There

While He is “there” I can know that He will step in and move things when needed. While He is “there” I can know that He knows exactly what is going on. While He is “there” I know that He knows, and has always known.

 

This year is going to be …um…actually I cannot find a way to describe it. There are times when I want God to do miracles and fight fights, not just stand there. It seems like sometimes He is just…there.

One day, I stepped out of the car to go and do the weekly shopping and it hit me. The huge commitments I  had taken on this year were mind boggling. With one foot on the ground and one foot still in the car, I breathed the words in prayer –

“Oh Father, how am I going to do this?”

The words replied to my heart, “With my help.”

My youngest son decided at the end of last year that he wanted to do his Year 9 schooling through Distance Education, from home. This added to an already overloaded and chaotic schedule for this year.

I am really not sure how this is all going to happen. But in my prayer time, God assures me that I will get through it and that there is a reason for what He is doing. God has assured me that He has placed every one of these things on my heart, but I need to give up one thing… and it is the one thing that would take the most faith. Slowly He is reducing this to almost nothing, and I have to trust.

I want to grip this tiny little area of my life and rely on it, but apparently it has to go. God promises me that this area is known by Him and He will be the one who is this for me. But I hate to let go. I feel like a little girl hold her security blanket for grim death, all the while asking God to take it from me. I want Him to show me that I will be alright before I let go.

He knows why I don’t want to let go.

I know why I have to let go. I also know why I have to do so much this year.

My son is reading Gifted Hands – the Ben Carson Story. Once again, I was reminded today that God has a way of reaching out to people and giving them tasks that are beyond them. This is an excerpt from the book that I read today –

“I’m not sure people always understand when I say that, but I had an inner certainty that I was on the right path in my life—the path God had chosen for me. Great things were going to happen in my life, and I had to do my part by preparing myself and being ready.”

(Ben Carson, 1990) (Gifted Hands 20th Anniversary Edition (p. 81). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.)

“…I had to do my part by preparing myself and being ready.”

Ah huh!!

The other evening, I stood in the middle of the kitchen, breathing heavily. I was dizzy, tired and about to pass out. The pain I was in was beyond being able to stand up anymore and for a moment I thought I was going to faint. I stood quietly and prayed. I opened my eyes and nothing had changed.

The phone was in my hand as I talked to my computer company about my computer only being out of warranty for two months (That afternoon my computer had died in the middle of important document being prepared, and my son’s computer was frozen because it could not do what I needed it to do). I was getting tea ready. I was answering my eldest sons’ questions, answering text messages on my mobile phone about baby sitting for a friend. I was waiting to be paid for a job I had just completed and had just been told that I could have to wait for 2-4 weeks for some money. My youngest son walked into the kitchen and held out his arms- his work shirt no longer fitted him.

At that very moment, the cat purred between my feet and let me know of his annoyance of being not fed and I nearly fell over him. I lifted my foot to move him out of the way, when I felt God say, “you can do this.”

Nothing had changed, accept that for some strange reason I was no longer breathing heavily. I was still feeling overwhelmed and in shocking pain. But for some reason I was okay.

God will sometimes give us more then we can handle. Sometimes He knows that life as just thrown us a curve ball and we have more then we can take. We will find ourselves in situations that are a bit beyond us, or completely beyond us.

Breathe.

Pray.

Believe.

When we open our eyes things haven’t changed, but God has changed us. Even though feelings are the same, there has been something that has changed.

Sometimes He provides a miracle. Sometimes He provides

…and sometimes He is just “there”.

I believe in a God who does awesome things. I believe in miracles. I believe in a God who cares and provides. But sometimes He is just…there.

Is “there” enough?

Yes, “there” is better then “no there”.

I still look forward to the day of getting more then 4 hours sleep a night, and not being in pain. I look forward to blessings and rest.

But this is what I want the most –

To be strengthened. To be changed. To not being so affected by the world that I live in. To not be reactive and emotional.

I don’t want to avoid the storms, I want to survive the storms

Yes, “there” is enough. While He is there I can change, I can lean and rely on Him. I can pray and believe. Because being there is better then not being there.

While He is “there” I can know that He will step in and move things when needed. While He is “there” I know that He cares. While He is “there” I know that He knows, and has always known.

Do you want my blanket God?

 

Editors Note:

Hi everyone, 

This year my world is chaotic, so my blogs are going to be short and to the point.

Okay..well..let’s see how we go on that one!!

Rephrasing that – I will attempt to make them short and to the point.  ??

Thank you all for your comments, support and prayers.

Blessings

Ruth

Finding treasures

 

 

Have you ever spent time looking at the ground? It is interesting what you see and notice. Have you ever looked at the ground when it is dark?

My two teenage boys have an early morning job that starts when it is still dark.  They are employed for a small amount of time by a company that cleans a local car park and toilet block. Their job is to pick up rubbish, blower vac the car park and take rubbish bins out. It is not the nicest of jobs to have, but it is teaching them some great lessons.

