In valleys and mountains

The word of my year this year is PRAY. As we enter February, I am comforted by my prayer time. It literally is a comfort to me, like a warm blanket surrounding me while I enjoy a cup of coffee in front of a fire. I feel God’s presence as I talk with Him.

The past 6 weeks have been excruciating for me and for the family of my friend, Rob. I have spent literally countless hours praying about him, for him, for his family, for those who care about him, for the, my friends and their needs, doctors and nurses, other hospital patients, you name it. I’ve wrestled with God on some questions from deep within me. I’ve sought council from friends who I know love Jesus, from those who have walked the path he’s walked, from those who work with those who’ve walked this path. I’ve done research, I’ve read, I’ve prayed.

My valley has happened while someone else is on a mountaintop, just as my mountaintop happens while someone else is in the valley. I am grateful for those who have faithfully lifted me (as well as others in my circle) in prayer and encouragement during this time. I pray to be able to return their blessing someday when I’m on the mountaintop and they’re in the valley.

Along my journey, I have reaffirmed what I already knew about God. He is faithful. He loves us. He IS working together all things for good. No, not all things are good, but I can do clearly see Gods hand on our lives… and I can see Him making a difference in the lives of people around me. As we travel through this journey together, my Lord is showing me things I’ve not known before, preparing me for something He has planned.

I so deeply love my Lord and trust where we’ve been, and trust where He will lead. I remember so clearly a few months ago when He asked me if I’d trust Him “when it got really bad”. I don’t know if it’s “really bad” yet, but I trust Him with a resounding “yes, Lord, I will trust You when it’s really bad”.

The God of the mountain is the same God in our valleys… and the God in our valleys is the same God in our mountains.

God has answered prayers in a big way this week. I’ll fill you in soon. I am trusting in His timing and in His guidance, to move Rob to wherever Rob needs to be. I pray God will continue to open and close doors to protect and heal my friend.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Lord. I know I need to trust you for everything… including Robs continued care. Everything I have is yours.

Blessings,

SB

courage for the journey…

This journey we embark on

is filled with much delight

though promises no safety

to those with strength to fight

 

Most will fear the outcome

and tread only paths well worn

but few with spartan courage

will venture toward reform

 

To blaze new trails for His sake

is not a journey for the weak

but steadfast toward the prize

and His Glory that we seek

 

Stand strong when trials shall come

for He gives you what you need

to fight another day for Him

the devil to impede

 

Godspeed, my fellow sojourner,

may you, with braveness be

the beacon of light in darkness

for all the world to see

 

May those who quest to find Him

be transformed and ever seek

to worship and adore Him

for all eternity

 

Faith

“One of our goals in life should be to learn to exercise faith in the promises of God no matter what the external circumstances appear to be” Pastor Stoper, Mission 119

This morning’s devotion was on Numbers 13-14. In this account, Moses sent spies out into the land to see if it would be good for them. (This occurred after God had delivered the Israelites out of Egypt, through the Red Sea into the wilderness). Of all of the spies sent, only two came back with a good report. Most said the land was good but they were afraid of the people who lived there for they were giants. Caleb and Joshua felt differently. They were confident in their faith because they had seen God deliver them before and knew He’d do it again.

I don’t know what mountain you’re facing today. I do know the mountains I facing, and I will admit, if I allow it, fear and uncertainty could cripple me. But when I look back at the promises God has made, and I see how faithful He has been to me over my lifetime.

In my career, I have had the opportunity to blaze new trails. It’s often scary to do, and I’ve faced strong opposition for sure. Ironically, one of my strong opponents was my friend Rob… and I stood strong against him, driving the change that needed to happen in the way in which the company we both worked for needed to do business. Who would have known that the steadfastness with which I persevered in my professional life would have been the strength that drew him back to me years later to lead him in his personal spiritual journey. But I digress.

As I stand here today, seemingly facing giants, I know that it was God who brought me to this place. I’m trusting in the promises that He’s made that He will protect, deliver, and bless those who follow Him. I’ve seen him do it and believe He’s going to do it again.

All for His glory,

SB