Room to Roam

Psalm 18:16 He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters.
"Why did I pay money for this?" I asked the logical side of my brain.  I was on a descent into a rock cavern buried deep within the earth.  With each step the craggy opening narrowed.  Every few feet the temperature dropped.  My once damp brow dried long ago.  Now I shivered as I walked.

Like a train run out of track, the aperture spilled into a void.  There's no telling how far down I'd travelled.  I only knew how it felt.  Cold.  Lonely.  Empty.

Today's passage is Psalm 18.  In this chapter David celebrates God as his Rescuer.  David's dwelling place was desperation.  His future uncertain. 

God's plan and purposes remained perfect even when David couldn't see his way through.  The hands that hold galaxies in place reached down and pulled David up from the depths.

From my vantage point below earth's surface, I felt physically what I sometimes feel spiritually.  Cold.  Lonely.  Empty.  God reaches down to me.  His strong arm is able to pull me out of the deepest water. 

When I resurfaced from the cave, the world around me seemed bigger.  When God rescues one of his struggling children, He brings them out into a spacious place.  He rescues us because He delights in us (Verse 19).

Jesus, there is no place I can go that's beyond Your reach.  Whether I build a wall around my fragile heart or slide into the depths, You pull me out into a spacious place.  In Your love and grace, there's always room to roam.


Ephesians 4:32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

It was one of the precious moments of the day - family bike ride.  Often after we join as a family around the table for dinner, we clean the kitchen quickly so we can enjoy another thirty minutes together.  The four kids ride their bikes.  Scott and I hold hands and walk.  With every turn of the wheel, our family draws closer.

Two nights ago one child stopped peddling.  After a little prodding, my daughter tearfully unloaded, "She called me a slowpoke."  I hugged her and told her I was proud that was trying her hardest. 

As we approached the house, I called the offender back to my side.  "What did you call your sister," I inquired. 

"Uh...a slowpoke."

"How do you think that made her feel?"


"What should you do about it?"

"Tell her and God I'm sorry."

We made it back to house.  As we climbed the garage stairs, she took her sister's hand and whispered, "I need to talk to you."

I followed at a distance and stood in the shadows to hear their exchange.  "I'm sorry I called you a slowpoke.  You're not a slowpoke.  You try really hard when we bike."

"That's okay.  I love you.  You're the best sister and my best friend."

This morning I read Psalm 17.  This chapter is a prayer of David.  He first establishes his right standing before God.  Then David asks for relief from those who wrong him.  His description of his offenders catches my eye:  "They close up their callous hearts and their mouths speak arrogance."

From my vantage point, I saw my daughters reconcile in a Christ-honoring way.  The injured party did not hesitate.  Instead she offered free and abundant grace. 

I contemplated the moments in my marriage when I have the opportunity to exercise this level of love and grace.  Sometimes I have a callous heart and give the silent treatment.  Other times I defend myself and my mouth speaks arrogance.  Into my heart I speak the words, "You're the best husband and my best friend."  I want to cement them there so I can offer the same level of love and grace as my precious child.

Jesus, I offer You my heart.  Massage away the callouses. Fill it with Your grace and humility.  Thank you for blessing of my husband.  He is the best husband and my best friend.

My God...Is Just Right

Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

I'm just going to go ahead and admit it.  I'm not what you'd call well endowed.  In fact before I had kids I was a bit concerned about this whole breastfeeding deal.  I read books that said my children wouldn't starve but I wasn't convinced.

Much to my relief but not to my surprise God designed my body perfectly to provide for the physical needs of my baby girls.  There was rarely too little or too much.  Most days my supply was just right.

Today's chapter is the 16th Psalm.  David praises God for His many gifts - protection, provision and presence.  This phrase really caught my eye:  "Lord you have assigned me my portion and cup."

Each day we face a plethora of challenges.  Sometimes I wonder if God gives me more than I can handle.  This passage assures me that's not the case.  God has assigned me a portion and serving of His grace, strength and patience that is just enough to walk victoriously.

He doesn't give me too much because I might begin to mistakenly believe I am the source of the victory.  He doesn't give me too little little because He delights in seeing His children overcome the odds.  His grace is just right.

Jesus, as a child I read about Goldilocks.  I never really appreciated her find of just the right size of chair or temperature of porridge until this morning.  Because You are enough what You give me is not too much.  Your portion is not too small and not too big.  It's just right.

I Only Have Eyes For You

Deuteronomy 4:29 But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul.

