Well, I am posting late, and what with my last post, "Issues" I pretty much already wrote about this chapter.
If you want to see others thoughts, visit Lelia, our gracious host.
Chapter 4: The Pressure's On
I think the quote that really got to me in this chapter was the following.
"Anxious times should cause us to look beyond ourselves to God for His provision."
"It's hard because when the pressure is on, we're not truly convinced that God will supply for all our needs for the days ahead."
I am under pressure right now.
Singing a solo this coming weekend.
Needing to look for a job.
Needing to tell someone no to something that I already told them yes to.
All these things are bringing on stress. I just don't know how in the world, in my sight, all these things will resolve.
I can't know.
How can I? God holds all my days in His hands.
I read something today that talked about someone standing on God with his whole weight, trusting Him to hold his weight.
My heart was touched profoundly. I remember praying... through the tears.
How many times, Lord do I start to put my weight on You, on the Solid Rock, but hold onto something else to take part of my weight because I am afraid You will slip out from under me, or that I will find myself falling and You wouldn't catch me. Oh God, help me to stop hanging onto other things that don't matter. Help me to stop clinging to the things that don't matter, and instead stand on You, and put my full weight there, on You. You are my firm ground, my solid footing. Nothing else will hold me up, but You.
Dear Father, break the hold that other things have on me. Break my dependence on them so that I find myself able to let go of them and settle on You. Give me the strength and willingness and determination to stand on You and let you bear up my full weight. Help me to trust you to fully provide for my every need... and to be content, because I trust you. I will never be content in any circumstances, until I like Paul am completely convinced that You will supply all my needs in the days ahead.
Oh Jesus, help me to be thankful for what I have, whether I like it or not. Develop in me that deep contentment that Paul had. I long for that deep contentment in the midst of the pressure I am under.
I just want to be more of His. I want to spend some times of silence with Him. Where I can be alone and just settled in His presence. I find so much more peace there. And that peace and connection with Him is what I long for the most. It is something I hunger for, and I can't get it in the depth or length that I really want and need, at this stage in my life.
And when I can't unplug from my daily life and plug into God better, the pressure of my life over takes me. I find myself discontented, distrustful, and unwilling to lean on God with my full weight.
The other day, when I was visiting Cindy, she waited to do her daily devotion until I got there, and we did it together. The scripture reading was good, the thought prompter question was good, but the best part for me was the few minutes of silence at the beginning. We prayed and then were silent and settled into God's presence. All I can say is that it was profound. God is so good and faithful for meeting us where we are at.
I want more of that. I am greedy. I want more of God. I want more time alone with Him. Secluded. Some place where, if I am moved to tears, I can feel free to cry. Somewhere, if I need to, I can yell at God, talk out loud to Him, and just BE with Him.
I guess that is a good thing to be greedy for? I hope!
In the midst of stress, God gave me a breather on Friday. And He gave me a breather this morning. I had a time of good fellowship with Him this morning. I couldn't get to sleep last night, so I ended up not going to church this morning. Instead, I slept in, and then ended up spending some good time with Him, reading His word, praying, doing a devotional, and writing in my journal, and praying and crying more in His presence.
It was needed. It was good, and I was grateful to Him.
May He bring me more of those times with Him, to rejuvenate and refresh me in the midst of the pressure.