I Will Wednesday 10/30/19

I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.  Psalm 4:8

Many nights, I have tossed and turned with my mind on the things that disturbed my rest. My physical body was indeed tired, but my heart and mind were far from experiencing the sleep that I needed. Indeed, my very spirit was disquieted and sleep was elusive.

King David knew this well. As he feared for his very life, he understood the angsts of trouble and the hardships. But, more importantly, he knew how trusting God in the midst of those troubles brought him peace. Peace replaced stress, dread and worry. And not just any kind of peace, but supernatural peace that comes only from the God of peace.

Paul also understood this when he admonished us to resist anxiety. He tells us instead to pray, and give thanks and then we would experience God’s peace in such a way that transcends human understanding. It’s this peace, God’s peace, that stands guard over our hearts and minds. Philippians 4:6-7

No matter your situation, you can experience the supernatural peace of God. When your head hits the pillow, you can declare, l WILL both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

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I WILL Wednesday 10/23/19

Happy I Will Wednesday!

For this ‘I Will Wednesday’, we will actually be focusing on an ‘I Will Not’. Found in Psalm 3:5-6, King
David makes a declaration. He says I WILL not fear . . .
During this time in David’s life, he was running from his own son, Absalom, who had started a rebellion against him. He was forsaken by many who claimed to be his friend. His own people began to defect and join Absalom’s ranks. Trouble on every side, so much so that on-lookers felt like even God would not help him (Psalm 3:2).

In spite of it all, David did not allow the storms in his life to shake his faith. With resolve, he affirms that God is his shield, glory and the lifter of his head  (Psalm 3:3).    In the middle of his storm, when he should’ve been greatly troubled, David slept well because he knew that he was kept by the Lord  (Psalm 3:5). 

Today, all may not be as you think it should be. Troubling thoughts may attempt to derail you. You may feel that the storm you are in is overwhelming or even devastating. Even if family and friends have betrayed you, make this your declaration, I WILL not fear! We can endure our present circumstances with eyes fixed on our future hope. Then, when fear tries to creep in, be comforted by this truth; Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me (Psalm 23:4).

I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
I will not fear though tens of thousands assail me on every side. Psalm 3:5-6  

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I Will . . .

A29BE5BF-6B9C-4212-80AB-2B9AD6BEA6C3I will. . .
This is the answer I received from this sweet little precocious girl who dropped by my classroom one morning. This little girl, so full of life, has been through so much at her young age, but these things have not defined her. Through all that has happened, she has continued to be ever-spirited and bubbly. And her bubbly nature is abundantly infectious. She had brightened my day multiple times when I was her teacher and now, as she walks her little brother to class, she is still like a ray of sunshine.

One particularly difficult morning, Sunshine came bouncing into my room. She greeted me with a smile and hug. We chatted for a minute before she said,“I gotta go.” I said, “Ok, sweet pea. Have a good day.” Now, the typically response would be “ok” or “thank you.” On those tougher days, you may even hear, “I’ll try” or even, a dismissive “hmmp.” But not this sweet one. She bounced out of my room after saying two simple words that flipped my mood, and started the wheels of my mind turning. She said, “I will.”

First, I began to think about how I respond when I’m told to “have a good day”. Do I just see it as a well wish that is largely dependent on the happenings of the day? Or do I realize that I can change the trajectory of my day with the words I speak? Next, I began to think about those I tell “have a good day.” Is it just something to say? Or am I consciously speaking over that person’s day?

Then I began to think about the Word of God. How many ‘I wills” are found there? Am I actively declaring these in my life? Psalms includes many.

Some notable ones are:

I will praise the LORD according to His righteousness,
And will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High. Psalm 7:17

I will love You, O LORD, my strength. Psalm 18:1b

I will bless the LORD at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:1

Whenever I am afraid,
I will trust in You. Psalm 56:3

Come and hear, all you who fear God,
And I will declare what He has done for my soul.  Psalm 66:16

You are my God, and I will praise You;
You are my God, I will exalt You. Psalm 118:28

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help? Psalm 121:1

What if I made the “I Wills” in scripture a part of my daily confession? What can I discover as I focus on changing my words and therefore changing my mindset? Like my darling little friend, I will challenge myself to take ownership over my days, my years, my life. I will submit to God’s sovereignty and to His divine authority. I will invite transformation through the Word of God by confessing the Word daily (because the Word Works). I will shape my day with Words of life so the next time I’m told to have good day, I can say with confidence, “I will!”

(Over the next few weeks, we will be exploring the I Wills found in scripture, in particularly in the Psalms. Join us on the Sparrows Song Facebook group each Wednesday for “I Will Wednesdays” to discover more truths from God’s Word.)

 

No Words Necessary

96653AF5-CF3C-43A3-9686-2B3FA4A6768BOne of my favorite lines in a song is “though she spoke no words, everything she said was heard, as she poured her love on the Master, from her box of alabaster.” This beautiful song, by artist CeCe Winans, depicts the story of the woman with the alabaster box who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. This beautiful account is found in Luke 7:36-50.

When the woman began to wash Jesus’ feet, the Pharisees who invited Him to his home began to question, within himself, whether Jesus was truly a prophet. These unspoken words were addressed by our Savior. Jesus, through a parable, explained the gratitude and love shown by this woman.

This woman said nothing, but there were shouts of praise. She uttered no words, but thankfulness flowed from her heart. Maybe she didn’t know what to say, or maybe the words just wouldn’t come out right. Either way, no words were needed! Our beautiful Savior heard the cries of her heart. This reminds me of a beautiful scripture found in Psalm 56:8. It says, “You number my wanderings;
Put my tears into Your bottle; Are they not in Your book?”
(NKJV).

God is not unaware of the struggles we face. Every tear that falls is accounted for. More beautiful than that is an ancient custom that when friends visited a person who was suffering, that friend would collect the tears of the sufferer in a tiny bottle as a memory of the event. God, our faithful friend, visits us during our suffering. He doesn’t leave us all alone. Yes, He is there all the time, but when we are hurt, in distress, and in pain we become more acutely aware of His nearness. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18

Our loving Father sees our tears and hears the silent prayers that we pray. He truly knows the whole content of our hearts. He visits us in our suffering and comforts us with His precious presence.

Every prayer will not be only tears, we need to employ strategic warfare through praying God’s Word, praying in the Spirit, and supplicating before Him. But there will be times when we don’t know what to say, or the words escape us, or they just won’t come out. In these times, posture your heart in prayer, fall down at the feet of Jesus, and cry out to Him.