When I started to write the devotional for this morning, my mind went blank. I did my normal routine of praying for God’s guidance on what he would have me to say but I just couldn’t think. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t pick a topic and go. Folk were constantly interrupting me and I started to get irritated because the words just wouldn’t flow. I had so many things running through my head, I just couldn’t write them down. To try to lift somebody’s spirit, to give a smile instead of a frown. I thought about the mother that has been missing for days, wondering where she could be and praying that no harm has come her way. I thought about the stress children are facing at their young age, when they should be children and not adults walking across life’s stage. I thought about the bullying that is driving more children to suicide and taking them away from God who promises to always be their guide. I thought about the situations that folk are facing with sick parents and spouses, the health issues, the bills; not having money to buy food & gas and the stress that’s making them ill. I thought of the folk that are missing their sleep; and for those that are constantly praying to God for their mind to keep.
What could I say today that I haven’t said times before? Don’t you already know that God is standing knocking at the door? I’m just a woman, wife, mother, daughter, sister, niece and to some a friend. But what words could I say to keep your life from coming to an end? Can I share with you God’s word that promises relief; will that keep you from taking pills and never waking from your sleep? But then God said, “You are more than just a person, because I’ve chosen you, my child, for this very purpose.” So, I closed my eyes and I prayed again and again. “Lord, what will you have me to say today to help folk through their sin?” Then I heard, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28),” for each of you know, surely, this is only a test. Yes, I know somebody is yawning who couldn’t sleep last night, because they were worried about trying to find a place of their own with no job, no car and no money and they had no more energy to fight. Somebody paced the floor all night long because their love one is sick, but they are not ready to let go but to God’s word they stick. Somebody is drinking tears for water and God’s direction they seek, but Isaiah 40:29 says “He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.” See, God hears your pleas and he’ll come to see about you if you give it over to him. Stop praying the same prayer over and over because he has heard all of them. He hasn’t answered yet because he is waiting on you to let it go. It’s almost like planting a seed and then watching it grow. Just because you watch, it won’t make it grow fast, but worrying about a problem, you can’t fix, only makes it last. It’s like releasing a balloon and waiting to see it fly, but you can’t see it yet because it hasn’t reached the sky. That’s because you’ve let it go but the string is still tied to your wrist. Cut the string and let it fly, release your problems from your fist.
God knows you need a job, a car and some extra cash, but if you pray with faith, you don’t have to constantly ask. See, asking in faith means you know it’ll come to pass, so you can go on about your day and start a new task. Then you can focus on things that you can handle, battles you can win because with faith you have your answer and know it’ll be alright in the end.
James 1:6-8 say “But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” So why not ask in faith instead of shortening your days? When you worry and stress it only causes you pain and strife, and then you’ll cause heart attacks and strokes that’ll quickly end your life. Trust in God and believe in the word and the promises that he made. Because the scriptures are written for your understanding if you keep your mind stayed. I know that it’s easy for me to say when I’m not walking in your shoes, because I don’t what storms you’re fighting or what’s causing you the blues. It’s true; I don’t know what you’re facing or what is causing you to fall. But I do know a man who has promised to help see you through it all. I don’t begin to tell you that I know what you’re facing, but I can tell you to put on your battle gear, those boots start lacing. Because God has equipped you with what you need to fight and to win, he will even give you strength when the world is wearing you thin. So don’t be quick to think that God is punishing you because he is there every step of the way no matter what you go through. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” So don’t cry the times when you fall because Proverbs 24:16 says a just man falls seven. Just pick yourself up, knock the dust off your back and clean the blood from the cuts, because there will be many more times; the world knocks you in your gut. Ephesians 6:14 says “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,” so you’ll be ready when trouble comes to stare it in the face. Ephesians 6:13 says “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.” Then you can fight the battle, win and do your victory dance!
So yes, times will be hard and storms will come, that’s a proven fact. But stop being defeated every time, stand up and clean up your act. Everybody has struggles so they can’t always offer help, you could see that if you weren’t gossiping every time you hit their steps. People won’t be quick to join in on your pity party; they have their own problems to solve, but do as the bible says, turn them over and let God do his job. When you do, you’ll find the peace you need, the sleep and that rest; if you hold on to God’s unchanging hand through this test. It won’t always be dark on walk and your days filled with mourning, because Psalm 30:5 says “For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.” So tie back your curtains, open up your blinds to let the sun shine through; believe in the power of God and his word because I’ve found them to be true.