Category Archives: CONFIDENT HOPE

“Faith don’t come in a bushel basket, Missy. It come one step at a time. Decide to TRUST Him for one little thing today, and before you know it, you find out He’s so trustworthy you be putting your whole life in His hands.”
― Lynn Austin, Candle in the Darkness

“Sing a little song of trust,

O my heart!

Sing it just because you must,

As leaves start;

As flowers push their way through dust;

Sing, my heart, because you must.

“Wait not for an eager throng

Bird on bird;

‘Tis the solitary song

That is heard.

Every voice at dawn will start,

Be a nightingale, my heart!

“Sing across the winter snow,

Pierce the cloud;

Sing when mists are drooping low

Clear and loud;

But sing sweetest in the dark;

He who slumbers not will hark.”

“An’ when He hears yo’ sing, He bends down wid a smile on His kin’ face an’ listens mighty keerful, an’ He says, ‘Sing on, chile, I hears, an’ I’s comin’ down to deliber yo’: I’ll tote dat load fer yo’; jest lean hawd on Me and de road will get smoother bime by.”‘

“Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice” Philippians 4:4

REJOICE by Mrs. Charles Cowman

The public domain version of this classic devotional is the unabridged edition of Streams in the Desert.

Finding Rest In A Restless World

restHe lets me rest in the meadow grass and leads me beside the quiet streams. Psalm 23:2Psalm 23:2
English: World English Bible - WEB

2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.

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“God never asked us to meet life’s pressures and demands on our own terms or by relying upon our own strength. Nor did He demand that we win His favor by assembling an impressive portfolio of good deeds. Instead, He invites us to enter His rest.”   

