God Already Knew!

Sometimes I am struck with the realization that God has been working out certain things in our lives.  Does this ever happen to you?  It is really an awesome, faith-building moment.  Yet, I sometimes have a twinge of guilt in a related realization – – that I hadn’t really trusted him enough.  But God knows. He knows already that I am weak and a worrier.  And, he points out the little bit of faith I did have to keep going and the little bit of trust I did have to look to him and follow, even if it took a BIG push.  Then I look back and see that God already knew and my striving and worrying did nothing to help his work, only (and this is where I feel that guilty twinge again) hinder his work, or at least hinder the joy that could have been greater if it weren’t for my bad attitude, etc.

I was struck recently by the fact that while I didn’t know my F.A.S. (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) affected children would have an auditory processing problem that could be aided by using sign language, GOD KNEW!  God knew their needs and what they would need long before I did and he gave us a deaf son who would need us to all learn sign language to facilitate communication with him.

Years ago when I first began homeschooling my children, one beginning fourth grade and one beginning first with a toddler in tow, I thought I was doing it for my kids and their needs; I didn’t know how much I needed to learn and how God would use homeschooling to teach me, But GOD ALREADY KNEW!  He knew that the best Bible-based curriculum and resources, even my search for them, would teach me as well as my children, amazing truths  about God, his Word and living a Christian life.

When God saved my oldest daughter’s life at birth, again after her two month old vaccines caused a bad reaction, and then protected both of us when my car caught fire, I didn’t know that it was preparation for a life-threatening, chronic illness and her facing fear of death many times over, but GOD ALREADY KNEW!  He knew we would both need to reach back to those earlier times and see how his saving hand had been on her from day one.

When we found out about a crazy sounding genetic issue (MTHFR) this same daughter had that was a culprit in her ongoing health problems, we didn’t realize that learning about and addressing this issue would not only help her and possibly our biological family members, but our adopted family members as well.  But GOD ALREADY KNEW!

There are other instances where I can look back or have a sudden realization at God’s hand and his plan being worked out and coming together, knowing He knew all along how certain things would fit together down the road of our lives.  This gives me great comfort, even in the situations that seem difficult, and reminds me to trust God even more.  If you don’t see God’s hand in your life, or in the lives of those close to you, try asking him to show you or remind you of a time that he knew how things would work out down the road before you.  Ask him to show you that he really does know what you need and can work out even huge problems for your good. Then wait (expectantly) for God’s revelation!

By the way, God already knew that you and I would break his laws and sin even before we were born and he made a plan to work things out for our good, a plan for Jesus to come into the world and be the perfect sacrifice for you and me, and all of mankind, so that we could be saved and have an everlasting relationship with him.  He loves us so much.  May you be reminded of that love this Sunday!

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Eager Anticipation

After my daughter left on her first trip out of the country on a mission trip with a large group from our new church, I found myself waiting with eager anticipation for contact from or about her and the group.  When each one came I was thrilled for the news and soon awaiting the next communication with similar eagerness, but with a peace and absence of worry.  I knew communication would be limited. At one point she mentioned in a brief message she had been feeling sick and I eagerly awaited more news, but knowing I had been told that “no news is good news” and feeling mostly confident that the group leaders would contact me if there was much of a problem, I was not terribly worried.  Because of her battle with Lyme disease (a second daughter to get this disease; see the link in the sidebar to read about the first) I know that something that is a minor annoyance to others has the potential to cause major problems for her.   So, with Facebook at the ready I posted a brief note and was pleasantly delighted in having many folks register not only their well wishes, but their prayers for her and the next communication received said she was feeling better!  Delightedly thankful to God and our prayerful Facebook friends I am now awaiting the news that they have safely landed back in the U.S.

