Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 287
Devotional Song: Go to this link -
Please, PLEASE, PLEASE [!!!] take the time to meditate on this poignant song and video, the song written and sung by Laura Story, Blessings, … which has become an anthem for many who’ve had to go through great trials in their lives to discover that the trials were actually, in Laura’s words, “God’s mercy in disguise.”
Highlight meditation passage – Psalms 66: 10-12 : [Abundance is not necessarily a “blessing.” ] …
10 You have tested us, O God; you have purified us like silver. 11 You captured us in your net and laid the burden of slavery on our backs. 12 Then you put a leader over us. We went through fire and flood, but you brought us to a place of great abundance.
Highlight reading study of Acts, Chapter 9: Go to this link …
Reference Passage #1: 1st Peter 1: 6-7 … [Often it is the testing/trials in life which lead us to the “blessing.”] … [NLT]
6 So be truly glad! There is wonderful joy ahead, even though it is necessary for you to endure many trials for a while. … 7 These trials are only to test your faith, to show that it is strong and pure. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—and your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold. So if your faith remains strong after being tried by fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.
Reference Passage #2: 1st Corinthians 10:13… [Yes, again; … no test, trial, tribulation should ever be considered “BAD” when God is leading us to His way, i.e., His “blessing.”] … [NLT] …
13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure.
Reference Passage #3: Romans 8: 28… [One of God’s most difficult truths to swallow when we’re in the midst of rally bad stuff in our lives.] … [NLT] …
28 And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
My Journal for Today: When you hear or read the phrase “God’s blessings,” don’t we usually gravitate toward a warm-and-fuzzy connotation where we imagine rally nice happenings in our lives or God showering us with His abundance in some ways? … BUT … how many reading here have discovered, as I have, that abundance and “good stuff” coming our way can be a challenge in disguise? And just the opposite is true as well. Quite often, as Laura Story’s poignant song - linked above for your meditation - proclaims, the storms of life are quite often God’s greatest blessings in disguise.
I just love Laura Story’s story in song; because it was written by a woman who had to endure her husband going through surgery-after-surgery for brain tumor removal and see their relatively new marriage challenged by the testing God put them through. But from it all, her song – and the Scripture passages I was either led to this morning (above) or bubbled up from my memory – reminded me that we have a very skewed, and often unrealistic, view of the meaning of the phrase “God’s blessings.”
And when we can go through the testing fires of life at times and let God purify us from the process, it is then that we really discover the reality meaning of “God’s blessings,” … which are so often the outcome of our Romans 8: 28 experiences in life, … those things which don’t seem to be blessings but are, as Laura sings, ”God’s mercy in disguise.”
My Prayer for Today … Lord, keep my view of Your “blessings” in the realm of reality and Your truth. Your mercies are new every morning – as Your word declares in Lam. 3: 22-23 – GREAT IS YOUR FAITHFULNESS!!! … Amen
Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online blog entitled Today God Is First [TGIF], authored by Os Hillman. If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you’ll find a link to read Hillman’s TGIF blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.