to give up, I decided to listen one more time and to my delight, I very clearly heard what the doctor was saying. It was so clear I couldn’t believe I didn’t hear it before!

Just as clearly as I heard the doctor, I hear God saying:

“I know you’ve tried and tried.  You believed you could do it, but believe One More Time.  Believe because I said so.  I know you’re weary and just want to walk away and if you do, that’s okay too.  Come on.  Just because I said so, do it one more time.”

It would have been acceptable…”okay”… to send the document on to QA. That’s what they’re there for and they excel in solving mysteries.  No harm no foul.  I tried but I couldn’t get it.  But I tried, one more time after listening time after time and I finally got it.

God won’t bail on us if we decide to quit.  We won’t be any less in His eyes if we stop where we are.  He always gives us the choice to try, one more time.  One more time, we put our feet to the floor with nothing but faith, believing we can and believing God will do His part.  Don’t be afraid to fail or fall short. Don’t think about it.  Just do it.  One more time.

Matthew 7:7 (NLT)  “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.

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The Third Day

Your battle’s been long. Day after day, you rise praying for a change and a “better” but it still looks and feels the same. You’re tired.  The facts say this is the way it’s going to be. It is what it is, despite your best efforts. Discouragement has crept in and depression isn’t far behind. You tell yourself you may as well settle in and try to become okay with it because it’s never going to change for the better. You’ve given it your best shot; now it’s time to learn to live with it.

The disciples felt the same way.  Walking on that road to Emmaus they reminisced over all they had been taught and heard from Jesus.  They gave up everything to follow Him only to watch Him be captured and killed.  He’s dead.  They’d seen Him die, they probably witnessed His cold body be wrapped in death linens and placed in a tomb.  Gone.  Buried.  What are they supposed to do with that harsh truth?  That was the truth, you know.  They were grieved and perhaps decided to go back to their pre-Jesus lives. It appeared to be over so they scattered and went on.

Wait.

They forgot the rest of the story.  In their grief, fear and despair, they forgot the truth…HIS truth…that yes, He would be crucified, killed and buried BUT He would rise again. At that moment on the road, though, their confusion and grief was all they could see and feel.  It had been three days, too long a period of time to really hope for a change.

Is it your third day?  Are you loosening the grip on your hope? Sometimes the truth of the situation trips us up and we fight the thing which causes our grip on God to weaken. The circumstances are real and we demand God show up and rescue us. Perhaps we’re looking more for a thing rather than the Person.  Oswald Chambers makes a profound statement which says “the purpose of prayer isn’t to get an answer, it’s to get hold of God”. In times of desperation and depression, that “mission” evades us – we’re so focused on our need we’re sometimes more desperate for an answer or remedy than we are for Him when, in fact, He is the answer!

Third days are hard. Our faith erodes and we’re finding ourselves in a weakened state physically, mentally and spiritually.  What do we do? Hang on.  Start speaking “the other” truths to yourself and remember, HIS WORD is just as much truth as the situation we find ourselves in.  Start believing (even though it appears to be ridiculous) what He said.  Convince yourself that no matter if everything looks dead, He’s not.  He is hope.  He is peace, comfort, and He has promised to provide.  He’s promised to never leave or forsake us.  He’s in that third day place with us.

The critical choice is whether we choose to have hope in Him or not. Jesus had the ultimate third day. He proved Himself to be who He said He was.  He will do the same in your third day.  Only believe.

Luke 24:21

And Barbie

I listened to Charles Stanley this morning describe John the beloved’s description of Christ in Revelation chapter one. I never really thought about it but Mr. Stanley pointed these scriptures out to be the only physical description of Jesus Christ in the New Testament. If that wasn’t enough just to read the description he expounded on it. (Revelation 1:12-17). He said John was seeing the unveiled just-as-he-really-is Jesus. The REAL Jesus, as Judge and Righteous Jesus whom we will also see when the time comes. Jesus in all His glory.

Verse 17 says when he saw him he fell at His feet ‘like a dead man’. Precious Lord Jesus, in John’s moment of face to face confrontation with his beloved servant placed His right hand on him and told him not to be afraid. This touched me deeply. I have a reverent desire and expectation to see our Lord. There are days when life is hard I just want Him to come and get me. There are also days when I look at myself and see the places where I have really missed the mark and wonder how it’s possible for Him to love me and STILL love me and even have a desire to see me!

This morning, I imagined what it will be like to see Him in His glory. Don’t we all? Do you rehearse the things that didn’t make sense and the questions you’ll ask Him when you see Him? I realized how silly that all is. After meditating on this all morning, I’m quite sure I will fall as though dead at His feet. I also thought about the fact that I in no way deserve to see Him and the weight of that truth will fill me like never before when we’re face to face. I have nothing upon which to base my right on that promise of a face to face encounter other than HIS word; HIS promise and solely because of who He is. In that split second, it will be unquestionably clear who and what we REALLY are when in His physical presence.

What touched me so is that, even I will hear His voice and feel His touch physically in spite of me! THANK GOD! Jesus could have spoken anything to John in that vision but look at what He chose to say! “Do not be afraid…” I think there’s a good chance that’s what He’ll say to me first, as well.

Going on the Say-So

I must not be learning what I said I have…maybe I’ve gotten a superficial jolt; a “feel good” moment. True that! Nothing thrills me like studying God’s Word. Nothing makes me feel so good. FEELINGS,  however, are not sustainable. I think that’s why Jesus is called “Bread of Life” – one must take Him literally into His being. Take Him all the way in to the depths of our souls because there will come a time when He will be the only thing sustaining us. Don’t I know it and I’m sure you’ve had that moment, too. If you haven’t prepare for it now because you will.

I’ve heard lots of discussion about God’s promises. I’ve heard there are 366 in the whole of the Bible – one for every day including Leap Year. Hearing isn’t the same as believing, you know. I BELIEVE I’m covered by ALL of His promises regardless of the number. I haven’t fully researched this myself but I’ve gone with it. Is it important to count? Maybe not? Maybe? It is important to believe for yourself.

I do know the promises I have read. I recite them often to myself especially when I’m scared. Yet just as a person in a boat that suddenly topples over when a hard wave hits chunks his life vest in a panic (so I’ve heard) because he thinks he can stay afloat better without it, I let go of what I know to be true. First response is so often fear, anger, doubt…to name a few. Rather than hang on to my life jacket I let go then spend my time paddling to grab hold again. It’s exhausting. Sound familiar?

Today, I’m going on His say-so. I’m walking ‘in faith not by site’ because frankly, I’m not thrilled with what I see. Isn’t that what it takes to get us to walk by faith? Why, I wonder, do we humans not choose it in the first place? Well, I do anyway. Maybe you’re a stronger faith-walker than I am.

He says He will never leave nor forsake me. I believe it. He will go with me, before me and after me to keep me from harm. I believe it. He will provide our every need regardless of what I see or feel. I believe it. No one or nothing can change or take away His great love for His child. I believe it.

I’m walking in the say-so of Papa God. No matter how I feel, what I see. I am trusting in the sometimes invisible promises, providence and protection He has for me. That’s what faith is, right? (Hebrews 11:1)