9. Calm in Trials

9. Calm in God’s Pavilion 

“For months Ellen’s body wracked with pain,” her husband, said. She lay helpless from two compressed disks in her back. He winced as he helped her with simple needs like personal hygiene and eating.

Ellen had said, “My hobby is helping others.” For months she lay unable to help even herself. Riveting pain often interrupted her sleep. In those long pain-filled hours she turned her thoughts to the Lord.

After many months flat on her back, Ellen rejoiced to be able to attend church again. “I’m thankful,” she testified. “When I can’t sleep at night, it gives me more time to pray.”

After she became a widow, she moved to a nursing home, debilitated and in a wheel chair. “How are you?” she asked residents, wheeling toward them. “Jesus is with you.”

How did Ellen think of others when she faced such great needs of her own? She testified, “I have known the Lord about forty years, and I still have much to learn. I place my full dependence upon Him.”

Ellen displayed contentment. Her heart seemed to be somewhere other than the nursing home. Perhaps she found a secret hiding place—a place of renewal.

Psalm 27:5 promises, “For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion” (KJV). The essence of prayer is entering into God’s pavilion. Ellen entered and knew how to remain there, especially during adversity. Now she resides in Heaven.

Do we complain when swallowed up by pain? When troubles come do we still have a thankful heart? Do we pray in the face of unwanted circumstances that threaten to consume us? Prayer is responding to God’s invitation to enter into His pavilion, where He hides us under His safe covering. Like Ellen, we can depend on Him and live with a heart full of joy.

Dear Lord, help me to remain thankful when I suffer pain. Equip me to endure troubles. Give me, like Ellen, the habit of helping others. In times of trouble, hide me in Thy pavilion. Thank you, Father, for the safe, tranquil place of prayer where Thou embracest and careth for me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

This is a reprint article by Lynn Wallace, © 1960. It went online in November 1960 on Prayer Support for Women. This does not appear to still be online.

Bio: Ambassador-Emerald International published Lynn’s book, Our Lifeship: Studies in Proverbs for Women. Periodicals published about eighty of her articles and fillers. Accent Publications published two of her curriculum packages. Leon, her late husband, and she served on the Navajo field several years.She plays the piano for Canyon View Baptist Church in Montrose, Colorado. She enjoys jeeping, reading, and artwork. writeheart@montrose.net. www.writingfrommyheart.com (Our Lifeship available from PayPal.)

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9. Hope Out of the Depths

9. Hope Out of the Depths

Psalm 130:5

I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.

The psalmist cried out of the depths of despair. He said, “Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord” (Psa. 130:1). Many of us have experienced this.

In all his troubles, he cried out to the Lord God, and hoped in his word. He knew God is merciful and that with Him is plenteous redemption. Redeem means to buy back. Jesus Christ came to redeem us from our sin. He paid the purchase price when he died on a cruel cross and shed His innocent blood.

As a young believer, I struggled. The Lord gave me hope. After four breakdowns and a long wait, He called me to the Navajo Indian. There I met the man who became my husband, Leon. The Lord gave us a daughter. Many Navajos professed to receive Christ as Saviour. I look forward to seeing them in heaven one day.

One day when we had other plans, a Navajo asked us to baby sit her baby. She left her daughter with us. We agreed to care for the little one. They brought in a cradle board. I wanted to hold that baby. She needed changing. I took her out of the cradle board and took care of her problem. I had no idea how to get her back into the cradle board and fasten it. I held her until her parents returned.

My husband took his Bible and talked to Marilyn about salvation. She wanted to become Jesus’ little lamb. We rejoiced that we changed our plans to care for a baby.

Another time, three girls came to our place. Lugarita spoke up, “May we stay here tonight? A drunk came by while our parents went on business last night, and scared us all.” Leon scratched his head. You cannot refuse a request like that. We had wall-to-wall sleepers that night. Their parents came by about two in the morning. The next day we had seven visitors in our church service from that family. The three girls accepted Christ as their Saviour. Leon baptized them in Lake Powell near Page, Arizona.

After sixteen years of a wonderful marriage, God took my beloved home. What will I do now, Lord? I pondered. The next week I visited my brother-in-law’s church. Pastor Bill preached on writing. He described my shanty though he had never seen it. I knew the Lord was speaking to me. Many manuscripts and two curriculum packages found publication. My first book, Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women, sailed off to Ambassador International who published it. I love to write. My God is so good and so great.

My hope is that Our Lifeship will help women sail calmly on life’s seas. My hope is in God’s Word. My desire is to help them find hope in God and then to help them sail calmly on troubled waters. It is like a little bird who finds shelter in the cliff while the waters pour down from above.

Do you have hope in God’s Word? Do you know God promises peace in the heart in the midst of trouble?

Lynn’s book is available from www.writingfrommyheart.com through PayPal.

5. Our Eternal Hope

5. Hope in Troubles

Psalms 42 and 43

Psalm 42:5, 11; 43:5

Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.

David felt like all the waves and billows swept over him. Three times he asked, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul?”

His enemies asked him, “Where is your God?” They worshipped idols. David, an exile, could not attend the temple services. To the Israelite in Old Testament times these services made up the chief means of approaching God. Tears ran down David’s cheeks day and night. He poured out his soul unto God.

Now he was shut off from these services. He fled from Jerusalem because his son, Absalom, usurped the throne. Though David had confessed his sin with Bathsheba, and been forgiven, he still suffered its consequences. He may have felt God was angry with him.

David meditated on the time he enjoyed sweet communion with God in His house. He had joy and praised God. He enjoyed the fellowship with God and other believers. He attended the holy days. Now an exile from the palace, he could not go to the temple.

