When God Has You in a Place

Do you remember a time when you thought you needed something and it didn’t come? Maybe it was a report from the doctor, a friend to show up, for a situation to end, for a situation to begin, or a hug. But it didn’t come. What did you do? Did you cry? Did you pray? Did you question God? Did you harden your heart? Did you praise God? Did you give thanks to God? Did you complain to others or to God? What did you do?

Sometimes God has you in a place. Sometimes that place has no door for exit and no window for hope. What do you do? What can you do?

There’s a sense of powerlessness. Whatever you desire is not in your control to fix or attain. You can’t push things along. You can’t escape.

God has you in a place and you are forced to do things His way. You are forced to beg him for His intervention. You are forced to seek His perspective. You are forced to praise Him. You are forced to give Him thanks. 

Not too long after you begin to be honest with God and you quit carrying the desire, burden, need, hope, or longing, then you realize there is a burden bearer. There is a caregiver for your soul. There is a tear wiper and a compassionate ear. Even though He may seem silent, He is not inattentive. He is present.

When was the last time you poured out your heart to God? When was the last time you gave up being strong? When was the last time you went to your knees in surrender?

For the follower of Christ, this is where Christianity is proved. These are the places where no human can fulfill. You may know that God doesn’t even want you to share this with another human. It’s just you talking to Him. You didn’t think He was enough. You thought you needed a friend. A human. He is teaching you that HE is enough. He is your best friend. He is the one who can fix, fulfill, and fan into flame whatever the plan is. No matter how long you have to wait. Even if you don’t see Him do anything. Even if what you thought you needed never happens.

I could tell you what the Bible says about how valuable giving thanks is, being content, how He gives perseverance, how He gives strength to the weary, and so on. If you are a follower of Christ, you are familiar with all these promises. It’s your choice to cling to them.

What you may not be familiar with is waiting the way He wants you to wait. We will do most anything other than wait well. It seems so counterintuitive. But that is where the presence of God is. It’s that still, silent place, sometimes full of peace, sometimes uncomfortable.

Let’s not rush the process and ruin His plans with our own plan. He is a God of love who longs to give His children good things. Wait.

Waiting silently is the hardest thing of all.

Elisabeth Elliot

The Leaves are Turning

As I scrolled my Facebook newsfeed this morning, two posts were about this season of the year. One was from a New England friend. She had shared a picture of a parkway lined with vividly colored trees. Another post, from a Mississippi friend, offered a view of some trees in the background with a bit of fall color on them. But at the forefront of the picture were rose and azalea bushes blooming. She marveled at the Mississippi Fall as she called it.

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Yesterday, I went to visit my mother at the assisted living. As I pulled into the parking lot, I was pleasantly surprised by the color on the trees. The surrounding neighborhood streets were speckled with color as well. The colorful scenery served as inspiration for an activity I could do with my mother.

I mentioned going on a stroll outside when I greeted her. Soon, we ventured out onto the property to admire the beauty of creation.

My mother struggled to make out the color on the trees that I was pointing out. Her limited vision was blurring it, but I soon realized, she found another way to make our outing worthy. She was able to look on the ground and make out the shapes of the leaves against the asphalt. After that, we began collecting leaves, and she could see the color on each of those leaves better. Later, we strolled inside to the elegantly decorated lobby. We concluded our time together taking pictures with pumpkins and mums on display outside.

Yes, the leaves are turning!

Mississippi certainly is not void of beauty, and I would not want you to get that idea. This time of year can hold a variety of temperatures, and sometimes the flower bushes bloom again. We have a gardenia bush that is blooming now. While it may seem strange, we can take in the peculiar timing and embrace the beauty. We get excited here when a jacket or coat is needed as we head outside. We enjoy the hot chocolate, the first fire in the fireplace, and roasted marshmallows. Let’s not forget the abundance of fall festivals in most communities!

Knowing the cooler temps may not last, or that a storm may come and rip the leaves to the ground, we appreciate the little joys. No matter what Fall or Autumn is doing in your area, each day is important and worthy of not just observing, but living.