Grace and God's Timing by Tonya Johnson

The LOVE of Jesus that lives in me "covered all wrongs" and allowed me to press on, one day at a time.  God is faithful and He is able.  Allow His LOVE to help you.

Today's post comes from my friend Tonya Johnson.  She is our Ministry Assistant at Oak Pointe Church and had the most beautiful family you have ever seen!  She and her husband also serve as pastors to our youth and together they are making a difference in their generation and beyond!  Please stop by Tonya's blog and say hello!  

Doing Life Under the Umbrella of Grace
Brent and Tonya Johnson

God's Impeccable Timing

I've been doing a Proverbs study with the youth at our church and as much as the hubby and I decided on this study for their needs, it has surely gotten "all up in my grill."  He does that, you know, uses something we think we're doing for someone else to impact our lives much more than we expected. This is week 3 in the study and my first realization was that I was not actively seeking Him daily.  I was in a dry season, spiritually.  I wanted to and had intentions to, but I allowed other stuff to interfere and I lazily spent a few moments with him each day.  If I want to lead a life of wisdom and be the woman God has called me to be, I have to work for it and intentionally seek Him through prayer and the study of His word.  In order to walk, talk, and live in truth, we MUST KNOW the truth.  To know the Truth, we must know the Word of God.  To know the Word of God, we must read the Word of God.

God knew some difficult circumstances that I would be facing, and I firmly believe that he has guided each step to get me digging into his word more intentionally on a daily basis.  He has placed some amazing people into my life who have spoken words of wisdom and reminded me of God's promises to me.  They have stopped in their tracks and prayed for me, with me, and over me. God loves me so much that He continues to pursue me even when I neglect to pursue Him.  Bottom line is that He LOVES and proverbs 10:12 says "love covers all wrongs." 

Today has been one of the most emotionally draining days I've had since the end of January.  I've cried so many tears for so many loved ones that I don't think there are any more tears to cry.  My head is pounding from all the times I've wept. My heart is consumed with grief, heartbreak, hurt, inability to understand, failure, worthlessness, hopelessness, and LOVE.  Wow, wait that one doesn't fit, or does it?  Indeed it does, and I'm so thankful that is able to remain in my worn heart.  Because the Holy Spirit lives in me, that LOVE remains and allows me to press on, and eventually overcomes all those other raw emotions. It's not an immediate thing and sometimes it takes a lot longer than I would prefer, but it ALWAYS happens.  

How does it happen and how is it possible for one dim light in the midst of all the darkness to eventually take over and turn everything to light?  The answer is because of Jesus.  Because Jesus gave up His life for me and you, because He was blameless, white as snow, and righteous, because He suffered an unimaginably brutal death that we deserve, because He took His last breath on the cross and said, "It is finished," because three days later He arose from the grave, because His LOVE for us and His Father, He conquered death and has over come the world, so that we can have HOPE.  His LOVE offers us HOPE in the darkest of times.  His unconditional LOVE has already won the battle for us.  His LOVE provides a promise to NEVER leave us or forsake us.  His LOVE has paved a way for us to be cleansed from all sin so that we can have an eternal relationship with the Father.  

In the midst of my tears and sobbing I remember stopping in the middle of my negative, self-condemning thoughts and begging God to flood my mind and overwhelm my heart with His Word and His Truth. Today the LOVE that remains in my heart spoke clearly in my darkness and reminded me that I am of great worth, that I am fully-equipped, that I am strong, that I am fearfully & wonderfully made, that I am more than my mistakes, that hard times are going to come, but God is always with me, upholding me with His righteous right hand, catching every tear I cry and assuring me that He works all things for my good because I love Him and I am called for His purpose. He brought these verses to mind that I have studied, applied to memory, and leaned on many times before.  These verses offered hope to my hopelessness and helped me to see the light of LOVE.  Did my tears turn to laughter?  No, but the hope I was offered through the powerful Word of God gave me the strength & confidence I needed to get up, brush myself off, and move forward.  Had I not studied His word and sought Him intentionally, I would not have been equipped and prepared for this raging storm. "For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart." Hebrews 4:12  God's word was my weapon of defense today, against my own evil thoughts.

It wasn't until later in the evening after I had diligently sought Him out through His Word and prayer and still felt like something was missing, and I couldn't seem to shake my anxiety about the whole situation that I came across this sweet prayer from Lysa TerKeurst on Facebook that spoke directly to my aching heart that longed for a solution, a way to mend the broken pieces.  

"Be still my runaway heart…
Be still my desire to fix things…
Be still my anxious thoughts…
Be still and know without a doubt, God is.
God is the answer.
God is the solution.
God is the desire met.
God is what I am looking for.
God is what I need.
God is God.
Be still and know."

-Lysa TerKeurst

This is what my heart longed to hear.  This is what I needed to say to God. I read the prayer over and over and it was as if God wrapped His big, strong arms around me, held me tightly, and whispered, "I love you, my precious daughter. I am here, and I know exactly how to fix this...just be still and be confident that I will!" I was amazed at God's impeccable timing, and I felt so special to know that God cared about my hurting heart. I felt LOVED.  The LOVE I felt eventually wiped away the hurt feelings and hopelessness of my situation. That love reminded me that I'm called to forgive and live as if I'm forgiven.  The LOVE of Jesus that lives in me "covered all wrongs" and allowed me to press on, one day at a time.  God is faithful and He is able.  Allow His LOVE to help you.