Well, I am sharing this later than I typically do. You know how summer weekends are – I was so busy trying to get things accomplished (like the lawn, and other home projects) that the time got away from me.  Now, I am resting, enjoying another beautiful evening, here in Western Pennsylvania.  My daughter, Felicity, is away this week, spending time with her grandmother in Virginia. I miss her but I am so thankful she got to go.  I am actually heading out in the next couple days on a little trip of my own.  I will be spending a few days in a cabin in the mountains of West Virginia, to relax, explore, and more importantly to work on WRITING my BOOK!  Due to life being busy, I haven’t been able to give the book the attention I have wanted and my publishing team has been more than patient with me.  So, when I knew Felicity would be away for a few days, I decided this was a good time to get away and be intentional about THE BOOK! I’d appreciate your prayers.  Revisiting the events of my late-wife’s death and the growth that has happened since is a necessary, but very painful story to revisit.  I KNOW that someone needs to hear the story, so that is why I am going to face that roar head on.

If you’ve been reading the blog for any length of time, you will notice I like to reference prior events in my journey.  It was a year ago, today (July 1), that I was away on a men’s overnight.  My two-year long men’s group was coming to the final lap, and we spent some time together, encouraging one another and just hanging out.  I really needed that time away.  You see, a year ago, I was unemployed with very few job prospects. We were financially sustained by savings and by the support and prayers of so many wonderful people in our lives. I dreaded people asking me what my next move was, because I honestly did not know what God was up to.  I couldn’t figure out why every application, resume, and interview ended the same way – with heart-wrenching silence or just a flat out “no”.  Yet, each time a bill was due, or we needed groceries, God took care of the need – often providing the exact amount at just the right time.

Today, I was serving in kid’s church, and we were chatting about how God delivered the three Hebrew boys from the fiery furnace, after they had refused to bow down to the statue of the foreign king (it’s in Daniel Chapter 3, in the Bible – you should read it!).  When I was with my small group of kids, I reminded them that those three boys did not know that God was going to keep them from being burned alive and YET they still trusted that God would deliver them somehow, someway…even if it wasn’t until they were dead.  That is some faith!  But it is not misplaced faith, because our God CAN BE TRUSTED!  That definitely doesn’t mean we are always delivered from our inconveniences, our pain, or our loss.  Sometimes, like those three boys, or like me, just a year ago, we do have to take a stand, trust that God is who He says He is and will do what He says He will do, and then walk forward into some of the most difficult, unexplainable, and painful moments.

JamesStaringOutA friend took this picture, early one morning, a year ago, while I was at that retreat.  I have a larger version in my bedroom, as a reminder that when we seek the Lord, we will never be disappointed – He will ALWAYS show up.  I don’t remember the prayer I prayed out on that dock, as I stared out across the water, early that summer morning, but I do remember know that God was going to take good care of Felicity and me, no matter what.  Friend, look around you.  Stop worrying for just a moment, and thank God for what He is doing on your behalf. That praise will redirect you, provide a contentment and a confidence of your deliverance, and perhaps….just perhaps…it might snuff out the fiery furnace you once thought would be your last stand.  And if not, know this…KNOW THIS…that no matter what you face, God is with you each step of the way, and He WILL PROVIDE far greater than you could ever imagine! 

Thank you for reading, following, and sharing this with someone else.  

Have a good one! 

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