Posts Tagged ‘Isaiah 41:10’

He Does What?

Who is God to you? Is he some illusive being out in the universe or is he a personal God who knows your name?

I’ve been thinking recently about the names of God: Jehovah, All Mighty, Ancient of Days, I AM that I AM, LORD, Lord God, Most High, Lord of Hosts, Everlasting God, and there are more. These names reveal His character;  righteous, all powerful, all knowing, ever present, love, holy, creator, healer, just, merciful, truth, forgiving, compassionate,  sufficient, faithful, judge of sin, and He never changes.

God is our shield, our rock, our hiding place, our fortress, our peace, our strength, our sure foundation, our shepherd. He can be trusted. He loves and provides a way of salvation through His son, Jesus Christ.

God hears our prayers, cares about our needs, grieves when we hurt, heals our wounds, forgives our sins, and when invited, lives within us. God desires a personal relationship with us.  One of the most precious things that God does is walk beside us. You may say, “He does what?” 

Visualize for a moment a father walking up a mountain trail with his young son walking beside him. When the journey gets rough, the father reaches out and takes the child’s hand to provide comfort, strength and safety. When the child says he is too weary and exhausted to go any more, the father picks him up and carries him on his shoulder.

When God walks beside us, it is an intimate relationship. He is a father who loves and cares deeply. He is close at hand, experiencing the journey with us just as the earthly father cares for his child.

This my friends, is my ever-present, Father God, who walks with me.

A few verses about God walking with us.

  • Deuteronomy 1:31 Moses is reminding the children of Israel how God cared for them as they wandered in the wilderness after leaving Egypt… “…you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a man carries his son, in all the way that you went until you came to this place.”
  • Psalms 23:4 “when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for you are with me. Your rod and staff they comfort me.” This is a picture of God as a shepherd walking with his sheep in a very difficult place.
  • Isaiah 41:10 “Fear not, for I am with you. Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. I will hold you up with my righteous right hand.”
  • Isaiah 42:6 “I the Lord, have called you in righteousness, and will hold your hand…”
  • Isaiah 43:2 “I have called you by your name. You are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you…..when you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned….”

Like A Bridge Over Troubled Waters

white water raftin

Today a friend called and we exchanged the normal “how are you today” greetings. Then she said, “do you really want to know how I am?”  She dared to give me a glimpse into her soul and what she is dealing with.

Just this past week I had stumbled across a note written in my Bible. “Faith is not a bridge over troubled waters but a path through it.” For the last week I have been mulling this over in my brain.  In 1970 my high school graduating class choose “Bridge Over Trouble Waters” by Paul Simon as our class theme song.

When you’re weary, feeling small
When tears are in your eyes
I will dry them all

I’m on your side
Oh when times get rough
And friends just can’t be found

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

When you’re down and out
When you’re on the street
When evening falls so hard, I will comfort you

I’ll take your part
Oh, when darkness comes
And pain is all around

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

Sail on silver girl, sail on by
Your time has come to shine
All your dreams are on their way
See how they shine

Oh, if you need a friend
I’m sailing right behind

Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will ease your mind

 As I have matured and struggled along the path of life’s journey I have come to realize that this may be a nice sounding song but the reality is there is usually no mystical bridge over troubled times in our life where all my dreams come true and the stars are shining. Neither can I lay myself down so that a “silver girl can sail on by”.  No, we each have to brave the current, wade into the deep and take the path that goes directly through the frothy, white water rapids.  It may be the ride of our life with the boat careening out of control and banging into rocks. There may be times when we wonder if we will make it through or become trapped under our capsized canoe.  We may feel helpless, lonely, discouraged and fearful.  Maybe we need a friend who doesn’t sail behind us but walks beside, shining a little light on our path; praying, encouraging, helping and cheering.

I love the words to the popular song by Casting Crowns which so much so poignantly speaks to God’s presence our lives in the midst of the storm.

Praise You in This Storm

I was sure by now God,

You would have reached down

And wiped our tears away, stepped in and saved the day

But once again, I say, “Amen” and it’s still raining.

But as the thunder rolls I barely hear Your whisper through the rain, “I’m with you”

And as Your mercy falls I’ll raise my hands

And praise the God who gives and takes away.

 

And I’ll praise You in this storm and I will lift my hands

For You are who You are no matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried You hold in Your hand

You never left my side and though my heart is torn I will praise You in this storm.

I remember when I stumbled in the wind You heard my cry,

You raised me up again

But my strength is almost gone

How can I carry on if I can’t find You

 

But as the thunder rolls I barely hear You whisper through the rain, “I’m with you”

And as You mercy falls I’ll raise my hands

And praise the God who gives and takes away.

And I’ll praise You in this storm and I will lift my hands

For You are who You are no matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried

You hold in Your hand You never left my side and though my heart is torn

I will praise You in this storm

I lift my eyes unto the hills

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord The Maker of Heaven and Earth

I lift my eyes unto the hills

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord

The Maker of Heaven and Earth.

