Proverbs 23:15-16 reads, “My son, if your heart is wise, then my heart will be glad; my inmost being will rejoice when your lips speak what is right.” I want to bring joy to my Heavenly Father more than I want anything else. I know how my son can make me glad, and that is by showing me that he was listening when I taught him, and by making good choices, and by caring for himself, not despising all I went through to bring him to this point in his life. It stands to reason, that the Perfect Father would find joy in the same things when I do them.

The phrase, “Be strong and courageous,” appears four times in Joshua chapter one, once with the word “very” before “courageous.” In verse 9, the command is followed with, “Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” The first three times, God is speaking directly to Joshua, Moses’ successor in leadership. The fourth time, Joshua gets to hear the exact same phrase coming from the mouths of the soldiers before him. I can think of times God has spoken to me by different sources, and it reminds me just how with me He is. Now if I could just remember that long enough to be strong and courageous in the face of fear, temptation, or remorse!

Today was stressful for me, in that those around me are hurting a great deal, I am in both physical pain and professional stress, and it all works together for sort of a great big stew-pot of trouble that seems to sap the energy right out of my effectiveness. While I am hurting, I am trying to look at WHY I am hurting from a spiritual warfare standpoint. If the destroyer is firing at me, what is he trying to distract me from? What service could I be doing? Who around me needed me to be a positive outreach while my pain is turning me inside myself? Too many times, the answer is right in front of me. Today I blew it. I missed opportunities to mend relationships I had recently bruised, and may have even done further harm. I almost feel like I owe it to Earth’s population to go to bed and take a break from doing some of the damage I can do by simply being awake. Since it’s way past my bedtime, I think I will do just that. One day at a time starts over again at 4:30 am.

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