This week’s devotion by
“Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Have you ever woken up and just felt down? Yesterday I woke up feeling really discouraged. All I could see was everything that has not gone right, everything that was out of my control.
I was home alone so I took advantage and went to sleep again, exhausted from thinking and thinking and thinking … What if everything falls apart? What if you fail? What if… My sleep gave me no relief, hours later the questions still rolling around in my mind. I needed some answers. Or something, anything.
In a few hours I had managed to think myself into an emotional tizz.God where are you? I really need you. This was not frustration, it was something worse and it alarmed me a little. I was slipping into a dark and bleak place and was not able to just snap out of it. A song came to me, softly, softly:
“My heart seeks you in desperation, no one knows me like you do.”
So I grabbed my Bible and as I paged through it randomly, not sure what I was looking for, I came across this verse:
“If you follow my statutes and faithfully observe my commands, I will give you rain at the right time, and the trees of the field will bear fruit.
Your threshing will continue until grape harvest, and the grape harvest will continue until sowing time; you will have plenty of food to eat and live securely in your land.” Leviticus 26: 3
Grapes, that rang a bell. It reminded of the story of the Israelites who sent scouts to check out the Promised Land. All but one brought back a bad report: the land was flowing with milk and honey and the grapes were massive. But so were the men. Intimidated, the Israelites went into a panic and in that moment decided that all the trouble they had seen in their journey through the wilderness was not worth risking their lives entering the promised land, Our children will be plunder! they cried. Their lowest point was when they saw their own smallness instead of God’s greatness. What they should have said was: Hey, God said this land is ours, let’s go get those grapes!
Yet even in their ignorance and unfaithfulness, God still took care of them. Sure, He was angry but He never once left them.
Hours later, I was still pondering the mystery of God’s faithfulness and doing some research on grape farming when my mom and sister arrived from town. The usual greetings were exchanged and I received the groceries they brought with them.
My mother could not have known that what she had in her hand was God’s way of whispering in my ear I’m here. I smiled a little as she handed me a box of dark, seedless grapes. She had been gone all day and could not have known their significance: Go girl, get those grapes!
It was all I needed to remind me that when I am at my lowest, God leans down.
When times are tough, never let the discouragement of life shake you from the assurance that God is right here with you. Your dreams are big and the obstacles between here and there are massive, but your God is gargantuan!
Be strong and courageous, He will never leave you, nor give up on you, nor fail you. I hope you hear the voice of the Father saying, even now: I’m here, let’s go get those grapes!
Father, I thank you that you are forever faithful and you never change. You know all my fears and anxieties and you are near to me. Give me the courage and help me to keep my eyes fixed on you.
In the name of Jesus, Amen.
*Shula loves God and people and her dream is to see women empowered to live out their God-given purpose. Caramel popcorn is the quickest way to her heart. She also blogs at Sheepish Shulamite.