Being still doesn’t come naturally to me. Most of the time my hands are doing something (like knitting socks) even when I do have time to sit. And I can’t seem to think about “nothing” – ever. It amazes me to think that’s even possible, but my husband says it is. 🙂
Yes, my life is busy. I work full time from home and have been caring for my husband and all of the matters of our household (gratefully with help from family) since November of 2019. But I can’t let “busy” rule my life. It’s not sustainable, it’s not as God designed me to be. As I once heard Mark Hankins say, “we are human beings, not human doings.”
So at times I choose to be still, to pause, to be quiet, rest, and listen. This afternoon I am doing just that. Through my bedroom window. I am enjoying watching the leaves on my maple tree gently sway in the breeze, listening to little birds chirping. I am enjoying the quiet and counting my blessings. I am resting in His care and listening with the intention of being more like Mary than Martha.
I share these scriptures that inspire me in hopes they will minister to you too. Oh how He loves you and me!
Simply join your life with mine. Learn my ways and you’ll discover that I’m gentle, humble, easy to please. You will find refreshment and rest in me. Matthew 11:28
Surrender your anxiety. Be still and realize that I am God. I am God above all the nations, and I am exalted throughout the whole earth. Psalms 46:10 TPT
But even if we are faithless, he will still be full of faith, for he never wavers in his faithfulness to us! 2 Timothy 2:13 TPT
The Lord bless you and watch, guard, and keep you; The Lord make His face to shine upon and enlighten you and be gracious (kind, merciful, and giving favor) to you; The Lord lift up His [approving] countenance upon you and give you peace (tranquility of heart and life continually). Numbers 6:24-26 AMPC
Last week Thursday and Friday we went to the other side of Michigan and fished for Walleye in the Detroit River. It was quite an experience with perhaps 300-500 other boats doing the same, plus big barges passing by occasionally. The 1st day was warm but very windy, the 2nd was colder, and I was grateful to be wearing my son’s ice fishing bibs and jacket (I am sure that was an amusing sight since he is much taller 😉). We didn’t get a lot of fish and the guys caught all of them but it was wonderful to have a short getaway. I am very grateful my son was willing to take us. It’s the 2nd time Ed has been out to do something fun in 2 1/2 years.
For here is the way God loved the world—he gave his only, unique Son as a gift. So now everyone who believes in him will never perish but experience everlasting life. John 3:16 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/jhn.3.16.TPT
I hope you know that He feels the same way about you. You are so very loved by God. It’s about how great He is, not how worthy we are. It’s the precious blood of Jesus that redeems, forgives and gives us the great honor to become His children. Oh how He loves us!
It’s Thanksgiving today, and it has been anything but traditional at our home. Due to my husband’s currently compromised immune system we are not having or participating in a family gathering. As this day approached I made a conscious decison to be thankful and grateful, and I am so glad. The quiet has been good, and I even found time to sleep in, bake bread, and just reflect on the goodness of God — to count my many, many blessings.
While thinking on this I feel I heard the Holy Spirit whisper that being grateful opens the door to a grace-filled life. It’s a matter of the heart and it’s the “why” that He is teaching me. I see that being grateful/thankful is like having my arms lifted, wide open to the Father. Looking to him and thanking Him for not only what He has already done, but trusting Him with the future. It’s like a magnet, pulling all the good things that He has toward me. He is love, He wants to supply all that we need, and He delights in doing it!
In contrast, being angry and ungrateful is like standing with closed, clenched fists, head down, fearful, unable to percieve or recieve all that God had provided and wants to provide. (Oh, how that must grieve His heart.)
As an example: I was deeply touched to learn of the unexpected home going of the husband of a precious woman I know — have known for years as a woman of faith and a lover of God. Her response today on social media was to write about thankfulness. As she so amazingly and aptly put, “In the midst of intense sorrow and loss the only posture that is fitting and necessary is thankfulness.” She then wrote a wonderful list of the many things for which she is thankful.
What she wrote served as an important reminder to me that no matter how difficult a moment in time or circumstance may be, I have the opportunity to be thankful for things both large and small — I am so very blessed!
I am so very grateful that He has given me the choice! When the enemy comes at me with fear, to make me angry or tries to get me to have a pity party over things that have happened, I will choose to believe in and thank God for His mercies and unfailing love. I will rehearse His goodness in prayers of thanksgiving and worship Him. King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Love incarnate, my savior and redeemer. And in doing so I will open up my heart and receive His great, great grace. Oh how HE LOVES you and me!
