The Text of My Life

The Text of My Life/The Book of my Heart

Psalm 18:24 (second half – The Message) – “God rewrote the text of my life when I opened the Book of my Heart to His Eyes.”

Let’s think about that for a few minutes because there is a LOT to it.

God rewrote the text of my life. Isn’t that the truth? I look at so many things that happen, decisions that we make (or don’t make), priorities that shift because God rewrote the text of my life. And your life. The people I know, the things I care about. They have all been rewritten because of God.

And then I think about crises – I think about my Dad getting pancreatic cancer. I think about my Mom falling and breaking four ribs in multiple places – and the fact that she’s been in the hospital 4 times because of complications from that fall and broken ribs. I think about the chronic health issues that I have been dealing with for decades. I think about the earthquake in Haiti and the life ending but also life changing impacts that has had on so many people in the 7 years since it happened.

And I wonder – how could someone make it through these things without knowing that God rewrote the text of their life? How could someone find purpose, find meaning, find life amid the pain of so many things? Many people wrestle with why God “allows” bad things. I choose to wait until I can ask God directly, face to face, in Heaven, “God, why did ……….?”

There’s a requirement in this verse though. In order for God to rewrite the text of our lives, we need to do something. It’s something very simple yet very difficult.

“I opened the book of my Heart to his Eyes.” I wrote earlier about the Casting Crowns concert I was blessed to go to. It was called, “The Very Next Thing” tour and I didn’t really understand what that meant until Mark Hall explained it there.

God wants us to open the book of our Hearts to His Eyes. That means we need to be willing to do “the very next thing” that God leads us to. If we open our hearts to God’s very next thing, God will rewrite the text of our lives.
And then the struggles, while many of them won’t go away, lose their spiritual significance. My Dad’s cancer isn’t going to defeat his faith and it isn’t going to defeat the faith of our family. Because we know God is writing the text of our lives. The text might be different than we wanted.

But God is bigger than we are,

God is bigger than cancer is.

God’s got this.

God’s got my Dad and my Mom.

God’s got me.

Does God have you?
Tom

Psalm 121 and Winston Churchill

Psalm 121:7- 8 say:  “God guards you from every evil he guards your very life.  He guards you when you leave and when you return,

he guards you now, he guards you always.”

But how do you square that with the evil that goes on in the world?

How do you balance what that says with what ISIS does?

How do you square what that says with genocide and germ warfare?

How do react to the evil in the world in light of Psalm 121:7 and 8?

There’s a big variation between the two.   On the one hand, God says He will guard you and keep you save.   Always.

On the other hand, there is much evil in this world…….

A couple of thoughts on that dissonance.

Winston Churchill said, referring to Russia, “It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.”    We just don’t know all of the facts, so Winston Churchillit’s not possible for us to truly grasp the inherent squabble between what God says and what we see on a daily basis.

I believe that many people (present company included at times) tend to assume that these type of Bible verses refer to “here on earth.”

God doesn’t promise that he will keep us from every evil here on earth.    But he does promise that he will guard our lives.  Does that mean he promises that everything on earth will be smooth?   Not a chance.

But our spiritual life, our glorified body and soul, those he will guard.   So, while evil is happening here, God is guarding us so that our survival, our making it to heaven, is not in doubt.

We know how the story ends.    We know that it has a happy ending (literally living happily ever after) but we don’t know what evil will sneak in and make life difficult for us in the mean time.

Rest in the fact that God will guard your life – now and forever.

Tom

Done What?

Psalm 118:24  “The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.”

Done what?

And why this very day?

Why did the Psalmist say, “this very day?”  Did something miraculous happen on that very day?

If you read the entire chapter, I don’t think you’ll find one particular event that is referred to by “it.”

Instead, I think you’ll find a challenge and a blessing.

A challenge – look to see what the Lord has done this very day.     On the day that you are reading this, look to see what God has done.2014-11-05 07.30.23

Tomorrow – look to see what God is doing.

Every day, look around you to see what God is up to.

Be aware of His blessings.   Be aware of the doors that He opens.   Be aware of the people He puts around you.

Look to see God in everything and everywhere.

And then you’ll find what the “it” is.   And every day “it” will be a little bit different.

And every day, for every person, “it” will be a little different.

Because the way God works in you and the way God works in me is different.

And the blessing – the Psalmist is calling us to rejoice in the ways that God is working.

When things are going well, rejoice.

When things are tougher, rejoice.

Rejoice that God is with you.   Rejoice that no matter what happens, you know who’s side you’re on.

Rejoice when you see the big things in life.   Rejoice when you see the small things in life.

Rejoice when you have the opportunity to encourage someone else.

Rejoice when someone else comes alongside you and lifts you up.

God has done it.   He’s done “it” today.   He’s going to do  “it” tomorrow.

Rejoice.

TJV

A Fast Food Meal?

Today, as part of my devotions, I came across this verse in Psalm 14:4 (the Message):

Don’t they know
they can’t get away with this—
Treating people like a fast-food meal
over which they’re too busy to pray?

A fast food meal over which they are too busy to pray.   Think about that – how often have you and I whipped into a fast food restaurant, bought some food and on our way again.   Never stopping, never praying for the food, just inhaling it and moving on.

That is NOT how God wants us to treat people.    God is calling us to invest in people, to enjoy spending time with people and to take the time to talk and pray with people.

So, are the people you meet and the people you relate with today a fast food meal or a good solid steak and potatoes sit down dinner?

Tom