"Clara.  Clara, where are you?" I called repeatedly.  For the first ten minutes of my search I wasn't concerned.  Clara is so prone to wander that I nicknamed her "The Israelite" back when she was just a crawler.  It was after I entered every room in our house I began to think the worst.

Maybe she went to the playground across the street or to the neighbor's next door.  The idea of disobedience was looking great as opposed to the other options my brain conjured.  She was neither place.  By now I was crying and begging God to help me find her. 

I raced into the bedroom to make the 911 call.  I spotted her snuggled down in my asleep.  My joyful cry fell on dream-filled ears.

Today I read Psalm 15.  David contemplates the character of the person who seeks God with an undivided heart.  He uses words like righteous, blameless, truth and honor as descriptors.  These adjectives seem better suited for the likes of Mother Teresa than me. 

Those minutes I couldn't find Clara filled a decade of time.  I was desperate to find her.  I wonder how my walk with God would look if I pursued Him with the same vigor.  As I considered this the words focus and priority came to mind.
  • Focus - No other thought than locating Clara crossed my mind but often when I sit with God my mind is a swirl of to dos.  To pursue God with passion, I need focus.
  • Priority - No other person entered my mind during my hunt but God competes for brain space with a variety of relationship thoughts.  To fully engage, I need to give Him priority.
Jesus, I picture myself on a frantic search not for a misplaced child but for my misplaced focus and priority.  Today, I choose to give you my undivided attention and thought.  In these moments, I only have eyes for You.

Gripped by Grace

Psalm 139:10 ...your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.

My heart raced.  Panic rose in my throat.  If I could just wake up, I thought I'd feel relief.  I didn't.  If possible, I was more frightened awake than I had been asleep.

Instinctively I moved closer to my husband.  "What are you doing?"

"I'm scared," I whispered back.  Thinking I must sound like a preschooler, I expected a reproof. 

Instead, he grabbed my hand and gently reassured me, "I'm not going anywhere."  With his hand fastened around mine, the relief I'd been anticipating washed over me.  My breathing slowed.  My rapid pulse subsided.  Sleep came once more.

Today's passage is Psalm 14. David makes an observation which Paul would later quote in Romans 3.  No person is godly.  In fact, we're all quite the opposite - filled with deceit and wrongdoing.

God's response is to remind David that He is present (verse 5).  God is not going anywhere.  No matter how badly I mess up, He's there holding my hand and reassuring me of His love.

His grace and forgiveness is not dependent on my goodness.  It is dependent on His.  How powerful to realize in my weakest moment, He is strong.  His grip never loosens.

As a part of a Bible story I was teaching this morning, I wrestled four elementary age the same time.  I was surprised to realize I could have taken the four of them down.  No boy wants to remember the day a church lady beat them and three friends at arm wrestling.  Grace and mercy forced my arm to fall back.

God doesn't arm wrestle me into submission.  He simply holds on.  How sweet to know that I'm in His grip of mercy and grace.

Jesus, hold my hand today.  I might squeeze tightly if I'm afraid.  I may raise my hand in a moment of victory.  I could stumble.  Whatever happens today, I want to be gripped by grace.

Moonlight Memories

Philippians 4:5b The Lord is near.

A sliver of moonlight slipped through the blinds.  The light played on her face as if the moon considered it a privilege to shine there.  "You're so precious," I whispered to the little body nestled in my arms.  I stroked her face and willed my heart to memorize every detail. 

I didn't know the hour of the night.  I didn't have to.  Sleeping in rooms nearby were my other children - 11, 8 and 1.  I knew as quickly as morning would come, so would pass these nighttime moments with my baby.  Soon I would peer down at the face of a young woman whose body had grown far longer than my arms.

Today I am reading Psalm 13.  David feels distant from God and cries out for intimacy.  Like the ebb and flow of the ocean tides, the rhythm of my walk with God moves over time.  Some mornings I awake and feel His presence so real and personal.  My soul is alive.  Other days I, like David, wonder where God is and why He seems far off.  My soul craves a connection with my Creator.

I spent countless hours watching my baby sleep.  Not once did my daughter question my whereabouts.  She slept at peace with the assurance her mom was watching over her.

As David ponders God's absence, he remembers His faithfulness.  He trusts His love.  He rejoices in His salvation.  He remembers His faithfulness.

My babies slept peacefully because they were confident of my care.  They didn't have to see me to know I was nearby.  They simply remembered my love and trusted my faithfulness.

