“Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits,”
Last winter I lived my first Midwest winter. I’ve always been cold-natured, so I was quite terrified how I’d fare. I did decent until winter seemed a bit too cozy to make its exit plan. Fall has always been a favorite season of mine, but I’ve found myself dreading it because I know the looming winter in the draft of fall’s race.
Steve offered me a perspective shift. I’m convinced we all need people in our lives who will alter our perspective. He reminded me how I moaned and groaned at the end of Southern summers. I itched to put out pumpkins, prepare soups in the crockpot, and lounge in my hoodie. Yet, it would be 90 degrees sometimes all the way until October. There were Thanksgivings we wore shorts. And I complained.
We move to the Midwest. Basically winter here is like summer in the south as far as the length of the season. Same problems.
I’m in a new season of life. Maybe you are too. Some seasons of life feel like they hang unwelcome far too long. Until they pass. Then we look over our shoulder and long to go back.
I find I reflect back on prior seasons with a sense of romanticism. Wanting to go back to a time when….Believing times were better when….If only I could…..
When my soul is crowded, there is a sense of discontentment. A longing unfilled because there’s too much clutter and noise.
I looked back at old journals, a habit I have. I found writings from previous August and Septembers. I had the same struggles then. Little time to write, shallow feeling quiet times, a longing for more quiet in my life, a need for more structure yet finding the new rhythms hard to adjust to. When I think back on past fall seasons, I don’t remember them the way I recorded them.
I remember differently than life actually happened at times.
Why am I remembering seasons not the way they actually happened? Why am I thinking I have it harder now and believing I should go back to a time when life served me better?
The Lord brought a passage of scripture to mind.
I stopped walking. I stood frozen. My heart gasped. I am an Israelite.
“If only the LORD had killed us back in Egypt,” they moaned. “There we sat around pots filled with meat and ate all the bread we wanted. But now you have brought us into this wilderness to starve us all to death.” Exodus 16:3
How quickly they forgot what their previous life was actually like. How quickly they forgot the misery, hardship, and the goodness of the God who saved them by His mighty hand.
I’m no different.
I have seen the hand of God, the work of His miracles. I’ve watched Him care for me, deliver me, love me radically. And yet the moment I don’t feel the way I want to feel, I incline my ear to the whispers of the enemy.
The enemy throws hard his taunting darts at my head.
You need to make a change.
You’ve missed your opportunity.
You aren’t important.
You can’t keep doing what you are doing.
Look at everyone else. They are doing it right.
The enemy is full of lies, doubt, fear, worry, anxiety. There is NO truth in him. Not an ounce. He’s a lie from beginning to end.
God is total truth. God is steady.
My Lord and my God. He is all I need. He has given me all I need.
I find the moment I’m too comfortable the Lord moves me into a new assignment. One that requires I lean more into Him than me. That is where I am right now. Again.
How about you? Do you find you long to sit in the place you feel most comfortable?
Lord, we confess we forget your goodness. We forget the work of your mighty hand. We forget who you are. May we remember. Lord, help us forget not your benefits. You are radically, wildly in love with us simply because you are love. You give based on who you are not what we do. Lord, we love you. Grow us in our faith. Make our minds steady and strong.
|In case you didn’t know, I’ve written and recorded a devotion on releasing our fears and anxieties by learning to see God for who He is. It’s called Illuminate. Download your copy today for only $5. I truly believe it will bless your soul. The Lord has used it repeatedly in my life since writing it. I go back and listen and find He speaks fresh all over again.
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