All Night Long

Good morning. It is Thursday, May 21, 2015. We have thunderstorms and more rain, this morning.

Today’s word of the day, from the OED, is moodle. This is a verb, meaning, “To dawdle aimlessly; to idle time away. Also with about, on.”

Today is One Day Without Shoes Day. Not to be confused with a day not too long ago, I think it was Go Barefoot Day, this day is to remind us that there are a lot of people in the world who don’t have shoes. Unfortunately, if I show up at work without shoes, I will be sent home. Hmmm . . . I may have just stumbled onto something there . . .

Yesterday morning, I found that I was feeling slightly sad (or at least contemplative), and couldn’t really pin point why. Then, suddenly, at one point in the morning, it hit me. Yesterday was one month since my father passed. Stephanie had already realized that, I’m sure, as she texted me in the afternoon, saying, “It’s an emotional day.” She is really struggling still, probably more so than the rest of us. I’m sure she would appreciate prayers for comfort as she misses her Grandpa a great deal. We all miss him, of course, but we have better coping mechanisms than Stephanie does. Autistic people don’t cope as well with loss like this.

Christi’s Huddle group isn’t meeting tonight, so we will have tonight together.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

To the choirmaster: according to Do Not Destroy. A Miktam of David.
Do you indeed decree what is right, you gods? Do you judge the children of man uprightly?
No, in your hearts you devise wrongs; your hands deal out violence on earth.
The wicked are estranged from the womb; they go astray from birth, speaking lies.
They have venom like the venom of a serpent, like the deaf adder that stops its ear,
so that it does not hear the voice of charmers or of the cunning enchanter.
O God, break the teeth in their mouths; tear out the fangs of the young lions, O LORD!
Let them vanish like water that runs away; when he aims his arrows, let them be blunted.
Let them be like the snail that dissolves into slime, like the stillborn child who never sees the sun.
Sooner than your pots can feel the heat of thorns, whether green or ablaze, may he sweep them away!
The righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance; he will bathe his feet in the blood of the wicked.
Mankind will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth.”

Psalm 58

(From Solid Joys)

I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come?
My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.

Psalm 121:1-3

Today’s reading is “God Works For You.”

“Do you need help? I do. Where do you look for help?”

The Psalmist looked to the hills and asked, “From where does my help come?” The answer was not, “from the hills,” but, “from the Lord,” the one who made the hills! There are two great truths, here. One is that God is the great Creator, who reigns over every problem of life. The other is that our God never sleeps!

“God is a tireless worker.” We can think of God as one who works in our lives. We tend to think the other way around, in our human pride. We like to think that we are “workers in God’s life.” But look at Isaiah 64:4. From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear, no eye has seen a God besides you, who acts for those who wait for him. The word “acts” could be rendered “works.”

“God is working for us around the clock. He does not take days off and he does not sleep.” In fact, 2 Chronicles 16:9 tells us that God is constantly on the lookout to find those for whom he can work! For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless toward him.

Jesus was the most important way that God showed his desire to work for us. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. (Mark 10:45)

If we believe these things, we will be able to “rejoice always” (Philippians 4:4), “give thanks in everything” (Ephesians 5:20), possess “the peace that passes understanding” (Philippians 4:7), “be anxious for nothing” (Philippians 4:6), “hate our lives in this world” (John 12:25), and “love our neighbor as we love ourselves” (Matthew 22:39).

“What a truth! What a reality! God is up all night and all day to work for those who wait for him.”

Father, I remember thinking, at last Saturday’s Anchor prayer gathering, how baffling it is to me to try to fathom that you hear all of our prayers; all of them that rise up to you, millions at a time. Yet you, somehow, hear, comprehend, and act on all of them (at least the ones that are according to you great will and plan). Today’s truth is almost as equally baffling, that you never sleep or slumber; you are always awake, always looking for ways that you can work for us! I remember a reading from this same source, back a week or so ago, that reminded us that the Gospel is not a “help wanted ad.” You work for us! This is a concept that we are slow to understand, because we like to be the ones who do all the work. Help us to relax and know that you are working for us. Even the good works that you have prepared in advance for us to walk in (Ephesians 2:10), are “prepared” by you, that we might “work” in your strength, as if you are truthfully doing the work through and in us. Father, help me to realize this throughout this day.

I pray for safe passage to and from work today, especially this morning, in the midst of thunderstorms and rain. I pray that our work day will go smoothly. Please shelter Christi from undue stress. She has an employee that is giving her trouble; I pray for your intervention in that situation. I pray that your love, mercy, and grace will surround Stephanie, Rachel, Justin, and Mama today. Keep them safe and show them your great love, holding them up in your merciful arms.

I pray for your protection over little Andrew, Lord, that these night terrors that he is experiencing will stop, once and for all! Shield him from whatever is causing these, Lord!

Your grace is sufficient.

psalm_121

He never sleeps!

Grace and peace, friends.

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