He felt despondent as if he had gone down to the depths of the sea. He said, “All thy waves and thy billows are gone over me.”

What could David do in these dire circumstances? Often, people become bitter when everything seems against them. David loved the Lord, and turned to Him for comfort. He encouraged himself in the Lord. He said, “The LORD will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, and in the night His song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life.”

He said unto God his Rock, “Why hast Thou forgotten me?” He mourned because the enemy oppressed him. He felt as if a sword entered his bones from their reproach. He repeated, “They daily say unto me, Where is thy God?”

He asked two more times, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul?” He asked God to judge him, and plead for him “against an ungodly nation. O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.”

He turned to God for strength. “Thou art the God of my strength.” He pled, “O send out Thy light and Thy truth. Let them lead me. Let them bring me unto Thy holy hill…Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy. Yea, upon the harp will I praise Thee, O God my God.” David was skilled upon the harp. He believed one day he would return to Jerusalem, to the temple. He wanted to give his best unto the Lord.

David’s hope was in God. He helped him, and gave him spiritual health. David praised his God even in exile.

What would we do if the enemy took us to a foreign land? He captured us and in his country no churches existed where we could meet with God’s people. In such a situation some professing Christians would become bitter. Others like David would encourage themselves in the Lord, and not give up their hope. If we belong to Jesus, we have an eternal hope, the hope of Heaven. No enemy can take that away from us.

Would we hunger and thirst for God as David did? Would we turn to Him in prayer and complain to Him? Would we earnestly plead to God for mercy? What if the enemy took our Bible away? Do we know enough Scripture to sustain us in such a case? Determine now whatever the case to let God comfort you and do not give up hope.

Lynn and Leon, her beloved husband, served as missionaries to the Navajo Indian for several years. After God took her honey to Heaven, He called her to write for Him. Many of her articles found publication, and two Sunday School curriculum packages. Ambassador International published her first book, Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women. More information is available at www.writingfrommyheart.com.

God’s Loving Arms

The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms (Deut. 33:27, KJV).

Has the cold ever nipped you and caused your fingers to tingle? Has your body ever shivered when ice coated the concrete outside?

One dreary night the ice storm sheeted the roads, making them impassable. Consequently, my husband stayed at his work place.  The temperature plunged to 4° F. The propane leaked out of the tank, leaving me without heat in the house.

When I slipped into bed and huddled under all the available covers, I missed my husband’s warm arms. My whole body trembled from the cold. My nose felt as if Jack Frost had nipped it.

After a cold, sleepless night, I forced myself to get up and eat breakfast. As we lacked propane, I heated water on an electric hotplate and washed the dishes. My fingers smarted when I touched the icy silverware.

Chilled to the bone, I crawled back into bed and pulled the covers around me. My teeth chattered and tears threatened to spill over. My nose ran.

“Please Lord,” I cried out in desperation, “help me.” His comforting warmth enveloped me. The angel of the Lord wrapped His loving arms around me. God heard my prayers and warmed me.

Dear Lord, Thank you for your warmth and your love. Help me always to look up to Thee. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Published by Hopekeepers, July 2003, ã 2003, Lynn Wallace.

Lynn’s book, Our Lifeship, speaks about prayer in the Christian life. www.writingfrommyheart.com. PayPal.

God Spares a Blind Driver

“The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear Him, and delivereth them” (Psalm 34:7).

My mother, legally blind, sat alone in her car when it started to roll. “The car was moving,” she told me. I thought, I’ve got to do something.”

Before this, we enjoyed our meal at the White Kitchen. We returned to our car. The engine turned over, but neither of us succeeded in getting it out of park.

What am I going to do? I thought. God is our hope, but we forgot to pray. Instead, we used our human reasoning. It nearly spelled disaster.

I dashed down the sidewalk to a telephone. I called Jack and told him our problem.

“Is the wheel cramped tight against the curb? “If it is, that can put the shift level into a bind. Pull hard on it, and you may be able to shift it. Please call me back.”

I followed Jack’s instructions and got it into reverse. If I shift back into park, it may lock up again, I thought. I left to telephone and returned to my car. Something has happened, I deduced when I saw Mom’s ashen white face. Her whole body trembled with fright.

“I almost had an accident,” Mom gasped between breaths. “Suddenly, the car started to move across the road. It moved all the way across the street. Two cars crossed behind me. I lunged across to the driver’s seat. Gritting my teeth, I managed to get the car into drive. I drove across the street and parked. And here I am, back where we were.”

My heart palpitated. Mom, I thought, cars don’t drive themselves. Unseen hands grabbed the wheel and drove the car. I believe an angel guided Mom’s hands back across the road. Mom could have been killed, I thought. We still have a good Chrysler. God still cares even though I forgot to pray.

Mom had scooted back into the passenger’s seat. Now it was my turn to drive.

She drew short breaths all the way home. I reached over and felt her racing pulse.

God did not fix the problem, but He kept us from harm. He used Jack to tell us what to do. He directed traffic that day and helped a blind woman to avert disaster. God protects, defends, and delivers me. He is my hope when eyes are dim.

Printed in Spiritual Voice News, Spring 2005, © 2005, Lynn Wallace

Lord, I thank Thee for Thy angels which watch over me. Help me remember God is my hope when things go wrong. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Bio: Lynn writes from her parents’ farm in Montrose, Colorado. She enjoys watching calves and deer at play. Robins, mourning doves, hawks and eagles take of in flight. Her articles flew off to various editors who printed about eighty of them. Her first book, Our Lifeship: Studies in Proverbs for Women soared to Ambassador Emerald International. They liked it and published it!