My Journey Along the Narrow Way

Archive for March, 2011

Waiting…

The older I get, the more I realize that I am not good at waiting. In fact, I’m really bad at waiting. Even when I have something not so pleasant coming along, I would rather get it over with then anticipate it. I figure, the faster I start with it, the faster I’ll be done with it.

It seems to me that 2011 is going to be the year of waiting. I guess God is determined to finally teach me some patience.

A few things I am waiting for right now…

~ The end of my old job and the beginning of my new job – as I made the decision to leave my job at Wells Distribution, I decided to give a one month notice. That way Wells would have time to find someone to replace me and I would have time to train them.

It really was a great idea but the wait has been hard. I am a “make a decision and then get on with it” type of person. So I have had to do a lot of praying to God for help in the waiting.

~ My father-in-law’s cancer – as anyone who has helped a loved one through a major illness, it usually is a “hurry up and wait” process. My father-in-law has finished with his radiation and chemotherapy for the time being, but we are waiting to see if the tumor has shrunk enough for surgery. Right now it looks good, but the treatments work for several weeks after they are done, so again with the waiting.

~ Bud coming home – this is actually been the hardest for me of all. It seems like Bud has been gone for so long already but in reality, it has only been a little over 2 months. That means I still have 5 more months before he comes for his one-week visit, and 7 months before he is home. The hardest part about this waiting situation is missing the day-to-day time together. We talk on the phone every day and we video Skype as much as we can, but it’s the little things I miss. I can’t just text Bud something when it happens. I can’t go up and hug him. I can’t get tickled about something we see and burst into laughter. Those things are the things I miss the most.

There are many stories in the Bible where God’s people had to wait. Abraham and Sarah had to wait until their old ages for their longed-for child (Genesis 18:10), Moses and the Israelites waited to enter the promised land (see Exodus), Noah waited for the waters to recede (Genesis 8:10), Simeon waited to see the Redeemer (Luke 2:27-32), as did Anna (Luke 2:36-39), We await the return of our Christ Jesus in all His glory (Revelation 19:11-16).

So, I wait. And I take hope in knowing that God is faithful to those who have faith and wait.

Wait for the LORD;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the LORD!
– Psalm 27:14

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All About Clouds…

I was looking at my tag cloud on my blog last night and I found that my top tags are as follows (in no particular order):

This makes me feel like at least I have my blog posting’s priorities in line.  I want to strive to make sure my life is in line and focusing on the MOST important things, not the mundane.

With Bud being gone for an extended period and changing jobs and training someone to replace me, I feel like my priorities are all skewed.

I have started using something called the Read Through the Bible Program for Shirkers and Slackers which seems to work well for me.   It is a reading plan but it’s not as structured so I don’t feel so freaked out if I miss a day or only read half of what I was supposed to that day.  I have been much more consistent with my daily Bible reading since starting this.  http://www.ransomfellowship.org/publications/notes_biblereadingprogram.pdf

I am still struggling with praying like I should.  I’m being really transparent here…I am truthfully praying around 4-5 times a week instead of every day.  This is something I am working on, though.  I am hoping once I change jobs and have an extra hour in the morning, I can institute a real consistent quiet time with praying every morning.  I am keeping a prayer list and am doing much better than in the past.  Prayer is really something I struggle with the most.

I am trying to be reading a good non-fiction Christian book at all times.  Sometimes I am reading fun reads (mostly Christian fiction) as well, but I’m trying to consistently read something meaty too.  Right now I am in the Holiness MIT class so my meaty Christian book is “Holiness” by JC Ryles.  This book has helped me greatly in this endeavor, as JC Ryles is an excellent read and has totally smashed my misconceptions about non-contemporary Christian writers.  This is good stuff and it’s making me want to branch out to more classic Christian writers.  I was, however, always a fan of CS Lewis.

Oh, and just a quick mention about adoption.  I saw Third Day’s new video for the song, “Children of God” and can I say that I’m amazed.  The song is already fantastic but the video blew me away.  Check it out if you haven’t seen it.