From my pastor this morning: “Prayer is not complete without gratitude… Thankfulness is an exercise in Faith.” – Pastor George Pearson, Eagle Mountain International Church
Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, Philippians 4:6 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/php.4.6.TPT
We read in the story of Daniel and how he faced the lion’s den – not desperate or fearful. He was faithfilled and grateful. His prayers and thankfulness led to his deliverance . (Daniel 6)
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house, and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he got down upon his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously. Daniel 6:10 AMPC https://bible.com/bible/8/dan.6.10.AMPC
I enjoy old movies. When recently thinking about being mindful to be grateful, I thought of the movie Pollyanna. I haven’t watched this movie from the 60s again just yet, but I found the story available on Kindle and I am reading it. If you want to learn more about the movie and see some clips, here is a link to Turner Classic Movies.
In the story, Pollyanna is an orphan who was born to missionaries and being sent to live with her wealthy, austere Aunt Polly. Early in life Pollyanna’s father taught her to play the Glad Game. The object of the game was to find something to be glad about no matter the situation or circumstance. To the chagrin of people around her (including her Aunt Polly–who did not want to hear anything about Pollyanna’s father), Pollyanna was very good at it! Although several did not like her positive attitude, eventually many of them found themselves learning to play the game too. She touched the lives of many around her, even the minister of the local church.
Not only do I enjoy Pollyanna’s story, I admire her courage and perserverance to do just what her father said, even when it was difficult — choosing to find something to be glad about. It seems that at the root, the Glad Game is quite biblical. It goes right along with the scripture below from Philippians. And with the following scripture that talks about the Lord being glad.
Keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising him always. Philippians 4:8 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/php.4.8.TPT
For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” Zephaniah 3:17 NLT https://bible.com/bible/116/zep.3.17.NLT
So as we near this Thanksgiving season, I’m making an effort to do just that — to hear and obey the Word of my Father — to choose to fix my thoughts on what’s good, pure, lovely… And no matter the circumstance to choose to BE GLAD, BE THANKFUL, and BE GRATEFUL.
Here’s an example: I would really enjoy being able to sit and talk with each one reading this. That might not be possible, but I am glad to have the opportunity to share my thoughts and my faith with you. Oh how HE loves you and me! I pray you will find many reasons to be glad too!
Higher than the highest heavens— that’s how high your tender mercy extends! Greater than the grandeur of heaven above is the greatness of your loyal love, towering over all who fear you and bow down before you! Farther than from a sunrise to a sunset— that’s how far you’ve removed our guilt from us. But Lord, your endless love stretches from one eternity to the other, unbroken and unrelenting toward those who fear you and those who bow facedown in awe before you. Your faithfulness to keep every gracious promise you’ve made passes from parents, to children, to grandchildren, and beyond. You arefaithful to all those who follow your ways and keep your word.
Take a few moments to reflect on these words and be encouraged dear one. Oh how He loves you and me!
Higherthan the highest heavens— that’s how high your tender mercy extends! Greater than the grandeur of heaven above is the greatness of your loyal love, towering over all who fear you and bow down before you! Fartherthan from a sunrise to a sunset— that’s how far you’ve removed our guilt from us. But Lord, your endless love stretches from one eternity to the other, unbroken and unrelenting toward those who fear you and those who bow facedown in awe before you. Your faithfulness to keep every gracious promise you’ve made passes from parents, to children, to grandchildren, and beyond. You are faithful to all those who follow your ways and keep your word. Psalms 103:11-12, 17-18 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/psa.103.11-18.TPT
I was inspired to write this poem several years ago. It fell out of my Bible today and reminded me of the many benefits of my relationship with Jesus. I hope you know Him too and are experiencing the benefits of trusting in Him.
Rest I am your deliverer and salvation, You are my covenant child, I have justified you, I have made you righteous, I have made you holy through the blood of my son.
Rest You are hid in Christ, My Spirit is in you and with you always, I am at work within you, I am causing you both to will and to do my good pleasure.
Rest Trust in my love, I know the plans I have for you, I planned them before your birth, I see the end result, I am focused on your future, not your past.
Rest I am your Lord, I am King of Kings, I am working all things together for your good, I am the author and finisher of your faith.
Rest I am faithful to My Word, My promises are true, You are a branch of The Vine, Rivers of living water are in you.
Rest I am your life and light, The strength and might of my Spirit are being imparted to your inner man, along with My wisdom and My ability.
Now My beloved child, rest.
Hebrews 4:3a For we who have believed(who have adhered to and relied on God)do enter into that rest.
Learn more about Jesus…pick up a Bible and read the book of John, then see Romans 3:23 and Romans 10:10.
I’m praying that you find rest in Him. Oh how He loves you and me.