Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Devotionals: God's presence

Psalm 27:13-14
(13) I remain confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living.
(14) Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord

Psalm 32:8
(8) I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.

Psalm 37:3
(3) Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.

Psalm 42:5
(5) Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.

Psalm 48:14
14 For this God is our God for ever and ever;
he will be our guide even to the end.

Isaiah 58:11
(11) The Lord will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.

John 16:13
(13) But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, 
he will guide you into all the truth. 
He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears,
 and he will tell you what is yet to come.

When was the last time you felt God's presence? 

"God's presence", honestly, has always been enough of an abstract for me that recognizing it in the moment has proved rather elusive over the years. I can't say that there was ever one moment or instant in the recent past where I looked out and said "this had to be Him, because my luck isn't this good."

However, I can say that with as much as I had going against me during my fight with cancer, the end results, and the aftermath have shown me that the outcome could have been far, far worse. Its not just that I was cured that is the critical issue here, but rather after the first few rounds of chemo, it took strength that I just didn't have to get up in the morning, get dressed and go to work. On Chemo days, by the end, I was getting out of the sessions so completely burned out, and worn out, and tired, and beat up that looking back, I have no idea how it is that I didn't just crumble to the ground right there and give up. The memory of it still scares the pants off of me, and the idea that I lasted through it still astounds me, even though I was there.

But what was even more amazing to me at the time, and now as well, is how much support I got. Not just from the expected channels, but from seemingly random encounters as well. I think the best example is from my first PET scan, where I, a former volunteer firefighter, had a chance encounter with a former CDF firefighter. His story gave me the type of motivation that renewed my faith that I might actually make it out the other side of this.

Now, I'm not shortchanging God by citing this man as an inspiration. What I am saying is, what are the odds that I would just happen to meet a real world hero then and there?

Yeah, you can call that "chance", but I don't.

Find one person and share the story with them.

I've told you my story. What's yours?

1 comment:

  1. Hey!! Just saw your latest posts, and I've been reading through them. I'm so excited to see your faith growing by the day.

    God is awesome ,and I'm glad to hear that you are cancer free. Cheryl was diagnosed in October, and by mid-november -- without chemo or radiation -- she was declared cancer free as well. God has turned our worlds upside down, but it has been in the most fantastic way. We've started to see his big-picture plan for us.

    Thiese are the scriptures God gave us to stand o (and my summary of them)

    Jeremiah 29:11 -- God has a plan. That plan is awesome. Stick to the plan.

    Exodus 14:13 -- God has it under control. And if I TRUST him and let him take care of it (and not fear), then we will never deal with these issues again. He will take care of it completely.

    Hope those encourage you as much as they did me.