Five Minute Friday: World

Along the Way@ mlsgregg.com (3)

Gentle Reader,

Didn’t really get to connect with my fellow writers this evening. Little things got in the way, like stopping by the store for milk and getting distracted by all the pretty ice cream.

It’s that time again. Kate. The sisters and brothers. Connecting across the miles and through the internet to write about: world.

Go.

It’s getting to me this week.

The world.

And all the junk in it.

I know to expect a dip in my mood with the first blast of summer’s cruelty. Though born in August, I despise this season. As I tweeted the other day, saying that you like the heat is basically saying you like being sweaty and lethargic. I don’t understand that at all. People that willingly live in the desert have to be a little touched in the head.

Already prone to scowl, I began to dwell on some things. Broken relationships. An upcoming CT scan to check on my sad, dysfunctional liver. (Seems like that road will never end). The cancer that’s eating away at my grandfather.

Crabby, thy face is mine.

Sunday was unpleasant.

Monday, out of nowhere, I had a desire to read the book of Ezra. I knew it was a prompting of the Spirit because…well, it was urgent. A deep, aching hunger. For Ezra? Sure, I’ve read it before, but nothing was sticking out in my mind. Why on earth would I be moved to read about the ancient priest and his people? What words did God have for me there?

If I listed everything I learned from just three chapters, this post would far exceed the five minute mark.

The people in exile return to the ruin of their home, the once-great city of Jerusalem. They take back with them all the precious items Nebuchadnezzer had stolen. The pagan community around them practically throws valuable items at them. They have no idea where to start, how to proceed. But they go.

The Nethinim. The Temple workers, who labored behind the scenes. The men who did the grunt work. Out of the spotlight, beyond the glory.

Chapter Three, verse three:

Though fear had come upon them because of the people of those countries, they set the altar on its bases; and they offered burnt offerings on it to the Lord, both the morning and evening burnt offerings. (NKJV)

They did what the knew was right, despite their fear.

I was reminded: I cannot take my eyes off of the Lord. Not for a moment. Not for a fraction of a moment. I will be swallowed up by woe and worry, rack and ruin if I dare. Yes, I face ongoing health problems. Yes, my grandfather is in his final days. Yes, there are troublesome people and issues.

None of that is bigger than God.

And so this, the cry of my heart:

Stop.

My journey to faith. (15)

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27 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: World

  1. I’m feeling you tonight, Marie. I’ve been in a funk, too, and have been praying that God would help me see things with His perspective. Just. So. Tired. ALL THE TIME. But I know He has a redeeming purpose to it all. Praying for you (and your grandfather) tonight!)

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    1. I think that’s one of the best prayers that we can ever pray: “God, give me Your eyes. Enable me to see this Your way.” It doesn’t always happen immediately, but He is faithful to answer and give us new insight every time.

      Thank you for your prayers for me and my grandfather, dear one. 🙂

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  2. Oh the world you reference is the one that I try not to think about which is not really the what I should be doing in God’s eyes. There is so much hurt out there and I have heard nothing but bad news locally with all the shootings that have already happened this summer. I understand the heaviness and pray hard everyday for relief from it all. But our hope is in God and He is so much bigger. Praying for our upcoming CT scan. Hugs!

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  3. Love this so much! “I cannot take my eyes off of the Lord. Not for a moment. Not for a fraction of a moment. I will be swallowed up by woe and worry, rack and ruin if I dare. ” That’s for my journal, friend. I’m right there with you with the rough week and crabby face. Thank you and praise God that He is bigger! Great post!

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    1. I’m so sorry you’ve had a tough week! I pray that God blesses you with something special, something just between the two of you, to make you smile.

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  4. Marie,
    so revealing and raw and yet not despondent in the slightest. (and look at you! First to post!) I too enjoy cooler temperatures. (though I’m pretty well spared at 4100 ft from scorching)
    Thank you for listening to His prompting, and then blessing us by sharing that prompting, the following, and the life that came from it! You are a vessel of His hand. And no matter the frail condition, I believe that the frailty of china is what makes it exceptionally valuable. I see you as a beautiful, delicate flower.
    Love and hugs!
    ~Tammy (#5) this week.