It has been a fantastic time to remind them that everyone needs to start somewhere until they get where they want to in life. They have also learnt how dirty people can be, and how thoughtless people can be. They are learning that some habits that people have, not only  cause addictions, but cause those people to not care about others or the environment that other have to live in.

Every morning the boys have to pick up hundreds of cigarette butts, lolly wrappers, alcohol bottles and cans, soft drink cans and takeaways food containers.

There job, hopefully, will teach them to enjoy the product of a finished job. The “thanks boys” from their boss, and the grateful thanks from the shop tenants, should also help them understand that when a good job is done, it is sometimes noticed by others.

There is one other important lesson that they are learning – treat people nicely no matter what someone does for a living. I teach my children to be wary of strangers, but to be polite and say hallo. I do the same. People are sometimes so rude and look away, not respond, or just stare at us. Just because we are picking up rubbish for a job does not mean we are ignorant or lower than them to be treated as such.

It is my job as a mum to wake them when they are tired, prompt them when they don’t want to get up, and drive them back and forth to the job. It is my job to make sure the environment is safe and that they are doing the job they are paid for. I also use the opportunity to teach them small things that they have no idea that they are being taught. I also help them get started – my eldest starts up the Blower soon after arriving so my younger son has to get ahead of him in picking up the rubbish. I help him get started, by putting on some gloves and picking up rubbish too.

There is something else that lies on the ground unseen by many.

Coins. Yes. Money. Often by picking up rubbish you see the 5 and 10 cents pieces left by others. Odd occasionally, you find a real treasure like a $5 note.

Most mornings you can collect about 50 cents worth of coin. But here is the thing – you have to pick up rubbish to see it and, because it is still dark, you can almost walk past the money on the ground. The silver coin is nearly the same colour as the asphalt, and the $5 note is often caught up in the garden or under rubbish.

While picking up rubbish this morning, the Lord reminded me of a lesson He taught me a few days before. It was after I had bent down to pick up some cigarette butts that my youngest had missed, and something caught my eye. I bent a little closer and realised that it was perfectly round. I picked it up and it was a 5 cent piece. It was tarnished, slightly damaged but it was money. I walked over and gave it to my son.

As I handed it to him, he made a comment about it being too dark these days to see the money, but I noticed he was taking more attention to his job. The Holy Spirit spoke into my heart. “Sometimes people cant see because it is too dark.” As I walked the final part of the car park with my son, I mulled over what I had been given. Too true, sometimes life, circumstances, ill health, tragedies, mental and emotional problems, and exhaustion, stop us from seeing treasures and (sometimes) rubbish that they need to see, take note of, and remove.

At the moment I have had quite a number of ladies who have reached out to me through social media, email and through my blogs. They are battlers – struggling with life, abuse, depression and illnesses. My job is not to tell them what to do or give them advice – I am not a doctor, lawyer or professional anything. My job is to be there and to understand, to prompt them, encourage them, point them towards a professional, and sometimes, help them pick up rubbish and show them the treasure they cannot see.

Just like I did in not lecture my son for missing the cigarette butts and money, there are people who do not need the lecture from others. Not only do they need help to see treasures, sometimes they need help seeing the rubbish too. A lecture will do no good as they are doing the best they can, however encouragement can bring a better eyesight. Right now, each one of those ladies are being lectured to and sometimes treated as inferior. Recently, one lady wrote this – “don’t tell me to pray and have faith”. Some people cannot see in the dark.

See, sometime the world has been a dark place to live for a long time. As Christians they go to other Christians for help. They often get told to pray, put on praise music, thank God for their life and to have faith – they get treated as if it just easy to get up and switch on a light. As if their human will is able and that their eyes can see in the dark.

It is true that many people need some light – they need a torch …or maybe a lamp or a light for their path. I can strike a match to encourage them for a moment, but they will soon need more then that. They will need the Son to rise and shine once again into their very being. Until then they need those of us not effected by the dark to hold their hand and help them.

I was in that dark place for 18 months too once. I, my mind, will and emotions, could not see the treasures that lay around for me to gather, I could not see the rubbish. I felt the rubbish. It was tripping me over and I could sense it around my feet but didn’t know what to do. But the treasure was hidden. I couldn’t see my life with anything precious within it. But God gave me the ability to see and hold onto something that helped me hang on.

You see, in my darkest moment it was a homeless man who helped me to see a treasure. He told me that he was happy to live no matter what tomorrow would bring. He had nothing and nowhere to go. But he was ok with living. It was from this moment that I was given a tiny piece of treasure that night which I gripped for 18 months.

Three months after this, I reached up a took a hold of God’s hand and He held me until I could see again. It was a simple prayer that said to the God, I didn’t know was listening, that I would not give up no matter how hard life would get. For some reason I knew He heard.

