So I am sitting here, reading my oh~so~loved women's friendship devotional book (they should pay me for bragging on it this much) when I came to today's entry. I love it so much that I am going to share it with you.
Today's verse comes from 2 Thessalonians 2:16&17 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say.
Remember one of yesterday's random thoughts about me being a loyal wife/mom/daughter/sister/friend/aunt? Well, I admit that I was having a bit of a hard time with always being a giver in my relationships. I know now (by spending quiet time before the Lord this morning) that one of the gifts He has given to me is encouragement. Hence this blog, my need to comment on silly little things to even strange people, and my need to please any/everyone. But last night, as I vented to Mom on the phone (Thank you, Mom), I was a little at my wit's end. Okay, okay, a lot at my wit's end. Then I read my devo of the day, and the Lord had something for me. He spoke to me through this devo. These are the words I read:
"What if your own heart is discouraged? What if people in your home or at work aren't being encouraging to you, and your "emotional tank" is empty? In times like these, look to the Lord, for He is your greatest Encourager. God's word, his love letter to you, is full of encouraging truth and precious promises that will infuse you with courage and hope: that He loves you with an everlasting, unconditional love and that He chose you before you even existed (Eph. 1:11 "Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for He chose us in advance, and He makes everything work out according to His plan."). He promises to be your strength, to help you, to uphold you, and to guide you continually (Isaiah 58:11 "The Lord will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well~watered garden, like an ever~flowing spring."). He will hide you in times of trouble (Psalm 27:5 "For He will conceal me there when troubles come; He will hide me in His sanctuary. He will place me out of reach on a high rock."), and His plan for you has always been filled with hope (Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you, " says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope."). When you pray, your Father hears you (Psalm 120:1 "I took my troubles to the LORD; I cried out to Him, and He answered my prayer.") and is attentive to your voice. When you call on Him in even the greatest distress, He will answer you and set you in a large place. He is for you, not against you, and He is on your side (Psalm 118:5&6 "In my distress I prayed to the LORD, and the LORD answered me and set me free. The LORD is for me, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?"). ***All of this one paragraph was taken from this book: "The One Year Women's Friendship Devotional" written by Cheri Heath Fuller & Sandra P. Alrich.***
Was that meant for me for today or what? Is it also meant for you? The Lord struck me with the thought that it doesn't matter if my emotional tank is empty, He is what fills me up. When I am low on the giving aspect of my relationships, if I look to Him, He will refill me with what I need so I can start all over. He is Rock. He is my Strength. He is my Refuge. No one else. Just Him. It's all about HIM.
So come on day, bring whatever you may. I am ready, and my tank is full. What do you need from me today? Can I pray for you? Can I do something for you? Do you just need to read these words and know that there is ONE who loves you regardless? Breathe in these words of life~these words from the Living, Breathing Word of God. I am here for you today and praying for everyone who reads this.
Isaiah 40:3~8 "Listen! It's the voice of someone shouting, "Clear the way through the wilderness for the LORD! Make a straight highway through the wasteland for our God! 4 Fill in the valleys, and level the mountains and hill. Straighten the curves, and smooth out the rough places. 5 Then the glory of the LORD will be revealed, and all people will see it together. The LORD has spoken!" 6 A voice said, "Shout! I asked, "What should I shout?" "Shout that people are like the grass. Their beauty fades as quickly as the flowers in a field. 7 The grass withers and the flowers fade beneath the breath of the LORD. And so it is with people. 8 The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of the LORD stands forever."
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