Remember my affliction and my wanderings, the wormwood and the gall! My soul continually remembers it and is bowed down within me. But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, therefore I will hope in him.
This scripture passage is very important to me. Two summers ago, I was going through something that I had never gone through. I was at Sky Ranch and felt completely abandoned by God. I wasn’t experiencing Him how I usually did, and I wasn’t sure what I did wrong. Throughout the last few weeks of the summer, I would meet with my mentor about what was going on. This is one of her favorite passages, and it is a great reminder about God and His love for us. Basically, you’re experiencing affliction and aren’t too happy about it and just being very honest in prayer with God about it. Then, verse 21 starts with ‘But,’ meaning that the complete opposite is fixing to be said on the page. Hope is found in the Lord, knowing the promise that His love never fails and is new every morning. He is faithful when we aren’t. He is everything; we don’t need any more.
Why do I bring up this passage? Well, number one, my roommates and I went to see Gangster Squad last night for a paper. I closed my eyes through half of it – when the guns came out or the mob leader was fixing to destroy someone. During those moments with my eyes closed, God said to me, ‘Isn’t it nice that when you’re with me in heaven for eternity, you won’t have to close your eyes?’ That got me to thinking. What about me deserves to be saved from the scariness and death that is hell? Nothing, yet He wants me anyway. In the midst of the dark theater with mobs going at it and scary bloody things, the promise of heaven brought such joy.
So, when the movie’s over, I’m so amped from all the action I could punch someone. I’ve got that much adrenaline and have sat in a mob movie for two hours – deal with it. Anyway, we end up trying to take home a different train that ends up at a different station than we usually take. We had taken it once with our professor, and it was piece of cake. This time, not so much. We get out and have no idea were we are. We pull out Siri, and things just get crazy. As we’re walking back, we spot a van trailing us – like a creepy van. So we run into a hotel lobby to wait it out and make sure our directions are accurate. Well, once we watch the van park, we decide it’s safe to leave and walk the three blocks up to the street our apartment is on. Once we cross the street, the van’s lights come back on, so we take off running … in below 20 degree weather. We get to our street where there are people (there hadn’t been any people walking where we were) and decide to speed walk the rest of the way home. Honestly, I have never been more scared in all my life. When I got back into the apartment, I just sprawled out on my bed, ice cold air still all up in my lungs and a nauseous feeling in the pit of my stomach. Still shaking, God showed up again. The parable of the lost sheep rung loudly in my ears. In those moments of the night, I was lost and scared. When I was six, God picked me up and took me to be with Him in safety and love. My testimony isn’t about how crazy I was before I met Jesus because what hoodrat things could I have done by the age of six? That experience last night made me more thankful for my relationship with God because in that moment when I had never been more scared, I was reminded of God’s goodness and love for me.
God has been pretty clear this weekend, which is really cool.
I saw my first Broadway play Friday – Mary Poppins. It was fantastic! Even though the temperatures have not been my cup of tea, all that I’m experiencing up here are gifts from the Lord.
One of the classes I’m taking up here is Faith and Works. On Thursday, we talked about our passions. Background: things have happened in my life that make it hard for me to truly dig deep and open up. Basically, I have trust issues. When I had to truly look deep and evaluate what my passions are, it was harder than I expected. Usually, I just pick what is expected of me, but what is that? Thinking of my passions is going to help me in the job hunt that’s going down now. If I can’t open up to myself or others, even let God have 100%, what am I doing? My first post was about courage. This morning, I listened to Ben Stuart’s talk at Breakaway about courage. We must dwell in His love, opening up to Him – and He will make us brave. The courage I seem to have is rooted in people’s opinions of me. I do what I do to please others. Why don’t I do what I do to bring glory to God? Do I resist evil or tolerate it? Why don’t I do something about it? In my final semester of college in New York City, it is time I do something about it. Please pray for myself and the other ones here that our courage is founded in the love of Christ and that while we’re here, we look to make a change in things around us for God’s glory not our own praise.
Well, this was kind of a heavier blog post, but after a morning spent with God, I felt like this was more important than a count of how many peanut butter and jelly sandwiches I’ve had since I’ve been here. Thanks for reading, y’all!