Your word is a lamp for my steps;
it lights the path before me.
Psalm 119:105 The Voice
Imagine yourself in a very dark room. You literally cannot see your hand in front of your face. What’s the first thing you would do? I’d put my hands out and slowly inch my way forward hoping to connect to something that would help me figure out where I was. A visually-impaired person uses a cane to help direct them in their darkness, but it doesn’t help them to see. You could assist by guiding that person. Now they’re relying on you instead of the cane, but it’s still not the same as seeing where they are going.
As I read Psalm 119:105 this morning, I realized, in a dark room, while there are a variety of things I could use to help direct or guide me in the darkness, there’s only one thing that can help me see…. LIGHT!
Turn on the light, and now I can see clearly where I am and what I need to do to navigate in, out or around the room. God’s word is that LIGHT for my life!
We’ve all been in dark places in our lives searching for answers aka searching for light. When we can’t see our way out of a situation, we look for things that can help us. Some of those things have momentary benefits, but a lot of those things only made the situation worse. Does your situation feel like a dark room and the four walls are closing in on you? That’s the BEST time to be still and KNOW that your God is with you and will be a light for you in that situation. God knows EXACTLY what you need and when you need it. The Lord is as reliable as the rising and setting of the sun. You CAN count on him. The outcomes may not happen as you imagined but, I bet in the end, the results will be far better!
I know. It’s hard to wait.
I’m not the most patient person either. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had spiritual temper-tantrums and demanded the Lord do it my way right now! Those were painful lessons to learn, and I’m still learning. There’s nothing we’re going through that is a surprise to God. He sees, He knows, and He cares.
Well, you say, if He sees, and He knows, and He cares, why hasn’t He done something by now?!
I feel you on that. But here’s something to consider. We see things from a very limited human perspective, and the Lord sees it from a divinely larger one. He sees the bigger picture across time and space and people that we can’t see. What seems to be a long and slow process to us is God working all things together for good!
So, where’s the starting point in this process? God’s Word! The Psalmist says it is a lamp to our feet and a light our path. It is the rope to hold on to, a shield to protect you, a blanket to comfort you and the wisdom you need to get through this situation.
Today, no matter what you’re going through, take a deep breath, open the WORD and READ. I promise, there’s an answer in there for you!
Conversations With Edwina! © 2018
via Daily Prompt: Overcome
Overcome. The word, like a two-edged sword, cuts both ways. It can mean to be overwhelmed or defeated by something AND it can mean to succeed in dealing with a difficulty or problem. As I consider what I’d like to overcome, I must face the fact that, for the moment, I am overcome by it. I don’t mean to play with words but the reality check of overcoming anything is to first acknowledge that it is a problem that needs to be overcome. If I arrogantly ignore this key catalyst of change, then I remain the same. I choose to overcome!
via Daily Prompt: Overworked
Sandy, blew out an exasperated breath and checked one more item off her To Do list. The thrill of accomplishment that normally accompanied that little action was not there today. The list was still very long and the day was getting shorter. She’d just gotten home from work and there were personal things to attend to that seemingly could not wait, like renewing her tags online before the deadline in just a few days! Sandy perused the list; was there anything she could move to another day or, better yet, not do at all? A weariness, that a 5 Hour Energy or a Red Bull drink couldn’t touch, draped itself around her shoulders and seeped into her very bones. Sandy wanted to cry but she knew if she started she may never stop. Shaking her head and taking a deep breath, Sandy mouthed a quick prayer and went on to the next task. In that moment, she made an executive decision and smiled as she circled the item on her list with a flourish. This item had originally been at the bottom of the list but she’d decided to move it up. Sandy begin peeling off her clothes as she headed to the bathroom. It didn’t take long to run a tub, light a few candles, dump in some bath salts and tune her phone to a smooth jazz station. Within minutes of sliding into the soothing waters, Sandy’s mind was somewhere else and her list… it was on the floor! #yougottaknowwhentotakeabreak!
via Daily Prompt: Fish
Fish! If you’ve read the book or visited the Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle, WA, then the one word prompt immediately conjures up images of fun, team spirit and, for me, a special time of comfort.
I was in Seattle for the memorial service of my first grandson who lived 21 days before leaving us bewildered and bereaved. We’d prayed and hoped and prayed some more for a miracle of healing but for Micah Andrew Johnson, his healing took place in heaven. After the service, I found myself at the fish market as a way of distracting myself from my feelings. The team at Pike Place typically asked their watching audience where they’re from and what brings them to Seattle. The question was asked of me and I somberly answered and tried to shrink to the back of the crowd but that team was not going to let me wallow in sorrow.
For the next 30 minutes I was embraced in loving hugs, fishy kisses and invited behind the counter for a picture. They told me they were sorry for my loss and hoped my trip home would be safe and peaceful and indeed it was. I still had tears but some of them were shed in grateful thanks for their kindness to me that day.
Boot camp was everything the young man expected and then some! Grueling, exhausting even what some might label abusive at times but he embraced it all. Small in stature, the young man went above and beyond to prove that there was more to him than just size. He excelled in all the physical tests except one; he had not been able to successfully vault over a wall that was part of an extensive obstacle course. In every attempt, he always fell short of being able to grab the top of the wall and propel himself over.
