Sow & Gather

Faith

When God Has a Better Plan

Faith, MothersMarci AnthonyComment
#sowandgather When God Has A Better Plan #faith #parenting

The Pharisees said to Him, "Do you hear what these are saying?" And Jesus said to them, 'Yes, have you never read, "Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise"?' Matthew 21:26 (ESV) 

As a mom, my most exciting moments have been seeing spiritual markers in my kids’ lives. It gives me joy, peace and hope to see my kiddos walking with Jesus. 

One such time happened when my son was only nine. We had set sail on a cruise from Florida, expecting to have a fabulous, fun-filled trip. We had already experienced disappointment since I was unfamiliar with cruises and had missed the deadline for signing up for the dolphin excursion. My six-year old daughter did not receive the news well and had spent some time crying about that lost opportunity. 

On day two of our seven-day cruise, we learned that there were not one but two hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and the danger would force our captain to make the decision to reroute the trip. I remember returning to the cabin as the news sank in that all previous plans had been cancelled and any new on-shore activities were uncertain. We were pretty down and my daughter again began to sob. 

I can still see my sweet son's face full of hope, joy and child-like faith as he spoke fourteen little words. "Maybe God has something better planned for us than we had planned for ourselves." At that moment, my breath caught in my chest as I realized that he could be right. 

Now, I know that God does not give us everything we want, because He is at work through difficult situations just as He is in the good times. On this occasion, though, He chose to affirm my son's faith and confirm his belief. We experienced everything we wanted to, including a swim in the ocean with dolphins that had not previously been possible. 

This spiritual milestone in my son's life became a mom milestone in mine. Even when I am not where I need to be, God is still working in my children's lives. He will be more of a parent for them than I could ever be. I just need to move out of the way and trust Him to do what I cannot. 

Dig deeper |

1 John 3:1-2John 16

Action Item |

Are you trusting your child's future to God? Or, are you trying to protect them from difficulties that are God's fertile ground for teaching? 

Prayer |

God, help me to trust Your ways are best for my child even when they experience unfavorable situations. Help me have wisdom to know how to guide them through these times and teach them to lean on You. In Jesus name, Amen. 

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Gather with us by sharing your "Action Item" or "Prayer" by clicking on the Comment link at the top of the post.

What Can I Do When My Faith Is So Weak?

Faith, New BeginningsMarci Anthony3 Comments
do-not-be-afraid-or-discouraged-sowandgather

Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. II Chronicles 20:15b NIV

I find it amazing that God has to remind me often that He wants to be involved in my daily life. I don’t know about you, but I simply forget that He’s standing by, just waiting for me to turn to Him and let Him guide me through my problems. He constantly has to remind me that if I’m willing, my battles are not mine…they're His!

In II Chronicles, King Jehoshaphat hears that three armies have united and are on the march toward Jerusalem! He knows his army has no chance to stand against them, so he makes an appeal of protection to the Lord. “O Lord, God of our fathers…we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You.”

God’s reply is immediate and wonderful: They don’t need to be afraid or discouraged because the battle is His.

But . . . ”Go out to face them tomorrow.” What?! God says He will fight the battle, but we still have to march up against an army that’s at least three times our size?!

For King Jehoshaphat and all his fellow soldiers, it becomes a distinct matter of faith. Is their faith in God real . . . real enough to march toward an army that will surely decimate them, unless God keeps His promise and enters the battle Himself?

The way they respond is exemplary! First, they all fall down and worship the Lord, then early the next morning they march – straight toward the enemy. But then they set the bar really high for all believers who would follow in centuries to come (that’s us!), for not only do they exhibit great faith by marching toward this vast army, they also appoint a men’s choir to lead the way! And as they march, with the choir in front, they sing praise to God for the splendor of His holiness! Now that’s faith. Simply amazing, life-on-the-line faith!

Of course, God was faithful to His promise. He ambushed the enemy armies and caused them to completely destroy each other.

And I must remember that those soldiers were people just like me. Same fears, same struggles. But they sure stepped up to the plate and showed me what it means to put my life in the hands of my faithful God!

Dig Deeper |

II Chronicles 20:1-30; Ephesians 6:16

Action Item |

Do you sometimes feel that a vast army is coming up against you? Do you truly believe God is willing to act on your behalf? Pick up our shield of faith each morning before the day begins and allow Him to guide you throughout the day.

Prayer |

Lord, many times my faith is so weak. Please help my unbelief. Help me to take that first, hard step, believing that you will carry me the rest of the way. And, Lord, help me to sing your praises as I go!! Amen.

Join Us |

Gather with us by sharing your "Action Item" or "Prayer" by clicking on the Comment link at the top of the post.

This post is part of A Little R-n-R Wednesdays A Linky Party and #livefreethursday with Suzie Eller