Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Blessings

"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV

Some people, okay most people, hate Mondays. Crazy as it sounds, I love Mondays! I love the fresh start, and I'm thankful for the opportunity to try once again to get it right. (To get something right. Anything right!) I especially love rainy Mondays. Call me Coo-coo. 

On this Monday, however, I feel like the rest of you. The work of the week lies before me, shrouded with stress like a mist over shark infested waters. (Yeah, well....) My stomach knots at the thought of everything I have to do. Sure, most of it is the usual: housework and homeschool. But I'm weighed down with a renewed realization of the responsibility that rests on my shoulders. I'm worn out just thinking of some of the life changes that lie ahead for our family, maybe not this week, but in the not-too-distant future. I'm overwhelmed by it all until even the little things, the small, mundane tasks, seem...simply undo-able

I'm trying to teach myself that when I feel this way, it's better to count my blessings and list some of them; to refocus my attention on the good stuff so that the bad stuff doesn't seem quite so scary. 

Yeah, I know that it sounds cliched, but it's one of those things that I've always thought sounded like a good idea but never put into practice. At least, not consistently. I think that needs to change, so my blog will be one of the places where I list some my blessings on Mondays so that the beginning of my week is a little brighter. 

Here are some of my blessings today:

1. Sunlight shining through my kitchen window onto flowers given to me by my husband.
2. Banana Foster coffee to start my day out right. 
3. Snuggles with my baby girl, who would stay in my arms all day if she could...and I love that.
4. That adorable, teeny dog whose cuteness always brings a smile to my face.
5. A daughter who is far more motivated than I, who is up before anyone else, attacking her schoolwork with a vengeance. (Where did this child come from!?)
6. My little boy's tousled head, undoubtedly filled with ideas of mischief. 
7. A beautiful, teenage girl who hugged me tightly before heading out the door to the Orthodontist with her daddy. 
8. The knowledge that I belong to the One Who already knows the answers to the questions swirling around in my brain. 

You're welcome to join me in making a list of your blessings. It might make your Monday feel better, too. :)

Monday, March 17, 2014

He Meets Us in Our Weakness

Photo copyright Moyan_Brenn 
Something I read in my study Bible today really struck me. I was reading about Jesus' appearance to his disciples after his resurrection and about how Thomas insisted on proof that Jesus was actually resurrected. In the commentary* it said, "Jesus lovingly met Thomas at the point of his weakness." I have heard Thomas berated over and over for his lack of faith. He is known as "Doubting Thomas". Preachers like to pick on him. 

But Jesus didn't berate him. He chided Thomas gently for his lack of faith, but He was gracious...understanding...and He met Thomas at the point of his weakness. He helped him in his unbelief, He didn't cast him aside.  Jesus was never harsh to those who had doubts. 

I don't know about you, but I definitely relate to Thomas, and it's comforting to me to know that Jesus, though He is displeased with my doubts, does not give up on me because of them. This is true in other areas as well: He meets us at the point of our weaknesses, whatever they are.

What is an area of weakness for you? Jesus wants to meet you there!

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  
Hebrews 4:15-16, ESV 

*Quote from the MacArthur Study Bible, ESV, commentary notes for John 20:24-26