Monday, February 22, 2010

The Fight to Remain Healed

Have you ever felt like you have to fight to remain healed? I felt this way this weekend. I have struggled for some time with the ill affects of an addicted loved one. Jesus healed me last October when he connected his command "to turn the other cheek" (Matthew 5:39) with the counseling term detachment. He taught me that I must disconnect for the agony of involvement with the substance abuser to protect my mind and heart from the stress connected to loving someone in this condition.

Jesus is also teaching me that healing, most of the time, is not immediate, but a process. I know I am supposed to love and forgive, but a problem arises, however, when my healing wounds are sliced opened again by hurtful words and repeated accusations. I am thanking and praising our great God in heaven that in the midst of the pain of reopened wounds, he gives me his powerful promises found in his word. He not only gives us his word, but he also gives us comfort through his beautiful creation. I spent this weekend on my farm riding horses with my daughter on our winding trails (photo above).

One devotion I read sent me to Psalm 141:8-10: But my eyes are fixed on you, O Sovereign LORD; in you I take refuge--do not give me over to death. Keep me from the snares they have laid for me (the ones that cause my wounds not to finish healing), from the traps set by evildoers. Let the wicked fall into their own nets, while I pass by in safety. I'm also figuring out that I must not step into the traps set before me. Then I won't get hurt. God is good all of the time.

O Dear Lord Jesus,
I am holding on tight to your promises. Keep me from falling into snares that cause my wounds to re-open before they are completely healed. I trust you and only you to help me through this fight to remain healed. You healed me and no one or no thing can take that away from me. I love you Lord. You are my light and my salvation--whom shall I fear? You LORD, are the stronghold of my life--of whom shall I be afraid? When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh (or to slander me), when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall (Psalm 27:1-2). In your precious name I pray. Amen.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Ran into any closed doors lately?

During my quiet time this morning I received great encouragement for moving forward in my efforts to get my Bible studies published, even though I don't see how this will ever happen. A good friend of mine is going through the same thing. What about you? Have you ran into any closed doors in your life or ministry? Are you out of work and opportunities to work are almost impossible to find? Has the Lord closed the door on a ministry you thought for sure you were supposed to do?

The apostle Paul faced the same closed doors. Acts 16:6 records: "Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. Just like he did for Paul, God guides and directs us through closed and open doors.

I found an antique devotional book (from 1925) in my mother's things that I am using during my quiet time for 2010 called, Streams in the Desert. I'd heard of it before, but now I know it must be a Christian classic because I found it in the book section yesterday at Costco. Only the best sellers make it for sale at Costco. It has been excellent so far. God used it to speak to me this morning when at the close of the day's devotional regarding closed doors it included the anonymous poem below:

Is there some problem in your life to solve,
Some passage seeming full of mystery?
God knows, who brings the hidden things to light.
He keeps the key.

Is there some door closed by the Father’s hand
Which widely opened you had hoped to see?
Trust God and wait—for when He shuts the door
He keeps the key.

Is there some earnest prayer unanswered yet,
Or answered NOT as you had thought ‘twould be?
God will make clear His purpose by-and-by.
He keeps the key.

Have patience with your God, your patient God,
All wise, all knowing, no long tarrier He,
And of the door of all thy future life
He keeps the key.

Unfailing comfort, sweet and blessed rest,
To know of EVERY door He keeps the key.
That He at last when just HE sees ‘tis best,
Will give it THEE.


Be blessed and please don't ever give up!