Saturday, December 25, 2010

Snow! Snow! Snow!

Just wanted to share the beauty of this white Christmas! Little sad because we were not able to see all of our family, but so beautiful none the less. It makes me remember the wonder of Jesus being born into the world as a tiny, helpless baby. This baby once created the world...He was there at the very first snow. Snow is a result of the perfection of his creativity. And he humbled himself and was "pleased as man with men to dwell...Jesus, our Immanuel." What a miracle!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Wonder of Christmas

Christmas time is upon us! I can easily say that this is one of my most favorite times of the year. I love all the cozy decorations and lights. I love spending time with family and friends. I love all the fun Christmas movies to watch (I am a HUGE White Christmas fan). But, even if you took all these things away, what makes this time of year so special to me is that is points me to focus on my Savior. What a wonder this is! A tiny baby---completely God and completely man came into the world! Since the fall of Adam, God has been setting the stage, pointing all human kind to their desperate need of a Savior. No man has been able to save wholly and completely. No man has been able to save completely from the sin that eternally separates us from a Holy God. And then one unsuspecting night, Jesus is born. Immanuel, God with us! A savior has entered the World. It is not trumpeted to the world's important rules and leaders, but to poor shepherds in a field. He was not born in a palace with all worldly comforts but in a stable. He came not to live but to die and be raised again. No greater gift has ever been given. The gift of God's own son; the gift of Jesus, the Way to salvation.

This year, Christmas has taken on an entirely new meaning as I am now thinking what traditions I want to start with our daughter. I think back to my childhood. I remember every Christmas Eve, after visiting my grandparents, we would drive around and look at Christmas lights, go home and open up new Christmas pajamas to wear, and read the story of Jesus' birth. We would go to bed so anxious for the next morning. And when Christmas morning came, my mom always made a "Happy Birthday, Jesus" cake and we lit candles and sang Happy Birthday to Jesus. These are wonderful memories! I love them. And, I want my daughter to have these same kind of wonderful memories too. I want these memories to point her to Jesus. I want her excitement to be an anticipation for celebrating her Savior. I want to teach her that we have such a special time of year because, and only because, of Jesus. It has been so exciting for me as I have researched what traditions to start with Cara. There are so many wonderful ways to celebrate in a way that points to our Savior....Advent (Advent candles and calendars), and the Jesse Tree, and combinations of the two among many. I think by next year we will have some exciting new traditions to start with our little one. :)

But, until then, my heart is still striving to fight against the hustle and bustle of this time of year and celebrate my Savior. There is one song that has become a favorite of mine in recent years. It is a song written from Mary's prospective and reminds me of this longing fulfilled...a Savior has come to us. What joy fills my heart! Hallelujah, indeed! We have been found!

Hallelujah (Light Has Come) by Barlow Girls

Hmmmm my Baby. Heaven sent you to me. All the worlds been praying,... Who will save? But who am I? That here tonight. I hold the One. Who'll bring us life.

Hallelujah! We've been found. A Child is born to save us now.
Hallelujah! Light has come. A Savior who will set us free. A promise for those who believe.

Do you hear the angels? Sing for You my baby? Men and Kings have come to bow to you.
But here in my arms, so close to me. The son of God. Now all can see.

Hallelujah! We've been found. A Child is born to save us now, Jesus.
Hallelujah! Light has come. A Savior set us free.
So praise to God on high. He has heard our cry.
So praise to God on high. He has heard our cry.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Lately I have found that was becoming bogged down with mommy discouragement. We have one particular area in our little one's life that is not easy....eating! The girl would literally live off of cheerios if I would let her! But, knowing that it is not exacting healthy to only consume cheerios, I have been discouraged with the dinner time battle. But, I am thankful for so many wise moms out there who give advice from experience. I have received so much helpful advice. "No, you are right. It is not ok for her to do that." "Remember it is love to her to instruct her heart, even when it is not easy." Or simply, "I am not sure. I never had that problem with you. But I will be praying!" (that was my mom :) But, one friend's advice was particularly helpful. She said to be my daughter's encourager! To praise her for even the smallest thing she does to obey. After all, it is not the wrath of God that floods me with the desire to obey, but it is knowing his tender love and mercy toward me. That way, when we do discipline her to shepherd her little heart, it is also balanced with knowing we are for her and delight in her obedience (just as our Heavenly Father delights in ours.) So, with those simple words, my whole perspective changed. Now, for even one bite of green beans (which she does like, but may or may not eat from day to day), we do big cheers! Literally, I even got out some pom poms! Instead of thinking, "Lord she took a bite, get her to take another!" Now, I clap my hands, smile really big, and say, "Yay, Cara! You took at bite! See how Jesus helped you obey Mommy! Yay! Thank you, Jesus, for helping Cara listen and obey!" And, Cara loves it. Now, that doesn't mean she always wants to eat the food I give her. She will always choose pizza over a veggie. But, the change is so much more within me.

