Playing in the snow with Darcy Dog. She brings me delight.
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end;they are new every morning;great is your faithfulness.
One of the luxuries of having grown children is that sometimes, not very often, but sometimes, I awaken without an alarm and can snuggle under the covers on a Colorado morning and enjoy quiet. I have had such a full schedule of work every day the past few weeks that I can tend to feel a little bit weighty (carrying the world’s weight on my shoulders) the moment I awaken. But this snowy morning, I slept in (7:45) and took life slowly and my body seemed to say, “Ahhh! I think we can make it a few more days now that you have treated me well for a few hours.”
Recently, I have been reading a great book that reminds me of God’s constant love through all the disasters, difficulties and challenges of life. It follows scripture through His gracious willingness to provide, His compassion and mercy when we are hurt, His very nature to provide and respond to us. Yet, in a world where accidents happen, and people are unfaithful and cause great damage to us, we can tend to blame God or wonder if He still loves us, or feel that He is not answering prayer. Yet, all along the way, we are subject to people who have refused to choose to make good and healthy choices or have acted foolishly and harmed us or others we know in the process.
John 14: 15 "If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.”
Hebrews 10: 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful;
God gives us choices to obey Him, to tender our hearts to His ways. Our service of worship is, because we love Him, to seek to obey Him day after day. Our faithfulness will be a testimony of our love and faith in Him through out eternity.
But in a fallen world, where people have the agency to rebel, we are subject to the battle of good and evil which comes in the form or consequences of someone else’s choice to sin. And so in this world, the same one that crucified Jesus, all things are not yet made right. We all know that all consequences are not fair, yet!.
But we also know that in eternity, all wrongs will be righted, all tears wiped from our eyes, all or our hard work will have its reward.
Oddly enough, this morning caught me pondering how grateful I am that Jesus forgives me every day, that He has compassion for me every day, that He is working in my life every day, and that when difficulty comes to my life and I carry heavy loads because of someone else’s sin or immaturity, He is there to whisper in my ear, “Keep going, I see you, your faithfulness matters because Jesus faithfulness mattered. He endured the cross. He despised the shame of crucifixion—yet, I will honor Him, that before Him in eternity, every knee will bow. And when you are faithful now, every minute of faithfulness and walking by faith through one more day, will be a glory to your life story, that you endured, that you loved, that you kept going for the sake of my message and for your love of Jesus.
I have lived long enough to see that, in spite of very dark times when I felt like quitting or that I would never get out of my “hole,” God kept me going one day at a time, sometimes even one moment at a time. Yet, as I look at my grown children, I realize that my enduring faithfulness helped them to learn to be faithful in dark times, through marriage stress, through financial difficulties, through broken relationships, through challenges with their siblings, (my very out of the box children.) As a matter of fact, I think our difficulties even stretched all of them more so that they could be stronger, more humble, more prepared for life.
.Don’t get me wrong, though I love God with all of my heart, pettiness still fills my heart at times, being self-absorbed and more about myself than others, holding on to small offenses. And these become distractions to what is really important.
Yet, He sees me and still loves me.His love never ceases towards me—I am like a toddler, growing and learning, but I am learning through many years, that when I make a decision in the direction of believing in His love and care for me, eventually I can turn around and survey my life and see that following Him was, in the end, always the right choice.
How can I who dwell in His unending forgiveness and count on his unconditional love, ever think that I have a right to criticize or condemn another? If I can judge someone else's sin, forgetting my own, then I do not understand Jesus love.
As I reflect, He brings this to mind,
"Nothing can separate us from the love of God." Romans 8
"I will never leave you or forsake you."Deut. 31:6
"As far as the east is from the west, so far have I removed your sin from you." Psalm 103
"Go do likewise." Luke 10: 37 (having mercy on our neighbor)
So why do I exercise patience and keep faithful to my husband? Because it is my spiritual service of worship to Jesus, to my God.
Why be patient to a child? Because He has been so patient with me.
Why give mercy, forgiveness to one who has hurt me? Because my Jesus has extended mercy to me over and over again.
When the world can see that we extend the amazing, beyond understanding faithfulness to each other and those who offend us, to those who are lost and broken, to those who are less than perfect as we are, then they will see our good works and glorify the One, our Father in heaven, who is the source of our worship to Him, who is always, always faithful.
Great is His faithfulness.
Praying faithfulness for you today.
That the steadfast love of yours towards your people doesn't cease, that your mercy doesn’t come to an end, that every morning, you may renew yourself in His love and then be an agent of bringing His love, one more day, into your world.