Rest

 

I know SO many people who struggle to rest. They can’t seem to find the time for a Sabbath, not even 10 minutes each day reading God’s word.

I tell these people that if they prioritize God first, He will work their busy schedule out for them. Something similar happens in Exodus 6:23-24

God wants the Israelites to observe a Sabbath so He directs them to gather extra food. He doesn’t want them to gather food on the Sabbath, but He doesn’t want them to grow hungry either.

To me that says, firstly, that God wants us to take a Sabbath, it’s important to Him and part of His plan for us.

Secondly, He will provide for us what we need when we rest.

We may worry things will not get done, we will lose sleep, our work will suffer, etc. God’s SO much bigger than all of that. He knows what you have to do, your responsibilities, but He’s telling you to rest and that He’ll take care of it all.

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Things Seem Worse

Exodus 5:23 Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble on this people, and you have not rescued your people at all.

Sometimes we can do things for Christ whether in ministry, with friends, at work, or in our personal walk, and rather than things feeling good or getting better, life or the situation becomes worst.

Nowhere does it say following Christ= an easy life. Yet, it says we reap what we sow! All I can say is,  it seems like I often reap very little of the good I sow.

My point is, many times when we do good in Christ’s name, following in obedience, things seem to go backwards or just stand still completely.

God promised Moses that the Israelites would be delivered out of Egypt. To Moses and the discouraged Israelites, that promise seems so distant or maybe even empty.

Thus far all God has managed to do is cause the Egyptians to work the Israelites harder and treat them with more cruelty.

I think we can experience this in our lives. I don’t exactly know why God let the Pharaoh say no so many times. I can’t begin to comprehend the timing and motivation of our sovereign Lord, but it seems He likes to work through calamities. He brings us to the end when we find ourselves hopeless and helpless. Then, our break through comes!

Perhaps you’ve been asking for something a long time; a spouse, healing, a job, etc., but the Lord hasn’t given you that yet.

Just as Moses, we are free to be honest with God about the progress we can’t see.

Don’t lose hope though. God delivered his people from Egypt. God mightily used Moses, and your breakthrough could be just around the corner.

Steep Mountain

Exodus 3:12 paraphrased

I will be with you… It is I who have sent you… you will worship God on this mountain.

I can’t tell you how many times I have felt like Moses. God calls me to do something big and scary, yet I doubt His calling. Who am I? (v. 11). What right do I have to ask that? What strength do I have to get through that? I can list out to God all the reasons I am poorly qualified for the job, but in the end, I always know when He is truly calling me to do something, one way or another, I am going to do it, He is going to do it.

Still, I oftentimes go through a lot of doubt and obstacles when I pursue His calling. In a sense, I am facing a steep mountain that, on my own, I could never climb.

That is why God’s reassurance to Moses, that He will be with him, and that it is He who sent him, gives me strength and peace. I may be climbing an incredibly dangerous and intimidating mountain, but I am never alone and I am honorably assigned this climb.

Then, I love God’s “prophesy” over Moses. When Moses accepts this calling and sees God’s faithfulness through it, he will worship God on this mountain. Of course, this is a literal mountain in this story, but for us its figurative.

God is faithful. He will come through and see you through your trials, especially if He called you to do something. No matter how long it takes, He will get you to the top of the mountain. Thus, you will worship Him when you finally reach the top.

Even though I’m in the middle of climbing a very steep mountain, I can’t wait to worship God at the top.

Dear Younger me, Pouch of Stars

Dear younger me,

Do you understand the impact you make with small gestures of kindness?

From holding the door open to paying a compliment, these are what build people up. These, in a sense, add up. It’s like carrying around a pouch of stars and handing them to people as you go about your day, so when darkness comes, they’re all still shining.

 

Image: https://www.saatchiart.com/art/Painting-Your-Words-Are-Stars/836916/2835127/view

The Best Tour Guide of your Life

 

 

After reading Psalm 49:14, “For this God is our God forever and ever; He will be our guide even to the end.”, I started thinking about a potentially silly analogy. The more I thought about it though, the more I felt I should write about it.

The job of a guide has always appealed to me. I’ve had dreams of being a safari guide, or honestly, even the cheesy Jungle Cruise guide at Disneyland. So whenever God is called our guide, I get excited because to me, it means He is our guide on this great adventure, just like a safari. But, I began thinking about this concept in greater depth after Psalm 49:14.

A tour guide is the most knowledgeable one on your adventure. Sometimes you even pay for a tour guide because they know special information that no one else does. God knows everything. We don’t have to pay Him for the knowledge, but we do have to listen. Just like the tour guide, if you aren’t listening to them, you might miss out on great information or insight. If we stop listening to God, we will miss out!

Another thought I had was the fact that you can sometimes get behind or lost on your tour. If I don’t keep my eyes on the guide, following His steps, path, I could very well lose sight of Him or not know where I am going. Similarly, life can be distracting. If we take our eyes off of Jesus, our guide, we may find ourselves lost. Watching and following is important and vital in our Christian walk.

Now, I don’t know if you have experienced this before, but sometimes tours have their boring moments. You pass by something uninteresting or maybe there’s nothing to talk about for a particular time as your just walking to get to the next place. Life can have its dreary mundane moments, the valley, so to speak. We have to hang in there through those moments, though, so we can get to the next adventure. The best part about this time is that our guide is still talking to us, still leading us. Jesus never ceases to lead us in our life and He always wants to be in relationship with us.

A tour guide makes all the difference in your experience. Jesus is the best guide you could have. If you choose Him to be the guide of your life, every moment will feel like a great adventure with Him.

So you may See He is God

Exodus 14:10-12

Could it be that when we follow the Lord, when we take a step of faith, answer His calling, we may feel like the Israelites? Sometimes, well, oftentimes, taking a step of faith leads to obstacles and especially causes the enemy to attack.

We might look at God and ask Him why He has called us here if it only to lead us to pain? But just like the Israelites who were facing the Pharaoh’s army, God allows this to happen so He can show He is God!

Perhaps He’s doing the same in your life. Wait and see what miracle He does next!