The Word Weaver
Inviting you to know & embrace Jesus Christ
Deb Weaver
by The Word Weaver, Deb on January 18th, 2018

Offer what you hold in your hands to God
​Writers create meals from raw ingredients: experiences, ideas, and words.  Sometimes as we pray and stir, the phrases transform the concepts into sumptuous, savory recipes that nourish and sustain our readers. 

Sometimes we pray and labor long, yet nothing holds together.  The words fall flat.  The scene scorches.  Every thought sours and separates.  It happens.  We clean up the mess and start over.   

Eventually, though, it’s time to serve the guests.   

​What happens if nothing is ready?   

​Sitting in exhausted anguish amidst the discarded drafts, I asked, “What do we do now, Lord?”

The story of the young boy who offered his lunch to Jesus came to mind.  I sensed God saying, “Offer what you hold in your hands.”   

To be honest, I cried.  “Lord, I don’t see anything.  Please show me what’s there.”

There was only one thing in my hands.  It was so small that He had to point it out to me, but it was there.

It had been there all week.  As I showed up to write, asking for God to speak in and through me.  As I crafted sentences and discarded them.  As I watched the deadline approach without panic.  As I waited and listened.  As I asked and anticipated without demanding.  And even as I expressed my disappointment.

​We marveled over it together:

​Faith.     

Childlike faith in Christ Jesus. 

Faith that listens for His voice, seeks His heart, and believes His Word. 

Faith rooted in grace and flowering in holiness.  

Open-hearted faith stretching in halting steps of trust and reliance.    
​Susie Larson says, in her excellent book, Your Beautiful Purpose, “Our calling isn’t to eloquence or perfection.  But our calling is to faith—engaged, living, and breathing faith that pursues the heart of God and brings life to the circumstances we encounter on the journey.” 

So, now, at the request of my Father, I extend this offering of faith in my hands—however meager it may seem—and trust that Jesus will miraculously multiply it into a meaningful meal for another hungry soul.   
Our Calling is to faith/ Quote by Susie Larson

by The Word Weaver, Deb on January 4th, 2018

Series of blog posts, www.thewordweaver.com, that focus on prayer.

Despite My Fearful What-Ifs, My Prayer Is: Surrender

​I write things in my journal that I wouldn’t dare say anywhere else.  Thoughts and feelings that hide within my unconscious tumble out in this regular, rambling conversation with the Lord. 

If you were reading it, you might drag yourself through mundane details of my day-to-day experiences, thinking that I’m the most boring, timid, whiny person on earth.  And then, suddenly, you’d stumble into a vast puddle of passionate, messy guts spilled onto the page.  You’d wade through the real stuff of life and follow along as I work it out with God.  Then you’d go back to boring.  That’s okay.  It’s not for you that I’m keeping it.

This journal shapes me, and it’s why I continue to write in it every day.  It helps me to know my heart.  In it, I:  
  • express gratitude
  • explore truth
  • find patterns
  • finger painful wounds
  • address sin or selfishness
  • ask questions. 

The number-one, oft-repeated question I pose in these pages is:  

What if . . . ?

​Some people ask this question with an ignited imagination.  Perhaps you are one such beautiful soul.  Perhaps you fling open the doors of possibility pondering, What if?, as you leap through the threshold with wonder, delight, and curiosity.  Perhaps you explore life in the spacious place between what-if and what-could-be.

I stand in amazement and awe.  I applaud you.  Some of my favorite writers, artists, and friends create life in that curious space. 

But that is a foreign land to me. 

My what-ifs are not lighthearted, playful, or curious queries. No, they emerge from the barricaded door of the dark, dank, disturbing basement.  These rotten rats scurry up the water pipes, squeeze through the crack at the bottom of the door, and slither up my spine, before settling into my shadowy thoughts. 

From there, they periodically get deposited into my journal.  Thankfully. 

My honest cries of confession pour across the page before God.  He crouches down with me, pries my fingers from over my eyes, and shines His grace and truth over the darkened corners of my cell. 

His perfect, radiant love casts out my worries and fears, one by one, over and over. 

