I feel like I’ve turned a corner.
I’m feeling very optimistic about August. I’m not sure why. It potentially holds a lot of change for us, with college and school starting back up. Maybe that’s part of it, though. Life’s looked the same for quite awhile now, so some change might be good!
While getting my hair cut on Friday, I told my stylist that I’m not usually a pessimist, but 2020 has done its best to turn me into one! We had a new roof put on our house last week, so I’m convinced that every tropical storm approaching the Atlantic Ocean is going to morph into at least a category 3 hurricane that will rip a swath of new shingles right off! #atleastIsaiasmostlymissedus
Our coronavirus numbers are looking only slightly better here, but I’m still feeling hopeful. I’ve decided it’s time to count some blessings and settle in to see what happens as fall progresses. Making any kind of plans for the future still seems like an iffy proposition. But maybe now that we’re entering into the sixth month of uncertainty, I’m learning to deal with it a little bit more.
And we can all find blessings – even small ones – that are pandemic related. For example, last week our older daughter flew Delta Airlines from here to Atlanta, then on to Memphis. She texted us about how nice it was to have the middle seat left empty in the three-seat airplane row.
Also, you now have to schedule one of a limited number of time slots each day to go to our neighborhood pool. That means fewer people are there when we go, and everything stays a lot cleaner!
If we just base our current outlook on circumstances, though, we know it could change in a moment. So I’m bolstering my positivity with some Bible verses that remind me that God has it all under control and I can rest in His plan.
“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand.” ~Psalm 37:23-24
God orders the steps of our lives. He arranges circumstances and events. As we rest in His care, we can find peace and yes, even joy. Sometimes we’ll face disappointments and failures, yet God is still there to support us through the hard times.
Almost nothing that’s happened in 2020 so far is what I would have chosen. But I can trust that behind the scenes, God is directing it all – and all for my good, and for the good of those I love.
“Blessed be the Lord, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications. The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.” ~Psalm 28:6-7
God hears my prayers. I’m weak, but He offers me His unending strength and protection. When I trust Him, He will help me, and I won’t be able to respond in any other way than to rejoice and praise Him.
How simple it is to just ask God for His help, yet how often I fail to do it. If we want to live on the praise side of things, we need to call on Him and trust Him to answer.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.” ~Psalm 46:1-3
That passage about covers it all! God’s present with us in our trouble. He’s the reason we can choose not to be afraid in spite of the craziness that’s going on around us.
“My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.” ~Psalm 62:5-8
I like the word expectation. What if we lived anticipating and looking forward to seeing how God’s going to work as we wait on Him? That would put a positive spin on our days!
And did you notice that it says to trust in Him at all times? Could 2020 be an exception, though? I don’t think so.
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” ~John 16:33
Jesus wants us to find our peace in Him. At times I tend to look for peace by trying to control circumstances or arrange things so that it will all work out okay and everyone will be happy. The only thing that’s likely to do is cause me stress!
Jesus says straight out that we’re going to have tribulation here. Then He follows that with, “But be of good cheer.” In other words, don’t let it get you down. He is the great overcomer, both through His death that provided salvation and through the final victory He’ll one day win here on earth.
***I wrote the first part of this post on Friday afternoon, wrapped up in my initial positivity about August. By the next day, I realized that Tropical Storm Isaias was probably going to interfere with our older daughter’s return flight last night from her visit to Memphis that I mentioned above. My positivity wanted to fly right out the window!
By mid-afternoon, we assumed her 8:30pm flight from Atlanta to Charleston would be canceled, so my husband went ahead and rebooked her flights for today. But combing through these verses – especially the first one – helped me stay fairly calm about the situation!***
May this month see us trusting God to order our steps, seeking His strength, and finding peace as we wait expectantly on Him!