Tough Times Don’t Take a Holiday

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At three a.m. this morning I heard the tones drop for an ambulance at the home of a friend. My heart sunk, I prayed for him and his sweet wife and then as my mind has a tendency to do, it jumped from thought to thought, heartache to heartache, trouble to trouble, struggle to struggle. Tough times don’t take a Holiday.

There’s a song in my head that’s on repeat called “Power in Prayer” by 11th hour. It’s a good one to be stuck! It’s a soulful song saying, “It’s a di-rect line to the throne room, where you can find someone who cares. And if you need some proof I can tell you, there is power, power in prayer!” Glory! I just took a little break to listen to it. It causes my heart to be grateful that I serve such an amazing God.

Psalm 100 says

[1] Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. [2] Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. [3] Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. [4] Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. [5] For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Make a Noise

Making a joyful noise takes an effort on our part, does it not? I’ve never had any issue making a noise. I was born with that ability in abundant supply. I spoke with a friend this week about the gift that God gave me of music and my fear that I wouldn’t have the strength to sing after heart surgery. But nine days after that surgery I stood with the choir at Victory Baptist Church and belted a song out as  if nothing was interfering with my health. That my friend is the power of prayer and the power of Almighty God who sits high and looks low.  He looks at a land that He created with such detail and splendor, and turned it over to an ungrateful people. Ingratitude is disease rooted in pride. Pride that we deserve this great land we live in. That we deserve the wonderful people and things in our life. But a three a.m. phone call can change your perspective of life rather quickly. We need to make noise while we have opportunity.

Serve with Gladness

It’s unfortunate that there is probably more sour than sweet saints serving in the sanctuary. If they’re even serving, Many are just sitting. And I’ll not be ungrateful and say I don’t appreciate their presence, because I do! But just for a second, imagine that we are Old Testament saints and not under the grace of God.

Deuteronomy 28:47-48 KJV

[47] Because thou servedst not the Lord thy God with joyfulness, and with gladness of heart, for the abundance of all things ; [48] Therefore shalt thou serve thine enemies which the Lord shall send against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in want of all things : and he shall put a yoke of iron upon thy neck, until he have destroyed thee.

I’d venture a guess those who God spoke to would have much preferred serving with a smile than what they got. But it was too little too late. God had had enough. Praise Him for His grace and mercy! Part of our service is simply to lift up our voices in songs of praise. Is that really too much too ask? Another 3 a.m. though that ran through my mind was “uh-oh, I’m on the music schedule this week!” It was a sting in my soul that I haven’t practiced anything yet. I should be preparing to sing a sermonic solo that will encourage God’s people and prepare their hearts for the Pastor’s message. But as always, it’s been down on my list of priority since the last time I sang. I forget what a privilege it is to serve the Lord in such a way.

Get with the Program

He reminds us in verse 3,  “Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” Have we forgotten our role in this world is to glorify and to serve the Creator? I always find it humorous that God refers to us as sheep and we prefer to associate ourselves with foxes, or horses or other more graceful creations, but God says, nope… you’re just dumb sheep. And as always, He’s not wrong. And even though He knows who we are, He loves us and has purpose for us, and that purpose is going to be expanded into the Kingdom depending upon how we serve Him here.

That thought makes me so much more excited about Heaven. I’m all about having something to do, and to imagine that being something that will allow me to serve God eternally and love every second of it, I’m in like Flynn! How can Christians be sad sack saints? Why can they not see what they’re missing. I pray they discover Who they are in Christ. It’s amazing!

Be Thankful

Thanksgiving shouldn’t just be a day on the calendar. God children need to learn to be more thankful. Society may have huge issues with many things, but there’s no shortage of issues within the Christian family either. There is a failure to understand what we read, comprehend it and then live it.

The cross isn’t just a piece of jewelry to wear as a symbol of faith. It’s an actual wooden instrument of death that our Lord was crucified on and treated despicably, taking every sin of ours upon Him and yet we wear it as our trophy. I say that with guilt in my own soul because I take too lightly what He did for me.

That is why when I read this Psalm, knowing what David did not when He wrote it, should give me greater desire to show my gratitude to the Lord Jesus.

[4] Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. [5] For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

The Lord is so good. And I am in need of His mercy every day and everlasting, and I praise Him that it extends not only to me, but to the generations before and after, that when eternity comes, there won’t  ble separation and family tables won’t have empty seats. Glory to God! And may you have the happiest of Thanksgivings! ~ Shari, The Jesus ChicK

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