Thursday, August 28, 2008

Be encouraged...

"And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast."- 1 Peter 5:10

"Monet's painting [The Water Garden] has much to remind me about the water garden of my life, and of it's Artist. First, it encourages me that there is a purpose and design to my life, and that perhaps, at times, I focus too exclusively on the darker portions of my painting.

It also reminds me that my Lord, the Artist of my life, has intentionally allowed the blue, green and, yes, sometimes even the gray and black hues to be brushed on my canvas for a reason. God uses these shadows to make my life richer....The Artist uses a multitude of techniques in our lives to help us become the people he created us to be.

Finally, I am reminded that just like the water lilies in Monet's masterpiece, God keeps the leaves and petals afloat through the muck, wind and rain that are part of the storms of life."

-Beth Donigan Severson,
Women's Devotional Bible NIV, Thursday devotional, "Weathering the Showers"

Be encouraged sweet friends, for He is near and will strengthen you to accomplish His will. I've struggled greatly the past few weeks, carrying a load that has seemed much bigger than it is and each time I feel like I'm at my breaking point, He lifts me up (be it through His children or a prayer meeting...) and puts it all back in perspective.

"We'll get through this, it's just a season, but how are you going to handle this while going through it? Will you rest in me, bring your worries, fears, heavy burdens to me or will you hold on to it and lash out at everyone else? Will you try and carry it by yourself or let me help you? I am right here, my child, I am right here...may I help?"

--Oh yes Father, please help, I can't do it on my own, teach me, forgive me, strengthen me, bless you, I love you my dear Lord. Guard my ears, heart and mind from the lies of the enemy. Guard my family, my marriage, our home. Teach me your ways, Lord, that you may be glorified by this season and by my heart and actions to this time. You are my refuge, my rock and my strength, for in my weakness your mighty strength is glorified. It is not by my will or might, but only by Your Spirit, Father. Thank you Lord! Amen.

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