Slowly and repeatedly, His truth rescues and releases me from strongholds that incarcerate my mind and that inhibit my feet from following Him.  

Last week, I recorded my insecurities about writing once more.  It’s a recurring theme. Here’s a peek:
  • I don’t know what to say, where to start.  What if writing a book is too big for me?
  • I know that, on my own, my words fall flat.  What if you do not ignite them?
  • What if I can’t write?  What if my thoughts mysteriously vanish?  What if I’m not organized enough?
  • What if I’m too lazy or overwhelmed or busy to stay with it? I start and abandon so many things.  What if this just adds to the pile?
  • What if I have nothing significant to say?
  • What if I get it all wrong?  What if my words cause more harm than good?
  • What if I fail?  What if it never gets published?  Or worse, what if no one reads it?
  • What if my perspective doesn’t matter?

In the hallowed hush that followed my honesty, He calmed me.
 
I sensed what may be His direction, “Do it for Me. Surrender your expectations, fears, and what-ifs.  Stop looking at anyone, anything but Me.

Surrender to Me.  Trust Me.  That is success.

Write regardless of:  where this takes you, how hard it is, or how inadequate you feel.  Whether or not it’s published.  Write.

Write because I’ve created you to:  express your soul through your love of language, connect and communicate with others who wrestle with faith, and point people to Me.

Write because it gives you and Me pleasure.

Write because it makes you desperate for Me.

Do it for Me. Through Me. With Me.  In Me. 

We do it together, one surrendered day, one surrendered page at a time.”

It's a process of trust:

​Last week, this journal of our journey together dealt with my writing fears.  Yesterday it was about my pride and bitter feelings.  Tomorrow it will be about something else. 

Every day He asks me to surrender.  Not just my fears or dreams.  All of me.  Wholly His.  His holy. 

Surrender is the means for abiding in Him.  
Abiding requires my surrender/blog post www.thewordweaver.com
​Ann Voskamp expresses it this way:
Ann Voskamp Quote:  Surrendered yes holds space for God/blog post www.thewordweaver.com
​My surrendered yes includes sitting down and writing despite my fears and insecurities.  My surrendered yes creates a space for God and for the way that He works in me.

Your surrendered yes creates a space for God and for the way that He works in you.

In this space of surrender, we discover that all is well with our souls. We remember that He is good, He is enough, and He is able.

Surrender is a sacred space of response to our Holy God.  It creates an avenue for God to do life-transformative miracles in us, through us.  

Let's Pray:

​Heavenly Father,

You are holy and Almighty.  There is no other God than You.  We bow before You.  Speak to us personally.  May we hear Your voice and respond aright.

What is it that You are calling us to surrender? 

What is not in alignment with Your ways and Your Word? 

Show us our sin and arrogant reliance upon ourselves.   Reveal our fears. Pinpoint our unbelief.  Underscore our selfishness.  Bring us to complete honesty by Your Spirit. 

Oh, Father, may we offer our whole lives as an offering before You.  May we surrender to the glorious flames of Your consuming Presence, Promises, Purity, Power, and Purposes.  Refine us and reshape us into the image of Your Son.    

When we wrestle with Your Word, Your way, or Your will, enable us to see that surrender is much less about losing something and far more about gaining freedom and joy. 

With our minds fixed upon You, our hearts rooted in Your love, and feet standing in Your truth, may we take the next step.  Stir us to surrender, Lord.

For Your glory and Your purposes, for You alone are worthy.

We lay these requests before You in the Name of Your precious Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ,

Amen.
Connecting threads/Readers of www.thewordweaver.com blog share heart-to-heart

Questions to Consider:

​What might God be asking you to surrender? 

How may I pray for you to do so?
Related  prayer posts from The Word Weaver blog:
Encouragement for Those Who Hesitate to Ask God
Allowing God to Quench Our Thirst
Grasping Love

Related resources I recommend:
The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp

​Click on the following quotes from this post to easily tweet and share with your friends on Twitter:


by The Word Weaver, Deb on December 21st, 2017

Unwrapping the Gift of the Season:  Grace is So Much More Than We Realize

​This season uncovers our desires, doesn’t it?

The wanting.  The waiting.  The wonder. 