Lately, I have been meditating on Philippians 4:6-7. What a great reminder. I am not to be anxious. When a challenge arises in parenting I am not to be fretting, but I am to be praying and petitioning my God. And, not with anxious and worrying thoughts, but with thankfulness and trust. My God keeps his promises! If I lay my burdens down with thanksgiving and not anxiety, my heart will be flooded with peace. He promises that! And, I have found it to be true.
Below is an excerpt from C. H. Spurgeon (he is one of my favs!) May it encourage you as it has me.
"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:4-7

No care, but all prayer. No anxiety, but much joyful communion with God. Carry your desires to the Lord of your life, the guardian of your soul. Go to him with two portions of prayer, and one of fragrant praise. Do not pray doubtfully, but thankfully. Consider that you have your petitions, and therefore thank God for his grace, give him thanks. Hide nothing. Allow no want to lie rankling in your bosom; 'make known your requests.' Run not to man. Go only to your God, the Father of Jesus, who loves you in him.
This shall bring you God's own peace. You shall not be able to understand the peace you shall enjoy. It will enfold you in its infinite embrace. Heart and mind through Christ Jesus shall be steeped in a sea of rest. Come life or death, poverty, pain, slander, you shall dwell in Jesus above every ruffling wind or darkening cloud. Will you not obey his dear command"
Yes, Lord I do believe thee; but, I beseech thee, help mine unbelief."

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Tranquil Heart

"A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot." Proverbs 14: 30

Oh for a tranquil heart! How often my heart is not at peace but filled with unrest. Even this morning as I was having my quiet time, I was filled with worry over a particular matter. And the much needed time with the Savior was spent in battle over sin in my heart and not in drinking in the depths of his sufficiencies. These battles with sin I wage every day. And, thank Jesus, at the end of my quiet time my mind was peaceful and able to understand his truth. I understood that while my mind and heart were worrying away (really, I couldn't even remember what I was reading in the Word), I should have been bowing my heart in prayer before my Lord as I agreed with His good word and claimed his promises. In this there is much rest and peace. There is tranquility.
But, the one who wrote this proverb had something else he was focusing on...the unrest caused by envy. To be honest, I have pridefully thought that I don't struggle with envy that much. Well, thank God he showed me how wrong I was! How often do I envy someone else's circumstances, or hair style, or clothing? How much do I hold myself up to someone else and feel I do not measure up when I should be looking to the unmerited grace God gives me and have a heart of contentment? He knows my needs perfectly and has tailored my life and circumstances to refine me into the image of His Son. I should not expect my life to look exactly like someone else's. God has a specific plan for my life that will bring Him much glory and me much joy. Why should I waste time wanting anything that is different?
So, Father, grant us hearts of tranquility. May we trust that You are wise and good and sufficient for our every need. May we take our thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ today and be faithful in prayer. Grant to us the grace to "fret not ourselves for it tends only to evil" (Psalm 37:8). May our lives bring glory to your name, and may we find our greatest joy and peace in you.

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Role of a Homemaker

I feel like most of my posts begin with what I have been reading recently...but here it is again. :) Lately, I have been reading Feminine Appeal by Carolyn Mahaney. The book goes through Titus 2:3-5 and describes what it means to be a godly woman according to God's word. Here is the scripture:
"Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled."
Titus 2:3-5