God's presence is not dependent on my feelings.  He is near.  With care far more perfect than mine, God watches over each one of us.  I trust His love.  I rejoice in His salvation.  I remember His faithfulness.

Jesus, hold me through this night.  Walk with me through this day.  Your love and care won't fail.  I'll never be too big for Your arms.  May my moonlight memories remind me today of Your faithfulness.

The Road to Effective Communication

Proverbs 12:18 Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.

Some people are born fighters.  I am most assuredly not one of those.  When I find myself in the throws of conflict, my tongue falls silent.  It becomes cement in my mouth and fails to respond to my commands.

Today I read Psalm 12.  Here David contemplates the power of speech.  He notes too often it is used inappropriately - lies, false flattery and boasts.  The words of man stand in direct contrast to God's words.  His are flawless (verse 6).

No doubt my inability to make a verbal argument has saved me from regret. It has also, however, prevented me from giving the gift of an opposing point of view. When my tongue becomes paralyzed I remind myself as if I'm a toddler to use my words. If I stop and pray eventually the words come - words which bring wisdom instead of wreckage.

To invite God into my conflict communication style, I must put up new road signs:
  • The Stop Sign - A stop sign is not a permanent destination.  It is a pause on the trip.  It is time to evaluate what's coming, consider options and make choices.  At the stop sign I pray.
  • The Yield - A yield is an act of humility.  I allow the other to go first and honor them with my discipline.  At the yield I put others first.
  • The Right of Way - The right of way signals my turn.  As I tune into God, He gives me the freedom to express myself in a manner that honors Him.  At the right of way I lovingly speak what's on my heart.
Jesus, Your words are flawless.  Today I want to travel on Your communication highway - not withdrawing and not recklessly charging ahead without mind of the road signs.  On your road I will stop, yield and take the right of way.

A Truth Revolution

Psalm 16:11 You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.

The road to my divorce began when I  believed one lie - I would be happy if my husband loved me.  My path was paved when I believed the second - I would be fulfilled if any man truly loved me.

This morning I am reading Psalm 11.  David tackles the subject of longing.  He is yearning for a nation in which every heart is true to God.  In the midst of his contemplation, shots are fired in the dark at the upright of heart (verse 2). 

Paul would clarify centuries later that those shots are defended by the shield of faith (Ephesians 6:16).  When I face a crisis moment in which I have to choose to believe a lie or the truth, I have to choose to take refuge with God and in His truth.
  • When you feel lonely in your marriage - Run to Jesus
  • When a friend betrays you - Run to Jesus
  • When you receive bitterly disappointing news - Run to Jesus
If I run to Jesus and decide to walk with Him in faith, I extinguish the lie in my life with truth.  My path is laid in a new direction - His. 

Jesus, help me recognize a lie when it is whispered into my ear.  Give me enough strength to run to You and take up the shield of faith.  With that shield firmly in hand, lies are extinguished and Truth revealed.  My life becomes a Truth Revolution.


Psalm 139:7-8 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

A neighbor stopped Scott and I on our nightly walk a few nights back.  He wanted to apologize for being stand-off-ish.  Frankly, neither Scott nor I had noticed.  In fact, we would classify this man as just the opposite.  He is the kind of neighbor who is always ready with a kind word or gesture and shrugs off any gratitude directed his way.

This magnanimous neighbor went on to explain he had experienced a near total hearing loss in a matter of a few short weeks.  What he was saying made no sense.  How could that be?

A virus attacked his body wreaking havoc on his ear by destroying all the minuscule hairs in the inner ear which make sound reception possible.  Without those, he was left in a world with very little sound.

Today's passage is Psalm 10.  One of the things I appreciate about the Psalms is the various authors dare to ask questions the rest of us only think.  This particular Psalm opens with the inquiry, "Why, O LORD, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?"

All of us have thought that at some point in our faith journey.  There has been a moment when things seemed impossibly tough and it seemed God was no where to be found.  We have a crisis of faith and wonder if God has abandoned us as He did Jesus on the cross 2,000 years ago.

I wonder if my neighbor thinks God has forgotten him?  The Creator who spoke galaxies into existence surely could have preserved the hearing of a man so humble he didn't even register the praise given him.  He did not.

When did you wonder if God had left you? 

Did God walk out along with your spouse?

Did your soul empty with your womb?

Did the unthinkable make God a figment of your imagination?

Later in the passage, the Psalmist answers his own question along with ours.  "You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry." 

