Wednesday, December 31, 2008

To laugh again...

December 31, 2008

Rather than read from Shattered Dreams this evening, God led me to continue in my Stepping Up Bible study... It reaffirmed for me what I am learning through Shattered Dreams. Beth Moore says "God's delivering us from every ounce of trial will never develop the relationship that occurs when God shows Himself faithful right in the midst of difficulty, delivering us through it. That's where we come to know Him, to love Him, to appreciate Him. When our lives are immersed in Him, every ending, everything we believe to be the death of is instead a hand-engraved invitation to a new beginning." Here's to new beginnings... This shattered dream is developing a much deeper and closer relationship with Him. I know Him, love Him, and appreciate Him like never before. And as hard as this journey is I am thankful for it...

After the last couple of rough days, it was EXACTLY what I needed to hear. I sat and wept with thanks and not sorrow. Thankful for a word from Him and comfort just when I needed it. And a pretty awesome way to end the year...

He says it so much better than me, so here are just a few of the scriptures that spoke to me...

Psalm 125: 1 & 2
Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion,
which cannot be shaken but endures forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the LORD surrounds his people
both now and forevermore.

Picture that with me... surrounded by Him, hemmed in by Him, His presence looming over you from every direction. Nothing can close in on you without closing in on Him first. Hallelujah!!!

Psalm 34: 17-19
The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them;
he delivers them from all their troubles.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
A righteous man may have many troubles,
but the LORD delivers him from them all

Acts 14:22
"We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God"

Psalm 116:1-7
I love the LORD, for he heard my voice;
he heard my cry for mercy.
Because he turned his ear to me,
I will call on him as long as I live.
The cords of death entangled me,
the anguish of the grave came upon me;
I was overcome by trouble and sorrow.
Then I called on the name of the LORD :
"O LORD, save me!"
The LORD is gracious and righteous;
our God is full of compassion.
The LORD protects the simplehearted;
when I was in great need, he saved me.
Be at rest once more, O my soul,
for the LORD has been good to you.

It's been a hard year but He has been good...

Isaiah 43: 16, 18-19
This is what the LORD says— he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, "Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.

Psalm 30: 8-12
To you, O LORD, I called;
to the Lord I cried for mercy:
"What gain is there in my destruction, in my going down into the pit?
Will the dust praise you?
Will it proclaim your faithfulness?
Hear, O LORD, and be merciful to me;
O LORD, be my help."
You turned my wailing into dancing;
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing to you and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give you thanks forever.

Psalm 126
When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion,
we were like men who dreamed.
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
"The LORD has done great things for them."
The LORD has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy.
Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like streams in the Negev.
Those who sow in tears
will reap with songs of joy.
He who goes out weeping,
carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
carrying sheaves with him.

We will laugh again...

Goodbye 2008 and hello 2009, I know there are still rough days weeks and even months ahead but I know He is with me...

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victoria says...
"As I was getting ready to head out tonight I was thinking of you & Chris. Funny, the only email tonight once home was from the people I thought about all night. With all that you have endured this year, I pray Lord for you both to have an "easier" year. We are all here with you. Take care" (12/31/08)

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