Thursday, February 21, 2013 that is what I call relief.

I have had the blessing of attending Beth Moore at Houston's First this spring.  Beth Moore has written numerous bible studies and is a very dynamic speaker.  She has so much talent, life experience, passion, humor and honesty - that if you have the opportunity to hear her speak, please take it!!

My Mom decided she wanted to make the commitment to drive in every Tuesday and attend with me.  We meet at church at 5 PM and eat dinner together and then at 6:30 head in for worship and teaching.  It has been such a blessing that I am getting sad we only have two weeks left.  I love my Mom and am going to have to come up with a new excuse to see her every week!  The last two weeks my Grandma has also doesn't get much better than that.  My grandparents live in Minnesota, so we typically see them once or twice a year.  My grandma is 5 foot nothing and a firecracker.  I love every SECOND i get to spend with all my grandparents.  Normally in the summer I head to Minnesota for a long weekend, but won't get to this year because I am going to the Dominican Republic for a mission trip and Rush Week with our youth group in July.  It was a tough decision, but the right one for this year. 

Anyways, Beth is teach on 1 and 2 Thessalonians and still in the process of writing, so I am not going to go into too much detail on her teachings, but one verse she mentioned really stuck with me.  It was 1 Peter 1:6-8.  (well she focused on 6-7, but I like 8 too) 

"In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls." - 1 Peter 1:6-8

Beth mentioned that this verse focuses on three time periods: NOW, For a little while and when Christ is revealed.  She talked about when we are going to trials, the longest they can last is for a little while.  What a relief....although a little while could feel like a long while, it was a good reminder that everything in life is temporary....good or bad.  God can get us through ANY trial and will be glorified through ALL trials if we let Him.  But its temporary.  Blessings in life are temporary.  So, why do we take each day for granted?  I challenged my 9th graders this week to look for God's love every day.  To look for one moment where they think "huh....that was special.  God loves me"  Could be as simple as their Mom making them breakfast, or a friend saving them a seat at lunch.  It has been a good reminder for me to.  God is and wants to be part of everything I do, every breath I take, every move I make.  (haha)  But he really does.  If it ever feels like he is absent, it is because I am creating the space and distance.  He is just waiting, EVER SO PATIENTLY, for me.  When my burdens feel overbearing and like one more little thing may cause me to bust, maybe I am not giving enough of my burden to God.  Am I trusting Him to help me carry the load?  He is there, just waiting, ever so patiently. 

How much relief do you feel knowing that you are not alone?  God is there, just waiting to love you.  How much relief do you feel knowing He knows the plans He has for you?  God is there, just waiting to show you He loves you.  How much relief do you feel knowing that no matter how overwhelming life's circumstances feel right now, you do NOT have to carry the burden alone?  God is there, jsut waiting for you to ask for help.  Phew!! I feel better. 
"I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are your works, and my soul knows it very well."

~Psalm 139:14