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by Elizabeth Hale
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Today, my son said to me, "Mom, you seem really tense lately." Truer words were never spoken. 'Out of the mouths of babes'. Never mind that this 'babe' is fourteen. I still found it insightful for one his age.

I am tense. Nervous. Not feeling well at all. Our Lord has heard much griping coming from my corner of the world lately. Whining. Pouting. Even yelling!

As I was washing dishes, I was gently reminded that I am to praise Him at all times. In all circumstances. For all things. ALL THINGS! Not just the good things, but also the bad things. I love Jesus mightily. But, I am guilty of not seeing the things He is trying to show me, to teach me. Sometimes I just want to be stubborn and I refuse to listen. To hear. To BE. It's just so darn hard!

Picture this. Say a person plays the lottery, hoping for the big win. It would solve so many problems. Meanwhile, this person is complaining about nearly everything in their life. Then, lo and behold, they win the big prize. They fall to their knees. "Praise God! Thank you, Jesus!" Because now their circumstances have changed for the better. Now it is easier to praise the One from whom all blessings flow. But--what about before? You know, when this person was blaming God for every misfortune that landed in his or her lap. When this person was so busy complaining that they failed to see any blessings? There are ALWAYS blessings to be found in any situation if we will but open our eyes and see them! The main blessing being, of course, that we know Jesus. We are His friends and His companions. What a sorry friend and companion I must be for Him at times. Yet He NEVER turns away from me, nor does He ever turn me away!!!

It goes against our human nature, I know, to praise our way through total ickiness. There seems to be a lot more of that than there should be. Still, we must learn how to praise our creator through good and bad, in sickness and in health, through tenseness, and joy. Whether we are rich or poor, soaring or falling. Kind of like the marriage vows some of us took. After all, we are His bride. We are in effect married to the Most Holy One. We have to praise Him no matter the extenuating circumstances. He is worthy. When is a good time to praise Him? ALL THE TIME! EVERYWHERE! FOR EVERYTHING--GOOD OR BAD! Remember this.

I for one will attempt to deal with my snarkiness. I will attempt to lay aside my worries and my fears and train my eyes on the One who promised to never leave me. God, as the song says, never promised me a rose garden. He did promise me a relationship with Him. He did promise me that if I will seek Him out, He will stay my restless mind and heart and soothe my fractured nerves. He promised me peace. And I am claiming all these things and more from Him, because I am His child.

I will remind myself that no matter what, I do not face any of these things that gnaw at my soul and cause me unease, alone. I have One who walks with me and clears the path. That's why He told us all to keep our eyes on Him. If we are totally focusing on Him and His leading, there is nothing left that we can trip over!

Are you like me? Endlessly having your emotions spinning you around like a top?

Come. Let's go before the throne of grace together and seek the peace we know awaits there. Let's actively praise Our Father, no matter what we are enduring. Let's support each other as we swim through the often muddy water of life.

Jesus, I am ashamed of myself. I am guilty of letting my eyes stray from you. You alone are worthy of praise and I praise You. No matter what, thank you for this gift of life. I will strive to be a better student, a more devoted follower. I will lay aside my fears and give my concerns to You, because You care for me. And Father, be with all those other 'spinning tops' out there. Remind them when they flounder, as I do, that You are as close as a breath to us. Jesus, take my eyes from ME, so I can see YOU. Help me stop living through MY emotions and learn to live more in YOUR truth. One more request, dear Lord, if it is Your will, send a few of the 'spinners' my way. I think I can help a little. Thank you, Jesus. Amen.

God bless you!

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Member Comments
Member Date
Julia May 10 May 2007
Jesus, take my eyes from ME, so I can see YOU. Hey - this might be a great title for a poem! I always love reading your stuff. You are so real (and funny too!) We all get carried up in the pressures of life sometimes, the important thing is: you always come back to the Prince of Peace. He's the only one to make it better. Thanks for sharing. In Christ's Love, julia
Heather Ross 09 May 2007
Elizabeth, "snarky" girl!, Jesus knows you better than you know yourself. He knew you would stop and see Him. He knows His girl, you will not fail in these hard days, you will be the comfort of those around you, there is great things He has in mind for you! You will not fail! You will succeed! He is showing you a way in these desperate times, He knows you want to please Him, and you are! Yes you are, snarky girl! He probably gets a giggle from listening to you like He did with Peter, gettin frustrated, then turning around, realizing how "bad" he was. Hee! Hee!
Thomas Kittrell 09 May 2007
Only when we confess our faults can we overcome them. I think you are on the track to many blessings from God. Thanks for sharing.


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