Remain

Psalm 42:6 (the message)
When my soul is in the dumps, I rehearse
     everything I know of you…

You can’t write about trusting God in the trials of life without then being tested on it.  You can’t write and encourage others to worship God in the midst of pain without expecting to face your own hardship.  So this is for Jesus…but it’s also to let the destroyer know that no matter what, he won’t destroy me.  Not my faith.  Not my trust.  Not even my willingness to offer up my worship along with my tears.  I still trust God.  So, just like the verse above…as I face loss and my soul suffers, I will rehearse everything I know of Him…

Thank you, Jesus, that you have always been with me.  Even from my childhood you have sheltered me and kept me.  In my most rebellious years you still loved me, called for me, accepted me.  You have mended my broken heart so many times…You have tenderly untied every knot in my soul, loosened the grip that shame and fear had on my life.  Jesus, only you could rescue me from myself that way.  Only you could take an insecure, needy and emotionally unstable young woman and rebuild the foundation for who I am.  You have taken my crumbly, messy self and reshaped me…taking the best of me and drowning out the worst with yourself.

You have taken a marriage that was hopeless and breathed life into it.  I am still amazed and will always be humbled that obedience to your word, trusting you, could produce such results.  I am so thankful for my marriage.  And Jesus, today I must thank you for my beautiful, healthy children.  For every smile, for every milestone.  I remember when Rivers took some of her first real steps and came over to give me a hug on the living room floor.  It was a day much like today and I was awed that she could sense my sadness.  She is intuitive beyond her 6 years.  She loves you, Lord, in a way that is beyond what I could teach her with a Bible story.  I know you will touch many lives through her.  And Leah!  Well, if you know Leah then you must just smile thinking about her…those big brown eyes and the mischievous grin.  She is independent and tender-hearted all at once.  Her hugs are warm and her big smile melts my heart.  I know that she will triumph in life…despite challenges…she will triumph.

I know more of who you are than I did before, Jesus.  Still, how could I be satisfied?  I know that you are merciful and kind.  Yet you are strong and powerful.  I know that you love people, all people no matter what, with a fierce  passion that moves you to grace.  I know, for sure, that even in pain you are present with me.  I know that in spite of the days in life that don’t turn out how I hoped or even how I prayed, you are with me.  Just like my favorite Kim Walker song, I Surrender:  Your love makes it worth it….Your love makes it worth it….Your love makes it worth it.  I trust You, God.  I know that lots of people think that “happiness” is supposed to be proof positive of your presence in their life.  I have found a much deeper truth…the proof of your goodness and great love for me is most real to me right in the middle of disappointment.  I used to question why…question You.  Now I just lift up my face, my hands, and my tear-strained voice to exalt the Only One who is good and kind.  I trust you, God.  I know more of who you are than I did before…

And I remain thankful.

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