Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "In The Sweet By And By"1 (Lyrics)
Lamentations 3:22-24 – Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, "The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him." (NIV)
As I approach the corral, it is still dark, and the icy morning seeks to penetrate the warmth of my parka. My headlamp illuminating the way picks out the horses as they hover at the gate. They are waiting in expectation, as they know there could be special treats in my pocket. As I silently laugh to myself at their eagerness, I consider the lesson that their behaviour is prodding me to embrace.
How expectant am I of the special treats that God has for me each day? God is a good God, and He gives good gifts to His children. For the asking, He strengthens us daily to do all that we need to do. He blesses us with friends and family, jobs and homes. He causes the sun to rise in the morning and the moon at night, the snow to fall and the rain to patter. Each and every day, He blesses us with opportunities to help others, to treat our neighbour as ourselves. We have eyes to see the glorious multitude of shades and colours that our world is adorned in. We have ears to hear the singing of the birds, the barking of a dog, the purring of a contented cat, the cry of a newborn, the laughter of a child. We have a mouth with which to praise Him and to encourage our fellow human beings. We have a sense of smell to savour fresh bread coming straight from the oven, blossoms in spring, wet leaves in the fall, and the sharp tang of winter. He blesses us with healing from our wounds emotionally, spiritually, and more often than not, physically, as we struggle to recuperate from colds, the flu, and a myriad of other common illnesses. For the asking, He grants us wisdom, which we must then not doubt. He forgives our sins and renews our spirit when we have fallen short of the life that He calls us to in Christ. His Word assures us of eternity with Christ when we have faith to believe in the work of the cross and resurrection. And He is even now, through Christ, preparing a home for us in heaven. Yet how often, I must ask myself, do I stand at the gate of prayer each morning, waiting with expectation to recognize and receive these special treats which come daily from the hand of my heavenly Father? Not nearly as I often as I should — I know that for certain.
How about you? Great is His faithfulness. Most wonderful are the gifts of His hand each and every day. I pray that I may not forget this lesson that the horses have revealed to me, and I pray that you might embrace it, too, as need be within your life.
Prayer: Father God, thank You that because of Your great love, we are not consumed, for Your compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. Help us to cultivate more and more an attitude of joyful expectation of seeing, receiving, and appreciating the good gifts which come from Your hand, each and every day. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.