Third Day, Children of God

As an adopted child myself, by earthly parents as well as God my father, this is a subject near and dear to my heart.


Praise You in the Storm…

Once, when I was around 11 or 12 years old, my mother was going to the grocery store.  I really, really didn’t want to go so I begged my mom to let me stay at home alone.  Now this wasn’t something that they allowed often, but my parents were just starting to let me stay alone from time to time.  Because it was only going to be for around an hour, my mother decided to let me do it.

My mom had been gone around 20 minutes when a really big, nasty freak storm hit our area.  I grew up in Redlands, California, and anyone from there could tell you that rain is a pretty rare event.  It is on the edge of the desert so we wouldn’t get rain for months on end.  However, sometimes when it decided to rain, it would do so with a vengeance.

This was one of the times.  Within a few minutes the winds started blowing, then howling.  There was lightening and thunder booming.  Then there was massive rain.  Then the hail came.

Our dog, Kasey, was terrified of storms.  Probably because there had only ever been a few in his whole life.

Kasey immediately started panicking, which threw me into a full-fledged panic as well.  We both decided that under the table would be a real good place to hang out.  I don’t think I’ve been more scared than that but a few times in my life.

I remember running to my mother and pretty much throwing myself at her when she got home.  She, of course, was very upset that I was so scared and upset.  I was just glad to have my mother there to comfort me and make it all better with some of her homemade chocolate chip cookies.

Today it is storming like crazy here in Alabama.  It reminded me of that day and others in my life when there have been storms, tornadoes, earthquakes, and such.  Growing up in California I have seen my share of earthquakes, and living my adult life in Alabama, there have been many times tornadoes have gone through the area.

Nahum 1:3 says, “…The LORD has His way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of His feet.”

If we are fearful of the weather, doesn’t it make more sense to be even more fearful of the Maker of the weather?

It is God who causes the weather.  He determines where it will rain and where it won’t rain.  He created the weather and He controls the weather.  In Amos 4:7 God tells us, “ I also withheld rain from you, when there were still three months to the harvest. I made it rain on one city, I withheld rain from another city. One part was rained upon, and where it did not rain the part withered.“

There are many other examples of God sending or withholding weather for various reasons:

Jonah 1:4 – But the LORD sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up.

Job 37:13 – He causes it to come, Whether for correction,  Or for His land, Or for mercy.

Exodus 9:23-29 – And Moses stretched out his rod toward heaven; and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and fire darted to the ground. And the LORD rained hail on the land of Egypt.  So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, so very heavy that there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. And the hail struck throughout the whole land of Egypt, all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail struck every herb of the field and broke every tree of the field. Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, there was no hail.

Deuteronomy 28:24 – The LORD will change the rain of your land to powder and dust; from the heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed.

1 Samuel 12:18 – So Samuel called to the LORD, and the LORD sent thunder and rain that day; and all the people greatly feared the LORD and Samuel.

And that is just what I found in a five-minute search.

Clearly, God is in control of the weather.  He creates the storms and then He sends the wind that blows them away.

So what do we do with this?  We praise God for the weather!  We marvel in the beautiful snowflakes (that He so rarely sends to Alabama!).  We are thankful for the wonderful rain that waters the trees and plants and flowers (all also His handiwork) so they will bloom.  We trust in Him during the drought, knowing that His will is being carried out.  We are amazed with the long, vivid streaks of lightening that pierce the sky.  And we sing to our Great God!

From the highest of heights to the depths of the sea
Creation’s revealing Your majesty
From the colors of fall to the fragrance of spring
Every creature unique in the song that it sings
All exclaiming

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God
All powerful, untameable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim
You are amazing God

Who has told every lightning bolt where it should go
Or seen heavenly storehouses laden with snow
Who imagined the sun and gives source to its light
Yet conceals it to bring us the coolness of night
None can fathom

Indescribable, uncontainable,
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name
You are amazing God
All powerful, untameable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim
You are amazing God