The abundance of his presence

Yesterday was a travel day for us, so I wasn’t able to post readings for Saturday.

Saturday readings:

Psalm 87, 90, 136
Gen. 47:27-48:7
1 Cor. 10:1-13
Mark 7:1-23

Sunday’s readings:

Ps. 66, 67, 19, 46
Gen. 48:8-22
Rom. 8:11-25
John 6:27-40

While I know it’s a need in my life to slow down when I read, it doesn’t happen enough. I slow down when reading Scripture, but when I read other books I hustle through too quickly. Read more

Satisfied… or not?

Just when I think I’ve got something figured out… go figure.

Ben Witherington has to write on holy DIScontent. Great! 🙂

First, I would say that we must not listen to the siren voices of pop psychology and the like which encourage us to settle, to be satisfied with the way we are, especially when it comes to our behavior.  On the contrary, we should wake up every morning realizing we are not all we ought to be. We have not yet arrived.

Great. I’m NOT satisfied. Back to the drawing board!

The Pain of Satisfaction

The other day I read a story about a man I have admired for well over 20 years. He is the top in his profession, in my opinion. He has known tremendous success in just about any way you could measure it. Not just money, but integrity, family, awards… I have not known him personally, but everything I could ever read about him spoke of excellence.

The other day I heard a story about another person. Not nearly as well known, but a friend. Though I’ve known of difficulties, I have known this person to be a loving person. Though there are struggles, she would be one I would look at and say, “You know what? She loves God and pursues God and loves people. I truly admire that.”

The stories I heard about both of them were the same: ultimately, they weren’t “enjoying the ride.” For the successful man, the article I read talked about how he never let the successes carry him along. He would let the defeats in life depress him for weeks or months. He couldn’t savor the successes, even when it meant so much to so many people.

For the friend, she was allowing words of defeat and depression take away all the Lord had done in her life over these years.

It is like we cannot believe in contentment. Paul’s admonition that “godliness with contentment is great gain” is lost on us. It is too often lost on me. There is always something better I SHOULD be doing, or I left something undone. And should I ever feel a moment of contentment, it is often overwhelmed in a few minutes with guilt. “There are so many who don’t have what I have.” Or other thoughts like that.

Yet, the Word almost yells at us about our incredible God. He is abundant. In him we FEAST on his grace and mercy.

“My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips” (Ps. 63:5).

“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight” (Eph. 1:7,8).

I am incredibly, deeply satisfied in God’s grace and provision. Truly. My heart is full. It is such a pain to write those words.