Florence

eye of the storm image from outer space
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

This week my husband and I were to spend a long-awaited few days basking in the sun and enjoying God’s creation at Virginia Beach. Reservations had been made months ago. Schedules were cleared and, with a bit of trepidation, we packed our bags while keeping an eye on Florence. I also prayed. We serve a powerful God. Couldn’t He just blow from the west and steer that swirling knot of horror away from the coast? Of course, He could! If He could turn the sundial back ten degrees for Hezekiah (2 Kings 20:10-11), He could certainly move a bunch of clouds!

He didn’t. As time moved on, so did our plans. My heart sank as the visions of warmth and sun slowly puddled at my feet! We fought discouragement and confusion.  What should we do? We could just cancel the whole thing, but we both felt a great need ( I was going to say, ‘desperate’ but the poor folks that are in the path of Florence have the right to use that word, not me!) to have some downtime.

I started searching the internet from Maine to D.C. struggling to keep my attitude right. After all…

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

we quote Romans 8:28, but do we really believe it? Somewhere in all the confusion and frustration, I discovered a great truth:

LIVING OUR FAITH AND BELIEVING GOD’S WORD ARE TWO DIFFERENT THINGS!

I’d say that most born-again believers would say they believe that God will work all things together for good, but what happens when it goes from a favorite Bible verse to reality? Life is falling apart and we can’t catch all the pieces! How can this be good? What is God doing? Can I know what He’s doing? Can I understand? CAN I TRUST HIM? Folks, that’s what it all boils down to—can I trust God?

Can I trust God? Can I trust God? Can I trust the One who…

  • Created everything I see
  • Controls every aspect of my life
  • Knows the beginning from the end
  • Sees me—all of me, all the time
  • Knows me and still loves me
  • Loves me so much that He
    • Allowed Himself as Son to come to this world
    • Live here in worse conditions than most of us could ever imagine
    • Was rejected by His own chosen people
    • Suffered the pains of the cross and the agony of sin for ME!!!

Can I trust Him? I’m ashamed to even type those words!

And today, as I sit in this cozy spot in Lancaster, PA enjoying comfort and beautiful surroundings, rest and relaxation (and lots of good food!) I am ashamed of my sin of forgetfulness and unbelief!

And I’m reminded of a poem that I wrote a while back about Martha’s similar plight. Take a look, and the next time you are called upon by our dear heavenly Father to LIVE your faith, remember Who He is and that you are not facing those difficult realities alone! Praise God, don’t “keep on swimming,” but pull up the oars and let Him drive!

Dost Thou Not Care?

Safe Haven for Husbands

michalWhere would that be, a safe haven for husbands? Well… it should be with his wife: Proverbs 31:11

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.

The heart of her husband trusteth in her, And he shall have no lack of gain. (ASV)

The heart of her husband has faith in her, and he will have profit in full measure. (BBE: Basic Bible in English)

The heart of her husband trusts in her confidently and relies on and believes in her securely, so that he has no lack of [honest] gain of need of [dishonest] spoil. (AMPC: Amplified Bible, Classic Edition)

There it is! But what does it look like to have a wife in whom he can trust, have faith in, believe or rely upon? Sadly, I can tell you about the opposite from my own experience. 😦 A husband does not feel safe to trust his wife because…

  • She expects the impossible from him. He doesn’t make enough money. She might not say it right out in plain words, but her complaints about not having this or that say it loud and clear.
  • She does not trust his leadership. She questions every decision right down to the salad dressing he chooses! On a bigger scale, she argues with him over major and minor issues presenting possibly the most deadly situation for raising godly, secure children: a divided front!
  • She doesn’t listen to him. He could NEVER share his heart, his hurt, or his struggles in fear that she will either ridicule him, make light of his difficulties, or explain why he’s not thinking right.
  • She WILL NOT FOLLOW. Even though she complains that he doesn’t lead, often it is the outcome of years of failed following on the wife’s part. If you will not follow in the little things, what makes you think he will lead in the difficult places?
  • She does not share his dreams or vision. If he would ever decide to share his ideas, she looks at him with one eyebrow raised. Words are not necessary.

When David brought the ark into Jerusalem, he was excited—very excited and for obvious reasons. His last attempt had ended in failure and the death of Uzzah (2 Samuel 6:6, 7). For three months, the ark is housed by Obededom and God blesses him.  Meanwhile, David is getting his heart right and makes preparations to move the ark properly—according to God’s law. His heart is clean and his actions are right. He is…

  • Acting with gladness (2 Sam. 6:12)
  • Offering sacrifices every six steps! (v. 13)
  • Dancing “before the LORD with all his might” (v. 14) [NOTE: The film King David (1985) really gets this scene COMPLETELY wrong! They make his dance to be sensual. There is no place for sensuality in worship and it goes against the grain of David’s character to portray it as such. –just my opinion!)

Michal, David’s wife, looks out the window, sees David “leaping and dancing before the LORD” and she despises him (v. 16). There are so many reasons for her to be out of sorts. Their culture was so different from ours, but her words to David when he comes home to bless his household are classic bitterness.

Then David returned to bless his household. And Michal the daughter of Saul came out to meet David, and said, How glorious was the king of Israel to day, who uncovered himself to day in the eyes of the handmaids of his servants, as one of the vain fellows shamelessly uncovereth himself! (v. 20)

Will David go to her again? No. His words are caustic and cruel as well. The chapter ends by saying that Michal never has children. She is not even referred to as David’s wife but as the daughter of Saul. How sad!

As wives, we could certainly side with Michal and list a dozen “yes, but he…” We are not married to perfect husbands and our husbands do not have perfect wives, but when trust is gone, the cornerstone of any marriage crumbles!

Love him! Listen to him! If he has not felt safe with you, dear wife, rebuild that trust little by little and watch your marriage flourish! This might be very hard for you depending on your situation, but try it—what do you have to lose? Remember, Beauty and the Beast:

Tale as old as time
True as it can be
Barely even friends
Then somebody bends
Unexpectedly

Just a little change
Small to say the least
Both a little scared
Neither one prepared

Beauty and the beast

Ever just the same
Ever a surprise
Ever as before and ever just as sure as the sun will rise

Tale as old as time
Tune as old as song
Bittersweet and strange
Finding you can change
Learning you were wrong

Certain as the sun
Rising in the east
Tale as old as time
Song as old as rhyme
Beauty and the beast

Songwriters: Howard Elliott Ashman / Alan Menken

Beauty & The Beast lyrics © Walt Disney Music Company