The night before the final tests of boot camp, he was awakened by his Drill Sergeant and ordered to go outside. Sure that he was about to be chastised for his failure on the course that day, the young man stoically waited for what was to come. Instead, his instructor led him to his nemesis: The Wall. Then the young man was given an odd instruction: feel the wall. Disciplined to respond to orders, he did as he was told. He slowly walked the length of the wall as he ran his hands over the rough surface. Thoughts tumbled about in the young man’s head. This wall stood between him and his long held goal of becoming a Marine. If he wasn’t able to get over this wall tomorrow, he would fail and be sent home.
The graveled voice of his Sergeant barked at him.
“Find a way over that wall!”
The young man pressed closer and breathed a silent prayer, “I gotta find a way.” and then he felt it…. a small niche, a lip in the face of the wall. Stepping back, he marked where the lip was and then began the circuit of the obstacle course which included running, belly busters, slide for life and swinging from ropes. He smoothly managed through each of these and then the wall loomed darkly before him. Heart pumping wildly, he raced towards it. In one fluid movement, he leaped on the wall, his boot instinctively finding the lip. Pushing up with strong arms, he grasped the top of the wall and sailed over! As he hit the ground on the other side, excitement surged and tingled. He’d made it! He knew in his heart that he’d be able to repeat this performance the next day and he did. But what thrilled him even more than that accomplishment were the words he received from his Drill Sergeant after graduation: “Good job Marine.” He’d successfully become one of the few and the proud.
(November 10th Marine Corp Birthday – Happy Birthday Marine Corp! Semper Fi)
This story inspired me to find my own LIP. Life presents us with obstacles every day and often they seem to be just as daunting as that wall appeared to be to that young man. But I learned 3 things from this story that I want to share with you.
- Get yourself an accountability partner. Someone who will challenge you to do what’s in your heart and not let you back away from it
- Be willing to face the obstacles that stand in the way of your goal. “Feel the wall.” You may find your answer in the midst of your problem
- Understand that your goal is worth every ounce of effort you have to expend to get it. Don’t back away from the challenges of reaching what you really want
via Photo Challenge: Transmogrify
I searched for before and after pictures on Google and found this one of super model, Tyra Banks. I immediately recognized the “after” picture of Tyra but was surprised at the before example. I would have walked past her on the streets without a second glance that this could be Tyra and it’s not just the absence of make-up and dolled up hair.
The “before” reflects a totally different personality like the transmogrification of a girl I knew in high school after she had a makeover. She went from being a mousy, nondescript student who slumped through the halls to a vibrant person who walked with her head held high and a new pep to her step. I thought she was a new at school. When I discovered who she was, I marveled that a makeover could literally transmogrify someone into a completely different person!
Her “Angela Davis” afro had been tamed to a short, boyish cut. The large, square-rimmed glasses she wore had been replaced with contacts and her pass-me-down looking clothes were updated to 70’s chic. Prior to the makeover, this girl, who looked like she’d faint if you said “Hi!”, was now popular, outspoken and fun to be with. She was the first example that came to mind and a great example of TRANSMORGRIFY! This kind of makeover did more than just add some “spit and polish” to her outward appearance; it seemingly changed the perception this girl had of herself which then changed how others saw her as well! The word, “transmorgrify” is new to me but the concept isn’t; “As a man thinketh… so is he…” Proverbs 23:7
via Daily Prompt: Banned
Banned: Platform Shoes!
At least that was the opinion of Mr. Brown, the principal of St. Rocco’s School. Tell that to a group of 8th grade girls back in 1973 when platform shoes were the newest status symbols of being cool. You could only spice up the uniform so much; hems of skirts taken up to the highest limit allowed, colorful earrings, maybe a bracelet or a choker but that was pretty much all the accessorizing that could be done until platforms came along. I ditched my Hush Puppy flats and never looked back! My first pair of platforms were a tan lace up number. Nothing fancy in my opinion, compared to what was out there. But Mr. Brown wasn’t having it. He even held an assembly to ensure we all got the same message.
Typically, I wasn’t the one to rock any boats but this just wasn’t right. First of all, there was no mention of platform shoes, for or against, in the handbook. That had to count for something! Normally, every rule was backed by something that had been established in “The Book.” Mr. Brown argued that since one girl had already fallen off her shoes while coming down the stairs, he felt they were unsafe and therefore no one could wear them.
Come on! One girl! One accident! Can we get better odds than that? I mean, it’s not like she died or broke her neck! I heard she came through with just few elbow scrapes! As far as I was concerned the fight was on! If I had to make my case by comparing all the accidents that had happened at the school over the past 10 years, compared to one platform shoe incident then I would. I was ready to do whatever it took, short of getting expelled, to persuade Mr. Brown to get with the times.
I wrote out my complaint and was able to get the majority of the 8th grade girls to sign it. I stood in Mr. Brown’s office and watched him read every word. He sighed deeply before putting the paper down on his desk. He stared at it for awhile before looking up at me. I stood there, trying to look neutral instead of sassy and I met his eyes with just a tad bit of defiance. Finally, he stood, paper in hand and gestured towards me. “Edwina do most of the girls really feel this way?” I nodded vigorously. Words escaped me since I wasn’t expecting that question. “Ok, let’s compromise….” I held my breath and said nothing. He took deep breath and passed his verdict: “2 inches in height will be the limit. Is that understood?” I blinked in surprise and stammered out a, “Yes sir!” before exiting his office. I felt like blowing the smoke off my imaginary pistol. The word “banned” had just met its match!