When we think we should run from or be void of emotions and ups and downs, remember that
Jesus showed anger.
Jesus needed time alone to pray.
Jesus was deeply moved in spirit.
Hannah cried to the Lord in brokenness.
Tabitha’s friends wept for her.
Paul inwardly burned.
Thomas was uncertain and
yet, Jesus showed up.
When they reached for him, he was there.
Because even in our pain, the Lord is present.
If you’re struggling and in that place of sadness,
know that the Lord is with you in it.
Look to Jesus. He will lift you up.
There is always hope in the Lord.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him so that you would overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance…
He has made everything beautiful in its time.”
I cringed when my friend told me the story about her trip to the store.
My friend had her two young kids with her. She was holding her son and her daughter was standing up in the cart.
The cart fell on its side, so she scooped her crying daughter up, feeling overwhelmed, when another mama strolled right by her saying coldly, “And, that’s exactly why I leave my kids at home with my husband when I come to the store.”
The thing is, my friend’s husband was on deployment, for a third time. My friend was on the brink of tears now. Maybe if that other mama knew, she might have lent a hand?
We just don’t know people’s stories. Maybe someone’s spouse is deployed, maybe she’s a widow, a single mom, or just having a bad day.
If someone is in distress, instead of calculating what they should be doing or giving advice, let’s figure out how we can jump in and help.
There’s usually more to someone’s story.
But, regardless, some days, we all just need someone to lift us up.
Let’s be that someone.
“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you.”
My son and I were talking about the Pharisees in the Bible. The ones who thought they were above everyone else because of how they prayed and followed the law so closely.
He said, “I’m glad we’re not like the Pharisees.” I told him about a story Jesus shared in Luke 18.
To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
[Jesus said,] “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
The Lord says he will lift up the humble. The one begging for mercy.
But, he will humble the who is prideful, thinking he’s above the rest. The one whose heart is not in what he’s doing, but just doing it for show and ritual.
The Lord wants our hearts, our humility, our brokenness.
He doesn’t want us pointing out how we’re better than the next person as this Pharisee did.
He doesn’t want us to be secure in our own righteousness.
He wants us to be secure in His righteousness.
I told my son that we all fall short and need Jesus. We all mess up. That Jesus said, “I didn’t come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”(Luke 5:32)
Jesus wants us to see our need for him. If someone sees themselves as perfect and “righteous” they don’t see a need for Jesus.
But, the thing is, every single one of us humans falls short at times, and we all need Jesus desperately. If we don’t see our imperfections, then we miss seeing that we need the Lord.
The Lord saw the tax collector’s imperfections, but he also saw his humility, the man’s need for him, and his desperate prayer.
And Jesus said, he “went home justified before God.”
Lord, may we walk in humility and be quick to confess when we mess up.
When we are proud and arrogant, change our hearts to reflect humility.
Instead of pointing fingers, Lord, help us point our fingers at ourselves to see where we can change our own hearts, our own minds, our own souls, to be more like you. Oh, Lord, we need You. We love you. Would you fill our hearts and help us seek first your kingdom and righteous.
In Jesus’ name, amen. ❤️
I was reminded today to make sure I’m present with my kids because we never know when they’ll need to open up.
This afternoon, my kids were playing in the art room and I brought my laundry there to fold. Out of nowhere, one of them opened up, telling me something that had been so heavy on their heart and I didn’t know.
I didn’t know that there had been so much sadness about this, until it came through with tears and broken words.
We weren’t playing a game together. It wasn’t tuck-in time. I wasn’t asking questions. It wasn’t one-on-one or planned time. I was just there. Folding laundry.
We don’t have to be doing magnificent things with our kids for them to open up. We just need to be there. To be present.
Not constantly, as we all need space, but enough so our kids know that we are available and there for them. Always.
(And, please no judgement on my lack of folding skills. I’m well aware!) 😂