Just Believe

June 01, 2024  •  Leave a Comment

“Give and it will be given to you. A good measure pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured to you.” (Luke 6:38)

 

I can see my dad holding up our bright orange dog food scoop in the middle of a sermon illustration. At that point in life, he had been my preacher since the day I was born. I honestly can’t remember too many sermons from childhood, but that one stuck. I can’t even remember what he started with. I know there was a progression. Maybe a spoon, then a ladle, and there may have even been more than a dog food scoop (we had a very large German Shepherd), but that bright orange scoop sticks out in my mind: “whatever measure you choose to use, the same will be used on you.”

 

Fast forward 30ish years. The scriptures taught in childhood have been tested, tainted, and questioned. While I know in my heart they haven’t failed (or even been tainted), because of the harsh realities life brings, sometimes my heart struggles to believe the simplicity of the words. It is a battle to remain steadfast. A long war (2 Sam 3:1). There is a very real enemy that thrives off of stealing, killing, and destroying the life the Lord longs to bring (John 10:10). An enemy that whispers doubts, fears, and lies. An enemy that twists His words (Gen 3:1).  An enemy that steals our hope in them. His words are life (John 1:1-4). His words are our guide in this life (John 16:13). They don’t return void (Isa 55:11). The same Jesus who whispers in Mark 5:36 “don’t be afraid…just believe” whispers those same words to you and I as well…”don’t be afraid, just believe”. There is so much encouragement found in His words. Read His words. Hang onto His words with everything you have. And when you can’t hang on anymore, trust that He still holds onto you. When you surrender to Him, nothing can separate you from His love (Rom 8:39).

 

A few weeks ago, friends text me about the northern lights in Alabama. I was skeptical. It had been predicted before. I didn’t give it much thought. The week had been a rough one. The tragic loss of a neighbor in a car accident, a couple of patients at work who were struggling, and some health issues in my own family exhausted my soul and hit my heart hard. I heard John Eldredge say in a podcast today actually, “joy is always opposed.” My heart ached in the losses and the unknowns. I was so thankful the weekend was finally here. My heart was also expectant and hopeful. I knew the weekend would soon bring a sunrise, breakfast, the beauty of a lake, nature, and the refreshment of companionship. Companionship...something I've continually brought before the Lord. Something others have brought before the Lord on my behalf. The battle of alone and loneliness is something I've fought since before my divorce. An early morning meet up with this wonderful man was the only chance that week we could find to see each other. The possibility of northern lights the night before really wasn't a major thought in my mind until I walked out of my front door onto my doorstep about 9p to take out the trash. I was met by the most beautiful glow of purple above the houses across the street. The purple oscillated between green and pink. The sky danced. I yelled at the kids to come outside and we watched mesmerized. How incredible is our God?!?! It’s so easy to “just believe” in those moments standing in the presence of His beauty. 

 

The lights lasted about an hour. There was prediction for more in the early morning hours. I texted my friend. We agreed to meet earlier that morning. We waited and saw nothing. I was about to pack up my gear but first decided to take a camera photo. The camera revealed the purple glow. As we watched, the sky again began to change. The incredible beauty of it all…the northern lights, something he and I both have on our bucket lists, were visible here in Alabama!!!!! Thanks to auto timer I captured the photo below. My heart melted. It still brings tears. My hands in his, surrounded by beauty, and a shooting star darted across the sky (upper right). But what caught my attention the most…the Big Dipper to the left above us. My mind…brought back to those childhood years sitting in a church pew and hearing scripture. That big orange scoop. I most definitely have NOT always used a large measure of love, joy, peace, justice, mercy, forgiveness, etc. What even was this lesson coming back into the front of my mind? I knew there were so many instances where I haven’t done my part. But the continual image of the Lord pouring out incredible blessings using so much more than an orange scoop wouldn’t leave my mind…

 

I can’t hide my heart. My prayers. My faith in Him. The whispers of Him “don’t be afraid…just believe”. As this friend and I navigate the newness of a dating relationship together there are pieces of our hearts that have been given new life. Do we know the outcome?? Not totally. But we both rely on the Lord to be our guide through His Spirit. We both trust Him. Surrender and mountains of prayer is what brought us here. Surrender and mountains of prayer is what we will continue to do. We will continue to praise Him giving thanks for His steadfast love knowing we don’t deserve it but also knowing we are His kids. This song by Benjamin Hastings is a favorite. Take time to listen. Choose to believe. Continue to remind yourself you are His and He loves you so very much. He’ll “never leave” you “abandoned.” 

 

 

 

 


Comments

No comments posted.
Loading...

Archive
January February March April May (1) June (3) July (2) August September (1) October November December
January February March (1) April (8) May (2) June (7) July (3) August September October November (2) December
January February March April May (1) June July August September October November December (1)
January (2) February March (1) April (1) May (5) June (3) July August September October November December
January February March April May June (2) July (3) August (5) September October November December
January (6) February (3) March (1) April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December (4)
January (2) February (2) March (1) April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July August September October November December
January February March April May June July (4) August September October (2) November December (1)
January February March (2) April May (1) June July (1) August September October (1) November (2) December (1)
January February March April (1) May June (1) July August September October November December