A man once said, "God is great in great things, but very great in little things." Many people think that God is interested only in big things, and will not want to be bothered with our small concerns. Actually, all we have to do is observe a father and his child, and we will learn otherwise - especially as we realize that a good man's "father-heart" is a reflection of our heavenly Father's heart.
All of us yearn to be accepted, to be loved. This is a core need, part of our deepest being.
It doesn't take very long, as we walk along our life journey from day one, before something happens that results in the opposite experience for us: rejection. And we are wounded. For some of us, the wounds are very, very deep. For all of us, not being accepted in one way or another distorts how we feel about ourselves. We get the message that we are not worth being accepted. And a shadow begins to fall over our life.
Inevitably we will all face impossible situations in our lives. Heavy matters will weigh upon us, and despite all our best efforts, solving our dilemmas will seem hopeless.
There is a story from days of old of an occurrence in the life of the prophet Elisha. He was accompanying friends, sons of the prophets, as they cut down trees for beams to build a dwelling place. As one of the men chopped, his axe head came loose and fell into the nearby water. He was especially dismayed because the axe head was borrowed. As a man of God, he felt that having borrowed something to do God's work , his losing it would put the name of His God at the risk of being dishonored. His "Alas!" came to Elisha's ears, and what did God do? He prompted His servant Elisha to toss a stick into the water just above where the axe head had sunk, and the account reads "the iron did swim" (II Kings 6:6). This God who can make iron rise to the surface of water and float is our God!
We know. We all know. We know the word "ought." We may not like it, and we may certainly come up with countless ways to try to avoid its implications, but it doesn't go away. It is inherent in the corporate consciousness of the human race. Inevitably, yet tragically, it is possible for any individual to override the sense in his deepest being of the way he should be. That's because our Creator did not choose to make us robots; rather, He deliberately chose to create us with free wills. We are free to choose: to either believe that His ways are best for us, or that we know better.
How could such a beautiful lady have been just left lying in the mud like that? Of course they had assumed she would remain on the little rise above that swampy area, but she had slid. And now, what a mess we were having to try to pull out of the muck! I had finally found again, after several years, the classic old beauty that I had once owned. We watched with both eagerness and some trepidation as the winch slowly turned and the suction of the damp ground resisted its pull. At last the old girl was near level ground at the top of the rise, her red and white stripes still bright between the streaks of grime. My lovely 1954 Ford sedan was almost to safety and the hope of restoration - when the chain broke!
There is a group of people on this earth who are the most disadvantaged of all people. It is not any of those who perhaps first come to our minds as "disadvantaged." It is the proud. The reason I make this statement is because if I am proud, then God is against me.
When a man knows his source, he can begin to be what he was intended to be. Jesus said, "Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father." (John 14:9) It is in seeing Jesus that we see our Maker, our source.
"From one day to the next," the man had told my husband's friend, "everything was changed." The man was from the Ukraine, and he shared from his own personal experience. "We went to sleep one night with everything fine. We had money in the bank, everything was normal. But, the next morning it was all gone." As I tried to sleep the night my husband mentioned this account to me, the words seemed etched onto my mind: "From one day to the next, from one day to the next..." Could it really have been so fast?
Although in winter we may look out upon the barrenness of the landscape, and hear outside the doleful sound of the wind stirring dead leaves on the ground, we need not be disheartened. We can resist borrowing the bleak lines in that outer world, allowing them to color our heart views, and instead guard in our hearts a sure sense of the presence of God. Knowing He is near, and that despite how things appear, that He is at work for our good, we can be glad. Although the cold and frost seem to hold the earth in an iron fist, Spring is on the way. The frozen streams and rivers soon will be broken free from their icy bonds, yielding to the irresistible power of Spring's warmth. In Spring, life pours itself through myriad channels, and year after marching year Life faithfully shows itself stronger than death.
When it seems that evil has triumphed over good, or when the joy of life has fled, take heart. Spring is the harbinger of hope. Just as during the cold, gripping days of winter we can listen deep within us for the sweet minstrel of the coming springtime, so also we can choose to cultivate in our pining spirits an illimitable hope. Reach out, dear friend, for a consciousness of the tender love flowing to you from God. As the Spring is victorious over Winter, so good shall prove to be victorious over evil, and joy over sorrow.
I have observed when I am considering twenty or thirty different desires, that irresolution as to which one to act on (with the degree of required determination and effort to carry it through to fruition) seems to precipitate in me a debilitating mental inertia. As a result, while I languish in indecision, my life may come to resemble the stagnant pools that breed disease. However, I have discovered that when I can direct all my desires into one channel, the result may be more like a river of water, that can run swiftly and can be accurately aimed to irrigate the fields. The arrow of one's focused desire can go straight to the target of accomplished purpose.