I haven’t been writing as much as usual. There are times when I’ve gone a few weeks without writing. Some people get on my case when there is a devotion drought, but I only write when God inspires me to share something. Otherwise there is no writing. This weekend it rained so our Independence Day picnic was cancelled. I spent the day in God’s Word—the entire day! It didn’t take long for God to say, “Tania, why don’t we do this so much anymore”?
I have a lot of devotions to write now, and a renewed spirit. Remember friends, God wants to share life with you. Sometimes in the busyness of the day, we spend all the time speaking and we don’t listen for God to speak. At times, we don’t focus on Him or His Word because we continue to pile on more things to get through our day. Or we allow the noise of the world to drown out the voice of God.
Today take some time to read God’s Word. Read more than usual. Read ready to hear from God. Read expectantly. Pray. Enjoy some quiet time with your Father. Sit back and ask Him what He wants to show you.
“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” – Jeremiah 29:13 [ESV]
Almost a year ago I sat down to write about Daniel 3:18. When I write, there are two different ways that I begin. First, there are moments when I am walking my dog Max and the Lord leads me to something. Second, there are moments when I am reading my Bible (many times during my lunch break), when He leads me to something and I will scrawl down some notes for later. Nonetheless, this week I was again reading Daniel 3:18 and was led to write about it. But it felt very familiar.
I considered that perhaps I had written about it before. After writing devotionals, other books, papers, sermons, lessons, etc., it was a possibility. I felt this overwhelming need to search, and then I found it, “But Even If.” Does someone need to hear it again? Yes, and God knew—it was me!
Life has been very difficult lately. Life in general is difficult, but lately I have been feeling exhausted. Not tired. Exhausted. Everything is a battle. I have followed the narrow path. But when we are on the journey God has placed before us, our expectations of the outcome might be very different from where God takes us. Hence the exhaustion. For some of us it’s frustration or even worse. But God reminds each of us that He is with us and He has a great plan for our lives. No matter where we are at on the journey, no matter what our expectations for a situation, our lips should say, “But even if he doesn’t” we will still press forward and live each day firmly rooted in Him. I’m pressing forward. He is my hope and my confidence.
“But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.” – Daniel 3:18 [NLT]
“Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” – Psalm 25:5 [NIV]
“Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.” – Isaiah 49:16 [ESV]
Although I was told time and time again to not write on my hand, I continue to write things on my left hand so I do not forget what is important. As I was teaching a lesson this past weekend, a child asked what was written on my hand. It so happened to be a verse from Nehemiah. The night before I was reading from Nehemiah and found some verses I wanted to revisit. Most of the time you will find that my left hand has a fresh verse or remnants of past verses that have faded with the numerous hand washings, and I am okay with my dirty hands. They are reminders of what is important to me.
It reminds me of the verse in Isaiah that notes how God has us engraved on the palms of His hands. Imagine all of us, His sinful, flawed children, all written on His perfect hands. Can you see how important you are to Him? Can you grasp that you, YOU right there, matter to Him?
Too often we get caught up on being received well by those around us. We want to be loved. We want to be appreciated. We want to feel important. At times we find ourselves discouraged in these areas of our life. Today is a good day to remember just how important you are to the Most High God. Remember, He has your name written on His hand. You don’t have to do anything to get your name there—He put it there because He loves you. You are special. You are important.