The ache of longing.  The possibility of hope.

Drawn by the Light, I tiptoe closer.  I circle it, content to simply gaze in growing anticipation at this glowing gift.

Then I can’t help myself.  I stretch out a hand and touch it.  Finger its wrapping.  When no one is looking I dare to heft it into my arms and shake it. 

Entranced, I check and double-check the tag.  Is it really for me?  Could it be?  This beautiful, ginormous box? 
Grace is a Greater Gift than we Imagine
​Look!  Do you see it, there on the tag?  It’s addressed to you and to me . . . 

Oooh, this will be good!  Our Father is a lavish, loving Giver. 

We peel back the wrapping and catch our breath. 

There cradled in the crèche, multiplied in the miracles, nailed to the tree, exploding from the tomb—Grace!  
 

​This incredible gift triggers a few different responses at this point:

We could walk away, convinced that the gift is meant for everyone else except us. 

Perhaps feelings of shame flood us.  We recoil, thinking:  “He loves the world, so technically this includes me, but it wouldn’t be right to accept.  It’s too much. I don’t deserve it.” 

As we pivot, the Father picks up His priceless present and emphatically extends it toward us, urging us to reconsider. With mournful cords of longing and regret clanging within, one walks away from Gift and Giver.     

Or

​We could look it over, shrug indifferently, and place it back in the box.  Perhaps we assume to know exactly what it is, what it’s like, or how it works. 

We avoid the gaze of The Giver, privately thinking, “Grace is a nice thought but a lousy gift. It wasn’t what I wanted or needed; I’m doing fine without it.” 

We set it aside, slide it under the bed, or bury it in the back of the closet.  Then we go our own way, often returning to our tedious tally sheets, entering good deeds to counterbalance the rest.  We cannot alter grace and, in trying to do so, we reject both the Giver and the Gift.

Or

We could approach this precious, surprising gift with the anticipation and excitement of a beloved child.  Perhaps we tear into the wrapping with wonder and joy.  Open it and fully receive all its goodness.  Inhale this lavish grace greedily.  Exhale generously, sharing God’s grace with others. 

Running into the arms of the Father and bowling Him over with hard hugs of gratitude.  Leaning into and relying upon this amazing grace.  Accepting and savoring both the Giver and the Gift.

Every. Single. Day.

Despite our doubts. Despite our questions.  Balancing our pain and His goodness in our hearts. 

When we’re happy or sad. When we’re lonely and afraid.  When we offend God and others.  When our lives sit in ruins.  When we love well and when we do not.  

​Oh, grace is not what we think it is!

​More often than not, you and I treat grace like the innocuous phrase, “Bless you,” after a sneeze.  It becomes a well-intended nicety but an unnecessary and impractical one. 
 
Grace is stronger, deeper, better, more necessary than we ever expect.  It’s not an artificially sweetened, watered-down idea.  It’s real, fierce, passionate, enduring, and life-giving. 

It’s laid at the feet of our sinful souls with God’s full knowledge of who we are, what we’ve done, and what it’s cost Him. Yet it’s given willingly, purposely, lovingly, longingly. 

Once we open and embrace this treasure trove, we are changed.  Grace transforms our identity and our essence.  It changes everything. 

We cannot live without God’s grace, gifted in Christ Jesus—here or hereafter.  Divine grace drenching us.  Scarlet grace, saving us.  Sustaining grace nourishing us.

We cannot earn it. Purchase it.  Repay it.  And ultimately, we cannot ignore it.

Too many of us try.  Though salvation through grace is offered to all, only some of us actually receive it.  Sobering, isn’t it?  It becomes ours only when we—you and I—recognize our need, reaching out to receive it. 

Grace, grace, amazing grace.  Our only hope.  Our infinite joy.  Grace, ours for the taking. 
This grace—with our names etched upon it—is the Gift of God.  The Giver gives Himself. To us. For us.  
Grace is the Greatest Gift. God gives Himself.
​Today, let’s consider our own responses to this beautiful gift.

I’ll scoot over, and we can it delight in it together.  There’s more than enough for both of us.  It’s big enough to enfold us all. 