I could go on for a while of all the things I have learned and been convicted of recently by this book and scripture. In these two verses, Paul addresses loving your husbands and kids, being self-controlled, being kind, being submissive... But, I want to think awhile on working at home...being a homemaker. As we look at the Proverbs 31 women we see her doing many things from managing her household to making good business deals. But, her primary role was caring for her family...she was a homemaker. That has such negative connotations in our society. Outside of my close network of friends, I feel like I have to apologize or give a reason for my staying home. Most women will see me as lazy or backward. I can just imagine what they are thinking..."Oh, if we were all so lucky to just stay at home and not to have to work." Or, "You need to do something better, more meaningful with your life." Everywhere we go, everywhere we look, society portrays the idea that it is second rate to "just be a homemaker." Many women feel like husband and wife should share the responsibility of managing the home equally (and yes, there are certain circumstances where this must be the case, but not on a whole.). I confess that I have battled with my own thoughts of feeling that what I do isn't good enough, and I even had a godly role model in a mother who enjoyed staying home and caring for her family. So, that is why reading this book has been so encouraging. It has served to remind me that this is not just some idea my husband and I had. It is even more than just something I want to do (and I have wanted to do this my whole life---probably from watching my mom). But it is something I am commanded to do. (Now, please let me put in a side note: I know there are women who have no choice but to work outside the home. I am in no way condemning those in that situation. God has ordained our circumstances, and I believe he gives such grace to those women to have a job and care for their homes well.)

My faithful Father has been opening my eyes to see the beauty and worth of being a homemaker. God has created distinct roles for men and women. This does not mean one role is better than another. We are meant to compliment each other...women are meant to be man's helper. There are women who will see this as demeaning towards all woman-kind. But, there is peace and rest in fulfilling the role God has created for us. And, being a homemaker is such a worthy role; although, it is often unappreciated. When I was younger, I rarely thought of all the sacrifices my mom made on my behalf. But that is why God spoke of women being a homemaker in his Word. To remind us of the calling we have. You see, something I have come to realize is that being a homemaker is so much more than just doing mundane tasks everyday to care for our families. It is making our home a haven for our families. It is a place where we can cultivate the environment to reflect the God we serve. It should be a place where powerful ministry takes place. For the truth of the matter is, sharing hospitality, the daily responsibility of teaching our children to love Jesus, listening to a hurting friend, or befriending a lost neighbor to share the gospel is powerful ministry when done in the name of Jesus Christ.

Another very freeing realization is that my homemaking is not tailored to fit my own needs or accomplish my goals of what would make me a great wife and mother. As Carolyn Mahaney says in her book (p. 110), "our main objective as homemakers is to be oriented to our husbands." Well, this clears up things quite nicely! And, it also has solved many of my problems! You see, so often I find myself comparing my abilities or what I do to others. I see women with these amazing talents that I don't have and feel like I don't measure up. But, God does not require me to look at other women to see what I need to be doing as a homemaker, although we can certainly learn and benefit from each other. No, I am first to look to God's word, and then to my husband. For example, I really wish I were great at working in the yard. I wish I had wonderful abilities to plant flowers and make then flourish. But, I simply don't. On top of that, I have TERRIBLE allergies. So pretty much anytime I even go outside I feel terrible after about 20 minutes. Thus said, my husband has no desire for me to work in the yard. He would rather me stay indoors and feel well rather than have pretty flowers and feel bad. I would not be serving my husband in any way if I decided to do yard work. I sat down the other night and just asked my husband what was important to him, and I learned that my expectations were much higher than his. He appreciates a clean house, clean clothes, cooked meals, and all I do for our daughter. But, all the detailed cleaning and organizing that I would love to do are not important to him. He would rather I order my day so that we can spend quality time together in the evenings---not be so busy or exhausted from accomplishing my to-do list that we have no quality time together. Also, as I look at the wonderful giftings of other women, I can appreciate them, but not feel like I have to be just like them. I can rest in the fact that God has gifted me as he saw fit to meet the needs of my own family.

