ROMANS 8:13 May the God of hope fill you with
all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by
the power of the Holy Spirit. ♥




Monday, June 15, 2015

 FOR THE KING

A group of us are studying the book of Esther this summer. It is the story of a young Jewish girl who was taken from her home to serve in King Ahasuerus' court. She is ultimately chosen by him to be his queen because of her great beauty. One Night with the King, a film made several years ago, is a depiction of the book of Esther. While the movie is not completely factual, it is an entertaining look at true events.
           
Chapter 2 of Esther describes how the king ordered young and beautiful virgins to be gathered from among all his provinces so that he could choose from among them the next queen. Great ceremony was taken in cleansing and prettying up these young women before they were presented to the king.

Precious oils and perfumes where used and the process took months. They were finally taken before the king so that he could make his choice. It was all in the presentation. The right smell. The right hairdo. The right outfit and jewels. No expense was spared in decorating these young women. They were pure and clean and undefiled. They were lovely.
           
My heart fills with joy when I realize that our King, God, requires no such preparation to come to Him. I don’t have to wait until I straighten out my life or give up that habit or stop a certain behavior. I don’t need to bathe in scented oils or brush my hair till it shines or get a new wardrobe. I don’t have to clean myself up first. I don’t have to be lovely.
           

All I need to do is fall broken at His feet, to release the grip on what I call managing and free fall for a moment. I can abandon hope in my own power and grab ahold of the folds of His robe.  And He is there. God is there.
           
Whether you are already His child or have yet to call on Him, He’s waiting.  He is looking to hold you through this life, no matter what comes. Don’t wait for the right time. The right time is now, right where you are.
           
Situations can take a while to change. Old habits die hard. People won’t get what they expect from us and some may walk away. But let’s release the baggage and turn away from remedies that make us numb or giddy or pliable. Let’s feel and think and hope and pray and submit and trust and hang on every minute until it passes and then do it all again the next minute. Let’s keep our focus on Jesus and feel the peace He promises. It is real. It is life.
           
The God of the universe, the true King of heaven and earth is waiting to fold you into His heart. Relax into the truth and the hope that will give you rest.


Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”


2015 © Charlene M Campanella


            

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

CHEEK TO CHEEK

Paul, who authored so many books in the New Testament, felt that Christ's return would be soon. I can relate to this even today. Surely it can't get much worse! I suppose it's all relevant. Grandma told me years ago that she had the same fear as I did just different worries. In this fallen world there will be pain and great conflict.

My hope in God and the promises of Scripture are the solid anchors that hold me firm. Faith. It's what I have. It is a sort of full sighted blind trust. I turn my eyes away from evil, remain slightly shielded from its activity and keep my eyes on God. At times I put my head down, close my eyes and push forward. If I were to dwell on what was dancing all around, I could lose hope.

Here is a balm for a fearful heart. Regardless of the latest headlines or personal struggle, God is involved and in control. He's not ringing His hands in frustration wondering what to do next. He's got this!

We are not in the Garden and this living is not the living God designed. No wonder there are bruises. Instead of physically leaning against His shoulder as I'm sure Eve could have done, we need to lean deep into the faith that never fails. This is not the destination. This is the journey. Regardless of what happens in life, our future is with God. We have maybe 80 or so years on earth. Let’s just do this. On the other side is forever with God. That has to be enough for now. That can be enough.

I think of the times I told my little boys to trust me even though they couldn't understand. I was the mommy and I could see so much farther than their little world. I would hold their tiny face in my hands and whisper calm in their ear. Mine was a soothing voice they could trust. When one had blood taken. When another had surgery. I got cheek to cheek with them and spoke comfort against their fear. I cooed and soothed like a mama dove. 
 
Resolve to stay cheek to cheek with God today. This nearness will assure that you will hear His voice above the drone of discontent crying all around. He will keep your heart calm and your hope assured.

Hebrews 6:17-18 (ESV)
So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us.

2015 © Charlene M Campanella