“And yet this was a SMALL thing…”

Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and said, “Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that you have brought me thus far? And yet this was a small thing in your eyes, O Lord God. You have spoken also of your servant’s house for a great while to come, and this is instruction for mankind, O Lord God! And what more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Lord God! Because of your promise, and according to your own heart, you have brought about all this greatness, to make your servant know it. Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.”

2 Samuel 7:18-22 ESV

This morning, I woke up completely overwhelmed by God’s relentless, reckless love for me. As I read this passage in 2 Samuel 7, and thought about who God is and all that He has done in my own life, I began to weep.

Like David, I asked who am I, so flawed, and insignificant, and undeserving that the Great God of Heaven would take all of my days, both good and bad, and make something so beautiful from them. And if the sum total of all that I have seen God do is merely “a small thing” for Him, then no matter the kind of moment I sit in right now, I can remain confident that the best is STILL yet to come!

This morning, be encouraged to pause for a moment, and look back over your own life. Identify the moments of deep sorrow, disappointment and heartache – it’s there we most clearly see God’s righteous right hand upholding us. Think back to the moments of unspeakable joy and unbridled celebration – there it is easy to see the Presence of the King who rejoices over us, where we see that His joy is our strength.

If you are struggling to find energy and focus for worship this morning, think of a Savior who was willing to sacrifice everything just. for. you. Who went down into the depths so that you could be raised to life again! The same Jesus who now sits at the right hand of His Father interceding continually on your behalf.

And like David, I’m sure you will come to the conclusion: “Therefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears” (2 Samuel 7:22).

40 Days Lighter – Day 36: Push Through It


Have you ever watched a toddler who really wants something, maybe a toy, or better yet, something they shouldn’t have, like a pen? If you have, then you’ll notice that they are unbelievably persistent, especially when they think no one is watching.

My 1.75 year old will stop at absolutely nothing, and I mean nothing, to reach my books and pens when he sees that there is any possibility that they might be within reach. He has been known to go and find the seat for his toy keyboard, some cushions to make a fluffy tower, or even a pile of stuffed animals – anything he can use to get a boost and reach his target.

And as you can see from the image above, once he has that pen in his hand, there is no question what he should be doing with it. As far as he is concerned, any light colored wall in this house is a blank canvas, and fair game for his artwork.

Terrible two’s or not, there is a lesson to be learned from the tenacity of toddlers – they don’t know when something is “too hard”, and they don’t know what it means to hold back. They fully love, hug and snuggle, or fully throw a tantrum. They love a certain food today, and demonstrate their absolute disdain for the same food tomorrow. Toddlers are ALL IN when it comes to life.

As I contemplated our son’s “artwork”, I was encouraged to push through the moments when my goal feels too far away, when I feel like there is too much weight left to lose, or too much work undone. I was inspired to approach challenges with a “make it happen attitude”, even if it took a million “stuffed animals” to get enough leverage to reach my goal. I was reminded that sometimes the difference between failure and success is laser-like focus – being unconcerned about what others “in the room” are doing, fixing my gaze on the prize and not the distractions.

As I tried to decide how to take this latest masterpiece off of the wall, I was emboldened to write my story, without reservation, when I finally achieved my goal – because there is someone who needs to hear it.

 

 

40 Days Lighter – Day 15: Growing Stronger


I have finally arrived at the place where I look forward to going to the gym. And believe me, it’s been a long time coming.

I’ve tried working out at other times in my life, had two gym memberships at one point, but just couldn’t wrap my mind around the idea that there was any form of joy to be found there. I saw each trip to the fitness center as punishment – it was uncomfortable, inconvenient (a nap would have been more appealing), and reminded me just how much of a fitness failure I was.

So what changed between then and now?

Is working out still uncomfortable? 

Absolutely! I still feel the same breathlessness as I attempt to increase my speed and endurance on a treadmill or elliptical. Using weights puts pressure on my muscles and joints. Nevermind the soreness that sets in after an intense leg day, arm day or ab day!

Is it still inconvenient? 

Well…if you think getting up before 5 am to go the gym, when you have a 5 year old, 1 year old, and you are an impossible to rehabilitate night owl whose brain thinks you’re Einstein right around midnight, is inconvenient, then YES, it’s still inconvenient.

Am I still reminded of the fitness journey ahead of me, to reach a healthy weight and achieve the fitness levels/goals I have in mind?

Yes. It is still apparent that I have a long road ahead as I continue to huff and puff on the treadmill in my best attempt at a run.

What HAS CHANGED is my perspective, my attitude towards this journey. I recognize that I am a work in progress. My journey will never be finished – I’m not just working towards “an end” – I’m allowing God to use even THIS to change my life. I’m giving in to the stretching and tearing and pushing – giving in to the DISCIPLINE of it all – so that I will emerge from this season of the journey STRONGER, with more ENDURANCE, and the ability to RUN with the vision God has given me for my life.

Have you found yourself, once again, going through a process that you have attempted before, without previous success? Are you wrestling with the fact that the circumstances – the discomfort, inconvenience, and your overwhelming need to go through the process – are still the same?

Then I dare you to change your perspective. 

But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.”

Numbers 13:30 ESV