Friday, July 18, 2003

Proverbs 3:5-7 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. (NIV)

I was up late last night, because I wanted to fix and clean a camera lens. Today, I am totally exhausted. My eyes are tired, and I have not had enough sleep.

To add insult to injury, I did not succeed in my task; I only made things worse, and the lens lies in bits awaiting another attempt at fixing it.

Worse still, I am covered in bites. Something is eating me alive, slowly, so I found it difficult to get to sleep. Today at work, my body itches, and my brain is elsewhere — not that it is anybody's fault but my own.

It is usual, at these times of facing up to my physical limitations, that I feel sorry for myself, wishing myself to be bionic or superhuman. I huff and puff.

The Tempter is there with me. Whether in person or just in my memory from earlier experiences of my baser self I cannot tell, but the result is the same. I want to curse at my frustration. I want everyone on my side, because I want to overcome, I want to win.

I have a long journey to drive tonight after work, and I do not think that I can do it easily. I am in trouble, both with my wife and my Creator, and I know it.

Elsewhere I know the thought, "The devil wants to separate you from God's love, and you are helping him here. Actually, you are doing a better job than he would be allowed to do."

A verse of salvation comes to mind: "The joy of the Lord is your strength." (Nehemiah 8:10) Gradually, I realise that I am not alone.

Yes, with a quiet time, I am subdued; tired, but no longer just left to my own devices. None of us is left alone when we turn to God.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for Your grace today, as once more, we find that we are in need of it. We offer up our praise to Your awesome majesty. Lord, we rejoice that You died to set fools like us free from the grasp of evil. Lord, cleanse the thoughts of our minds, grant us a pure heart, and prune back the pride in us. Grant us enough patience for the day, and watch over our mouths. Grant us, too, a safe journey. Amen.

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About the author:

Rod Marshall <roderickhenrymarshall@gmail.com>
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

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