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The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18.

God is drawn to the proximity of your brokenness and if your spirit is crushed, He is ready to save you.

Grieving can make your world tremble and paralyze your voice. Suffering losses, whether it is the repercussions of a national disaster or the passing of a loved one, can pillage language by stealing your ability to articulate what emotions and sentiments you’ve experienced.

Another aspect of known language is when a person can define a word, but has never experienced its meaning. For instance, the literary devices of past, present, and future tense are fundamental to the formation of sentence structures and considered elementary. However, what do you do when the present-tense phrase, “I love” turns to the past tense phrase, “I loved.” The fundamental parts of speech are no longer elementary, but compounded into emotional responses you cannot prepare for.

Express Yourself

Vocalizing the depth of our brokenness can be next to impossible at times. How can someone articulate the complexities of their emotion into words? Thankfully, God knows the cry of your heart and the pain you have experienced. We serve a God who knows the language of grief and who is touched by the feeling of our infirmities. If you are hurting today, take your pain to the Lord in prayer; He can help carry your burdens.

Prayer: Lord, I pray that I when I feel brokenness and crushed in my spirit that I would feel You near me. Surround me, oh Lord, when I do not know how to pray. Comfort me when I feel alone and afraid. Help me to know that You are with me in the valleys of life. And, I pray that you will remind me that You will never leave or forsake me.

Remember the days of old; consider the generations long past. Ask your father and he will tell you, your elders, and they will explain to you. Deuteronomy 32:7

My mom worked in a Retirement Home when I was growing up. I have many memories of bringing my classical piano books to play songs for anyone who desired to listen. Walking through those hallways with my mother, I learned the valuable lesson to honor my elders and to take time to listen to their stories—they hold much wisdom.

Several of my mom’s patients had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and I didn’t understand the complications of their life, but I remember looking into their eyes and seeing confusion.

Maybe you have experienced this terrible disease inflict someone close to you and you are learning how to navigate life with a person who has made you a stranger. You may be heartbroken—so are they, but they do not know why.

Alzheimer’s robs an individual of their memories and as a result, they may react in fear and frustration to a family member or close friend who walks into their room.

This is understandable…

The Power of Memories

  • How can you navigate life if you cannot remember your past.
  • How can you have peace in your future, if you cannot remember where you have been?

I’m sure those with this degenerative disease would love to have all of their memories—even the bad ones, because without the positive and negative together, it is difficult to understand a persons blessings, victories, healing, and successes.

If you have the power to remember, then stop trying so hard to forget.

Everything that you have been through has brought you to this place. There may be parts of your story you would like to forget, but those dark moments have brought you to where you are right now. Your former sins have brought you to grace. Your past, whatever it may be, has revealed that God has better plans for your future.

Do not despise your history, your past, your failures, or your memories. Instead, be grateful that you can use those for the glory of God.

I shall remember the deeds of the LORD; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old. Psalm 77:11

Allow your past to shape a better future for you and your family. Take some time today to share what God has done for you, because your memories and your testimony holds power.

“But God demonstrates his own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8, New English Translation).

I grow ugly houseplants. Not intentionally—I just don’t have a green thumb. I also can’t bear to throw out a plant that still has any life showing. Even if it is misshapen, with brownish spots, and unattractive. One such plant now lives by a bright sunny window of my home.

There’s Life!

The plant in question came to me in a strange way. A friend and I offered to pick someone up following a medical test. I sat curbside while she walked inside the hospital to lead the lady to the car. A few minutes later, my friend returned with the lady and carrying a potted plant. Did she buy it in the gift shop, I wondered? And why? She explained, “I was walking down the hallway and someone just handed it to me and walked on. I don’t know why.” She, in turn, gave the plant to me. It’s not pretty, but it’s alive. And so, it sits by my window because I can’t bear to throw out something that still has some potential.

I wonder if that plant is symbolic of how God found us. Sin had made our lives ugly and scarred, and many would not see any potential for good. Yet God in His mercy did not give up on us. He knew that with loving care, we could be nurtured into a thing of beauty. He was not willing to toss us aside while there was still a chance for us to turn into something lovely.

We Can Thrive

God is the Master Gardener. He knows just the right things to do to nurture us and take away the ugliness that marred our appearance. Under His tender care we can thrive and reach our full potential.

I looked at my ugly plant again this morning as I watered it. No, I won’t throw it away. It’s a gentle reminder of God’s amazing grace in my life. God sees beyond the ugly to what I can become as I live my new life in Him.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for loving me when I was unlovable. You saw beauty when no one else did. Each day I am flooded with thanksgiving at the mercy You offer. Your love and mercy are never ending.