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Friday, February 22, 2013

Light in the Darkness

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world.  Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
                                                                          John 8:12

I've spent a lot of time walking in darkness . . .

                        - the darkness of sin

                        - the darkness of my distorted thoughts

                        - the darkness of depression and despair

But in all my darkest times there has always been a light.

Sometimes the light is completely hidden for a time.  And sometimes it it is so faint that I can barely see it.

But I am learning more and more that even when I can't see it,  the Spirit within me knows it's there.

I am learning to hold on even during the darkest nights because I've seen over and over again that the light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. (John 1:5)

Even in my deepest doubt and despair the light flickers in my darkened heart like a tiny pilot light that only God can see.

As God foretold in Isaiah about the coming Savior - a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.  (Isaiah 42:3)

I am learning to trust in the darkness because Jesus promises that whoever lives in the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God. (John 3:21)

I am learning that when I cling to His truth He will lead me back into the light of life for He is the light of the world.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

A Prayer of Letting Go

Great God of Love,

Forgive me for my feeble attempts to control Your world that I so often don't understand.

Forgive me for the arrogance that convinces me that my way is right.

Forgive me for the impatience of my ignorant demands and childish whims.

Forgive me for my careless words of manipulation and deceit.

Fill me with Your Spirit of grace and truth.

Fill me with the hope of trust and stubborn faith.

Fill me with the evidence of things not seen.

Fill me with the love and freedom held out to me with bloodied hands.

Fill me with the promise that all things work together for good for those who love You.

Fill my heart to overflowing with acceptance, gratitude and praise.


Friday, February 8, 2013

With all my Heart

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
                                                                       Proverbs 3:5-6


That's the word I chose to be my focus for the year 2013.  I felt as if too many of my efforts had become half-hearted.

I want to live fully committed and greet each day with gratitude and hope.

In my own strength that is impossible.  My flesh fails again and again and I become disheartened and discouraged.

My strength must come from abiding in the vine and living through the power of the Holy Spirit.

If I know this, then why can't I remember to live it out?

The distractions of the world lure me away from the truth and I fall victim to the lies. . .

     -lies that I can do it myself

     -lies that I have to be perfect

     -lies that I have to win others' approval

     -lies that I will never be good enough

     -lies that things should be easy

The lies can only be defeated by trusting in the truth of God's Word - with all my heart.

I may not always understand.
He tells me not to lean on my own understanding.

He alone is sufficient and I can trust Him - with all my heart.

It may not be easy.
I will have to cling to the promises in faith even when my thoughts and feelings rebel.

But I will not lose hope.
He has promised He will never leave me or forsake me.

He has told me to trust Him - with all my heart.
And with His grace, I will.