Dwelling in Him

Well, I have worn out the soles of my favorite walking shoes! I am putting in lots of miles and it is perfect for "prayer, praise, pondering, and podcasting". (And most often, the podcasts make me pray more fervently). There is just so much to pray for: health crises, stress of finances, stress of navigating COVID, disappointments, shattered dreams, loneliness, school decisions, and much more.

I was convicted recently that I was forgetting to PRAISE God, and have just been concentrating on prayers for this unusual time we are living through. (Ferocious, fierce prayers for this time!)
I realized the ratio of my praising God was on the low side. Proclaiming and praising Him for who HE is, and what He has done. It is time to get my focus off the "wind and waves". They are so huge and frightening and distract me from God's presence. So I pulled out some of my most treasured Scriptures of praise. And as I began to recite, repeat and dwell on them, I began to feel my heart changing!!! A transformation and renewal from anxiety and negative thoughts.

"I praise you, God, because "who is like you, LORD God Almighty? You, LORD, are mighty, and your faithfulness surrounds you"Ps 89:8

My circumstances have not changed. But my heart and perspective began to change in the middle of my circumstances. I can actually see Him working in circumstances that are frustrating, disappointing and painful. (I can think of many more negative adjectives).
Praise isn't just putting a smiley face on the situation. It is putting the focus on God Who is "able to do exceedingly, abundantly beyond all we can ask or think". Eph 3:20,21
Prayer and praise is not the power of positive thinking. It is the power of Jesus Christ Who conquered sin, death, redeemed us and brought us into fellowship with Him. And He calls us His children!

"But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ".
1 Cor 15:57
And He loves when we worship Him and praise Him for Who He is.

Isaiah 12:2
"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the LORD GOD is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation."

Yesterday, I was pondering the Scripture, Psalm 91: 1,2. "He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the Lord, my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust". And I kept thinking, "where are my thoughts dwelling? Where do I want my heart to dwell"? I want to abide in Him.
But the constant assault of our situation - both health and political, hinders me many times.
It is a discipline, a choice to focus on God, not on the wind and waves. The voices will always be clamoring for me.
Today I choose - choose His Voice, His promises, His presence.

Suzanne Dull

1 Comment

Wendy - October 1st, 2020 at 10:26am

Thanks Suzanne. I agree and love to praise and sing. I always liked that song “I will praise you in this storm”. Yes, we take our eyes off the catastrophe, the wind and waves and look into his face and praising him. Thank you. I even once had a dream that I was in the back of the boat with Him wrapped in his arms during the course of that storm. A good image when it hits! Thank you so much.