"Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer."
Romans 12:12 ESV
Sometimes I have periods of times that I feel not just physically weak, but emotionally weak. If I've had a stressful period of time and I'm tired, my system needs rest from all the distractions that are around me, and I want to retreat to my bedroom and be quiet for the entire weekend. This is how I felt last weekend, and I needed strength.
For me, my resource of strength is my Friend, Jesus. I have a continual converstaion going on with Him, and just that in itself is helpful for me. He is the One friend that I am always able to be completely raw with all the time, right in the moment. I don't have to filter my words with Him inside my head, He hears me, He knows me. He sees my heart. What I love about Jesus is that He values me. When I feel valued, I feel strengthened. Do you know what I mean? It's pretty rough in times of weakness, I think, to find value with some people. In weakness, both physically or emotionally I am in pain. I am needed. I need. I need someone to listen to me, or bring me tea, or leave me alone. I may not have a lot to offer that is visible. Yet, Jesus still sees my heart in those times and still values me, and this brings me strength.
In Isaiah 40:28-31 I am assured of this:
"Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint."
Isaiah 40:28-31 ESV
Bethany Looyenga- Guest Blogger
My name is Bethany. I am a friend and devoted follower of Jesus Christ, I love spending time with him and sharing the stories he tells me with others. I’ve been married for over 36 years and have four sons and one daughter, three daughter in-laws, and seven beautiful grandchildren. God has blessed me with a ministry, Agape Celebration, we focus on celebrating God through art and bringing woman to a place of understanding their identity through Jesus. I love to write and speak about life experiences and the hope of Jesus.
Rooted in Mercy
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
Proverbs 1:7 KJV
Have you ever noticed that people are more likely to express admiration of your art and tell you good things about it than they are to give out constructive criticism that would help you improve? That’s certainly been my experience. It’s far more likely for me to get compliments on my art than it is to be told how to make it better. Sure, I’ve had teachers show me different things but a lot of times my artistic deficiencies have been slow to get noticed by me.
"Wisdom opens your heart to receive wise counsel, but pride closes your ears to advice and gives birth to only quarrels and strife."
Proverbs 13:11 TPT
This verse is such a great reminder of what we need to be walking in, daily. In fact, recently the Lord got my attention too, as I was walking in pride. It's funny how we choose to view our decisions at times, and see them as good, or even have great explanations for them.
I've also come to realize there are times that the Lord is speaking to me, and I may not even notice. That makes my heart sad to think I haven't always noticed when God is speaking, but even more sad when I realize that not only do I sometimes not realize it's God speaking to my heart, I argue with Him. Have you ever had a thought to do or try something and you came back with a really good reason to not do that idea. Yeah, me too.