On a different note, I am finding a lot more commentary lately referring to the end times and the coming of our Lord Jesus as so much in the news and the world’s state of affairs seem to have gotten people thinking more along that line.   We sing songs and hear sermons and read Bible verses about the second coming of Jesus Christ, and know it is imminent, yet it also seems hard to grasp at times.  There have been many times and places across the span of decades when it appeared to folks that it must be on the brink, yet here we are all these years later. We know we should wait with eager anticipation for his coming.  Yet we also know that there is work to be done.  Are we putting it off; are we frantically rushing to get it all done (as if company’s coming and you don’t want them to see your house in a mess)?  What is the right/best response or course of action?  When things seem to be falling apart it seems easier to wish for Jesus to come and put a stop to it all, lamenting the state of our surroundings.  Yet, when we remember the purpose of the wait – – so that as many as will would have the opportunity to come to Jesus and be saved from their sins and destruction – – it points to the need to consider what we do during the wait, however long or short it may be.  Do we wait and lament that the longer it takes the more the world goes crazy?  Or do we realize that while we wait, we have something to do, perhaps even to hasten the coming of Jesus, in the work of bringing the lost to him?  Could it be that WE Christians are partly responsible for the things going on in the world around us, and that it CONTINUES for so long because we aren’t as diligent in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ as we should be?

As this mamma waits on her daughter’s return from her first mission trip, where I know she was way outside her comfort zone, and waits for the trickle of stories and insights from the past several days to unfold, I wait with eager anticipation knowing she has grown in her relationship to God and has helped to spread the Gospel of Christ and perhaps brought his second coming just a little bit closer.

In & Out, Up & Down

“I’m in, right out, right up, right down, right happy all the time . . .” – – so the children’s song goes.  Yet, even as a child I wasn’t so sure about that “happy all the time” part.  Is anyone really happy ALL the time?  Later I learned about biblical, spiritual joy.  JOY:  A deep down happiness that supersedes the surface emotion and that, for a Christian, can really be had because of their deep, personal relationship with Jesus and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  And I believe that.

But, it sometimes feels like that joy is buried really deep down, and that the surface emotions are getting the better of me/us.  This past month has had it’s ups and downs for our family and for me personally, and as I reflect on the circumstances and those REAL surface emotions, I realize that the joy that was seemingly buried, was really not so deep after all, and that with a little dusting off it was quickly brought back to the surface.  But that joy needs to be fed, and nurtured, just as any relationship does.  That is what my personal prayer time and Bible study and fellowship with other Christians at Church (such as this great worship service this morning https://vimeo.com/131588047) and one on one does for me.  It nurtures my inner joy so that is never buried too deep, whatever comes my way.  How about you?

Shhh. . . . It’s been very quiet lately

Yes, I know it has been very quiet lately on the blog.  Yet I assure you it has NOT been quiet for very long here in Baggettland.  I will let you know, that it is a bit quieter, however, as I have been praying for peace lately for my family and even asked for similar prayer as we held family prayer time in the evenings and as I wrote out prayer requests at our Church.  Being on the prayer team I know we are being prayed for, and it is a big comfort when we have particularly heavy duty prayer needs.  (Aside:  if you are not in a Church that really puts a priority on prayer, you should search one out – – it’s THAT important.)

I have noticed that often the answers to our prayers are much quieter and low-key than we have been with our previous needs. We may worry and fret about a certain need but when the need is met, just go on as if nothing happened. What if we reversed it? We could quietly assess the need and pray about it, perhaps enlisting others to pray as God leads, but without a lot of complaining, worry, or hoopla about it. Then as God provides, stop to thank him, give God the credit in our conversations with others and celebrate God’s provision in our lives with more fanfare than we currently do. What would that do for our relationship with God? Our stress levels? How we appear to others and their perception of the Christian life? Do you know anyone who already lives like this? Aren’t they great to be around?!

So while my family is more at peace at the moment, I am delighted to see God’s work in our lives and excited to experience more. I am celebrating tonight another answer to prayer provided by the all powerful, loving God whose peace passes all understanding.