It is only in our weakness that we can “go from strength to strength,” because it is about God’s strength, not our own.
Sometimes we're on the mountaintop in our walk with God, facing an exhilarating view of how He is working in our lives and in His church. But sometimes we're in the fiery furnace. These [trials] have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by … Continue reading Praying Scripture – 11/6/2019
Community isn’t just about what we get out of it. It’s about how we journey together.
Reach out to those people that haven’t been around in a while. Don’t just show up for them when it’s convenient. Show up when you are able. Reaching out to those who are struggling is often inconvenient. Sometimes it’s downright difficult and painful. But sometimes loving our neighbor means showing up when they can’t.
When we are suffering—or even just struggling—we are not to do it alone. We celebrate together. We mourn together. We struggle together. We emerge from the wilderness surrounded by those who've helped carry our burdens. And through it all, we help others carry theirs too.
Just as our human relationships change, our relationships with God grow. Our knowledge of and experience of life with Him deepen. And sometimes God calls us to stop trying to put our relationship with Him in a box and embrace change.
The knowledge that things will eventually change can keep us going, but it isn’t the same as experiencing the thrill of reaching the mountaintop or coming out of the trees and seeing an amazing panorama lying before you. Actually seeing this view reflects not only the words but the experience of the praise section of the laments.
We tend to focus on God’s goodness and faithfulness. We submit ourselves to His will. We often blame ourselves for our circumstances, focusing on our own sinfulness or the reality of life in a fallen world. That's not what the laments do. They don't just beg God to fix things. They blame God. They demand that He intervene.
The laments invite us to boldly express our pain, anger, and fear to God with visceral honesty. They seek an answer from the only One who can bring relief. They keep seeking. They stay in dialogue.
Honestly acknowledging the reality of life in a fallen world doesn’t represent a lack of faith. Admitting the truth doesn’t mean that we think God has lost control.