Let’s receive and adore Him!  Merry Christmas! 
Quotes from The Word Weaver blog post to tweet

Click on the following quotes from this post to easily tweet and share with your friends on Twitter:

Related Posts & Resources on The Word Weaver blog
Related posts from The Word Weaver blog:
He Made Room For Us
To See With the Heart of a Child

Related resources I recommend:
Grace--More Than We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine by Max Lucado
The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp
The Grace-Truth Paradox by Randy Alcorn
Lay It Down by Bill Tell
The Cure--What if God Isn't Who You Think He Is & Neither Are You?  by Lynch, McNichol, & Thrall

by The Word Weaver, Deb on December 6th, 2017

Encouragement to those who hesitate to ask God. Click through to read relatable encouragement on this The Word Weaver blog post.
​I hate to be a bother.

To anyone.

For years I suppressed my preferences: 
  • “You pick.” 
  • “Whatever you want is fine.”   
  • “Sure, no problem.” 
  • “Whatever is best for your schedule.”
  • “If you can, that would be great; but don’t feel like you have to.”
I didn’t want to inconvenience others.  I’d bend my desires to make room for theirs.  I didn’t make demands on friendships.  Whatever they were willing to pour into the relationship was good enough for me; I would accept crumbs. After all, I didn’t want to be a bother. 

Yeah, yeah, not healthy, I know. Thankfully God loves me too much to let this skewed view continue.  He has been teaching me my value as a person. My wiring, priorities, time, opinions, and desires matter. He’s helping me to re-discover my true identity.  I contribute most by most being myself.  You do too.

Sometimes, old patterns of thought still surface.  When they do, without realizing, I transfer this reluctance to be a bother into my approach to God.  I skirt the edges of the throne room, trying to avoid attracting attention, desperately ducking honest soul contact, or denying my real wants. Asking for top priority needs but trying not to inconvenience Him much.

Do you ever default into this deception too?   

The Truth:

​We—you and I—are of incalculable value to our Heavenly Father.  He loves us so.  And He has much more for us.  God has storerooms of treasure marked with our names. 

Rooms full of things we desperately need: wisdom, discernment, strength, perseverance, righteousness, courage, joy, and grace.  Many good things we deeply desire await us: dreams, ideas, and hopes.  He also has hard blessings to bestow upon us.  He desires for us to ask. 

So why do we hesitate?

​There may be many reasons but, for me, it often boils down to these root issues:  ignorance, guilt, insecurity, unbelief, or fear. 

Ignorance:

​Many times I don’t know what I need or even want. Whether I’m spinning at a frenetic pace or plodding along, life’s pace and responsibilities act like a sieve.  Relentlessly it drips and drains my energy and passion. Perhaps you may relate?

We must repeatedly and intentionally pause and get quiet in order to allow God to refill us as well as to determine the deep stirrings of our hearts. 

Jesus is direct in His dealings.  He asks:
  • What do you want me to do for you? 
  • Do you want to get well? 
  • Who do you say I am? 
His questions penetrate the surface and probe into the heart of the matter. 

May we pause, ask, and listen:  Lord, Calm me in Your presence.  Immerse me in Your grace. Speak to me through Your truth.  You know me inside and out.  May Your Spirit help me to sift my heart’s desires.  Make me aware of what I need, why I’m acting this way, or what I really want. Show me. 

Guilt:

​Sometimes I skirt the edges of His presence because I have done wrong.  I’ve hurt someone’s feelings with my tone of voice or my actions.  I’ve failed to trust Him or disobeyed.

This guilt and conviction is a gift from God.  The terrible sinking sense lets me know something is wrong.  When I confess what I have thought, said, or done that is offensive to Him, He freely forgives.  And He restores our relationship. 

Conviction that sparks confession is itself a grace.

Father, I have sinned...  Show me the depth and breadth of my wickedness.  It is You whom I have hurt first and foremost, and I have also injured myself and those I love.  Please forgive and grow me.
Gifts in Christ.  Click through to read authentic encouragement on The Word Weaver blog post, Encouragement to those who hesitate to ask God.

