Let's Get Real!

Life is hard and sometimes it feels like we are on the losing side.  It's hard to get on top of life's battles.  Discouragement and disillusionment seem to be nipping at our heals.  

Let's be honest...that sounds like a typical day for some of us!

This week I was encouraged by a Psalm of lament. 

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David. How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? Consider and answer me, O LORD my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death, lest my enemy say, "I have prevailed over him," lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken. But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me.  (Psalms 13:1-6)

There was a man who sounded like he was suffering and yet He trusted in the Lord, the one who restores his soul!

Here is another Scripture with a similar theme.

Habakkuk 3:17- 19, Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.

I remember sitting on my balcony in Croatia years ago.  I was in a bit of a funk and looking up, saw dark clouds rolling across the sky.  I decided to put down my feelings in a poem.  As I neared the end, the sky began to clear.

I Need Clear Skies 

I need clear skies
Lord, I need clear skies
I need a ray of hope
To start shining through

The winds are getting strong
Dark clouds are rolling in
And now the rain
The rain is coming down

Things don’t look good
A gloom is setting in
Help me Lord
Let it not affect my mood
Off in the distance
I see some brighter clouds
Oh please let them
Start to come my way

Finally here they come
Sunshine is on the way
The winds are calming
The rain has gone away

I see clear skies
Lord, I see clear skies
I see a ray of hope
It’s shining on my heart

I read that poem, thanks to translation via a Croatian friend, at an evening of poetry and song a few days later.  A lady came up to me afterwards and asked how long after I wrote the poem did I become a Christian.  I told her I wrote it last week!  She was stunned because she was not used to hearing Christians speak of discouragement and gloom.

In the midst of the storm, it is hard to keep our eyes on Jesus.  Distractions come to easily.  We lose our focus and look at the storm itself.  Yet it is only Jesus who can lift us up above the storm and calm the wind and the waves of life.

Sometimes my prayer is simply "Lord I believe; help my unbelief!"  (Mark 9:23-24)

The great thing about Jesus is He hears and answers those prayers as well!

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