Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. – (Proverbs 19:21, NIV)
People might make many plans, but what the Lord says is what will happen. – (Proverbs 19:21, ERV)
We humans keep brainstorming options and plans, but God’s purpose prevails. – (Proverbs 19:21, MSG)
Yesterday was a fantastic day, as my husband drove over the mountains to spend time with mom and me. We enjoyed our afternoon and evening together, balancing time between just he and I as mom took an afternoon siesta, and a wonderful adventure of preparing and partaking in dinner with one another, as a trio. Interestingly, we had a plan in place, as a dear friend, (who was like a second mom to me growing up) was going to come spend time with mom, so that Mark and I could go into town for a quick visit with our best friends, who are here for a ball tournament. Well, the timing did not align, and our plans did not go according to what we had imagined, but we ended up having a fantastic evening of playing a family favorite game with mom, my second mom, Mark and myself. So often, what we think we ought to be doing turns out to not be the actual plan. What unfolds, ends up being a perfect sort of wonderful, and exactly the sort of evening that each of us needed. God knew, even if we did not. Though we are not meant to sit idly by and wait for life to unfold; we ought not get flustered or forlorn when plans do not go as we thought they ought to have gone. Rather, we should be open to the idea that when things do not go the way we thought they should, perhaps God had a better plan all along. No matter how the road before us unfolds, God is with us, God is for us, and God is good.
Many are the plans,
Deep down in our heart;
Yet it’s God’s purpose,
That will find a start.
Sometimes the best plans,
Go a different way;
And we discover,
His path is made plain.
All praise to the Lord,
On whom we rely;
For His ways are best,
And His strength supplied.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that Your ways are higher than our ways, and Your plans, greater than our own. Forgive us for our initial frustration or disappointment when our plans seem to fail. Teach us to trust You more, as Your plans provide us with all that we need and more. Show us how to love those around us well, so that we may encourage, strengthen and build each other up in Your goodness and grace. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we keep pressing forward in faith, but allow our plans to be interruptible and embrace the way that You direct our steps. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11
Far More than Satisfied
Satisfy us in the morning with Your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. – (Psalm 90:14, NIV)
Fill us with Your love every morning. Let us be happy and enjoy our lives. – (Psalm 90:14, ERV)
With every sun’s rising, surprise us with Your love, satisfy us with Your kindness. Then we will celebrate every day we are alive. – (Psalm 90:14, VOICE)
Being an early riser and one who loves the outdoors, the setting I am in serves me well. Mom’s home is secured on a hill, overlooking the river, surrounded by foothills, with orchards below. The sunrise each morning glows on the hills across from us, and daily, I am reminded of new hope and a fresh start that come with the unfailing love of the Lord. With every sun’s rising, I am surprised with God’s handiwork; as no two sunrises are the same. He varies the cloud formations and color patterns, mixing His palette and providing my eyes and heart with fresh delight daily. In the same way that each new sunrise brings delight, so too does each new day on this journey with mom in her recovery and rehabilitation. The kindness of God grants of reason to celebrate each new day of life that we are given. There is joy in the journey, and new gains each step that we take. Yesterday, mom learned some new exercises in occupational therapy that she can do on her own (which she is thrilled about) and during her speech therapy session, she could do things yesterday that she was unable to do two days earlier! My heart is satisfied with His kindness, even in the moments when I struggle. He reminds me that I am not alone, and that He has us in His hands. Mom is a living miracle, and I have the privilege of watching her miraculous awakening each day. Additionally, we laugh often, as there are some seriously silly statements that occur when exhaustion hits, and words become difficult to recall. Because I know mom so well, I typically know what she is trying to say, and we just giggle together about the “substitute” word and continue moving forward.
May we recognize Your love with every new rising of the sun, and be satisfied with Your kindness. Help us to celebrate with joy, every day that we are alive.
May the break of dawn,
The first light of morn;
Remind us of grace,
Hope when we’re forlorn.
With each brand-new day,
The rise of the sun;
Shows God’s faithfulness,
Before we’ve begun.
His kindness endures,
As we make our way;
When covered by grace.
