“I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future”

by Tina CobleBe_still_and_Know_that_I_am_God

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?  Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[e]? Matthew 6: 25-27
One day while driving, I rode by a church sign that said, “ I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future.” As I read it, I felt God tap me on the shoulder, telling me this was the lesson he had been teaching me over the last few years. It has been one of the hardest lessons I have ever had to learn.
In the past few years, I have had to trust in this saying. When the economy crashed, we got hit extremely hard. My husband and I reached a point where we had to depend on the Lord each and every day to survive financially. I would pray with a heavy heart, begging the Lord to help us out of this situation. All I could hear from him was, “Be still and know I am God.” To be honest, when I first heard this, anger came over me. “Really God? That is all you have to say. We are need for you to intervene and help us in this.”
So, my flesh went into panic. All my life I had been taught, “if something is wrong, fix it.” I tried. I worried each night, complained, cried, tried to find different jobs, etc. It took me a couple of months to figure out my way wasn’t working. Wearily, I came to the Lord asking what did I need to do to help us out of this situation. He stated, “Be still and know I am God.” With tears in my eyes, I heard the Lord say, “ Look outside your window.” Looking out, I saw thousands and thousands of birds in my front yard. So many; I couldn’t see the grass. He said, “Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest. They don’t even store grain in barns. Yet, your Father in heaven takes care of them. Aren’t you worth more than birds?”
When I finally decide to believe in this scripture, things started to change. Our bills were always paid (still not sure where some of the money came from), we got many blessings (food, clothes, money) and most of all, a peaceful night’s sleep. It is still hard. Fear still creeps up on me, but I have learned to look at the fear and turn the other direction, and say to myself, “Be still and know that He is God.”
So if you are struggling and feel weary, take note of this. “Be still and know that He is God.” He wants you to trust in him. Know that he loves you and will never forsake you. He is the King of the universe and can do anything. Trust in Him and peace will follow.
Jesus, I want to say Thank You. You have never left or forsaken my family. I have stronger faith in you through this hard trial. Also, you have shown me how to use money for you and not for selfish reasons. I also believe that through this trial, you will double fold our blessings because your work says,
“Return to your fortress, O prisoners of hope; even now I announce that I will restore twice as much to you.” Zechariah 9:12
Most of all Jesus, I am so thankful you hold my future and I don’t. Even in this, You can make all things work together for my good.

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A New Year

by Missy Strayerslide-02

Psalm 18:2
2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,
    my God, my rock in whom I take refuge,
    my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

As I look at this past year, I have so much to be thankful for: healthy children and family members, the love of great friends, and the provisions of the Lord in ministry and work. This last year has had its challenges with many ups and downs, joys and fears, but through it all, God has been right there. Every step of the way He has held me up, as I cried, complained, laughed, comforted, prayed, worshiped, hugged, screamed, panicked, or felt his calming spirit. I would love to say I did it all right but then we all know that is not possible. I have had to ask for forgiveness along the way and have graciously been given some by others. My story is not any different from yours I am sure.

As I look forward to the New Year, which has so much promise and excitement, I am reminded that the year is what you make it. You can take the things that happen,good and bad, and use them for God’s good. Learn from them, grow from the experience. Nothing is wasted; nothing is by chance. Yes, we make our own decisions. God gives us free will, but He does not waste a thing. If we continue to seek His face in all that we do, we will fulfill our destiny He has called us to. He has placed a calling on each of our lives. One that is specifically meant for you. I know too often I have jumped into something or said no before asking the Holy Spirit “is this what I am called to do, is this my next step?”

2013. A new year, a sense of a new beginning, a new outlook, a fresh start so to speak, and one that I am going to use to bring more balance into my life. I want to move forward with the Holy Spirit’s guidance. I know it sounds huge, and it is especially difficult for me. I have done a lot in my life out of obligation, fear, guilt, selfishness and yes God’s calling also. I just want to move forward with less of the old self and more of Him.

Dear Lord, I pray in this next year that you transform my heart and the hearts of everyone who is praying this with me today, to beat as your heart beats to see with your eyes the world as you do. I pray for grace, compassion, wisdom, and discernment to move in the Holy Spirit and not from my own wounds or judgments. I pray for those who feel forgotten, that they experience your love and know your voice. I pray for guidance as we move forward as a nation that we put you FIRST above all else. It is in GOD WE TRUST!!! I pray peace for those who have lost loved ones this past year in the tragedies that have been beyond our comprehension. May your love and hope fill the hearts of those that are without and bring them back under the cover of your wings for rest. May we continue to love, worship and serve you with all of our hearts. In Jesus name we pray Amen.