As I have been pondering and applying all these things, I have found so much joy! As I am fulfilling my role of wife and mom, I am doing these things so "the word of God may not be reviled." (vs. 5) That is so powerful! I have seen a huge difference in many homes where the mother is joyfully loving her home and family. No home is perfect, but there is peace and a genuine enjoyment of one another. The family desires to be with one another. These things should separate us from the world. The world should see our home, and it should reflect the love of Jesus. Thus, we are obeying and fulfilling the word of God. Not reviling it. And, God gets so much glory. So, from the way I see it, being a homemaker is a high calling and an honor. May I, each day, seek to serve my family well in the way I manage our home so that the love of Jesus may be shown, and our God may be praised!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Discouragement and a Sufficient Savior

Recently I have been struggling with discouragement. Yesterday I finally took time to examine why I was feeling this way...basically why I felt like things just weren't going so well. Well, I am so thankful that I have a faithful Heavenly Father who doesn't just leave us in our sin, but reveals it to us and then gives us the strength to fight against it. Oddly enough, my "Aha" moment of what was causing all my struggles came from hearing the sweet encouragement of a friend. This dear friend has moved away, but left me a message on my voice mail that spoke such encouraging words. I was rushing around trying to get our house ready for our community group meeting and just stopped and listened to her words. They were like a healing balm to my hurting heart, and God used them to point me to my sin. My friend was not praising all the things I had done. She was encouraging me with the things she had seen God do through me. And, that is when it hit me. I have been striving to be very self-sufficient lately. I have been trying to love my husband, care for my daughter, serve others, take care or our home, and all the many other things in my own strength. That is why I was so discouraged. Because when things didn't go so well, I would feel as if I was in this dark pit...I would feel like I needed to do better. When I just didn't have the right words to encourage someone, or I didn't love my husband well, I would feel like a failure. And, really, I was. I was trying to do so many things on my own, and that is prideful sin. I will not always be perfect, no one except Jesus will ever be on this earth. So, that is why I must run to perfection. He will give me everything I need for life and godliness. And, his shed blood is enough for my sin. He alone can enable me to love my husband, my daughter, and others in my life well.
I was reading Psalm 40 today and verses 1-5 were very encouraging to me. Perhaps they will be to you as well.

"I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord. Blessed is the man who makes the LORD his trust, who does not turn to the proud, to those who go astray after a lie! You have multiplied, O LORD my God, your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you! I will proclaim and tell of them, yet they are more than can be told.

Just look at all the things HE does! Not me! He heard my cry, drew me out of the pit, set my feet on a rock, and makes my steps secure. He put a new song of praise in my mouth. And He blesses those who trust in him. His wonderful works are too numerous to mention them all!

May we wait patiently on the Lord for he alone will make our steps secure. May we ever be praising our Lord so others will fear and trust in his name. May we make the Lord our trust and not turn to man (or ourselves). And, may we ever be recounting the wondrous deeds of our God...they are too many to recount them all. For, "your steadfast love and your faithfulness will ever preserve" us! (Psalm 40:11)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Misplaced Fears

If you asked me what my greatest fears are, I would have two answers for you. One is that I fear losing my loved ones. The other is that I fear excruciating pain in dying. To think about losing my daughter or husband (as well as other family members) is almost unbearable to me. I wonder how I would survive. When I think about some of the ways people have died, I beg God to spare me. And, this leads me to the book that my church is currently reading, Radical , by David Platt. I have only read the first three chapters, but already this book has served to bring these fears to the fore front of my mind. In this book, Platt speaks of Christians in other nations who daily risk losing their homes, jobs, families, and lives for the sake of the gospel.

So often when I read of those in other countries who are losing their families or their lives for the cause of Christ I ask myself would I be willing. And, then the fears crowd in. I am left just pleading that if I am ever faced with one of these things that God would give me the grace at that time. But, as I was reading in chapter 2 of this book, I came across something very encouraging. David Platt is speaking of Jesus as he is praying in the garden before he is to be arrested. Jesus is pleading for God to "take this cup from him" if it be possible. He is so burdened that he is sweating blood. Now, I have always assumed that Jesus is fearing the pain of what is going to happen. That is what I would be fearing! But, Platt sees it very differently. Jesus, knows the full weight of what is about to take place. And, he sees crystal clearly that the physical pain he is about to endure is of no comparison to the wrath of God that is about to be poured out upon him. All the wrath of God that has been built up since the very first sin and all the wrath for all the sins yet to be committed are about to be poured out on Jesus. So often I just see the side of God as my loving Heavenly Father that I also forget that he is a wrathful Judge. He cannot tolerate my sin. And, the only reason that I am able to know Him as loving Heavenly Father is because Jesus took on the punishment that was meant to be mine. As torturous as Jesus' death truly was, that was not the most excruciating thing for him. It was taking on my punishment. Nothing I will experience on this earth will ever compare to the wrath of God that was reserved for me. O what a wonderful, glorious Savior I have! Does he not deserve my full affections, my full devotion? And, here is the real clincher...when he he took on the punishment for my sins, he saved me from an eternity of being separated from God.