—Chuck Swindoll

~~~

Take it from a reforming workaholic…

Nothing is more important than your rest.

Without the proper rest?

Nothing in your work—works right!

So lay it down for now.

Let it go.

Rest.

It will still be there tomorrow.

Confident Hope

“Because the Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything I need!

He lets me rest in the meadow grass and leads me beside the quiet streams. He gives me new strength. He helps me do what honors him the most.”

Psalm 23:1-3Psalm 23:1-3
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23 A Psalm by David. 1 Yahweh is my shepherd: I shall lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. 3 He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

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The Day is Done

The day is done, and the darkness
Falls from the wings of Night,
As a feather is wafted downward
From an eagle in his flight.

I see the lights of the village
Gleam through the rain and the mist,
And a feeling of sadness comes o’er me
That my soul cannot resist:

A feeling of sadness and longing,
That is not akin to pain,
And resembles sorrow only
As the mist resembles the rain.

Come, read to me some poem,
Some simple and heartfelt lay,
That shall soothe this restless feeling,
And banish the thoughts of day.

Not from the grand old masters,
Not from the bards sublime,
Whose distant footsteps echo
Through the corridors of Time.

For, like strains of martial music,
Their mighty thoughts suggest
Life’s endless toil and endeavor;
And to-night I long for rest.

Read from some humbler poet,
Whose songs gushed from his heart,
As showers from the clouds of summer,
Or tears from the eyelids start;

Who, through long days of labor,
And nights devoid of ease,
Still heard in his soul the music
Of wonderful melodies.

Such songs have power to quiet
The restless pulse of care,
And come like the benediction
That follows after prayer.

Then read from the treasured volume
The poem of thy choice,
And lend to the rhyme of the poet
The beauty of thy voice.

And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares, that infest the day,
Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


SEEDS FOR TRUST #5

Rest
  

In The Silence of The Heart You Speak

You rule the oceans when their waves arise in fearful storms; You speak and they lie still. Psalm 89:9Psalm 89:9
English: World English Bible - WEB

9 You rule the pride of the sea. When its waves rise up, you calm them.

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acceptance with joyMother Teresa said, “In the silence of the heart God speaks. If you face God in prayer and silence, God will speak to you… souls of prayer are souls of great silence.”

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God speaks in whispers.

Whispers that are barely audible—most of the time.

Whispers that you can hear only with a heart that leans in.

What do I mean by that?

A heart that leans in is a heart that is hungry for, searching for, something MORE.

It is thirsty and desperate.

It is not afraid of silence.

It is willing to be still and wait.

It is wanting to listen and listen hard.

A heart that leans in, wants more than the empty chaos and noise this world offers…

More than its own heart’s futile thoughts and opinions.

A heart that leans into the unseen world—waiting and listening for something more?

That is a heart that seeks.

That is a heart that finds God.

Confident Hope

You rule the oceans when their waves arise in fearful storms; you speak, and they lie still.  You have cut haughty Egypt to pieces. Your enemies are scattered by your awesome power.  The heavens are yours, the world, everything—for you created them all.  You created north and south! Mount Tabor and Mount Hermon rejoice to be signed by your name as their maker!  Strong is your arm! Strong is your hand! Your right hand is lifted high in glorious strength.

Your throne is founded on two strong pillars—the one is Justice and the other Righteousness. Mercy and Truth walk before you as your attendants. Blessed are those who hear the joyful blast of the trumpet, for they shall walk in the light of your presence.  They rejoice all day long in your wonderful reputation and in your perfect righteousness.  You are their strength. What glory! Our power is based on your favor!

Psalm 89:9Psalm 89:9
English: World English Bible - WEB

9 You rule the pride of the sea. When its waves rise up, you calm them.

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SEEDS FOR TRUST #4 Mother Teresa

A Battle With Head and Heart

I have no idea who “R” is but this guy nailed it when it came to the battle that was often going on inside me.

My faith seems to reside in the “think and be logical” part of my head, while my trust, it lives in the “tender and vulnerable” places in my heart.

All is well, until, they both meet up with “Mr. R” which is a perfect illustration for the troublesome addition of RISK.

When a decision that involves risk comes into play, then the conversational quote from above becomes my inner dialogue—and the battle ensues.

Yet, if we are honest with ourselves, then we must admit that much of our lives and our choices are bound up in risk.

Taking chances.

Going for the gusto.

I have always liked Luci Swindoll’s, “Give it the Koo-tash!”

Whatever language you like to couch it in, RISK and FAITH and TRUST are all bound together, like it or not.

But, who doesn’t want to love wildly, passionately, and fearlessly? The rewards are tremendous, yes?

Ah, but so are the risks. Just ask the guy who has crashed and burned and is trying to put the shattered pieces of his heart back together again! Ask him to “trust again” and what sort of answer do you think you will get?

He may have a real battle getting his head and heart to sync up again.

Walking by faith. Taking a bold leap. Both are impossible without risking the heart and trust.

So what are we to do?

ignore your headThe world says you can break all the rules and follow your heart. It will all work out.

But our faith says that though risk is an essential part of living a full and rewarding life, breaking the rules God has put in place for our protection, will definitely break us!

And that is a truth that I can testify to.

Yes, we are to walk by faith, but soberly. We are not to check our brains at the door! Proverbs has a great deal to say about the fool and the wise man.

wisdom from ProverbsGod wants us to bring our decisions to Him, seek His wisdom by trusting His word, and wait for clear direction.


Confident HopeSeeds of Trust #3:  To find true hope you have to go the distance between the head and the heart.

Emilie Barnes, A Cup of Hope

Believing Is Not About The Outcome

I used to struggle a great deal about this believing business. Mostly because my expectations and outcomes didn’t always match up with what I was believing for.

It is easy to say to someone, “You need to trust God.”

Oh yes, that part is easy!