Insecurity:

​The Bible assures us of who we really are.  God holds us in much greater esteem  than we fully realize.  He’s already paid the price to rescue and redeem us, and He considers us worth the cost.  That’s amazing grace!

As believers in Christ, we’re chosen, beloved, and created on purpose for a purpose.  When we embrace our role as God’s holy child, we can live out of our true selves.  We don’t have to worry about wearing out our welcome.  Or that we’re too needy or pesky. 

We come, just as we are. And in turn, we have the precious opportunity to delight ourselves in the Lord. 

Thank You for beckoning us into Your presence, into Your arms.  Help us to remember that we are beloved. Root out our insecurities and replace them with abiding truth.  Remind us that You know, You care, You understand—all the time. That You welcome our requests and delight in giving good gifts.  That You are who our souls crave.  We adore You, O God. 

Unbelief:

​Sometimes—more often than I like to admit—I don’t ask because I don’t believe.  I don’t have enough faith to take Him at His Word.

I used to berate myself for this lack or I’d try to muster more.  Then I read of a father who brought his son, who had endured a long-term, devastating, and life-threatening condition, to Jesus.  In Mark 9, he begged, “…If you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”  Jesus assured him that nothing is impossible for God and for those who believe.  The man did not walk away in regret.  He responded by offering the little faith he had and earnestly asking for more. 

Now when I face a daunting situation and recognize signs of my unbelief, I take them to the Lord and repeat the cry, “I believe; help me overcome my unbelief.” 

Fear:

​In Christ, there is no need to cower before our Heavenly Father.  We may approach fearlessly. No need to worry that we’ll say the wrong thing. It’s not necessary to agonize over our motives.  No need to hide our unvarnished, messy selves.

No hesitation.  No fear. 

He welcomes us as we are—not as we wish to be or as we think He wants us to be. He always responds to His children out of His love, truth, compassion, and wisdom.  

Like a child

​Children can be audacious to a fault.  They speak their minds. They love and trust the Father.  So they ask.

Do they want everything?  All at once?  Yes, often.

Feel entitled?  Ask for things they shouldn’t?  Sometimes. 

Act impatient?  Throw a tantrum?  Better than the rest.

Climb into His lap with dirty hands?  You know the answer to that!

Forget to say thanks?  At times.

And won’t we?  Most likely. 

Should fear of getting it wrong keep us from asking?  Absolutely not.
We are God

Yes, but what if. . .

What if we don’t say the right words?  What if we don’t even know what to say or where to begin?  The Lord knows our hearts and thoughts before we do.  When we enter His presence and struggle shaping our thoughts into intelligible words, the Holy Spirit utters divine requests on our behalf.  He loves us.

What if asking for more means we’re not grateful for what we already have? Gratitude doesn’t preclude asking; it accompanies it.  Our God is a generous, happy giver.  He loves us.

What if our motives are wrong?  What if our requests are silly or selfish?  God is able to scan them and then respond accordingly. If we ask for something with the wrong motive or a tainted attitude, He teaches and corrects us. He loves us. 

Our what-if-worries melt before Him, consumed in His perfect love.  

Just ask:

​Our heavenly Father knows our hearts.  We don’t have to package our words in shiny paper or box them into acceptable shapes.  He’ll sort out our requests and do what is best.  We can relax and enjoy our Father.  As beloved children, we can just ask. 

At one time or another, He will say:  Yes!   No.  Or not now . . .

Every time, He urges: “Stay with Me.  Lean against Me.  Relax.  Breathe.  Be Still and know that I am God.” 

May we accept His decisions with open-hearted gratitude and trust.

Let’s run into the arms of our Father and ask.  Continually. Repeatedly. Humbly.  Joyfully. Trustingly.  He is everything we need. 
God is a good, good Father. We can run to Him. Click for authentic encouragement in The Word Weaver post, Encouragement to those who hesitate to ask God.
Our lives intertwine and we find encouragement from one another. Click to read The Word Weaver post, Encouragement to those who hesitate to ask God.

Questions to consider:

  • What causes you to hesitate in asking God? 
  • Do you see patterns? 
  • What Scripture truths cause you to ask anyway? 
  • How may we pray with you?

