God's Words For US
by Cecelia Lester
Thou wilt keep himin perfect peace,
whose mind is stayed on thee:
because he trusteth in thee.
Isaiah 26:3 (KJV)
Have you ever seen a snapshot that looked blurry? When I was a child, we used to see them often.
Have you ever watched a movie or a television show where the objects near the camera became less clear as the background became more pronounced? It is a vehicle of the director to cause us, the audience, to see something we might otherwise miss.
Both these examples deal with our focus. The old pictures are deemed out of focus. In the movie/television show, the camera changes focus. In life, we sometimes have events happen because we have the wrong spiritual focus.
*Words come out of a friend’s mouth and we take them wrong. Those words may not have meant to hurt us but we feel pain because of them. Our focus shouldn’t be on ourselves.
*We hear a story about a friend’s son who had gotten into some trouble with the authorities. You share this information with someone as a prayer concern. The second friend tells you, “There but, for the grace of God, goes my child and me.” Our focus should be on God and how He instructs people to renounce behavior He deems questionable.
*A family has a son/brother who has been deemed terminally ill. Someone asks the father how the son is and he tears up. The person asking has to regroup and change focus from small talk to find words of encouragement.
*A man loses his job. He wants to find work so he can become independent and live on his own. His family doesn’t blame him for this backset. They learn to wait for the right combination of job search criteria to materialize. They focus on the positive things about having him at home. They also prayed for what’s best for their son.
Several years ago, I stretched the truth for my benefit. I had asked for a particular day off work. I asked for that day off 4 ½ months earlier. A week or so before the day in question, my supervisor told three of us that she had too many off that day, a day after a holiday. One of the others had plane tickets to go to Florida. The other lady was considered priority on her request for the time. I was angry. What I said to the supervisor went something like this. “My grandmother’s birthday is that day and I don’t know how many more she will have.” My focus was not where it should have been. I was thinking how I was getting beat out of a long weekend with my family and the fact that I had requested the time off on July 3rd. Had I the opportunity to relive that era, I like to think I would have the courage to deal with the issue and be truthful as to when I made the original request.
In ministry, we hear words spoken that are two-edged. We can hear them as encouraging thoughts or as ideas that injure us. If we truly live for the Lord, we have Him to decipher how some phrases are intended.
In the New Testament, the Pharisees resented the words Jesus spoke. Their focus was on themselves. They made all these rules to keep the Hebrew people under their thumb in order to rule over them.
In our 21Century world, we have issues to deal with everywhere we look, family issues, health issues, political issues, relational issues. Did you ever wonder what would happen if we took our eyes off these worldly problems and looked to God for the answers?
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Cecelia Lester has been serious about her writing for two decades..
She composes Christian essays and posts them to her blog quietspirit-followingmyking.blogspot.com/
She has served in a faith-based organization, Grace In Action by writing two newsletters and searching for possible grants.
In July 2017, she published her first book, 'Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy.'
She and her husband of 52 years live in central Indiana. They have one grown son.
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