Our pain is not unseen.  Our cries are not unheard.  God knows our hurt and feels our every pain deeper than we ever could.

Jesus, in the bleakest moment, You are still the Son who shines in our darkness.  Your arms of love reach down to us at our lowest.  You hear.  You encourage.  You listen.  You are with me - 24/7/365.

Concrete Parenting

Isaiah 33:6 He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is the key to this treasure.

“Mamaaaa,,” the tiny voiced wailed. Instinctively I turned toward the sound to locate the source. A skinned knee. A search for mom. No one answered. I saw the injured little boy and my natural inclination to nurture overwhelmed.

“Shhhh. Don’t worry. We’ll find your mama. Does your Mommy kiss your boo boos?” The sobs slowed to an occasional whimper. “Well, let’s find her. I’ll bet she can’t wait to give you the best boo-boo kiss ever.”

I spotted whom must be his mother. No wonder she hadn’t heard his cries. She was a harried mother with several preschool aged children. I delivered her son to her with a smile and waved off her thanks. There have been plenty of times when the situation might have been reversed.

Today’s reading is Psalm 9. David recounts the faithfulness of God. No matter how many foes rise against him, David finds peace, refuge and a listening ear in the arms of God.

In life’s playground there are exhilarating trips down the slide, adventures up the rock climbing wall but also missteps which cause pain. No matter how well I attempt to love my kids, my love falls short of the perfect love of God. I don’t always hear their cries for help. I fail to see their pain. I am thankful when my daughters fall, God is there to kiss their boo-boos. 

Jesus, You fill in my parenting gaps. You are the Comforter behind every kiss. You are the Celebrator of every accomplishment. You are the Cement under my feet.

Constellation Grace

Psalm 8:3, 4 When I consider your heavens...what is man that you are mindful of him?

These kids are going to be too close together.  I was the one who'd born three kids already and I didn't think having another one this soon was a good idea.  My husband who shared the fun of the moment of conception but none of the development of the baby disagreed.

Carynne Morgason Milholland was born just sixteen months after our third daughter.  I didn't know then the sweetness of a hug so tight it enfuses your heart with love.  I hadn't heard the sound of a voice so tender, it forces a smile to your face.  I couldn't imagine in less than two years my husband would have cancer that would eradicate any possibility of further children.

Today I am reading Psalm 8.  In this magnificent passage of praise, David stands in awe at glory of the heavens and the power of a Creator who fashioned them.  On any starry evening, I peer into the sky and wonder how the God of all heaven sees and cares for an ordinary girl like me.

I don't recall being particularly spiritual the day I let Scott talk me into another baby.  It was a usual day on my regular walk of faith.  My God who dwells among the galaxies and also in my heart gently nudged my husband that day.  He wanted to give me a present.

This would be no One Spot Target special.  The God who speaks solar systems into existence planted a seed of pure joy in my womb.  He planted her in His perfect timing.  She is an extravagant gift of His grace and love.

Jesus, when I stare out into Your vast sky, I consider Your greatness.  I feel so small by comparison.  Your hand is large enough to plant a star in the sky and gentle enough to bring clear evidence of Your love into my life and family.  There is no greater place to dwell than here with You in Constellation Grace.

Runner's World

Isaiah 50:11 But watch out, you who live in your own light and warm yourselves by your own fires.

I was in my second trimester of pregnancy with my second child.  I was working full time because our household budget required my financial contribution.  I wanted desperately to not put my child in daycare. 

What I thought was my answer came in my fourth month.  My husband was offered a job making almost double his current pay.  His new job would replace my income and then some!  One day we were moving to Philadelphia.  The next he came home and said the offer was rescinded.  I was crushed.

I did not pray.  I did not wait for my husband to lead.  I ran ahead of God.  I made my own light and walked by it by suggesting to my husband that we leave Memphis where we had incredible friends and attended a wonderful church and move to Chattanooga so his mom could watch our new baby.  He agreed.

That day was the first day of the end of my marriage. 

Today I am reading Psalm 7.  David is feeling the emotional pressure of attack from his enemies.  Unlike me he runs to God not ahead of God.  There he finds refuge.

When I chose to walk by the light of my own fire, I walked straight into destruction.  When I ran ahead of God, I ran into disaster.

Today's scripture reminds me that I have choice when I don't like the outcome.  I can stop, pray and wait on God or I can run ahead to destination unknown somewhere outside of God's will.

Jesus, today I wait for You.  I choose to  walk with You.  I want Your Word and wisdom to light my path.  Show me the way to walk in a runner's world.