There’s no greater joy,
Love held in His hands;
Our lives a great gift,
To walk out His plan.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You bless us and renew us each morning with Your unfailing love, and that You are our reason to be glad for all of our days. Forgive us for allowing circumstances to steal our joy or hide our hope, as both hope and joy are found in You alone. Teach us to turn to You in all things and at all times, so that we never miss a sunrise or a miraculous moment that You intend for us to see, that is meant to remind us of Your incredible, infallible love. Show us how to love those around us in a way that celebrates the gift of each new day, and marvels at each minute miracle that You place before us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we sing for joy at the wonders of Your love, and marvel at the miraculous ways in which You move. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present
In the morning, Lord, You hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before You and wait expectantly. – Psalm 5:3
Strength in the Sorrow
I am sad and tired. Say the word, and make me strong again. – (Psalm 119:28, ERV)
My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word. – (Psalm 119:28, NIV)
Sorrow is a sadness that seems to strangle the soul; it comes and clings to the core and clouds one’s countenance for a season. The magnitude of what is now missing weighs heavily on my heart; though expected, and even celebrated for the blessed homecoming that has happened, there is this space of having to reconcile earthly loss with heavenly gain. This verse perfectly depicts the space where I find my heart. I am sad and tired, exhausted really. However, I know that my strength and hope are held in Christ, and it is by His grace that I can move forward, and it was His strength that carried me through yesterday. Each day is made new, and I need seek Him for today and trust that He will remain present; as He will carry me when I cannot go any further. Already, He has poured out His grace through the kindness of family and friends who have surrounded each of us who are lamenting the loss of my grandmother. This season of sorrow, though seemingly heavy, will be short, and then there will be a time to celebrate a life well lived. May we ever seek the Lord and His strength, as He is trustworthy and true to His word as the giver of strength and holder of hope.
The weight of sorrow,
Makes weary and worn;
This space of sadness,
When hearts are forlorn.
‘Tis but a season,
Deep ache for the lost;
Time to cling to Christ,
He knows what love costs.
Seek the Lord for strength,
He’s true to His word;
His hope shall breathe joy,
And peace undeterred.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that we can come to You in our seasons of sorrow, and You meet us and grant us strength. Thank You for the peace that passes all understanding, even in the midst of our own pain. Forgive us for trying to trudge forward rather than rely on You for strength. Teach us to trust You more, as it takes but a word from You and we are restored. Show us how to love those around us through their seasons of sorrow, and celebrate with them, their seasons of joy. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we seek Your strength in our sorrow, and trust You to be true to Your word. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present
As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. – James 5:11
Rest for the Weary
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” – (Matthew 11:28)
It is easy to get so busy and buried in our burdens, that we do not even realize our own weariness until it is unbearable. Yesterday, weariness snuck up and smacked me square in the head. Out of seemingly nowhere, narcolepsy was threatening to take over at the start of my sixth period class. I actually had to consume a cup of coffee, just to get through my final hour of teaching. Though the coffee was a band aid of sorts, I was alert enough to get through the remainder of the school day, go for a run, and then get home to prepare dinner. God was gracious, and supplied the strength needed to assist our boys with their homework. However, as soon as they were done, the makings of a migraine began to set in. Again, God provided His rest, as Super Spouse suggested I retire for the night. It was really early, but I did not argue. This morning, I woke well before my alarm, rested and ready for the day.
Though the blessing of a good night’s sleep is not the solution for all weariness, it was God’s provision of something that I needed. He knows what we need, and is willing to provide, if we come to Him and trust Him to take on our load. Sometimes, He utilizes those around us to be His hands, heart, and voice to deliver the direction necessary. My part is to remember to give the things that I am not meant to carry, to Him. His arms are far stronger than mine. He is willing and waiting, we need only come, and we will find rest in Him.
when weary and worn;
He’ll carry the load,
rest for the forlorn.
He’ll take our burdens,
into His strong hands;
He will provide rest,
our Heavenly Dad.
He will hold us up,
when we’re broken down;
He’ll grant us new life,
as in Him we’re found.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that we can come to You when we are weary and burdened, and find rest in You. Thank You that You take our burdens upon Yourself and supply all that we need to stand strong in You. Thank You that You never grow weary nor burdened by us. Forgive us for trying to carry burdens that are not meant to be ours to carry, and help us to hand the heaviness to You. Teach us to trust You more, so that we will bring our burdens to You the moment we recognize that they are before us. Grant us wisdom and strength to know what we are meant to carry and what we are not. Lead us to love others as You love us, and may we offer strength to the weary, and help point those who are searching, to the path that leads to a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified in all that we say and do. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.
For the Lord your God will bless you, …and your joy will be complete. – Deuteronomy 16:15