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  5. I feel all of this. I know our stories are vastly different, but I think our hearts hurt for the world with the same steady beat… Never letting up. I am keeping my eyes fixed on Him with you. And my words will go before the throne on your behalf, sweet Marie. You encourage and inspire me more than you know.

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  6. Marie, I get so sick of the junk in the world too! And I’m so sorry to hear about your grandfather. Earlier this week, on my blog, I wrote about Godly fear vs our worldly fears. We indeed need to keep our eyes on him and to trust in him!

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  7. Well, I’ll see your liver, and raise you a pancreas…

    Nice post, and I agree…we simply can’t let God out of our sight. (Sounds like I should continue, “…or who knows WHAT He’ll be up to!”)

    Not hard for me, really. Suspended between Heaven and Earth, it’s like living…or dying…in a state of exaltation. Not a place I WANT to be, but the place I am, where God’s presence saturates the very air, and provides the tang of these desert sands.

    Yeah, I’ll keep an eye on Him. Can’t do otherwise.

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    1. Your faith moved me, Andrew. It really does.

      My grandfather was just diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It’s metastasized to his liver. I don’t know much about it, but I know he’s very ill. You are most certainly in my prayers.

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  8. Marie, those “down” times are hard to sludge our way out of. I’m gonna admit it . . . I like summer. But I like spring, fall, and winter too. I like the changes that come with each season. And just when I begin to tire of one, the next one rolls in.

    As far as always, always keeping my eyes on the Lord? I needed that reminder. When I see friends suffering, my children struggling, injustices in the world . . . it’s hard for me to grasp and be okay with it. I have to keep my eyes on the Lord when the hard times enter my life, when they enter the lives of those around me. It’s the only way to walk through life’s hard. And I love Asheritah’s prayer. I think I’ll adopt that today.

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    1. I still like you, even though you enjoy summer. 🙂

      I think we all need to be reminded on a consistent basis to “turn (our) eyes upon Jesus.” That’s what is so great about FMF. I am always encouraged when I read your words and those of others. We each bring something unique to the table, and it makes for a feast.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh, I certainly know that feeling of the world just being overwhelming…I really like your resolve: I can’t take my eyes of the Lord. May we continue to practice that! Happy Friday to you!

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    1. Happy Friday to you, too, Katha! I really enjoyed watching your video on Kate’s blog. It’s fun to hook up with brothers and sisters all around the world!

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  10. I’ve definitely been right there with you on the whole grumpy face thing. Mine is more of a depressed face (stupid disease!), but it often gets pretty grumpy because of that too. I guess in a way, I get grumpy with the state of my own interior world and how it affects my life and the world immediately around me (like my husband and children). I’m sorry to hear about your liver and your grandfather too. Praying for you and offering up some of my own suffering on your behalf! Stopping by from FMF….have a happier (and hopefully cooler — I’m right there with you on the heat thing!) weekend!

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    1. Oh, Therese. I struggle with depression and anxiety myself so I’m truly sorry to know that you bear the same burden. I pray that the Lord grants you eyes to see His wondrous light all around you, the light that always overcomes the darkness!

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  11. Hey my friend… I love it when God is so bossy about a specific book or section of the Bible to read… He’s so much smarter than we are and leads us to where He can reveal yet again whatever it is that we are needing! Praying for you and thankful for our little Voxer chats… keep us posted, sweet friend! Praying – yes, even in this desert land! 😉

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  12. Likewise, I have felt a lot of fear seeing what’s going on in the world. And I happen to despise this season of heat as well. Thank you for sharing the Ezra connection. I am eager to back and read it again.

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  13. Marie, my heart is with you. As I listened to the song, I couldn’t help tearing up. Take me to the King! He truly is the One with all the answers. When we have NO idea how to get from where we are to where we want to be, He is a mighty Savior. He is a mighty deliverer. And His grace truly carries us when we don’t know what to do. This season won’t last forever. There are blue skies ( and cooler days) ahead. 🙂

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