“At that time the deaf will hear word-for-word what’s been written. After a lifetime in the dark, the blind will see” (Isaiah 29:18 The Message).
My husband Patrick has a little spot below his jaw line that he invariably misses when he shaves. Sometimes he misses it two or three shaves in a row, and then it isn’t just beard, now it looks like hair. That little patch of hair seems to hide in the shadows, difficult to detect, and then all of a sudden there it is.
I began thinking about those little spots in my life that hide in the shadows, difficult to discern, until they take over some area of my life, and I have to go in and hack them off.
Frustration, loss of peace, making excuses, defending myself, occasional slothfulness, tendency to gluttony. All of these are areas of my life usually under control, but they still show up occasionally. When I least expect them. When I’m least prepared for them.
I praise God for being willing to take me, unworthy as I am, and make me into His image. This week, as you seek God, ask Him to reveal those blind spots you may have in your life, and then to cause them to evaporate. Gone! So that all that is left is Him reflected in you and your life and words and actions.
Leeann Betts writes contemporary romantic suspense, while her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, pens historical romantic suspense. In the Money is the tenth title in her cozy mystery series, and together she and Donna have published more than thirty novellas and full-length novels. They ghostwrite, judge writing contests, edit, facilitate a critique group, and are members of American Christian Fiction Writers, Writers on the Rock, Sisters in Crime, and Christian Authors Network. Leeann travels extensively to research her stories. Receive a free ebook by signing up for their quarterly newsletter at www.LeeannBetts.com.
My friend’s husband slipped during a vacation and injured his back. Instead of getting better, the pain grew worse. After numerous doctors’ visits and tests, he heard the news no one wants to hear. Cancer. Of the bones. And he needed back surgery.
The surgery left this formerly active husband and father with a back brace and a cane. His wife struggled with responsibilities he’d previously carried with ease. Sometimes the loss of the life they’d taken for granted and the frustration over lack of youthful strength boiled over.
One such day, she fumed to herself and her husband as she hurled boxes that contained a lifetime of accumulated junk and memories into the dumpster at the local junk yard. “Why didn’t we prepare for old age before it was so hard?”
In her rant, her keys sailed with her belongings into the huge dumpster. Her frustration turned to desperation—and then to God. “Lord, forgive me for complaining. Please have mercy and rescue my keys!”
Halfway down, the keys dangled from protruding trash. She asked two burly men, “Please, would you crawl in and rescue my keys?”
One man fished out a long pole with an attached magnet and snagged the keys. “No problem.”
Has weakness, frustration, or lack of planning dropped you in the middle of a mess? We can’t adequately predict or prepare for some things. But the One who knows our future has promised:
Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. (Isaiah 46:4 NIV)
Lord Jesus, please sustain me in weakness, rescue me in my stumbles, and carry me when I’m too weak to walk.
Debbie W. Wilson—author, Bible teacher, and life coach—helps people, especially overachievers, give themselves a break and live in God’s grace so they can enjoy fruitful and satisfying lives. Her newest book, Little Faith, Big God (Leafwood Publishers) releases February 2020. Share her journey to refreshing faith at debbieWwilson.com.
As storm clouds gather, they often cover the sun and a harsh greyness vails the light. This was the place B ill and I found outselves for three long years, as Bill commuted back and forth almost weekly through gridlock Los Angeles traffic to care for his againg parents, all while we worked to keep up with our acre of land, and our Love-Wise ministry of writing, speaking, and travel. While our marriage was weathering the storm, we both we tired of the treadmill that seemed to have now end. A darkness of depression was trying to cover over our hope. One night, at the end of yet another long an rigorous commute, about midnight, I heard Bill’s footsteps, heavy on the stairwell, then say his weary face in the dim light of our bedroom. I whispered,
“Keeping your parents alive is killing you. Something has to change”
He nodded in exhausted agreement.
He worked to remodel our home and place it on the market, while I was writing my portion of
Discovering Hope in the Psalms. We handled these unbelievably long work days and very short nights of sleep by emailing Psalms to each other; sharing Psalms as we ate meals together; as we traveled in the car and as we sorted, packed then moved boxes.We looked for Psalms to sing praises and we listened to Psalms as musical choruses or being read aloud as we drifted to sleep. The Psalms calmed our hearts, renewed our spirits, and revived our HOPE despite the difficult circumstances
Psalm 43:3-4 gave comfort one day in the middle of the mess of life. Our home wasn’t sold (yet still needed to be kept picture perfect for showings), our parents still needed care, our commute was still long, our ministry needed an infusion of energy and finances that we lacked, and nothing on the horizon in our circumstances was indicating anything would be changing any time soon. We needed to have a verse to hang our heart on to move forward emotionally in this very long wait. So, we prayed Psalm 43:3-4:
“Send out Your light and Your truth. Let them lead me. Let them bring me to Your Holy hill and to Your dwelling. Then I will go to the alter of God, to my God my exceeding joy. …”
Instead of looking at our current difficult circumstances, we looked at the end game. God would bring us to a place where we saw the exceeding joy only God could give. And He promised to dispatch His light (the kind of light that pierces the darkness like dawn) and His truth (some translations say, “faithful care” or the trustworthy truth that is backed by God’s caring character of action) And we were most encouraged that the kind of “leading” that the Psalmist is describing is a fluid one that moves forward and back to create the best opportunity!
We hung our hearts on verses like these. for a long five-year journey, but in the end, God brought a church planter to buy our
home at a price that was a win-win for all; God moved us on to our family’s vineyard as an oasis of recovery, then provided the perfect live aboard boat, at a miracle price where I daily now, read a a #sunsetpsalm from the bow of our vessel moored in a sunny southern California marina. . . and yes, there is exceeding joy on our tiny home on the water!