Doubts, Direction, and the Pause

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So I’ve been back in the swing of out of state relational ministry travels this winter. It has been such a full, beautiful time with many opportunities to see God’s movement in the lives of so many and encourage those near and far from Jesus to come closer.

During this particular travel season, I’ve found God stretching me a bit further in my faith than before. Over the years, the Lord has shown me in this itinerant, relational ministry work we’re doing together how critical it is for me to pray, consistently abide in Him, and seek His direction for where He wants us to go and when and how long. And as usual, He’s been faithfully giving answers…

But lately it definitely hasn’t been in quite the timing I prefer. =/

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Hope at Dawn

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Work.

This early morning, my thoughts lead me to reflect on those times when our work, our efforts, no matter how well intentioned or focused, dedicated or talent filled, only result in nothing. You know? When you’ve been steadily hard at work but just spinning your wheels? After hours upon hours, months and months of diligent effort? Doing all you know how to do in your current situation and yet nothing comes of it? What then? Continue reading

In Case of Disappointment, Break Glass (Part 3): Make Room

sherjc.com_lace_curtain_cirThis is the second post in a 4-part series. Read part 2: Frustrated Desire and Faith.

A few minutes into my heart-to-heart with the Father about those pesky missing lace curtains, I remembered God’s specific word that morning:

“Make room…for Me to move.”

I reflected some more on this instruction from Him. Then, I found myself telling my weakness to God, declaring His truth, and expressing my gratitude regardless of how I felt at the time. I confessed my inability to imagine a better circumstance than what I had originally planned. I declared by faith that I believed what He said. I thanked Him for even telling me ahead of the disappointment!

Then, I looked up at my semi-clad window with my unfinished vision of what could be, sighed, and decided to release it to Him. God knows better than I do and has better in store; otherwise, He would not have said so. I thanked Him for allowing this chain of events and using silly lace curtains to draw me to Himself.

And slowly along the way, I found comfort in Him. Continue reading

A Time to Cry Out (Part 2): Weariness and God’s Strength

sherjc.com_dusk_ocean_ship_cirThis is the second post in a 2-part series. Read part 1: The Fight Against Apathy and Weariness

“Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. And He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.” –Paul (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” –Paul (Philippians 4:13)

Did you know that it’s okay to be weary?

Really.

Although it hurts our pride (especially for us self-sufficient people!), we really don’t need to have it all together or have all the answers. We simply don’t have resources or power like that in our own strength and wisdom, but God certainly does.

When we’re confronted with the bigness of the darkness, trials, suffering, and pain in this world, it’s only natural to get overwhelmed. We really are not quite as “big” as we like to think, and to admit the reality of our proportion, our size in comparison to all that is wrong in this world, in our communities, in ourselves that discourages and overwhelms can be downright frightening. Continue reading