It was the hardest thing that I had ever done – taken the hand of a God that I hardly knew and walked around with no feelings to help. The only feeling I had, wanted me to give up and I knew I couldn’t trust them. Amongst the rubbish I found faith, which was worth more than I could ever imagine. It would be the thing that held me for years to come.

Many people told that I just needed be richer, cleaner and that I needed to stay on my feet. They told me to read the bible, listen to Christian music, that I need to have more faith. The worst advice I received was this – “get over yourself”. The greatest thing I needed was hope and faith. I wanted it. There was treasure there on the ground for me to find and take a hold of, but I could not see.

The faith that I thought that I didn’t have, was there in abundance. I didn’t realise that the more I hung on, the greater my faith. In hanging on to God, He was filling my pockets with treasure for me to have later on.

That this scripture – “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1

One bible commentary put it like this – “the soul thereby seeing what the eye cannot see”.

So, what can you then say to someone whose soul cannot see either? Do we all have some spark of hope deep within us? Is it just that we need someone to help us find and acknowledge that hope, no matter how small? Do you realise that sometimes people need someone to walk through the darkness with them?

There will always be someone is who will help you to seek the treasure among the rubbish and in the dark, but it might be the least likely person or it might be a pet. Somewhere you need to promise yourself to hang on and wait for your eyes to see again. Find people to help you – the right people.

In the meantime, this is my letter to you –

Dear Damaged and Hurting One in the darkness,

I have this treasure given by God to give you. I know you cannot see but I found this while I was walking around in the dark. This treasure is called “hang in there” or “perseverance”. Make a promise to yourself that you will never listen to the words that come from the dark places of your mind and heart. Make a vow to yourself that you will live, no matter what.

This is the treasure that will see you through until you find hope. The hope you find will build in you and will grow.

When you feel no one else cares, there is a God who cares. His knows you like no other and will be there even when you don’t feel Him. Don’t be afraid to ask Him for things to help you through. But don’t expect people to be that answer. People are often only able to see their own life. Allow perseverance to reach out to God and use it to hang on Him.

I cannot promise you anything other than this – Keep looking for treasure in your life and look for the treasure “contentment”. This is the treasure that sees everything differently, it settles into your heart like nothing else. Keep contentment and do not trade it for anything.

Don’t allow the darkness to keep these treasures hidden from you. Don’t allow the rubbish to be the only thing you pick up. Don’t hang onto the rubbish, it is not worth it’s weight.

There are others who have won this battle and now walk thru the darkness with God’s light in front of them, helping those who are lost in the black.

From your fellow Treasure Seeker.

 

Psalm 50:15 – “Call on me in a day of trouble; I will rescue you, and you will honor me.”

To His daughters

 

Today this blog is specifically for Christian women. Usually when I write it could be read by anyone, not today.

God is trying to get people’s attention, in fact He has never ceased to try. People are busy, overwelmed, worried, frightened and not listening. That doesn’t stop God.

My heart has been so heavy for the past two days, but this morning I feel like I have something heavy on my chest. If you live in Australia, you will notice a debate going on about marriage. The pros and then cons – the for and the against. Emotions are high, words spoken in haste. Social media is overflowing with opinions.

I have so wanted to write something on this and I have had enough words going around my head over the past weeks to be able to fill an encyclopedia a few times over. Every time I started a sentence on this subject, it went nowhere. Nothing flowed, words were stumbling over each other without structure. The words in my brain would not come out.

Finally, I sat and talked to God about this stuff swirling through my head.

Was I to write? “No.”

Was I to put forward what was in my head? “No, I have other people doing that.”

“Mmmm… ok Father God… what then?”

“Speak to my daughters…” came the reply. “Tell them I am God and there is no other.”

“Say to them…”

“Put your whole trust in Me, rely on Me for your help. Trust in Me for your future. Learn to rest. Rest in the rest I give to you. Allow my strength to give you strength.”

I have a sense of a vice, slowly winding in. Tightening slowly. My heart is still heavy.

My mind flickered back to scriptures in Isaiah. I opened my bible. There it is… Isaiah 43:11-12a (AMP)

 

“I, [only] I, am the Lord, and there is no Saviour besides Me.

“I have declared [the future] and saved [the nation] and proclaimed [that I am God]…”

 

God is God, He our Saviour, our future, our salvation and He never lies. He alone is Lord. FULL STOP!

Today, the nation He speaks about is not a physical nation, but His people. If He is not our God, our salvation and our future, then what is He to us?

Lean on Him, learn to lean well. Trust in Him only, and don’t let go.

Don’t look around you, look at Him. The world will continue to decay.

He is trustworthy, and He saves well.

There is nothing more that I want to add to this. The heaviness is gone, it has lifted. Our God is good – love Him and know Him.

Be blessed as you seek Him.