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Tag Archives: Faithfulness

One Day at a Time

Dear God, I was reading Fred Smith’s blog today about a man who lived a seemingly ordinary life, but the truth is that it was as extraordinary as any because it was the life you had for him to live. It made me think about how often we live for greatness, but the reality is that, when a 70-year-old looks back on her or his life, what they see is the culmination of 25,500 days that built one on top of the other. And within each are countless moments. Sometimes we are faithful in those moments and do the right things. Sometimes we are sinful in those moments. Sometimes we suffer setbacks, and sometimes we experience those great victorious moments for which we all hope. But the overwhelming majority of our lives are made up of those small moments, decisions, and actions that make us who we are.

I woke up this morning with dread. Our nonprofit has an event coming up, and I do not like putting on events. It’s one of my least favorite things to do, and there is a lot of work to be done today. A lot of it will be thankless and tedious. Most of it will never be seen by anyone. But, with your blessing, my actions (along with the actions of others) will prayerfully combine with a lot of other actions to turn into money for our clinic. That money for our clinic will meet someone in crisis. The greatness of that moment CANNOT happen without the faithfulness in the tedious.

Father, give me the strength you need me to have to accomplish what you need me to accomplish today. Help me to do good work that is inspired by you. Help me to be energized with your spirit and attitude towards all of this. Help me to die to myself. Help me to not look for any glory for me, but to completely bring glory to you. Help me to love well. Help me to be your servant. My hope is that you will find me faithful.

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 
 

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The Redemption of Gomer — Hosea 3

The image above was done by Ned Bustard and is part of a book he put together called Revealed: A Storybook Bible for Grown-Ups. I am using it for my Bible studies on Saturdays as a way of integrating the arts into my Bible study.

Hosea 3 NIV
[1] The Lord said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another man and is an adulteress. Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes. ” [2] So I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about a homer and a lethek of barley. [3] Then I told her, “You are to live with me many days; you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man, and I will behave the same way toward you.” [4] For the Israelites will live many days without king or prince, without sacrifice or sacred stones, without ephod or household gods. [5] Afterward the Israelites will return and seek the Lord their God and David their king. They will come trembling to the Lord and to his blessings in the last days.

 

Dear God, this is a hard story. Why did Hosea have to go through this to make your point? Was his sacrifice necessary for us to read all of these years later?

Of the image that Ned Bustard made, he wrote: “In this piece a spurned husband dresses up in a tuxedo and comes out to the street corner with a wedding ring and an offer of marriage to his unfaithful wife who is standing under the street light, working as a prostitute.” As I look at his image, her face is expressionless–only lips. Her dress appears to be torn–perhaps from her customers tearing at her clothes. Her hair is not particularly smooth, but unkempt. And as he said, she is “under the streetlight.” She is showing off the merchandise, her body being the only thing that is important–not her face.

On the other hand, the husband has brought her her wedding ring that she left behind. He has made himself up as nice as he possibly could for her. His face if visible, and his hair is perfect, in contrast to her invisible face and unkempt hair. He wants to love her and take care of her. Will she accept his love?

Father, thank you for loving me. I have been the whore who has left you for others. I have pursued my own interests and sold out for advancement. I have also taken advantage of others for my gain. I am so sorry. I know I’ve repented of these things before, and you probably don’t remember what I’m talking about, but things like this bring them to mind again. And I am also reminded that, just like Hosea was called to a life of pain and sacrifice, I have no right to expect any different. I am amazed I have as much as I have. I am amazed you have answered my prayers in such powerful ways. You have been doubly good to me when I didn’t even deserve for you to be single-y good. Really, thank you!

In Jesus’ name I pray,

Amen

 

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