As this day dawned, I found myself wanting a little more sleep! Friday, our church finally closed on the sale of our former school property which was a very emotional experience; a sorrowful ending and a foundation for new things to come. Saturday, I enjoyed celebrating a wedding for a positively joy-filled couple! Sunday was a full day including worship service, preaching, and leading a funeral. So, as the sun announced a new day, I did not jump up.
Which more describes you today – “Oh, Lord, it’s morning.” said with a groan, or; “Good morning, Lord!” spoken with expectation? Whatever your circumstances today, you are blessed with the ability to choose your response to those circumstances. Faith, a foundation that rests on the unchanging love of God, allows us to enter our day with a positive attitude. Yes, you can. Will you accept the day and the gifts of God for it, or will you complain and live miserably?
A persistent illusion invites us to think that those who are most joyful are those who we might call ‘lucky,’ who enjoy good fortune. I do not believe in luck. I serve a purposeful God and everything that enters my life, whether as a result of my choices, the choices of others, or because of reasons beyond my comprehension, passes through His hands. Not everything that happens to me is His direct will because of sin in this world, but nothing is outside of His awareness, and so I pray for the faith needed to let Him lead, to wisely choose for the future, and to trust Him even on the darkest days.
Deep faith allows us to find contentment. Reverence for the Almighty God dethrones the ego. In submission that results there is serenity. The wisdom of the Word leads me. “The fear of the LORD leads to life: then one rests content, untouched by trouble.” (Proverbs 19:23, NIV) Paul, who knew all manner of hardships, said that he had “learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” (Philippians 4:11-12, NIV) He repeats it twice, impressing the importance of this choice.
Contentment is neither passivity nor apathy. It is a choice to REST in God, to receive each day (even Monday!) from Him, confessing that He has every resource for us that we need to meet the day’s challenges. It is found in faith. “O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my every thought when far away. You chart the path ahead of me and tell me where to stop and rest. Every moment you know where I am. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord. You both precede and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to know!” (Psalm 139:1-6, NLT)
However you started this new week, I encourage you to pause and recommit yourself, your life, your job, your family, your LIFE to Him. Here is a word from the Word – a promise for Monday morning. “So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? … I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.” (Romans 8:38-39, The Message)
(He is there in the mysteries.)
You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep my faith will stand
And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine
Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sov’reign hand will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You’ve never failed and You won’t start now
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Saviour
I will call upon Your name
Keep my eyes above the waves
My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine
Joel Houston | Matt Crocker | Salomon Ligthelm © 2012 Hillsong Music Publishing (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing) CCLI License # 810055