Strength

I must be very transparent in that as I’m writing this we are wrapping up what was supposed to be a relaxing weekend getaway with my wife’s family to Grafton, IL and while it was a great time with them..I’m still tired. I’m not refreshed and recharged like I hoped. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very thankful that many of the recent events have not directly affected my family negatively. My prayers go out those who have been directly affected my all the crazy stuff going on in our world. When I say I’m tired…I mean I’m tired of all the sin and evil every day with so many bad things happening which also seems amplified in the news. Yes…we have had conflict since sin came into the world through the Fall and we always will until Jesus returns, but it seems as though the level of divisiveness is extremely high right now. At times I just sigh and long for us to do as Jesus directed us in John 15:12, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

As Jon wrote about last week https://www.biblejournal.net/2020/09/11/200-trillion-decisions/ , we make about 35,000 decisions a day. And while that can be tiring enough, it seems as though every decision we make, or don’t make, is under a magnifying glass as political or social statement these days which there also doesn’t seem to be a perceived difference right now. You are either for something or against it. If you say one thing on one side of a social or political issue..or even don’t say anything at all…you’re labeled an extremist for or against it. Even a decision whether or not to wear a mask, or what’s on the mask, seems to make an unintended statement someone may not agree with. There’s also the whole social media animal which I used to love to keep up with friends and their families. Then, there’s sports and movies. And while I’m not going to say that athletes or entertainers should be silent on issues in our world which they can potentially help make a positive impact where needed, I must admit I miss the days where we could watch a game or movie to get away from the stresses of the world without everything and everyone making a statement on something. In fact, I’m concerned as I write this that I’m going to offend someone by this prior sentence. That they might think this means I don’t care about these issues athletes and entertainers are speaking and acting on and thus I’m making a stance for or against something. Crazy, isn’t it? Please don’t misunderstand and judge me. Again, I’m not. I am just saying again I’m tired…and sports and movies were something to watch and attend as a respite for weariness..a medium to get away so to speak..and to forget about everything else in the world for a couple hours and get re-energized.

Again, I’m very blessed, and this is minor in comparison to the direct challenges others are facing due to the issues we see in the news everyday or just the everyday financial, relationship, and health challenges others are facing to name a few. I’m just being transparent with the fact that I’m feeling drained right now. Author Jon Gordon writes about staying away from energy vampires. I feel like the present times we are in are like one big energy vampire. A weekend getaway with family, scanning social media to see what friends and their families are up to, sports, and movies are not refreshing to me.

That brings me to my personal lesson in reading today’s verses and my assignment to write on which is the Lord being our “strength.” It seems as though He’s speaking to me through this topic that my relationship with Him has an opportunity to grow to look to Him to re-charge and for strength and not to the idols of this world in our everyday lives. This is the ‘what’ so to speak..I need to reflect more on the ‘how’..although their are simple steps like more time in prayer (speaking with Him), His Word (listening to Him), and worship (praising Him for His saving grace on the cross and all He’s done for me).

Please take a few moments to read the below verses and if you are just plain tired like me, reflect on if you need to turn more to your relationship with Him, and not to other idols, for strength.  Pray on how you can do so as well. As Psalm 73:26 says, when He is our strength, He is our portion. He fills us up…forever.

“I love you, O Lord, my strength.”

Psalm 18:1

“The Lord is my strength and my shield; in Him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to Him.”

Psalm 28:7

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

Psalm 46:1

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

Psalm 73:26

 

Published by

Chet Bandy

I live in Bloomington, Illinois with my wife Shannon and 3 young children. I grew up in Central Illinois with Lutheran roots. We moved to the area in 2011 and began attending Eastview Christian Church where I now lead a Small Group. It's been awesome to see God's plan for our lives and our growing thirst for knowledge and closer relationship with Jesus through our move to Bloomington. Professionally, I'm a wealth management advisor with Northwestern Mutual.