Monday, November 28, 2022

Don't Second-Guess God

 

By Andrea Merrell


As for God, His way is perfect. Psalm 18:30 NIV


“Give your burden to God,” the pastor said. “Lay it at His feet and walk away empty-handed. Trust Him for the answer.”


I did what he said. It lasted about ten minutes. I picked my burden back up and continued to carry it. The worst part is that I gave the Lord several suggestions on how to fix the problem. I’m sure He was grateful for my sage advice (😊) but said, “I’ve got this … if you’ll let go.”


Why is it that we think we’re smarter and wiser than the God of the universe? The Creator of heaven and earth? The all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present God?


Paul says it best in Romans 9:20-21 (MSG):

Who in the world do you think you are to second-guess God? Do you for one moment suppose any of us knows enough to call God into question? Clay doesn’t talk back to the fingers that mold it, saying, “Why did you shape me like this?” Isn’t it obvious that a potter has a perfect right to shape one lump of clay into a vase for holding flowers and another into a pot for cooking beans?


There are so many things in this world we will never understand until we see the Lord face-to-face. And I imagine when we do, all those trivial matters we worried about, struggled with, and tried to fix will become meaningless in the light of His glory.


Don’t be guilty of second-guessing God. Give up the right to understand His ways—which are so much higher than ours—and learn to trust Him for the outcome. He is the answer to every question and the solution to every problem.


As the psalmist David said, “As for God, His way is perfect.”

 

(Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Stuart Miles.)


TWEETABLE

Don’t be guilty of second-guessing God. Give up the right to understand His ways—which are so much higher than ours—and trust Him for the outcome. via @AndreaMerrell (Click to tweet.)

 

                            

Monday, November 21, 2022

What Are You Thinking About Day and Night?

 By Andrea Merrell


Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure

to obey everything written in it.

Joshua 1:8 NLT

 

“Oh, I don’t meditate,” the woman said. “That’s spooky New Age stuff.”


How sad that the word meditation has gotten such a bad rap in today’s society. To meditate simply means to think deeply or carefully about something.


Eastern philosophy  teaches that we are to empty our minds, while Scripture says we are to fill our minds with God’s Word. 


The Lord told Joshua, "Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do."


“But I don’t have time for all that,” some people might say. One writer suggests that we should consider all the hours we spend driving, waiting in line, and being put on hold. How do we spend that time? Listening to a CD or the radio? Getting angry at other drivers. Worrying about all the items on our to-do list? Thinking about all that could go wrong?


The Bible says, "For as he thinks in heart, so is he" (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV). And we get to choose what we think about. The Bible also has much to say about renewing our mind, and it always begins with what we think about the most.


During this holiday week, ask yourself, What am I thinking about day and night? Then turn your attention to the Lord with a heart of gratitude and praise for who He is and all He's done in your life. And be sure to meditate on His Word both day and night.


Wishing you and yours a blessed Thanksgiving.               


Photo by Sebastian Knoll on Unsplash


TWEETABLE

Are you meditating daily on God's Word or everything that could go wrong? via @Andrea Merrell (Click to tweet.)

Monday, November 14, 2022

The Recipe for Happiness

 

By Andrea Merrell

 I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content.

Philippians 4:11 NKJV

 

“How are you?” I asked my friend.

“Not so hot,” she answered, then proceeded to tell me all the negative things going on in her life.

The next time I saw her—about a year later—I knew she had landed her dream job and had recently gotten engaged. So I said, “Well, you look great. How’s life treating you these days?”

I got the same reply as before: “Not so hot.” Then I heard the same negative laundry list from our previous visit.

In Jesus Calling, Sarah Young writes, “People tend to think their circumstances determine the quality of their lives. They feel happy when things are going well and sad or frustrated when things don’t turn out as they’d hoped.” In my friend’s case, she couldn’t—or wouldn’t—allow herself to be happy no matter what.

In spite of everything the apostle Paul faced, he said, “I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content." The Message says it this way:

I’m glad in God, far happier than you would ever guess … I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.

Our well-being should never depend on our circumstances or emotions but on the goodness and faithfulness of the Lord. Paul had the right perspective. He was content and full of joy. Paul found the recipe for happiness—in Christ. Let’s follow his example. 

 

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash


TWEETABLE

Our well-being should never depend on our circumstances or emotions but on the goodness and faithfulness of the Lord. via @Andrea Merrell (Click to tweet.)

Monday, November 7, 2022

Keep Your Mind in Gear

 

By Andrea Merrell

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you!

Isaiah 26:3 NLT

 

I stepped on the gas. Nothing. The car didn’t move.

My mind immediately went into problem-solving mode. Oh, no. What’s wrong with my car? What can I do? Who can I call?


That’s when I looked down.


Car in neutral.


Not in gear.


Problem solved.


The same thing happens when my mind slips into neutral. Thoughts whiz through my mind like bullets at a shooting range. Those random thoughts tend to create worry, anxiety, and stress. My peace disappears.


The only way to correct this problem is to shift my mind out of neutral and into gear by turning my full attention back to the Lord and submitting all my thoughts to Him.


When we trust in Him and keep our thoughts firmly fixed on Him, He promises to keep us in perfect peace. His peace. The peace that goes far beyond human comprehension.


I need that peace. How about you?



Photo by Syed Ali on Unsplash


TWEETABLE

When we trust in the Lord and keep our thoughts firmly fixed on Him, He promises to keep us in perfect peace. via @AndreaMerrell (Click to tweet.)

Monday, October 31, 2022

Knee-Mail

 

By Andrea Merrell

 

Pray without ceasing.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 NKJV


I recently saw a cartoon that showed a little girl kneeling beside her bed, sending her knee-mail to God. A lost art.


In this fast-paced world of tweets, instant messages, texts, emails—and sometimes only emojis—have we lost the ability to really connect with people?


And what about God? Do we send Him a quick IM when we’re in trouble or do we take the time to seek Him, to pour our heart out to Him? Do we flash Him a cute smiley face when He blesses us or do we take time to praise Him, to thank Him for His goodness?


It seems as though getting on our knees has become a thing of the past. (In my case, I wouldn’t be able to get back up … 😊) But bowing a knee is simply an outward expression of posturing the heart. We submit to the Lord by humbling ourselves before Him. We can talk to Him and pray without ceasing no matter where we are or what we’re doing, but we should never discount the practice of taking a knee before our Creator.


Don’t wait. He's waiting for your knee-mail.

 


 Photo by Ben White on Unsplash


TWEETABLE

God doesn’t want our tweets, texts, emails, instant messages, or even an emoji. He wants us to humble ourselves before Him and pray without ceasing. via @AndreaMerrell (Click to tweet.)


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