When your daily activities are in concert with your highest priorities, you have a credible claim to inner peace. – Hyrum Smith


A good place

I am in a good place.  I don't just mean geographically.  I mean emotionally.  I am finally, finally feeling a bit like my old self again.  It's taken over half a year.  I can rebound from birthing a child faster than I can making an international move.  Wow!  Humbling.

But if I'm really honest, it's not humbling for long.  Pretty soon, that insidious little voice in my head begins to whisper, "Look at you!  Look at what you've done!  You really pulled yourself up by your bootstraps.  You can handle anything!"

In my heart I know that I should take take zero credit for the improvements in my attitude and mental health.  What occurred in my heart is nothing short of a miracle.  But it is precisely at the times when things are going so well that I am most vulnerable.

When things are going well I stop reading my Bible and stop talking with God.  I talk at Him, but my listening skills go out the window.

I am trying to break that cycle.  So last night I pulled out my Bible and prayed that God would speak right to me through His Word.

Two things stood out (from the book of Joshua):

1.  This verse:  "He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God.

Sometimes when I am going through a tough time, I wonder why God does things the way He does.  Isn't there an easier way?  Does it really have to be this hard?  Then I remember that if I put my faith in Him, He always carries me through.  Always.  And my hope is that others will see that and acknowledge just how powerful He is.   

2.  The manna stopped.  

Remember how God gave the Israelites manna every day for forty years in the desert?  What an awesome reminder of His presence!  I felt so jealous of those people reading about that. There is no way they could deny the presence of an all-caring God when he was literally serving them breakfast every morning.  

But then it stopped.  Once he gave them the big gift - the promised land - the manna stopped.  I bet after eating it every day for forty years, the people weren't complaining…at first. At first, they were probably drinking in all the milk and honey their bellies could handle.  But I wonder if the parents of the next generation ever wished their children could have been fed directly from the hand of God.  What's that phrase?  Seeing is believing.

God was physically closest and most easily identified by the people during some of their hardest times.  They were wandering around a desert.  And He was there, feeding them, leading them by a pillar of cloud by day, and providing light at night with a pillar of fire.  

When we survive our own "desert" experience, after awhile we may wonder, Where did God go?  The answer, of course, is nowhere.  He never left.  His presence may need to be experienced in a different way, but He's always there.  And when we need Him most, our loving, almighty God will swoop in and show Himself in an unmistakable way.

For it is the Lord your God who goes with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. 
Dt 31:6

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