And I’ll praise You in this storm and I will lift my hands

For You are who You are no matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried You hold in Your hand

You never left my side and though my heart is torn I will praise You in this storm

And though my heart is torn I will praise You in this storm

Faith grows when we go through something.  Faith happens when I release my inability to control to my Heavenly Father.  God promises His presence and in His presence I find strength, peace and security.

  • Isaiah 41:10  Fear not, for I am with you. be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will hold you with My righteous right hand.
  • Isaiah 43:1b-2  Fear not, for I have redeemed you, I have called you by name. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.  When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you.
  • Psalms 23:4 When I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and staff, they comfort me.

Faith is the hope that I will make it through. Faith is trusting in the promises of God-the evidence of things I can not see. Faith is the path through troubled waters. (Hebrews 11)

 

Ebola-Too close home….Update

I want to personally thank everyone who prayed for my niece and her family who were in the midst of the Ebola crisis in Liberia.  I can report that they are safely home in the states and doing well. They have completed the 21-day quarantine and are now able to freely travel and mingle with people.  I know we all  are anxious to hear their story and the stories of others who were caught in the crisis.  We prayed for them while we anxiously awaited news that all was well.  To know their stories satisfies our curiosity but it also puts a human touch to the crisis that made international news.  We are anxious to hear their faith journey but we will have to wait until they are ready. In time some will write and talk.

In the meantime, continue to pray for the team and health care workers as they try to figure out “what next”.  God led them to Liberia and now they have to discern what and where God wants them now  as their lives and careers are temporarily on an unplanned “hold”.  This has not caught God by surprise.

The Ebola situation in West Africa is troubling and the news coming from Liberia is dire.  Let us petition our Heavenly Father on behalf of the thousands of suffering people who have no hope and no chance of rescue.  Continue to pray for Samaritan’s Purse as they are dealing with multiple world crisis.  Their ministry is far-reaching and they need the wisdom that only God can give.

I am reminded of the precious promise of God in Isaiah 41:10…

Fear not; for I am with you.

Be not dismayed for I am thy God.

I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you.

I will uphold you with my right hand of righteousness.

Wait for the Doctor with Ebola to tell his own story.

September 5, 2014 The doctor tells his story….  “Saving Dr. Brantley” on NBC.  This is a six part interview with Matt Lauer.

Google Earth

We got a call this evening from our daughter. “Mom, I need you to do something for me. We have been at the Washington Zoo all day and we can’t find our van.  We came out of the zoo at a different place then we went in and we are turned around.  Can you go on Google Earth and tell us where we are at?”

Well… uhmmm…. how do I do that?????

“We are at the intersection (on foot) of  Connecticut  Ave. and Calvert St. and need to know how to get to Columbia.  Our van is  parked in front of a CVS Pharmacy and our cell phone battery is running low so I can’t stay on the phone too long!”

Oh, the wonders of modern technology!    Gene and I each made a mad scramble on our computers, bringing up Google Maps, googling Washington Zoo, zooming in close to the streets surrounding it, searching for Connecticut….found it…oh, and Calvert,  I can’t find it. How do you spell “Calvert”?  Oh there it is.  But where, oh where, is Columbia?  Google search again for CVS Pharmacy+Washington Zoo.  And there it was!  Relayed the information…keep walking  east on Calvert until you come to Columbia and then turn north.   They safely and with ease found their van!

Only Obe, Jill’s husband, who is an Instructional Technology Resource Instructor could have thought of such a crafty way to solve their problem!!!  I am amazed he didn’t have an iPad or smart phone stuck in his back pocket!

I could visualize them on the crowded sidewalks of Washington with two little children and dear friends, John and Brenda, and their two younguns trying to figure out where to go.  They needed a larger, bird’s eye view of their plight.

Sometimes in life we can’t see beyond the next step.  We feel lost, confused, and don’t know which way to go.  We know there is an answer but we need a broader perspective.   We know our destination. We know where we are parked but it is finding our way there.

Jeremiah 29: 11-13  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”.  When we dial up heaven our broadband connection rate is to die for.  God knows the big picture.   He sees the whole perspective and He knew it even before we called.  He zooms in on us and if we can trust Him he will direct our path.  He will show us the way. We do not need to be wandering aimlessly on planet earth.

Some other verses about God’s loving care for us….

  • Psalms 67:1-2  “God be merciful to us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine on us that His way may be known on earth”.
  • Psalms 56:3  “When I am afraid I will trust in you”.
  • Psalms 119: 105 “Your Word is a light to my path and a lamp to my feet”.
  • Proverbs 3:6  “In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path”.
  • Proverbs 5: 21  “For the ways of man are before the eyes of the Lord, and he ponders all his goings”.
  • Isaiah 46-4 “…who have been upheld by Me from birth, who have been carried from the womb; even to your old age, I am He, and even to gray hairs I will carry you! ” (God knows every detail about us. He created us and will be with us from conception to death.  Our way is known by the God of the universe. and we are enrolled in his life insurance plan).
  • God gives us the assurance of  his divine presence and care in Isaiah 41:10. “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you. I will uphold you with My righteous right hand”.

Maybe we need Google earth to help us navigate the maze of streets to help us find our destination or parked van. But only God can navigate us through our journey on earth and help us reach our home in heaven.

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