Valley Girl

Psalm 6:8-9 The Lord has heard my weeping...the Lord accepts my prayer.

It was one of those days that breeds dread in the heart of every middle school parent.  Tryouts.  All I wanted was for her to make the team.  It didn't matter to me if she ever set foot on the court as long as she was with her friends.

Tryouts concluded with an envelope passed to every girl.  We walked to the car to a symphony of ripped paper, shouts of celebration and mournful sobs.  My daughter wanted privacy.  She didn't open her envelope until we reached the safety of my SUV.  Nervous but silently praying for a yes, one final envelope was opened.  The letter was a no.  The texts came rapidly.  Each report was the same.  My daughter's friends were smiling.  She was crying.

Today I am reading Psalm 6.  David must be having a really bad hair day.  Maybe he even broke a fingernail because he is in a particularly bad mood.  I don't think that's the stuff that fuels a manly king's tears but something has him downcast and blubbering.

I don't know why I took my daughter's no so hard.  She was over it the next day but I just kept right on crying.  I didn't understand why God would allow her to be the only one of her friends not to make the team.  Had He not heard my prayers?

The truth is He did.  About five years ago, I dared to begin praying radical prayers for my daughters.  I prayed that God would do whatever it took to draw them into a deep, abiding relationship with Him.  I prayed that trials would come into their life because during trials our faith grows exponentially.  God answered my prayers.

It's been three years since the day my daughter didn't make the team.  Her faith has grown incredibly.  This summer she isn't a pool junkie or a camp hopper.  She's an intern at our church, pouring her life out in the Children's ministry.  Her burning passion is for kids to know her Jesus.  Her faith has been made real.

I don't know what happened with David the day he wrote this Psalm but I can declare with certainty that his faith grew as a result of his pain.

Jesus, today I dare to pray a radical prayer not just for my kids but for myself.  Try us.  Stretch us.  Grow us.  In the valley of tears, I see You most clearly.  When I weep, I will remember the priceless gift given every Valley Girl - growth.

American Idle

James 5:16b The prayer of a righteous (woman) is powerful and effective.

My first planning error was venturing out with my brain still hazy from my recent pregnancy.  My second was going to Costco with my mother.  Clara and Carynne were then still both under two.  They were present but not contributing much to the conversation.  As we typically do when we have an uninterrupted moment, we were chatting away like two young school girls.

Our trip through the store was equally fun.  We shopped, laughed and prattled our way down every aisle.  Our cart stacked high with our purchases, we made our way back to the car.  I couldn't find the keys.  Too little brain power + too much fun with mom = A big problem.  Panic immediately began to set in.  As I dug faster through my purse, fear rose in my throat.

Then a thought.  Perhaps for some unknown reason I left them in the car.  That is exactly where I found them.  In the car.  In the ignition.  With the motor running.

This morning I am reading Psalm 5.  In this passage, David lays his concerns before God.  His words are honest and raw.  David is not content to live his life idling or meandering in first gear.  He wants everything God has to offer and is bold enough to ask Him for it.

Too often my life just happens without intentionality.  There are errands to run, sporting events to attend and laundry to wash.  One day just blends into the next.  I'm stuck in American Idle.

That morning in the parking lot my engine was running but I was just wasting gas.  When I attempt to live a prayerless existence my life is like that.  I can run around and think I do so much good but really I'm just wasting gas.  An effective life is a prayer-filled one.

A car sitting in a parking lot, running with the keys in the ignition is just asking to be stolen.  Likewise, a work done in my power is under grave threat to have its' impact stolen by the enemy.  It is by laying a foundation of prayer that my life is empowered.  An empowered life is a prayer-filled one. 

Jesus, I don't want to be stuck in the parking lot of life idling and waiting for life to happen.  I want to live full throttle, pedal to the floor, all out for you.  To do so I must pause and fill my life with the high octane fuel of prayer.  So long, American Idle. 

A Search Party

Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. (NIV)

Seven years ago today, my life took a 180.  The day started as a single mother of two daughters.  The day ended as a married woman whose husband pledged to love her children as his own. 

We celebrate our anniversary with our children.  For us, it's the day we became a family, not just a couple. Early on Scott established a tradition of writing an annual letter addressed to all his girls.  In it he documents the blessings of God for our family and how he sees Him at work in each life. 

It will not surprise you that every year I cry.  I feel so amazingly blessed to be married to a man who loves me and our four daughters so immeasurably.  Every year I wonder to myself how I could ever be angry at him.