building trust and believingBut, if our trust is tied to our beliefs for a certain kind of outcome, and then things seem to go haywire?

Then what are we supposed to do?

Was our believing at fault?

Should we have prayed more fervently?

Isn’t my faith supposed to move mountains?

I used to stumble over these questions wondering if there was something faulty with my faith, or my praying, or my believing, until I realized one day that I kept making a very strategic wrong turn in my understanding.

I began to see that if my beliefs were based on my expectations for a certain outcome, and if that was the foundation for my trust, I would always struggle—because my expectations were so often wrong.

I needed a better basis for my trusting.

And then I saw it!

The “wrong turn” I kept making was right here:

Jesus said in John 6:29John 6:29
English: World English Bible - WEB

29 Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”

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, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”

I needed to put my confidence and trust in who Jesus had proved Himself to be, not in what He would do for me—or not do for me.

My trust couldn’t stand on my outcomes.

No, my trust had to be based on who Jesus said He was—period.

The Bible says over and over, “We live by faith, not by sight.” [2 Corinthians 5:72 Corinthians 5:7
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7 for we walk by faith, not by sight.

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walk by faithThe reality of this world is that sometimes bad things happen even if all of our faith is in good outcomes.

Therefore, if my faith and trust are to survive the storms of this life, then there will be times when I must trust in what I can’t see.

walking with JesusI must learn to “walk” with stability in the unseen with my trust based solely in the One God sent.

He is my Cornerstone.

If my confidence is in Him, and my trust is built solely on the character of God’s goodness, then no matter what the outcome to my faith, prayers, and believing—my TRUST will stand on a firm foundation.

Seeds for Trust #2:

believing for God's outcome

 

Foundation Stones for Trust

Before we begin our journey through the Psalms we must talk about the foundation stones for trust.

You cannot have a trust that will weather all the storms of life if it is built on the “sand” of what you see and feel.

Your eyes will deceive you and your feelings often shift and change with each passing storm that blows.

Therefore let us address ourselves to some of the basic truths from the inerrant and infallible word of God.

foundation of trustTo start with, the Bible doesn’t say there might be trouble in this world. On the contrary, it assures us that we absolutely will have trouble.

Jesus said, “I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33John 16:33
English: World English Bible - WEB

33 I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world.”

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The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy, “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” [3:12]

So, since we know we shall have trials, sorrow, and persecution, and since our life will not be trouble-free, we can’t base our trust on the hope that we should have a painless journey.

Often our trust falters or fails because it is based on the false hope that the promises in God’s word can be manipulated to suit our own wishes. We believe  by praying fervent prayers, or  “claiming” this or that Bible verse for ourselves, or our loved ones, we can have whatever we want.

But no matter how heartfelt those wishes and desires may be, or how sincere our hopes, even in the word of God we must face all of the truth. We must acknowledge that God knows what we don’t, and we must put our TRUST in Him, and His will on any matter. Then our trust can not only weather the storm, it can also flower and flourish in it.

Anyone who reads my blog, knows by now, I love to quote from the works of C. S. Lewis. So, in closing, let me add a few more of his wonderful encouraging words.

Remember, though we struggle against things because we are afraid of them, it is often the other way around—we get afraid because we struggle. Are you struggling; resisting? Don’t you think our Lord says to you, “Peace child, peace. Relax. Let go. Underneath are the Everlasting Arms. Let go, I will catch you. Do you trust me so little?”

— C. S. Lewis

SEEDS FOR TRUST #1:

trust God's love for you

He Speaks To Us In Songs of Deliverance

The Psalms have been songs of deliverance for me more than once. And so I go there, whenever I am struggling with anything—because it is there HE SPEAKS to me.

songs of deliverance

In those sweet songs I find comfort, I find healing, I find wisdom, instruction, and redemption. In those one hundred and fifty passages—I find HOPE!

They are the Bible’s most beloved poetical anthems of praise and glory to God!

It was C. S. Lewis who wrote,

“I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed. It is frustrating to have discovered a new author and not to be able to tell anyone how good he is; to come suddenly, at the turn of the road, upon some mountain valley of unexpected grandeur and then to have to keep silent because the people with you care for it no more than for a tin can in the ditch; to hear a good joke and find no one to share it with. . .

The Scotch catechism says that man’s chief end is ‘to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’ But we shall then know that these are the same thing. Fully to enjoy is to glorify. In commanding us to glorify Him, God is inviting us to enjoy Him.”

― C. S. Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms 

So for as long as it takes, let us journey through this Book of Songs, looking for the reasons why we can TRUST God.

I believe we shall find such beauty growing there, that by the time we are finished, we shall have discovered our own Garden of Eden in it’s pages.

you are my hiding place

And, songs.

That, too!

There will be songs of deliverance, that shall bring with them, all manner of good things. We shall find messages that will bolster our strength and courage, as well as the substance and evidence, for our faith and trust in a God who passionately loves us.

As C S. Lewis encouraged us to do, we shall “complete our enjoyment” by consuming all the beauty we shall surely uncover there.

Come, let’s mosey together down ancient paths laid out for us thousands of years ago, gathering wildflowers from the darker vales of sadness and lament, as well as in the highland meadows with their prospects of hopefulness.

As we refresh ourselves here and there, by pools of still waters, we shall find His messages of love for us. Then, like Lewis we shall also be able to say,

“The most valuable thing the Psalms do for me is to express the same delight in God which made David dance.”   

songs of deliverance