Do I Depend on God as Much as My iPhone?

Realizing How Much I Depend on My Phone

I lost my iPhone yesterday afternoon. Ouch. I left it in the restroom at Von’s. It took less than ten minutes for me to realize I didn’t have it, emptying my purse three times and patting my pockets over and over. As soon as I knew it was definitely gone, I raced back, muttering reassurances. It’s Ok, I told myself. A locked bathroom, needing the florist to use a code to open the door; it’ll be there.

But it wasn’t. “A lot of people were in there,” the florist told me. “Try the front desk.”

No phone turned in.

Even though I knew I used it in Von’s, after all, I used the Von’s app to check off my list while I shopped, I trotted down to Office Depot. Just in case.

No phone there either.

Suddenly I realized just how much I depend on my phone. My whole life is on there. Precious photos of family, contacts, calendar, email, my joy/gratitude journal, and on and on. I’m sure you know. Obviously, I couldn’t live without my phone.

Next stop, Verizon. I hoped maybe they could ping it, help me find it. Of course not. That only works on TV. “Nobody turns in iPhones,” Maria, my customer service rep said. “They’re too valuable.”

And so, I take a deep breath, and do the only thing I can. Buy a new phone. It takes a long time to set up a new phone and without it, I felt helpless. I couldn’t even call Van to tell him I’d be late.

Without my phone, I felt incomplete, inefficient, a little lost. I needed it to do daily business successfully. As I sat and waited for my new phone to be get ready, I couldn’t help but wonder, Do I depend on God as much as I do my phone? 

Depend on God

I can lose my phone, but I never have to be without God; He is always present and longs to be with me. But I can ignore Him. Turn Him to silent. I must choose to draw near to God. Before I do anything else, I need to set the tone of the day by spending time in His Word and talking to Him in prayer. I can’t leave Him at home, sitting on my desk, waiting for my return. He goes wherever I go, as long as I keep my eyes fixed on Him. Depend on Him.

 

There was nothing I could do to speed up the process of setting up my phone.  All I could do was wait for it to finish loading. Impatience added angst. Without my phone, I couldn’t do anything except wait. I didn’t want to, but I had no choice. I can’t hurry God, either. His timing is perfect, and I can’t rush Him. The only way to true peace is to completely depend on His perfect timing.

Linking today with Writer Wednesday, Woman to Woman, Porch Stories, Coffee for Your Heart, Chasing Community, Heart Encouragement, Tune-in Thursday, Salt and Light  Faith on Fire, Fresh Market Friday, Dance with Jesus

Priceless Treasure: God’s Word Sustains You

God’s Word Sustains Me

The fact of retirement starts to become real as I see Instagram and Facebook posts of former colleagues putting up bulletin boards. Not me. For the first time in thirty-five years, I don’t need to struggle with butcher paper, welcome signs, supply lists this year. Some people wonder if boredom may become a problem. I don’t worry about that; I never needed work for my reason to get up and go. The priceless treasure of God’s Word, the one and only thing that truly sustains me I have with me at all times.

Instead of racing out the door at 6:30, I sit at my desk with my coffee cup, Bible, and computer for a leisurely morning with Jesus. I don’t have to watch the clock; instead I can spend as much time as I want. Reading. Meditating. Talking to my Lord. Listening.

Sustains

Currently, I’m doing a study on the Names of God. This week the focus is on shepherd. And the passage I read is familiar, Psalm 23. I can say the words without reading them in my Bible. But I don’t rush; I savor each word.

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.

He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul.

He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

The Good Shepherd Sustains All My Needs

Retirement does bring some unknowns. Especially as we prepare to leave the family and friends who have sustained us for all of our married lives. As I read the familiar words, He reminds me of Who He is and sustains me.

The Lord is my shepherd. He cares and provides all I need. That includes my physical needs. I can rest in the assurance that He will take care of everything. No matter what happens in the uncharted water of retirement and moving, I don’t need to worry.

Most importantly, He restores my soul. Because of Christ’s love and care, I am on the path of righteousness. It’s only through Christ that I am righteous, washed clean. But I must follow Christ; I can’t go off on my own. The sheep listen for the voice of the shepherd and follow Him. When I follow the shepherd, His goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life, and I dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

That promise alone sustains me.

God’s Word sustains you, too. Spend time with Him, mining the priceless treasure of Scripture. What favorite Scriptures sustain you-in good times and hard ones? Let the Truth of His love wash over you as you spend time savoring all His Word holds.

Linking this week with Glimpses of Beauty, Monday Musings, Inspire Me Monday, Ra Ra Linkup, Trekking Thru, Tell His Story, Writer Wednesday, Woman to Woman, Porch Stories, Coffee for Your Heart, Chasing Community, Heart Encouragement, Tune-in Thursday, Salt and Light

Three Ways to Get Inspired

Van and I spent four days in Arizona looking at our in-construction new home this week.  The daily pictures my sister-in-love faithfully sends show every detail of the work completed, and inspired us; we wanted to walk through the rooms and see for ourselves.

More importantly, a friend suggested we write a favorite Bible verse as a couple on the beam over the doorway to our new home. “You’ll know it’s always there,” she said. We loved the idea and chose several verses to write throughout the house, but didn’t make it in time. Instead, we decided to write our verses on the foundation. And we knew if we didn’t get there soon, our opportunity would vanish.