As I look at all the things I love in my life (my husband, my daughter, my friends and family), they would not be wonderful to me if not for Christ. I have a loving relationship with my husband because Jesus is the center of our marriage. We cling to the Word and the power of Jesus so that we, two sinful beings, can love each other well. My relationships with my family are so much sweeter because we share the common bond of Christ. I am hopeful as I experience hard days as a mommy because I can trust in the One who has all my days ordered and gives me everything I need for life and godliness. Jesus just makes my life sweeter. When I look accurately at the gospel, I see that this life on earth is nothing to be treasured. All the things that truly bring my heart joy are joyful because of Jesus. And, when I now think of having to sacrifice my life or see my loved one's lives sacrificed for the cause of Christ, I see, by the grace of God, that it is truly nothing to fear. If I were to deny my Lord here on this earth, I would be escaping momentary pain and affliction. But, through Jesus, I have escaped an eternity of pain and suffering. So, my fears were so misplaced. I should not fear afflictions or suffering here on earth. This is a sinful fear resulting from not trusting my Lord and loving things of this world. My fear should be the fear of God. I should be overwhelmed with the Greatness of the God I serve and know that he should hold all my affections and devotion. When I am fearing the one who lovingly holds my life in his strong hands, I really have nothing to fear at all.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Sweetness of Affliction

Today I was reading in Psalm 25. I am always a little amazed and challenged when I read the psalms were David is experiencing heavy trials. Today the psalmist used words like "lonely and afflicted" (vs. 16), and "the troubles of my heart are enlarged" (vs. 17). And when he speaks of his foes he says "with violent hatred they hate me" (vs. 19). Pretty strong words. It is very clear that David was going through serious trials. Yet in the very same psalm David says, "Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame, they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous" (vs. 3). He says that the Lord leads the humble (vs. 9), and he asks to know the Lord's ways (vs. 4). He even starts the psalm off with praise! "To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust" (vs. 1,2).
I know from my own experience that praise is not naturally the first thing out of my mouth when I walk through difficulties (this is done through the strength of the Holy Spirit). But here, David is praising God before he even speaks of his difficulty. How can this be? Well, to me it seems like David knew who is Savior was. And not just knew like in the far off sense of so many today, but he KNEW his God intimately. And, then I asked did David know God intimately? One of the major ways was through his trials. Ironic, right? He had experienced God's strong hand of provision and salvation before, so he had no reason to doubt it now. David knew his savior was strong because God had proved himself through the trails he had allowed David to go through. I am sure that David would not have known many of the characteristics of God had he not gone through those times of difficulty. Is it not the same in our lives? How often have I been angry when I have gone though times of hardships, asking how God can allow this to happen? But, is it not the loving design of a wise Heavenly Father? He knows that he is the answer to all my soul's longings, and he knows the best means to teach me so. I would never know that God is powerful, sustaining, loving, forgiving, if He had not proved it to me. And for us who are bent towards sin, often it takes affliction to teach us these things. So, may I in my next state of affliction turn a heart of trusting hope in my God. Knowing that He is wise and knows what is for my good. And he will see me through to the end. Below is an excerpt from C. H. Spurgeon's Cheque Book of the Bank of Faith (p. 241). He sums up the sweetness of affliction so well.
'I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction' (Isaiah 48:10)
This has long been the motto fixed before our eyes upon the wall of our bed-chamber, and in many ways it has also been written on our heart. It is no mean thing to be chosen of God. God's choice makes chosen men choice men. Better to be the elect of God than the elect of a whole nation. So eminent is this privilege, that whatever drawback may be joined to it we joyfully accept it, even as the Jew ate the bitter herbs for the sake of the Paschal Lamb. We choose the furnace, since God chooses us in it.
We are chosen as an afflicted people, and not as a prosperous people, chosen not in the palace, but in the furnace. In the furnace beauty is marred, fashion is destroyed, strength is melted, glory is consumed, and yet here eternal love reveals its secrets, and declares its choice. So has it been in our case. In times of severest trial God has made to us our calling and election plain, and we have made it sure: then we have chosen the Lord to be our God, and he has shown that we are assuredly his chosen. Therefore, if today the furnace be heated seven times hotter, we will not dread it, for the glorious Son of God will walk with us amid the glowing coals.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Word

For any fellow laborer who may be tired and weary. May we be reminded that the Word of God is everything that we need.