Today's passage is Psalm 4.  This chapter contains a verse that is partially quoted by Paul in the book of Ephesians - "in your anger do not sin.  The expanded version written by David says, "In your anger do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent."

As I read this I thought about the nights I've laid in bed stewing over a supposed oversight or injury by my spouse.  How senseless.  I considered all the moments I spewed my complaints without a thought or prayer.

I know from experience that my marriage is not transformed by asking God to change my husband's heart.  I also know from experience that my marriage has been radically transformed by asking God to change mine.

Jesus, when I invite, You send out a search party for my heart. I have so many reasons to be thankful for my dear husband. Reshape my nighttime thoughts to recount Your goodness and ask You to peer into my heart.  In quiet reflection, I will pray and not speak.  I want a marriage radically blessed and transformed by Your love and grace.

The Avenger

Psalm 3:8a From the Lord comes deliverance.

Since I live in a house full of girls, it may surprise you that the favorite new show at my house is The Avengers.  The Avengers are a team of superheros who team up to fight evil.  They find they are stronger assembled. Where one is deficient, another stands in the gap.

We are enthusiastic fans who record every episode.  Nothing stirs up excitement in the family more than the announcement of a new installment.  Recently, we found out The Avengers will move up to the silver screen in 2012.  I picture a row of six fans in pink among a primarily male audience.

Today I am reading Psalm 3.  David, fearing for his life, flees the threat of bodily harm from his own son, Absalom.  I can not comprehend a reality in which one of my sweet daughters could wish me physical harm.  While not intentional, they are at times the source of great emotional pain.  No one can wound my heart like one of my girls.

Sometimes I wish I had a superhero of my own to call on.  David, who slayed Goliath with a single stone knew that mystical powers were not required to do the impossible.  Jehovah God is the God of the miraculous.  David cries to God from his place of emotional pain.  In this passage I see the best of several Avenger heroes.
  • Captain America - Captain America is a comic book hero whose power doesn't come from Gamma radiation or an alien planet.  His strength is his training.  He is the ultimate soldier - perhaps what would result if you could multiply a Green Beret by a Navy Seal.  His weapon of choice is his shield.  He uses it to attack and to defend.  In this passage, David refers to God as his shield.  Our Shield is also not just a passive device.  He will fight for us.
  • Iron Man - Iron Man builds extraordinary advantage on cutting edge technology.  His suit and home are both run by an unseen electronic assistant named Jarvis.  Iron Man speaks his requests and Jarvis is faithful to fulfill them.  In the depth of David's despair, he cries out to God.  Our God hears us when we call.  He is faithful and will answer.
  • Thor - Thor is a "god" from another dimension.  Since he is above mortals, he possesses no fear of them.  David feels as if everyone has turned away but he remembers even ten thousand hold nothing to fear when God is with him.  God does not abandon us.  He is with us.  God standing with us is more powerful than an army of any size.
Jesus, You fight for me.  Your weapons are a shield, an ear and fearlessness.  When I am afraid or discouraged, I  know You will be fearless.  You are my Avenger.

Mutiny Within

Psalm 61:4 I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.

With four affirmatives, the vote was unanimous.  We were moving to Grandmas.  I can't now remember what action incited this mutiny but we were ready to abandon the mom and dad ship for sure.  Best I recall, the Admiral (aka Dad) threw the oldest into the brig, instantly intimidating the remaining insurrectionists.  Our anarchy was annihilated before a single foot hit the pavement.

Today's passage is Psalm 2.  It opens with a question.  My paraphrase:  Why in the world do people ever think they can battle God?  Are we foolish enough to think we could actually win?

Even though I have zero chance of victory, I take up just such a pursuit quite regularly.  As if perpetually stuck in adolescence, I think that I can talk God into the changing the rules by the sheer volume of my arguments.  I have a smaller probability of success with the true Admiral than I did my dad decades ago.

Truth is God asks things of me I am reluctant to give.  He takes me places I am hesitant to go.  Is it possible to move from my juvenile bargaining attempts into a growing faith and trust in God?

It is.  The last line tells me how. "Blessed are all who take refuge in Him."  I have never walked in my home and questioned if disaster were imminent.  I inherently trust the structure to protect me.  Shelter is a place of quiet confidence.  When I choose to trust God, I take refuge in Him wherever I go and whatever I face.

Jesus, steer the ship of my life where You want it to go.  I choose to surrender.  Today there will be no mutiny within.