Prodigal: Well, let’s focus on God for a second and see if that helps.
This is from the book Reaching for the Invisible God by Philip Yancey
Did I do anything today that would give God pleasure? Since God longs to feel delight in me, did I give him such opportunity?
No matters what answers I come up with, I still relax in God’s love and ask him to enfold me in grace and forgiveness. I try to quiet the clamor of my own self and create space for the quiet of God to enter. What matters most to God in prayer, I am convinced, is my longing to know him.
Lord I want to hear from you today. Sometimes the world makes life seem sad and lonely. I know with you, you are with me every step of the way. The world tries to say acceptance means perfection. You just give me love. How I love the way you love me.
Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.
Me: Yes, it does and here is a story about the beach.
Now I was feeling better than I had in years. More than ready for a swim! I spread my towel out on the beach and looked out to sea. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky. In the distance, seagulls perched on the jagged rocks by the break wall that protected an old fishing pier. Like a scene from a postcard, I thought.
“Looks like we have the beach to ourselves,” Uncle Peter said. “And on this beautiful day!”
I ran down to the shoreline. The ankle-deep water was choppy, and it sent sand and broken seashells crashing against my feet. It was rougher than I had expected. But the salty ocean breeze felt good against my face, and it would be nice to cool off. I wasn’t going to let a few waves spoil my day at the beach.
“Let’s wade out past the white caps,” I said. “The water’s always calmer once you put a little distance between yourself and the shore.”
We fought through the waves until the water was up to our waistlines. Instead of getting calmer, the sea got even rougher. Some of the waves were taller than I was, and the undertow made it hard to stand still. I tried to paddle back to shore, but I couldn’t fight the waves. I looked back at Uncle Peter.
A wave crashed over me and knocked me down. My body tossed and turned beneath the surface of the water. Salty seawater filled my mouth. The sea swirled around me. I couldn’t see. I couldn’t breathe. My chest tightened as I ran out of air. I was helpless again.
Finally my head broke through the surface. I saw my uncle in the distance, closer to shore. I tried to make my way toward him, but my muscles were weak compared to the ocean. I couldn’t even catch enough breath to call for help.
A wave crashed over my head. The undertow pulled me further out to sea. Every time my head popped up, a wave came to beat me down. Each one pushed me closer to the break wall that protected the pier. What if a strong one threw me into it?
Dear God, please help me! I still need you, I’m not strong enough for this! I struggled to swim, but the power of the ocean was too strong. Another wave. I went under.
Then, instead of the dull rush of the undertow around my ears, I heard the wind and the waves of the beach. I opened my eyes. I was no longer near the rocks. In fact, I was much closer to shore than I had been just a moment before. Practically on the sand. How did I get here?
I touched my feet to the ocean floor. Gasping for breath, I dragged myself to the beach. I collapsed next to Uncle Peter on the dry sand. We lay there for a few minutes, struggling to catch our breath.
Uncle Peter and I made our way back to the others. We tried to tell them what had happened. “It’s a mystery how I escaped the water and rocks,” I said. As the words left my lips, an image came to my mind. I saw myself back in the ocean. I was not alone. Two bright white figures stood on either side of me. The waves roared, but they were not affected by the fury of the water. Each figure took an elbow, and together they guided me toward the beach. Two angels pulled me to safety, I thought. I could rely on God to help me ride out the waves.
by Kristina Cunningham
1 Corinthians 13:13
So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Prodigal: Yes, but that is when we increase our faith.
This is from the book Job: A Man of Heroic Endurance by Charles Swindoll
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declare the LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9). And so we say, with Job: “O, God, I trust You. I don’t know why I’m going through this. If there’s something I can learn, wonderful. If there’s something someone else can learn, great. Just get me through it. Just hold me close. Deepen me. Change me.”
Job asked, “Shall we accept good from God and not accept adversity?” Because he knew that God is God, someday He will make it clear. That’s one of the reasons I believe heaven will be such a delightful place. When we step into His presence for the first time we will be given the panoramic view, and then (and not until then) we will respond, “So that’s the reason! Now I get it!”
“It is easier to lower your view of God than to raise your faith to such a height,” writes a perceptive author. He then adds, “We shall watch the struggle as Job’s faith is strained every way by temptations to see the cause of his misfortune in something less than God.” God is totally and completely and absolutely in charge. If He wipes out every member of your family, He is in charge. If He ends your business in abysmal bankruptcy, He is in charge. If the x-ray returns and it couldn’t be worse. He is in charge. Please accept and submit to that teaching. How magnificent it is to find those who trust Him to the every end of this vale of suffering saying, “And may His name be praise. I don’t understand it. Can’t explain it. Nevertheless, may His name be praised.” That is worship at its highest level.
May God enable us to raise our faith to such heights rather than lower our view of Him.
Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues with injustice.
Me: I am glad that somethings have improved with time.
This is from the book Exceeding Gratitude for the Creator’s Plan by James P. Gills, M.D.
The statement, “The life is in the blood,” is not only good theology, but also good biology. The body has sixty thousand miles of blood vessels, a distance nearly two and one-half times around the Earth of the equator. Red blood cells (RBC’s) are of critical importance to life. Red blood cells are tiny but plentiful. We each make over two million RBC’s every second. If we took them all out of our body and laid them side by side, they would go around the Earth at the equator four times.
The necessary element to healthy RBC’s is oxygen. All fires require oxygen, including the energy-releasing fire within our cells. The body has an ingenious mechanism to transport oxygen into the tissues. When oxygen is inhaled into the respiratory tract, it snuggles up against the thinner-than-paper lining of the lung wall. Immediately on the other side of this wall are capillaries. The favorable diffusion coefficient attracts the oxygen molecule across the lining and into the capillary blood stream, where other mechanisms are needed to finally use the oxygen efficiently for sustaining life.
God figures out all the details too.
For I am no ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation….For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”
Prodigal: Yes, he would like to hear more about Jesus
This is from the book The Greatest Life of All: Jesus by Charles Swindoll
Jesus didn’t come to earth to establish a new religion. He came to restore a broken relationship. He came to make the primary, primary again. The secondary activity of obedience to the law of God was always intended to serve the primary activity: to love God and enjoy Him forever. When that Is primary, the secondary becomes a labor of love, a joyful, “easy” burden to bear.
Is it hard to love someone today. I get it. We all have days like that. It just seems to much to love that person like Jesus requires. It is time for us to focus on loving God today so that that person we need to love is not such a burden. Don’t reach out to that person till you reach out to Jesus first. From the love you give Jesus, He will refresh you.
Come to me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.