"The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter than honey and drippings from the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them is great reward."
Psalm 19:7-11

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Gospel

Recently I have been struck anew by the gospel. This has come about in several different ways. One has been the books I have been reading. I have just finished reading Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. I had read bits of this book before, but nothing has compared to reading it now as I am seeking to shepherd my own little one's heart. Ted Tripp does such an excellent job communicating the great need of the gospel to be central in raising our children. Another book I have been reading is Desiring God by John Piper. I have read parts before, but never accomplished reading the whole thing. Sometimes I feel like this finite brain of mine cannot take in all the truths set forth in this book. But, this time I feel like my heart is more ready to grasp the truth that God delights when I am infinitely satisfied in him--that He desires that I be completely happy in Him. And if I am going to be completely happy in my savior, I must know him better right? So this led me to start reading through the gospel of John. I am striving to know my God as I look at Jesus through new eyes. I have also been meditating on other scriptures as I am reading this gospel. Scriptures like Col. 1: 15-20, "He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities--all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might he preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood on the cross." Jesus is central to everything in the universe, and I have felt the desire to KNOW him.

So, as I have been looking more intently at the gospel I believe in, several things have really struck me. One is the power of the gospel. Ephesians 1:19-20 speaks of this power: "and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places". This is not a wimpy God that I serve. He had the power to raise his son from the dead, and what is more, that power he used to raise his son from the dead He works in me! I have seen this power in all Jesus does as I have been reading. He walks on the water in John 6. This is not just so his disciples would be amazed and scared silly. This was to display his sovereign power over all he created. HE IS GOD! This power is also shown in his first miracle of turning the water into wine. Not only does this show his power over creation but it shows that he has the power to provide for all our needs. If he can take a little boy's lunch and feed five thousand men (not counting all the women and children), I certainly feel he has the power to provide for all my needs.

I have also seen how Jesus is all-knowing. He knew what the Pharisees where thinking time and again as he boldly proclaimed the truth that He was the promised messiah. He knew what his disciples were thinking...their doubts, fears, and pride. He knew who were truly his followers and who would desert and betray him. He knows our minds and hearts completely. This is shown with the official who asked Jesus to heal his son. Jesus saw that God had granted this man faith and healed the man's son in an instant. The man received word of his son's healing on his journey home and knew the exact moment Jesus had spoken healing life back into his son's body.

Jesus was also single minded. Even after being weary from traveling, he put his physical needs aside to speak to the Samaritan woman at the well. He saw her sinful heart and knew her soul was ripe unto harvest. When his disciples urged him to eat, he answered that his food was to do the will of his father. The will of his Father was to seek and save the lost. Jesus would not be deterred, even to eat and drink. How thankful I am for this single-mindedness. For it was this single-mindedness that sought and saved me!

And, one of the most precious truths that I have been awed by is that Jesus is all satisfying. He says he is the bread of life and the living water. He knows and understand the deep longings of our souls. We may try to fill this longing with mindless, work, people, shopping, sports, etc. (I understand that these things are not bad in and of themselves. It is when they take the place of Jesus and consume our time, thoughts, energy, and affections that they become evil.) All these things will leave us hungry for more. We all seek to worship something. But Jesus knew that he was the only ONE that is ALL SATISFYING. He fills the longing in our souls with peace, joy, contentment. He is the TRUTH that is all satisfying.

So as I have been seeing more of my savior, my prayer is that I will become more like him. That I will be his imitator and be the sweet aroma of Christ. I pray that I will not walk in doubt and fear, or in weariness of soul, but that I will know and call upon His great power. May I rest in his sovereignty. He knows my past, present, and future. I have nothing to fear. May I be single minded in sharing this gospel for it is life to those who believe. May I be satisfied in Jesus alone. And, may this transform all that I do. May I point my husband and daughter to Jesus as I care for them daily. May I live a bold life before my neighbors so that the light of Jesus may pierce their darkened hearts. May I encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ to endure with joy this fight of faith. And, may I keep my gaze on my eternal reward....Jesus.