August 1 & 2, 2009, "The Lord Takes Care of Me"

Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"Day by day the Lord takes care of the innocent, and they will receive a reward that lasts forever. They will survive through hard times; even in famine they will have more than enough."
~ Psalm 37:18-19 ~

My friend Holly and I were talking the other day as she came to visit me from Iowa for a few days. The conversations we had, which I loved, were so deep and vast regarding the greatness and awesomeness of God. At a certain point our mind that processes logic, that logical process vanished. It became overwhelming that we actually GET to serve This Awesome, Amazing God through the One and Only Jesus Christ.

As I think on Eternal God and then think of the terrible things going on in just our nation alone; unemployment, foreclosures, debt, suicides, hopelessness, anxiety, stress, the list goes on and on. Yet, when we trust in the Lord with ALL our hearts and as we do this we will not lean on our way of doing things that we would understand. But in ALL our ways as we acknowledge Him, He will direct our paths (Proverbs 3:5-6). When we trust in Him, the process may seem unbearable to go through. However, as we allow Him to lead us through the 'fire', we will see that we got through it.

As I have looked back on the many times God has brought us through, the 'after sight' of it all is like this, "What was I really worried about?" It almost seemed like a 'cinch' after it was all said and done. Don't get me wrong, I so remember the labor, but with God's power and love I don't remember the pain (Like childbirth).

I must realize that the trials and tribulations are not from God. He gives and takes away. He takes away sorrow and gives us joy. He takes away mourning and gives us reason to dance. He takes off the spirit of heaviness and replaces it with the garment of praise.

I have realized that the trials and tribulations are coming after something. What is it? Our faith. (James 1:2-4). Who is our faith to be directed towards? Is it having faith that you'll get a job. Is it having faith that money will come in? Is it having faith in things or an event? No, it's directing that faith from God to God, knowing that when trusting in Him those things we are concerned with will be provided for. I must also remember that God does not test our faith, it is the trials and tribulations that test our faith.

James, the writer of the Book of James in the Bible, encouraged the Jewish Christians to let the trials and tribulations be an opportunity for joy. The word 'joy' in the greek was a description of someone being tied up, lying on their back as a boulder was being placed on them, crushing them (Holly shared with me what she was reading in Rick Renner's book). However, that is the difference between happiness and joy. Happiness demands a circumstance to bring that forth. Joy comes through in the circumstance when there is no happiness. Nehemiah 8:10 states, "..The joy of the Lord is our strength". So with joy through the trials and tribulations God is our strength. Many times we feel like we are going to be crushed by our circumstances, as though our life is over. Many times lives are ended in the circumstances, and it is crushing. However, with God's supernatural joy, we can get through it, not allowing the boulder of life to crush us, but to allow God's joy to bring us His great strength.

It leads me to another question, Who has come to kill, steal and destroy? The enemy, Satan himself. Who comes to give life and give life more abundantly? Jesus Christ
(John 10:10).

This reminder has greatly encouraged me to remember that He is God. God does take care of us with His great abundance.

I must remember that He will never leave us, nor forsake us. This is His promise to us through Christ Jesus as our Lord. Let us not leave Him or forsake His ways.

The free will He has given to us, was a true expression of His love. Another reminder that this amazing gift of free will from Him was never intended to reject Him, but to reject the temptations of not receiving His joy.


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