​​If you’re brave enough to share, please comment below. I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Tweetables:

Related Posts:

Monthly, I pray along a theme.  It redirects & freshens my thoughts as I pray for myself, my loved ones, and even strangers.  Perhaps you'd also like to read these posts:
Quenching Our Thirst
Grasping Love

by The Word Weaver, Deb on November 1st, 2017

​Are you thirsty? 

Are you drawn to the same old wells?  

Do you gulp and guzzle only to leave with nagging thirst? 

Me too.  Please join me for this month's prayer theme.
​Jesus is Living Water.  He’s promised us fresh, flowing sustenance in abundance.  Cleansing, nourishing, transforming, living water.  He alone satisfies.

We can KNOW this is true.  We can EXPERIENCE the deep satisfaction of allowing God’s presence to be our enough.

And then we can also easily FORGET.  We get into the habit of accepting and seeking empty calorie refreshment that fails to refresh us.

Or worse, we can REJECT this vital source of soul quenching nourishment. This happens more often than we admit.

Listen:

​Jeremiah 2:13 (NIV),My people have committed two sins: They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water.

Do you hear the brokenhearted longing of God in those words?  He offers us life-giving, life-sustaining help and hope.  Instead, we crawl away from Him and dig in the dirt hoping to find something, anything to fill us.  We’re dangerously dehydrated and only inches from rescue and life. 

Oh, how our precious, Almighty God yearns for us to come to Him.  To reach out with open hearts and arms toward His Word, His Presence, His Spirit.  To repeatedly run to Him, the Living Water. 

Yet, too often, we refuse.  We stubbornly determine to quench our own thirsts because we don’t trust nor want God to alleviate them.

This verse is not just a warning to strangers to the gospel.  God is cautioning His peopleYou and me.

We have deep, genuine lack.  We are thirsty people.  Our cravings—whatever they may be—are rooted in our spiritual needs.  We’ve been created with essential, universal desires that ONLY God, our Creator and Savior, can truly supply.

God is our greatest source of life, joy, and fulfillment.  This truth is stated over and over in the Scriptures.

Psalm 81:10  “I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt. Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.” (NIV)

Psalm 42: 1-2 “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.  When can I go and meet with God?”  (NIV)

The Message translation renders those verses in chapter forty-two this way:  “A white-tailed deer drinks from the creek; I want to drink God, deep draughts of God.  I’m thirsty for God-alive.” 

YES! wells up deep from within me.  Yes, I want more of God’s presence, thoughts, and words.  Yes, I want the solace of Him being near.  He is nearby—all around and within those who know Jesus.  And, in Him, I find everything I thirst for, everything I need. When I forsake my worn out, empty, sour cisterns and open my mouth, I find anew that He is enough.  He is plenty.  He is sufficient.  He is abundant. And, as a result of allowing Him to fill me, I am most myself, most joyful, most satiated. 

Honestly?  Even though He is what we absolutely and ultimately need, sometimes it doesn’t feel as satisfying or even desirable in the moment of crisis.  So I find that when I’m most needy, I have a crucial choice to make.

A recent example:

​While I was working on this post, I experienced a disappointment.  I received a phone call that was a refusal of my services.  The person on the phone was polite and kind; and though I knew that the rejection was not personal, it felt that way.  It was a minor situation on a simple Tuesday morning, but suddenly I had a major emotional crisis churning within me. Instantly, I was dehydrated, choking on desert dust, staggering in fear, and searching for significance. 

I felt ‘less than’.  Insecurity flooded me.  Shame shouted her oft-repeated lies, “See.  You don’t have value.  No one cares what you know about God. No one wants to attend an event where you speak. No one really wants to read what you write.  You should just quietly go on your way.” 

I desired and needed comfort, reassurance, and encouragement.

Here's what I really wanted to do:

​Rush to the cupboard where I keep chocolate. 

Close the computer and take a long winter’s nap. 

Pop onto Facebook where I’m known and appreciated and where I can waste hours in what seems like minutes.

Turn on a movie channel and hide in a happily-ever-after.  

Slug back enough sodas that I’d awaken with a sugar-induced hangover tomorrow. 

