“Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.”
My husband and I are used to heavy rains causing the sewers in our basement to back up. It’s never been a pleasant experience, since that’s where our bedrooms are, but we manage the best we can, staying up to the wee hours using a shop-vac to suck the filthy water up and tossing it back into the rain soaked night. However, in August and September of 2014, the floods of Noah invaded our lives and we were forced to evacuate our living quarters and call in help from our insurance company.
With nearly six inches of foul water sloshing over our feet, we knew there would be no going back to our beds that night and probably not for quite some time afterward, so we moved everything not soaked by the deluge into our 800 square foot upstairs and turned our kitchen and living room into a combo kitchenette/living room/bedroom for ourselves and our daughter. Sleeping on an air mattress on the floor while eight months pregnant hasn’t been the most wonderful experience and bringing our newborn home to a house of chaos won’t be either.
I could go on about the inconvenience and the heartbreak of losing some precious items to the inundation of water, but there’s more to every experience than the bad feelings we’re left with. There’s a lesson in this. It’s one of patience, yes, as we work to get our lives and our home back in some semblence of order, but there’s also the lesson of how God sustains us during all times.
In some ways it’s been a hassle dealing with all the red tape to get the money for repairs and trying to pin down a contractor who can get started sooner than New Year 2016. In other ways it’s been a blessing. Without the help of several kind people within our insurance company and the cleaning crews, we never would have been able to get the water (or the overwhelming smell!) out of our house. Nor would we be able to make repairs at all.
My daughter often asks why God let this happen to us. It’s a question we all ask of trying times. Our answer to her is that, even though this is a bad thing, God can always make something good come of it. In our case, we’ve wanted to renovate the rooms since we moved in nearly six years ago, but we never had the time or the money. Now we have the money and we’ll be able to hire someone to do it right, rather than try to fumble through it ourselves.
God is answering our prayers in a very unexpected way and during this time of trial, God is sustaining us through people who know what needs to be done and those who care enough to aid us in the little things (thanks Mom for the use of your washer and dryer!).
God sustains us each day by giving us, not necessarily what we want or expect, but what we need.
We thank you for sustaining us through our joys and our sorrows, through our victories and trials. Help us be patient as we wait for your promises to come to full fruition.
Questions and Reflections
As you read Isaiah 46, think about the times God has sustained you through life’s trials. Then, download the Questions and Reflections and take some time to work through them before engaging in the Meditation Activities below.
Find a quiet place, preferably in nature, and take 10 to 20 minutes to contemplate what the above image means to you as it relates to the reading of Isaiah 46, then choose as many of the following suggestions as you would like to express your thoughts and feelings outwardly.
- In your journal, write a free-flow of thoughts and descriptive images as they come to you regarding the picture and its relationship to God sustaining you through all the times in your life.
- Buy or transplant a flower, vegetable or other plant and nurture it in your home. As you care for this creation of God, think on how God also nurtures you no matter what the weather may be outside.
- Research different methods of sustainable living. Adopt one or two for 30 days or more. During this time, consider how God created everything and continues to sustain us through all the ups and downs of your life.
- Decide on your own creative way to express your feelings and thoughts regarding the picture and its relationship to God sustaining you through all the times in your life.
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Individuals and groups alike will find themselves
discovering that every day is a new opportunity to see God’s touch on their lives as they journey through scripture to uncover that:
- No Matter Who You Are…
- No Matter How You Feel…
- No Matter What People Do…
- No Matter What Happens..
- No Matter Where You Are…
- No Matter How Little You Have…
- No Matter What You’ve Done…
- No Matter How Old You Are…
Paperback edition also available on Amazon.
Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.
- Called to Forgive Called to Serve
- New Beginnings
- No Fear In Love
- The Boneyard
- The Dirty Little Penny
- The Hardest Commandment
Pay What You Want for the audiobook.
When we find ourselves stymied by what we think prayer should look like, it’s time to step back and think like a child. God loves each of us and wants to hear from us.
Prayer can be as complex as we want or as simple as we need, but sometimes we need a little help getting started. In this book you’ll discover the basics of:
- What prayer is
- Why we pray
- How to pray
- How to know your prayers are answered
From repetitions to labyrinths to dancing to journals, it is all Simply Prayer.
Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.
When life seems impossible to cope with, God reaches out to remind us of his promises for our lives. Journey through scripture to meet God in new and unexpected ways as you discover what it means to “Fear Not!”
Anyone can use Fear Not to meet God in new and unexpected ways. Each of the eight sessions begins with an introduction, then moves on to a scripture reading (included), questions to ponder, a meditation picture and lastly a list of possible hands-on projects you can do.
The eight sessions are:
- Session 1 … God is always with us
- Session 2 … God is in control
- Session 3 … God keeps his promises
- Session 4 … God keeps us safe
- Session 5 … God provides for us
- Session 6 … God reveals himself to us
- Session 7 … God gives us new life
- Session 8 … God sends a Helper to us
buy the .pdf version here
- 67“It shall happen… according as he has promised….” Exodus 12:25 Believing God keeps his promises is perhaps one of the most difficult things to do. We’ve often had others break their promises and been guilty of breaking them ourselves. However, God shouldn’t be measured by human standards. Whether we believe…
- 67“[God] said, ‘Certainly I will be with you.’” Exodus 3:12 Have you ever watched the latest news cast and wondered, “Where is God in all this?” Have you ever sat under the stars, feeling smaller than the smallest ant, and thought, “Is God out there somewhere?” Have you ever asked:…
- 66“Yahweh shall give you meat to eat in the evening, and in the morning bread to satisfy you.” Exodus 16 8 It is quite easy to believe God will provide for you when you have your basic needs. However, not many of us can say that we trust God to provide…
- 66“Thus says Yaweh, ‘In this you shall know that I am Yaweh.’” Exodus 7:17 We have heard and read about the miracles God has performed both in the Bible and in modern times. Most of those miracles were obvious demonstrations of God’s power. However, the power of God comes in…
- 63“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Matthew 16 16 Whether it is in the face of a delighted child or the crash of thunder during a storm, God reveals himself to us. Sometimes he catches our attention in a way we cannot ignore, like when he…