We spent an afternoon together, taking turns writing verses on the foundation of the house and praying each one together. Once we move in, we hope to regularly read the verses in each area and pray we faithfully live for God in this home He provided us.

Sometimes we all could stand a little help getting inspired instead of being stuck in a rut or feeling discouraged. But you don’t have to wait for inspiration to strike out of nowhere. Seek it in these three ways.

Ways to Get Inspired
  • Read and pray God’s Word. Nothing inspires like reading God’s Word. We can find direction, His promises, and evidence of how He faithfully works in our lives without fail. Ephesians 5:19 tells us to encourage one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, making music in our hearts to the Lord.
  • Take good advice from friends. Van and I loved the idea of dedicating our home to God and His Kingdom. First, we spent time individually choosing verses we wanted to pray. Then we shared those verses and prayed together. While we may have put up a plaque somewhere in the house, we didn’t think of making the Scripture part of the its foundation. Thank you, Karen Lochte for your idea.

Get Inspired

  • Read books, articles, blog posts. As we get ready to move, we’re thinking ahead to a new community. I have a stack of books I’m reading to give me ideas about reaching out to the people in my new neighborhood. Because I want to glorify God, I’m finding inspiration in books like The Turquoise Table by Krisin Schell as well as her blog and Craving Connection from (in)courage. I look forward to meeting new friends on my front porch.

We all need to get inspired sometimes. What helps you be inspired? Leave a comment sharing how you get inspired.

Linking with Five Minute Friday, Grace and Truth, Faith on Fire, Dance with Jesus, Counting My Blessings

Respond with the Hands and Feet of Jesus

Two a.m. and I lie awake. I’ve been waking up around two for a few days. Why? I search my mind for a reason and come up empty. Every other day, I’ve forced myself to stay in bed and go back to sleep. But this morning I wonder, is God calling me to listen? To pray? I respond to that question by throwing off the covers and going to the family room to pray.

But I don’t want to talk. I want to listen. To be like Samuel, who responded, “Speak, Lord, your servant is listening,” (1 Samuel 1:10).

It is incredibly hard to listen when there is no voice answering. My mind wanders. How do I listen?

Respond to His Word

By reading His Word. His Word speaks, and I listen by doing what it says (James 1:22). I become the hands and feet, the voice and heart of Christ every time I respond to a person He puts in my path today.

As I’m out and about, I remember what He asks me to do. I carry His Word in my heart and continue to respond to each circumstance with hope, trust, and love.

I can

  • Pray for my husband as I pack his lunch this morning.
  • Call my mom and remind her how special she is to me.
  • Sing with joy as I do dishes and laundry.
  • Say thank you to the clerk at the store who helps me.
  • Listen while someone shares their frustration.
  • Offer hope to the GriefShare group I facilitate tonight.
  • Share how God is working in my life with my granddaughter this afternoon on our weekly date.

How about you? How will you respond to His call?

Respond

Sharing this week with:

Intentional Tuesday, Testimony Tuesday, RaRaLinkup, #TellHisStory, #OneWordCoffee, Coffee for Your Heart, Thought Proving Thursday

 

 

Remembering God’s Word

I’m trying a new devotional this year, and I love it. Timothy Keller’s The Songs of Jesus: A Year of Daily Devotions in the Psalms. Today, I read Psalm 23, arguably one of the most beloved of all the psalms. My mother’s favorite. The psalm my pastor encouraged me to memorize fifty years ago when I was preparing to become a member of my church. I chose to memorize a different psalm–I think it was something shorter, but honestly, I don’t remember.

I didn’t understand the value of learning God’s Word when I was eleven.

The Value of Remembering God’s Word

Now, at sixty, I know the value of memorizing–and remembering–God’s Word. The Word that guards my heart and mind when it lives there. When I have choices to make, His Word

  • Protects me from Satan’s schemes. Quenches the fiery darts (Ephesians 6:16).
  • Comforts me when I struggle (Psalm 119:50).
  • Guides me and lights my path (Psalm 119:105).
  • When I feel like I’m walking around in circles, unsure of where I’m going or how to get there, it makes my paths straight (Proverbs 3:6).
  • Gives freedom and blesses what I do (James 1:25-26)
Remembering God’s Word is a Tangible Way to See Him Working in My Life

God uses His Word to whisper in my ear, or shout if I don’t pay attention. At just the right moment, the Word I took time to memorize, floods my mind and like a pebble thrown into a lake, ripples throughout my entire being. I may not be able to see God, but I hear the Truth of His Word. He uses His Word to remind me He’s with me.

Remembering God’s Word Changes Me

Memorizing God’s Word is pointless if all I learn are the words. Memorizing must involve meditation–letting His Words infuse my life, become part of my being. I must act on the Word, or I deceive myself about my walk with God (James 1:22-25). My natural inclinations are replaced with God’s patterns.

 

How Do I Remember His Word?

The best way I found to memorize His Word is to keep it with me. I write verses on cards and carry them in my purse and car. I frame the verse I’m working on and keep it on my desk. When I stand in line or wait for Van to find just the right nail at the hardware store, I repeat the verse. When I swim, I say the verses I know. Reviewing past verses is as important to me as learning new ones. Otherwise, I forget. I keep the verses I know on a ring and spend time rehearsing them.

God’s Word in my heart and mind. Infused into my very being. Guiding. Encouraging. Correcting. Reminding. Lighting my way.

Remembering Linking with Coffee for Your Heart, #onewordcoffee, Thought Provoking Thursday