God is at work. This is always a given, but we’re not always cognizant of what He’s doing. Lately, I’ve been more aware. I’ve asked the Lord for help, and He has answered me. Things have been happening. As He uncovered my cold heart and lack of communication, I’ve focused on repenting and asking Him for more and for specific help.
He answers every day.
Jesus is giving me increasing awareness of my sin of self-reliance.
He’s causing me to desire to tell Him all my thoughts and feelings.
He’s providing me with opportunities to converse with Him.
He sends unexpected encouraging words from a son. He ordains a reminder in a picture I see when I first peek at my iPhone in the morning. He captures my attention in the passage I “just happened” to be studying as I continue my morning quiet time through Revelation.
He’s making me aware of the stop sign He places at the end of my work day. It’s usually hours before I expect it, and it often involves a nap. My workaholic self still thinks I’m wasting time when I stop, but I’m learning to listen to my Shepherd. He’s the One who knows best.
He’s given me bursts of energy to get some marketing done, to position Fallen for sale, to schedule book giveaways, and to plan with my designers and tech people for some marketing campaigns that will soon begin.
He even sent a friend to help me take down the Christmas tree. Yes, I know it’s February. It’s okay to laugh. I had started boxing up the surrounding room decorations when a friend texted. She insisted I stop working immediately and wait for her, because she could come help me in a couple of days.
As she texted me, Handel’s Messiah played in my home – Christmas’s final hurrah, the chorus urging me to take Jesus’ yoke upon me and learn from Him. “His yoke is easy, and His burden is light.” Interestingly, miles away, she was simultaneously reading those very Scriptures, which prompted her to text me.
Since the Lord was telling us the same synchronized message, I decided I’d better listen to Him and wait for her. A few days later, she packed away my tree while I watched, and now she comes over weekly to relieve my loneliness.
God is so good to me!
God knows I’m still learning how to be chronically ill, and it’s a difficult lesson for a self-reliant workaholic. So He’s using very personal and timely tools that uniquely bless my heart:
- a son-in-law’s insights
- a podcast on grace
- unexpected roses
- a sacrificial husband
- a thoughtful daughter
- a comforting son
- a son kindly sharing an encouraging website
- a snowstorm
- a medical daughter to help me sort through the side effects of new medication
God is good!
He’s teaching me to rely on Him, knowing it’s in my nature to propel myself forward and grit it out, even though I know I’ll spend the next days in bed. His direct intervention in such a loving way causes my heart to rejoice!
He also helped me to pitch any parts of this year’s resolutions that smacked of my own energy and self-reliance. Through grace, He transforms me in ways unexpected.
First, He allowed all of my own energy to drain away and my pain to increase; and then He drew my focus even more toward Him and His grace. Next He sent the gentle helps and epiphanies needed to show me that He is intimately acquainted with my needs and is with me in this.
It’s better to embrace my disabilities and my utter need, than to claim any strength of my own. It’s amazing what happens when I actually ask God for help, I note sheepishly. Seeing these blessings pour out with supernatural timing as I have yielded encourages my heart!
Emmanuel: God is with me.
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4-7).
How does knowing, really knowing, that the Lord is near change your life?