“Bee” strong…

Fix-It Friday is upon us again!  Let’s get to it!

bee

Thanks Stephanie Ackerman Designs for our graphic today!

Bible journaling is a “new trend” that takes the underlining and highlighting of the Bible to new heights.  I love this particular rendition of Joshua 1:9 for a couple of reasons–One, it draws attention to the key words; Two, it uses bees in the graphic (and we…ahem…Kirk…is a beekeeper).  Just as a side note, if you are drawn to drawing in your Bible, do it.  Whatever you can do to memorize God’s Word should be done.

Joshua 1:9 is a well-known verse.  A lot of people hold fast to it when they are encountering difficult situations and need God-sized courage to make it through.  Fortunately, I have not been in a dire situation where a super-human amount of courage is necessary.  But, I have been in scary-to-me-circumstances, and have heard this verse resonate within my very soul.

So what does it mean to be strong and courageous?  I don’t think the ‘strong’ part has anything to do with muscular strength.  This ‘strong’ refers to strength of heart–you know; keeping the faith, believing, trusting.  When we have that strong connection to God through our beliefs, then the courage that comes from God will be ours for the taking.  This chick can be honest with you–I’m not the most courageous in the bunch.  I don’t like scary stuff, I don’t watch scary or suspenseful movies, I don’t do adventuresome activities involving scaling the sides of mountains or jumping off cliffs.  Even though I don’t do those kinds of things, I still encounter plenty of things for which I need courage. Starting a ministry position, leaving a ministry position, resigning from a job, beginning a blog, speaking for groups, leading a Bible study, writing a Bible study–these are just some of the things I’ve done in the past few years when I needed God’s promise of courage.  Not to mention the courageous acts of getting out of bed, going to the store, working with children, planning new dinner menus, test-driving new cars, sharing personal information with friends, opening myself up to new friendships and activities.  Wow, we need the courage that comes from God every day, don’t we?

When we are out there doing courageous things for God, sometimes we can get “dis” couraged–or not courageous.  Those new, shiny, adventurous activities leave us open for hurt, sadness, disappointment.  If those emotions are associated with doing something, it’s easy to just quit.  This verse tells us not to do that.  Even when things are rough, even when people don’t respond, even when the recipe is yucky, even when the “friends” aren’t really friends, even when we are pressured to do something else, even when… our God “en”courages us to keep going.  My friend, we have to be completely open to what God has in store for us.  Yes, we may not understand why we have to stop doing something, or begin doing something, or leave somewhere, or go somewhere.  The job that we have as believers is simple–to do what God has planned for us without hesitation.  All our human emotions may try to keep us from stepping out–that’s where the God-courage comes in.

For He has said in this verse that He will be with us wherever we go.  That is such a promise, one that I thoroughly believe in and have absolutely clung to in times of difficulty.  That means He is with us:  when we go to the doctor’s office, when we go to the hospital, when we go to the gravesite, when we test drive a car, when we drop our child off at college or at preschool for the first time, when we move our parent to an assisted living facility or into our own home, when we counsel a friend, when we let someone in front of us in the checkout line, when we say those marriage vows, when we hear our newborn baby’s cry.  No matter where we go, our God goes with us.  Such comfort that should bring!  We are not alone, we will never be alone.  If you remember nothing else from this verse, tuck this knowledge deep in your heart.  Pull it out when you need it, or even when you don’t–always remember that the God of the universe loves you and is right there with you in whatever the circumstance.

So I mentioned planning new meals as being courageous.  Are you ready to be show some courage today?  I have a great main dish for you to try, and it’s easy to fix as well!  Simple Pan-Fried Pork Chops from one of my favorite cooking show personalities The Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond is a tasty, satisfying dish that will delight your family.  Serve these alongside some buttery mashed potatoes (oh my mouth is watering!) and some fresh fruit–you are set to wow your loved ones with your culinary mastery. Have some courage–fry some pork chops!

Simple pan fried pork chops from pioneer woman

Enjoy the awesomeness of the weekend.  I’ll see you next week…

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