Thursday, May 31, 2007

How He Touches My Heart - Part III of III

In the title, I know I have said that this is Part 3 of 3, for ways that the Lord has touched my heart. But I just want to throw the disclaimer out right now, that I know, without a doubt, that throughout the rest of my life, there will be many, many more ways that He will touch my heart. The title should really read "Part III of Infinity".

That being said, today it hit me pretty hard, as I reflected on some tough and life altering decisions, that I am tired of being let down and left behind. Yes, I am uber-sensitive. Yes, I feel hurt, abandonment, and mistrust a little more than most people. And yes, often times, I feel let down and forgotten. This is just part of who I am. Pathetic little me.

Now, I know better than to assign blame to other people. Like I said, this is just me. We're all human, fallible, imperfect. People will always let each other down. Maybe the problem lies with the fact that I just want someone to believe in, someone who will protect me, someone who will never let me down and never abandon me.

I have that someone, and as I sat on the edge of my bed, after an exhaustingly long day lugging buckets of dough, it hit me hard as a rock to the stomach, that I can count on my God, my fortress, because for as long as I live, as much as I hurt, as hard as I cry, He will always be there for me. He will never let me down! He will never leave me in the dust!

The dictionary defines "steadfast" as

Stead·fast [sted-fast, -fahst, -fuhst] –adjective
1.fixed in direction; steadily directed: a steadfast gaze.
2.firm in purpose, resolution, faith, attachment, etc., as a person: a steadfast friend.
3.unwavering, as resolution, faith, adherence, etc.
4.firmly established, as an institution or a state of affairs.
5.firmly fixed in place or position.

Here's the interesting part though, when I went to look up steadfast in my word search software, every verse that returned was about how we as people are to be steadfast. What about the fact that the God we serve is unchanging, immovable, and constant as the rising and setting sun? He is the One I want to turn to count on. I can't even trust myself to be the same one minute to the next, how can anyone but God be steadfast?

So, instead, I remembered a verse that was told to Joshua, as he was about to enter the Promised Land. Told to him by the One who promised to protect him, to never let him down. Deuteronomy 31:6 reminds me to "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."

Deuteronomy 31:8 "The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged."

Joshua 1:5 "No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you."

1Chronicles 28:20 "David also said to Solomon his son, "Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished."

Psalms 27:10 "Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me."

Psalms 37:28 "For the Lord loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones. They will be protected forever, but the offspring of the wicked will be cut off;

Psalms 94:14 "For the Lord will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance."

Psalms 41:17 "The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the Lord will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them."

Isaiah 42:16 "I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them."

Psalms 12:5 "Because of the oppression of the weak and the groaning of the needy, I will now arise," says the Lord. "I will protect them from those who malign them."

Psalms 12:7 "O Lord, you will keep us safe and protect us from such people forever."

Psalms 32:7 "You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah"

Psalms 40:11 "Do not withhold your mercy from me, O Lord; may your love and your truth always protect me."

Psalms 41:2 "The Lord will protect him and preserve his life; he will bless him in the land and not surrender him to the desire of his foes."

Jeremiah 49:11 "Leave your orphans; I will protect their lives. Your widows too can trust in me."

John 17:11 "I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name-the name you gave me-so that they may be one as we are one."

John 17:15 "My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one."

2Thessalonians 3:3 "But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one."

John 14:2-3 "In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you, and if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am."

So there you have it. The promises of a steadfast One, of One who is set on protecting His inheritance, His bride, His sheep. I know that He will never let me down. What a peaceful realization to know that He will never forget me, how can He? I am written on the palm of His hand.

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