Do you find yourself thinking, “If only things were different”?
It has been almost a year since I was diagnosed with cancer following years of illness. I praise God that He has not allowed the cancer to return! Please praise Him with me and pray that my check-up later this month reveals no new cancer.
I was tired … really tired that day recently when I found myself rebelling like a petulant child. I don’t want to lie down to rest anymore. I want to play like the others. When I rest, I miss out on the fun. I’m tired of being tired.
My perspective changed suddenly though when the Holy Spirit brought these words of Scripture to my remembrance:
Each summer, I plant zinnia seeds harvested from the previous year’s planting. Butterflies and hummingbirds swarm the tops of the flowers, seeking the sweet nectar presented in little 5-pointed yellow flasks. Goldfinches pluck petals while clinging to the stems just under the flowers; treats in the form of seeds present themselves at the base of each petal. Small piles of rejected petals collect on the leaves as evidence of a goldfinch satisfying his hunger.
Reading has always been a pleasure of mine. After the introduction of characters in a story book, the plot develops and the action builds to a slightly unsettling, but exciting high point. Then, the action turns and slows to the point of resolution, a satisfyingly happy ending. All is well.
Over the last couple of years, it became apparent that my health was suffering significantly each time I would leave my house to go anywhere. The resulting illness that lasted for several days was a strong motivator to simply stay home instead of participate in my previous activities. As my world gradually grew smaller, I thought it would become easier to keep my mind on things above (Colossians 3:2). I thought there would be fewer sinful distractions. How wrong I was.
Surely I have composed and quieted my soul;
Like a weaned child rests against his mother,
My soul is like a weaned child within me.
In my process of being weaned, there are moments of discouragement. Falling tears leak my memory from my mind, making biblical truths difficult to recall. In order to compose and quiet my soul, I need to talk myself through what I know to be true though. A written list is helpful during these times; it reminds me of what I know to be true and prompts right thinking. Following is my list, provided for a special someone in need. A pdf version without links is provided at the end of the post for anyone desiring a printed version of truths “on hand” for those difficult moments.
Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.
1 John 2:15-16
The day after I realized that I might have to stop writing posts for this blog I remained in bed praying for a while before I got up for the day. I asked God to help me know Him more even though my struggles to see well prevent as much Bible reading as I had been doing. In this precious time spent with God, I became aware of the Father watching me, desiring to give me the answer to my prayer. I thought of Jesus standing at His Father’s side advocating for me and the Holy Spirit living inside of me, helping me along this process called sanctification. An hour passed peacefully as I pictured manna raining down to feed me while I tried to find God’s way in my desert.Read More »
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.
1 John 2:1-2
After a difficult weekend that resulted in continued fatigue and brain fog at the start of the week, I was unable to focus on commentaries for the verses I was studying for the day. Instead, I closed my eyes to think about 1 John 2:1-2 and pray. Jesus’ name and the word propitiation were foremost in my awareness. Salvation was my meditation for the next hour while I praised God for this gift.