Sunday, May 26, 2013

Much of life is adapting

Combat the negative thoughts by telling yourself affirmations
each hour. Hopefully you will start to believe them.
Sometimes in our frustration with our situations, we
need to find ways to channel our negative energy. Walking
at least three miles a day helps me. Jog, play tennis, play the
saxophone, mow the grass. Get out there and get moving.
Befriend the poor, the hungry, the widow, the fatherless,
the prisoners, the alien. Find someone else who is suffering
and affirm them in the love of our Lord.

Reflections to Ponder
Keep a journal. Studies show writing reduces stress and
if you write at least five times a week for twenty minutes
you will notice the affects.

Also, try to envision your current situation as you
would like to see it. Picture your kids getting along with
your new spouse. Imagine peaceful conversations and the
acceptance of each other. Pray for this to take place and
keep praying that one day it will.

“What matters is not what we feel like praying
about, but what God wants us to ask him for. Not
the poverty of our own heart, but the riches of the
Word of God must decide how we are to pray”
(Bonhoeffer, Life Together, 157)

When You Walk
As you walk, think of those in the Bible who went through
transitions in their journey and learned to adapt. Moses
is a great example of someone who was brought up by
God for a specific mission—to deliver His people out of
captivity in Egypt. Yet, even though God spoke to him
in a burning bush, Moses pleaded with his Lord to send
someone else to accomplish this task. Moses didn’t accept
or adjust to God’s plan for him overnight. It took time for
him to grow into the role and be transformed.
Do you believe that God can transform you in
your situation?

~ This is an excerpt from the devotional,
Getting Out of Bed in the Morning: Reflections of Comfort in Heartache
by Alice J. Wisler

Monday, May 6, 2013

Happiness? An entitlement?

“When you are happy, so happy you have no sense of needing
Him, so happy that you are tempted to feel His claims
upon you as an interruption, if you remember yourself and
turn to Him with gratitude and praise, you will be—or so
it feels—welcomed with open arms. But go to Him when
your need is desperate, when all other help is vain, and
what do you find? A door slammed in your face, and a
sound of bolting and double bolting on the inside. After
that, silence” (18).

We might conclude that we aren’t the ones with the
problem. We might neglect to remember that we do live in
a sin-filled world where, often, things are not as we believe
they should be. We believe we are entitled to the happiness
others feel and since our present turmoil keeps us from
happiness, something is therefore wrong with God.
Even Jesus asked His Father why He had been forsaken.
I think we can assume that Jesus felt abandoned.
Yet we know the outcome of the Crucifixion story. God
was working in the midst of the agony and pain Jesus suffered.
Can we trust that God works even when He seems
silent? Can we believe that He sees each tear, perhaps even
numbers them as He has the hair on our heads?

Reflections to Ponder
The fear of being left out in the cold grips us. Spend some
time focusing on the promises we are given.

Excerpt from Getting Out of Bed in the Morning

Friday, May 3, 2013

Moving from self-blame to God's grace

It was a myth to believe that we would be protected from life’s sadness. We live in a broken world and just as others go through seasons of anguish, so shall we. There are signs of suffering all around us if we open our eyes to them. I used to think bad things only happened to other people. Then one day my son died. Up until his cancer diagnosis he’d been a healthy boy. What caused the tumor? Doctors had no clue. As a mother, I wondered if I’d done something wrong during pregnancy. Was it because I got food poisoning during my sixth month? It must be my fault, something I could have controlled.Sorrow happens. How will we handle it? Will we ask God to come alongside and walk with us through it? Or will we continue to blame ourselves until we can barely hold our head up?

The sheer vastness and devastation of sorrow is summed up in this quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Sorrow makes us all children again—destroys all differences of intellect. The wisest know nothing.”

Allow yourself to ask the tough questions. Many of these hold no understandable earthly answer. Can you live with not knowing why?


God, I pray for a respite from my tears and questions today. Meet me in my struggles.

~ Excerpt from Getting Out of Bed in the Morning
To order your copy of Getting Out of Bed in the Morning: Reflections of Comfort in Heartache, click here.