Life is full of hallways - those times between God's closing doors and opening windows. Find Biblical encouragement for your own season of struggle by visiting the blog, stopping by the shop, or subscribing to our members' page. Let's praise Him in the waiting!
Today, we have a special treat here on the blog! In honor of National Adoption Month, blogger Naomi from Living Out 127 is sharing about her family's experience with foster care. And I couldn't be more blessed to have her here.
Adoption is something close to my heart. Not only have I been adopted into the family of God through Christ's work on the cross, Jon and I have been praying about the possibility of becoming adoptive parents, too. I don't know how the Lord will lead us, but if He chooses to open the door to adopt, we will be thrilled!
Adoption and foster care come with a lot of uncertainty - it definitely can be considered one of life's hallways! Naomi raises and excellent question below: what if fostering a child causes our other children difficulty? It's definitely something to consider, and she does an excellent job of sharing how her family handled this delicate situation.
Do you crave spiritual growth? If not, have you ever wondered why you don't or what you can do to foster a hunger for spiritual things?
I have a sneaking suspicion that if we're all honest with ourselves, none of us truly desire spiritual growth as much as we wish we did. Sure, we want to grow in our faith, and many of us have probably had at least one "aha!" moment while studying Scripture that was thrilling. But how many of us have an insatiable hunger for spiritual growth where we simply can't get enough of God and His Word?
If you're like me, wishing you had a greater hunger for spiritual growth, there is hope! Here are three ways you can develop a greater hunger for spiritual growth.
Several months ago, I started noticing just how many planners are now available - daily planners, weekly planners, homeschool planners, business planners. You can get a physical planner or a digital version. You can even create your own with the popular bullet journal concept. You name it, and there's probably a planner for it!
In fact, there's really only one area I've found where planning seems to be nonexistent or even considered taboo. I've yet to come across a planner specific to spiritual growth. I think many Christians feel that planning for something that should be Spirit-led somehow goes against what the Bible teaches. The more I've studied this, though, the more I believe that God's Word encourages planning in all seasons, including our walk with Christ.
Today's attribute of God is His worthiness, an appropriate attribute to conclude our 31 Attributes series. My absolute favorite Scripture verse on His worthiness is found in Revelation 4:11 (NKJV, emphasis added):
"You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created."
We've looked at His longsuffering, His righteousness, His goodness, His sovereignty, and many other attributes. And they all come together to prove that He alone truly is worthy of all power, praise, dominion, and worship. I stand in absolute awe of the amazing, incomprehensible God we serve.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you felt completely over your head and wished you had the wisdom to handle it better? This routinely happens to me. Although I might know how not to handle it, I never can quite figure out the best approach. And it drives me crazy. I long to have the understanding and mental clarity needed to determine the root issue, but most of the time, I just don't have enough wisdom.
Thankfully, I don't always need to know exactly what to do or have the perfect words to say, because while I lack that kind of wisdom, the Lord doesn't. He fully understands each and every situation we encounter in life and knows how to perfectly handle everything.
In short, He is wise.
We've almost completed our 31 Attributes of God series! Today, is another astounding attribute: He is unchangeable.
I'm kind of an unemotional person for the most part. I think my brother even once referred to me as stoic (though, admittedly, as I get older and experience more of life, I'm not nearly as stoic as I once was). But even so, my mind, feelings, and emotions flip-flop often! No one would describe me as unchangeable even if I am a little less given to wearing my feelings on my sleeve than others might be.
But God isn't like us. He is unchangeable, unmoving. He is steadfast and constant.
Truth is harder than a lie.
- Francesca Battistelli, If We're Honest
Isn't it sad how easy it is to lie? When I first heard the above line from the song, "If We're Honest," it hit me just how true it is. For us, telling the truth is more difficult than simply making up a story.
That's not true with God. He is truthful. One hundred percent, all the time. He stands in stark contrast to us who are tempted daily to be untruthful in a number of ways.
Do you believe that God is trustworthy? Because so many people aren't dependable, it can be difficult to really, truly believe that God is as good as He claims. And that's exactly why we can't rely on our experiences to say whether or not God is trustworthy.
Let's see what Scripture has to say:
- 2 Samuel 7:28 - "And now, O Lord God, You are God, and Your words are true, and You have promised this goodness to Your servant" (NKJV).
- Psalm 22:4-5 - "Our fathers trusted in You; they trusted, and You delivered them. They cried to You, and were delivered; they trusted in You, and were not ashamed" (NKJV, emphasis added).
What do you think about the sovereignty of God? Until I was 16, my family and I attended a church that talked a lot about man's free will. But then we began attending a church that focused heavily on God's sovereignty, and it did amazing things for my faith.
It wasn't that our first church didn't believe in the sovereignty of God, but rather it simply wasn't a focal point (at least, not that I remember, but I was also fairly young when we stopped going there). At our new church, however, the sovereignty of God permeated everything, and I began to understand more clearly how the Lord was in complete control of all things - how He was able to use even seemingly bad situations for His purposes.
What comes to mind when you hear the word steadfast? I tend to think of something immovable, something that would remain firm even in the fiercest storm. And since the online dictionary defines it as "resolute, dutifully firm, or unwavering," I think my concept is pretty much on the mark.
What doesn't come to mind about being steadfast is myself. There are days when my emotions and feelings are all over the place. One minute I'm on cloud 9; another minute and can be so frustrated that tears threaten. And even though comparatively speaking, I may be a little more emotionally stable than some, when I compare myself with God's steadfastness, I'm about as unwavering as liquid jello!