March 8, 2010
Jobless - Hopeful
Holly Good, Assistant to Lysa TerKeurst, She Speaks! Graduate
"… humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you."
James 1:21b (NIV)
My husband doesn't have a job. As the result of a merger he lost his job after having been with his organization for 21 years. In the world of banking we were quite used to mergers and the threat of losing his job throughout our entire marriage. But last summer the cyclical threat came to fruition. His job was eliminated and he came home.
Life has certainly taken an interesting twist. I now wake up before he does. I leave the house for work and he stays home. He has cooked most of our meals, has helped our daughter apply to colleges, taken on a more active role in our middle school son's schoolwork and sports, and fixed a water problem in our back yard. And just now as I write this, I received a text from him at the grocery store, ‘Do you want cinnamon flavored dental floss or regular?' Yes, he now does a majority of the grocery shopping as well.
We have had our struggles too. The what-ifs rear their ugly head and make an unwanted appearance in our minds from time to time. In addition to fleeting thoughts of fear and doubt, we have had our share of unwanted financial burdens as well. Our air conditioner broke; we had two pipe leaks in our home, a gas leak, our garage door broke, dreaded car repairs, and unexpected vet bills.
But we wait. And we hope. And we wait and hope some more.
Just this morning I read the book of James and was completely encouraged by the message God reveals through James' words. I came away with renewed insight in two areas of my life: drawing near to God and humbling myself before Him.
As we wait and we hope, God is also waiting. Waiting for me to come near to Him for strength, hope and peace. True fulfillment in these three areas can only be realized and received from the Giver of life. The One who holds the world in the palm of His hand. The One who spoke us into existence. As I come near to Him, He will come near to me. Not always on my timetable or in the way I would predict or prescribe, but in His perfectly sculpted plan.
And humbling myself before Him is not robotically proclaiming, "I guess You are right God and I perhaps I am wrong." It means to come to a place where I can honestly admit that humbling myself before Him means that I recognize my worth comes from Him and Him alone. My very worth. Everything in and of me. I must submit and realize that I don't know the path without His guidance, power and favor.
It's so easy to run ahead and plan our attempts to work things for our good. Through the past seven months we have had to learn to wait, hope and trust beyond our comprehension. Beyond our plan. Beyond our wishes.
We've had to pause, wait and focus on the good that He is doing each day.
We've had to resist and flee the doubts and fears that creep in at a moments notice.
We've had to learn and relearn that as we humbly draw near to Him, we must trust, and leave the rest to Him.
And just in case you are curious, I asked for the cinnamon flavored dental floss.
Dear Lord, I admit that I need You today. Help me focus on what is true. Keep my mind from doubting Your plan. I know full well that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Change me and then use me Lord. Thank You for entrusting me with all that I have. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl by Lysa TerKeurst
Read the book of James. Prayerfully search the depths of your heart and ask God for wisdom as you read. He will teach you many things about faith, perseverance, compassion, service, speech, submission, concern for others and sharing.
In what areas did you find encouragement as you read James?
What have you learned about faith, trials and perseverance?
James 4:8a, "Come near to God and he will come near to you." (NIV)
James 4:10, "Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up." (NIV)
James 3:17, "But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere." (NIV)
© 2010 by Holly Good. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Monday, 08 March 2010.