Monday, October 25, 2010

Storms of Life

Over the past couple of days, East Texas has experienced some pretty strong storms pass through the area. I am the first to admit that I do not like severe weather. However, each time the clouds start to gather, I find myself standing outside looking toward the heavens trying to catch a glimpse of what lies beyond the clouds.

There are times when we are challenged with storms of life. We are going along with our day to day activities with a picture perfect forecast of bright, sunny days bringing us happiness and contentment. Then storms clouds or situations that cause us great difficulty begin to gather on the horizon. Suddenly, a torrential downpour has caught us by surprise! It's during these times we need to be reminded that HOPE is the perfect life preserver in the midst of any storm. It keeps our head above water, enabling us to fight off feelings of discouragement and despair. It reminds us that help is on the way even if we can't see it yet.
God came through time and time again for people in the Bible. Think of all the times He's come through for us. We know He is always faithful, and that the hope we have in Him is steadfast and immovable. He is our greatest source of hope.
"But we are hoping for something we do not have yet, and we are waiting for it patiently." Rom.8:25

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Seeing God in Everything

I recently returned from a much needed getaway to the beautiful Florida Gulf Coast. I really did not want to leave my family for any length of time because I just knew they couldn't survive without me. However, I was strongly encouraged by many loved ones to take some time away for myself. Time to rest, relax, refocus. I wasn't sure I would go through with it until  last Thursday morning, at six o'clock, when I boarded a plane for a flight to Houston then on to Florida. I was so thankful that traveling went very smooth.
The first stop on the way to the beach front condo in Perdido Key was at one of my favorite places to dine in that area called, "The Shrimp Basket". The weather was gorgeous with a gentle breeze blowing which made lunch out on the deck even more wonderful. Finally, about two o'clock my toes were in the sand! The tranquil turquoise waters of the gulf of Mexico were so calm that the waves barely lapped up on the beach. As I sat in the old blue beach chair, in quiet reflection lulled by the sights and sounds of the ocean, I was awestruck at the beauty and wonder of our Lord. Then as I walked along the shoreline searching for shells, the song "Show me your Glory" by Third Day started going through my mind and I began to sing. The words are "Show me your glory. I want to see your face." Lately I've been discouraged. There has been a spiritual battle raging around me and because of that, life is hard. I was definitely in need a change of perspective so I can see God in everything. I am convinced that Satan wants to keep my perspective in a place where my heart is discouraged and my mind is questioning God. But, God's word calls me to a different action: "We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, character and hope" Romans 5:3. It was two years ago last week when we received a phone call about adopting Emma. When we told our boys about the opportunity to adopt her, we were all so in tune with saying yes to God and asking for His will to be done that we leaped into the unknown with nothing but His sweet confirmation's that we were doing what He asked us. Looking back, I think we expected everything to be perfect. We were getting a daughter and sister that we had longed for but never expected. We did not know that Emma had special needs until after she was with us for a while, then we realized something was wrong. Has it been easy or without challenge? No. There are days when I say, "Lord, I did not sign up for this!" Or "Lord, I don't understand why this precious baby girl has to go through all she does." I even go so far as to doubt God and question why he would think I could raise her. i'm sure Satan is having a field day! One thing I know for sure is God made Emma for a glorious purpose. She was given as a gift to our family to remind us how much our heavenly father loves us and every time she smiles at me, my heart melts. This has to be how the Lord feels about us, His children, when we have a relationship with Him. I did see His glory in many things while I was at the beach. But, I see Him more clearly in my life. He has blessed me with so much. A godly husband who is a great provider not to mention a really good kisser, precious children that are being raised to walk in the truth, dear friends and family who are willing to sacrifice their time to give me a hand when needed. So, I will rejoice in the good and the bad times because I know God is in everything!