Start a new project from my perpetual to-do list so that, in my busyness, I could run away and still feel productive. 

These are my empty wells, the activities whose paths are familiar and well-rutted.  Sipping from them occasionally is an okay, even enjoyable, thing when I seek relaxation.  But, when I am thirsty and desperate, they are poisonous places. 

Intoxicating, soothing, but toxic, idolatrous danger zones.
 

Here's what I did instead:

​I sat with the feelings before the Lord.  I cried out to Him.  Plaintively. Honestly. The lies I was feeling. The insignificance I was fearing.  I asked Him to press in with peace and perspective.  

The result:

​He responded to my cry.  He reminded me of His truth that I had just read hours earlier.  I don’t have to make something of my life.  He is the One who fulfills His purposes for my life. (Psalm 57: 2)  I am being faithful to what He’s wired me to do and to His voice of guidance.  He is responsible for the result.

And while I’m not splashing around in all-out Happy in this moment, I am immersed in the plentiful and precious presence of the Living God, and I am okay.

Actually, I more than okay.  I’m content and satisfied.  With Him at my side, I’m still plugging away in my calling to communicate His grace, love, and truth.  Partaking of His comfort and presence.  Soaking in His Word, and sensing His pleasure that I came to Him in my need.

Christ Jesus is quenching my thirst.  Today.  Now.  In my disappointments. In my fears.  In my doubts.  In my simple days and burgeoning hopes.  He is enough. 

What about you?

​Have you tried to tranquilize yourself against your pain?  Most likely, you’ve frequented your own broken, empty, bitter wells.  Perhaps, like me, you’ve tried to find fulfillment in perfectionism, people-pleasing, busyness, addictions, or mindless activity.  Or perhaps your cisterns are dug in the soil of isolation, bitterness, apathy, unforgiveness, pornography, explosive anger, worry, or relationships. 

Maybe your particular wells are not even mentioned here.  Can you name them?  Before we can abandon them, it’s important that we first begin to recognize them.

It’s not enough to know that we’re thirsty.  We also need to become aware of our symptoms and the triggers that activate them.  My warning signs include: sudden spikes in strong emotion or numbed emotion accompanied by prolonged mindless activities. Yours may be different.  We need to pay attention. And then we need to take action.

Let's heed caution:

​Dehydration is a serious matter.  If we ignore our legitimate thirsts for too long, we may end up desperately diving into scum-covered ponds in which we never, ever intended or wanted to find ourselves. 

Destructive, addictive habits.  Unhealthy relationships that do not honor God. Unfulfilling, disappointing days, months, or decades.  A mire of hopelessness.  Death can result. 

So, before we take another soured sip from splintered cisterns, let’s REPENT and RETURN to God, the Source of our everything. 

If you are willing, please join me this month in asking Him to quench our thirst.  He longs to do so.

Let's Pray:

​Heavenly Father,

We have hurt you, and we have hurt ourselves in our pursuit to satisfy our hearts’ longings.  We have forsaken you.  Please forgive us.

We don’t want to merely admit our wrongdoing, our wrong thinking.  We don’t want to repeat this disastrous pattern.  We want to repent and return to You.  We declare that nothing and no one on this earth can satisfy us.  Only You, God, only You. 

In the days ahead, please reveal the broken, poisonous wells which we’re accustomed to seeking.  It’s taken a long time to dig them; may we not give up when victory isn’t instantaneous.  Give us the strength and determination to abandon them—no matter how long or how many attempts it takes to reject them and to turn to You.  

Remind us in this winding, often painful process, that Your arms of grace and mercy are open wide.  You love us.  You long for us.  You stand willing and waiting to become our sufficient heart’s desire.  To welcome us Home in You. 

Teach us to run repeatedly to You, our Living Water, whenever we face need or desire.  Immerse us in Your Word and in Your presence.  Begin to transform us from the inside out as we walk with You. 

May we come daily with our mouths open wide: asking You to meet our truest needs, trusting You to fulfill Your promises, and expecting You to satisfy us. 

You are enough! By Your power, may we live like it!

In the name of our precious Savior and Your Son, Jesus Christ,
Amen.