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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tough Love Tuesday: Rejoice in your hope

If you've read my past posts, you know I love it when God exercises tough love on me, so I'm trying out a new post theme name.

This is a journal entry from November 30, 2010, a few days before Mikey's open-heart surgery.  (It's a little choppy because I was very emotional and not edited for grammar in an attempt to keep the original sentiment intact.  It takes a lot of work to reign in my rambling.)

Tonight I started to cry about the surgery.  I said many of the same things I've said over and over, like, "What if Your plan is to take him?"  (Because I always have faith in His plan.)

I've been praying constantly, which is what I feel God is calling me to do.

Then it spilled that I'm scared.  I felt a release as I said those words out loud, hands clasped.  I cried a bit longer, when a verse popped into my head - or part of a verse, since my brain - or God's message - stopped after the key part: "rejoice in your hope" (Romans 12:12). 

[For what it's worth, the last part, "pray constantly" I was already in the thick of, and the middle, "be patient in tribulation," has been my subconscious homework of late.]

That's it! I forgot to hope!  Last time, God did exactly as I asked, to every last detail.  Why wouldn't He answer my prayer this time?  Sure, His plan is best, but His plan could be for me to ask so He can answer.  (Duh.)

~ Rejoice in your hope ~

Incidentally, earlier today, a page on facebook asked its followers what verse they turn to in times of trial (interesting synchronicity, eh?).  I immediately though of two: Ephesians 5:20 and Romans 12:12.  Ephesians 5:20 speaks of giving thanks in everything.  A few weeks ago, Anna Duggar spoke of always thanking God.  After that, I saw mention of this verse time and time again.  I took the hint and made it my homework.  Romans 12:12 has been my favorite verse for a while because it feels like me: optimistic, enduring - at least in child health concerns, and prayerful; I feel the most secure when all three elements are in balance.  I made it a memory verse one night (no doubt a divine suggestion), and opportunity to share it has come up over and over.  God is great...if not a little sneaky.

So this verse from Romans has been playing through my head all day, no doubt in preparation for my need for it tonight.  Sneaky Power of the universe...

Ephesians playing through my head showed its value on Thanksgiving.  I was in a bad mood about "everyone" ditching us.  Mom, out of the blue, asked me to give the blessing.  Since I was such a crab, and we never do this, I know God prompted her.  I was immediately humbled.  As I prayed a clumsy prayer, I hit a rhythm, thanking God for those who were with us and those who weren't.  It felt like the words came out of my mouth beyond my control.  Maybe they did.

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