Journaling is a good thing. I wish I could learn to be steadfast with it, faithful to the recording of my thoughts, God’s hand moving in my life, scriptures of promise I claimed. When I read from old entries, I am reminded of times that God proved Himself to me in some personal way. I also read about reflections, when the Holy Spirit takes my mind down a particular pathway and talks to me about life. I was reminded this morning of such a time when I read an entry from two years ago. It was reflection and also a prompting to do more journaling. I feel led to share it with someone, though I know not who. It may not flow for everyone for I’ve written it here just as I did on May 13, 2016.
Life is made up of good times and bad. We take deeper breaths when the days of relief come, when the hard road we have traveled finally ends for a while, we let easier times embrace us. We drink in the rest and we give thanks–and for a while we may coast. We know we almost succumbed to a hard time, but “almost” is the word. God kept us from falling headlong into a pit of despair. He gave us “almost.”
We glance back and wonder at our crippled walk. We look at our panicked fear that oppression, or whatever was had, would stay forever. We know our God and He never has forsaken us, yet it seemed for just a while He might this time. The backward glance is but for a moment. We don’t want to relive even in memory the pain of yesterday.
It will always be this way: good times, bad times, good times again. We will always have our doubts in dark days whether we can stand the new test. But in the dark days–those days called trial–there is also infinite blessing. Like the earth and blooms and winged creatures drink in water from a long awaited heavy rain, we drink in scripture and prayer with greater thirst when we are in our gray days.
We are never quite at home on earth, always longing for that return to the Father’s home. We yearn to be closer to Him when we cannot do for ourselves, when we cannot change a sickness or injury or crisis of whatever kind. We climb into the arms of our Father, spending more time with Him then, for is there that we receive new strength. Though it may not immediately show itself, we can count on it to be there for the next hill to climb.
When we reach that place of sweet relief, that place where problems have lessened and our heart’s load has lightened, it is not a time to cast off the protection that comes with spending quantities of time with God. Yes, we take time to enjoy our respite. We give praise, we give thanks, but we need to keep building reserve. Part of that is by recording what we learn in our earth travels, so that in another time of battle we may reflect and be encouraged. The mind deceives and the memory fails. Write down the help found on the journey. Record answered prayers, the better direction learned, the greater blessing that came with the wait. Romans 8:28 forever proves true. That for those who love God, all things do work together for good when we are called according to His purpose. And that purpose is to be shaped in the image of His Son.
(My appreciation to Flickr for all images.)