Monday, February 9, 2009


I originally had an extremely long post of the "exciting" life I have led so far in 2009, but as I neared the end I found myself slightly focusing inward and asking myself, "Why me?" I deleted it so as not to have a public record of my self-centeredness, but also because as I typed I heard the voice of a rather mean, heartless, and painfully honest friend...."What is your focus?" Just to be transparent, this has been a rather difficult task. It seems as though I have been hit from every side so far this year and I find myself looking up from the bottom of the barrel often. I am learning, albeit ever so slowly, that I can not be in control of my circumstances, but I can be in control of my focus. Am I feeding at the bottom of the barrel or looking up and expecting to see my Father reaching down to pull me up?

Which brings me to another lesson...What can I expect from my Heavenly Father? Do I expect to see Him working things for my good? Do I expect Him to be consistent with His track record?

Illustration #1, as pointed out by my "mean" friend: I baby-sit a genius. His name is Vipul. Though he is very intelligent, he is only three. At times I find myself stressed because he will refuse to complete a task when I know he is fully capable. Yet many times I have watched him attack a job with vigor only to learn that it is beyond his ability. Usually I watch him for a few minutes and chuckle to myself, then hold out my hand and offer assistance. It is a joy to help him. How much more would my Father stretch His loving arms out to offer hope, comfort, healing, and ultimately His kind assistance? I can expect Him to be consistent and stand by His record and do it again, and again, and again!

Illustration #2, 3rd Grade Bible Lesson on John 3:16: This morning Mrs. B introduced the lesson in a rather unique way. She started out calling the students to attention for a game called the "rhythm game." Pad your legs twice, clap hands twice, snap each finger once. On the first snap say your name, second snap a friend's name, continue until someone misses the beat or says the wrong name. After practicing for a few rounds she changed the name of the game and added a different aspect. "We are going to call this game Life and when you mess up it is a sin. Sin must be punished!" Mrs. B pulled out a long roll of what looked like bulletin board paper. She took a marker and wrote punishment. "When you mess up the rhythm or miss a name you will be punished."

The game started again and you could see the concern and concentration of the students. They were really trying not to mess up out of fear of getting swatted by the rolled up paper. The first student to break the rhythm looked like she was getting ready to pass out. As Mrs. B went toward the small girl, she suddenly turned and LIGHTLY swatted another student. This went on for several turns. Each time the same student was swatted. The class questioned the fairness of this method, but Mrs. B continued without a word. Finally the class was called to attention and a explanation was given. John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not parish but have everlasting life! The children were so upset at the injustice of one person getting swatted, but the point was driven home and you could see the lights come on

I sat in the back of the room at my desk as tears formed and flowed. I can expect my Father to come through with a solution to the problem. I can expect Him to love me when I feel unlovable and ugly inside, He has already proven it true.

One more lesson I am learning. Most of my life the verse stating that "the truth will set you free" referred to lying. Always tell the truth, it keeps you out of trouble. While telling the truth is a great thing and requirement by God, there is more to this verse. Knowing the truth will set you free. When my mind runs about wildly with doubts and fears, the truth will set me free. The truth is God is faithful, God is available, God is CONSISTENT, God is God and I should let Him be. Knowing the truth will set me free.