The holidays are over. We got all the decorations put away before Martin Luther King Day (that was a goal)!
Each year I dig into a Bible Reading plan. There are so many to choose! This year is going to be chronological — although, I must say, reading through Job in early January, when the weather is cold and the skies can be gray can be a difficult task.
However, today’s reading gave me a glimpse into Job’s character, and why God chose to tell us his story. Job was in constant pain; all his friends had abandoned him (except the ones who were constantly berating him to “confess” so he could be well); his wife was disgusted with him; he was still grieving the loss of his children and all that he had.
Yes, he complained. Yes, he regretted the day he was born. Yes, he asked “why.” But despite all this, he still trusted God. He knew that he had a future. He continued to fight for joy.
For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. (Job 19:25-27 ESV)
When I am frustrated; when my pain levels are high; when I am lonely; when I am struggling with financial burdens; when I miss my children — do I fight for joy, or do I sink into despair? Do I stand on the character of God, and trust in His ways, or do I run to my own ways, my own devices?
Another goal for me is to have a systematic Bible memory plan this year. I had one for 2009, and, for some reason, just didn’t keep it up as diligently in 2010. I missed it. Renewing my mind with God’s Truth is essential for my spiritual (and mental and emotional) health. Besides, I so want to know my God better!
I found a great resource online. It’s called the “Truth Bible Memory Plan,” in which the goal is to memorize a passage every week for the next year. Here was this week’s passage:
O LORD, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether. (Psalm 139:1-4 ESV)
Just as You were with Job, God, You are with me. You know everything about me (both comforting and convicting). Nothing escapes Your notice and Your care. I am never alone. Despair need not overtake me. You give me joy in You.
Thank you for praying regarding my visit to the Mayo clinic in Florida. I was not able to complete all the appointments the doctor wanted, so Tod and I are going back to Florida at the end of January. At this point, the doctors do not believe that surgery would be helpful. I have very few answers, and still many questions, but patience and living in the “present” are the necessities right now. We are praying for God to lead us to some local doctors for continued follow-up. I have an appointment with an internist in Richmond, but she cannot see me until March 29, 2011 (I almost put 2012 just to be sarcastic).
We love you, our dear friends,
Tod and Bev
Oh, yes, the website for Bible Reading plans and the Truth Bible Memory Plan: http://www.esvonline.org/devotions/