I will turn your celebrations into times of mourning
and your singing into weeping.
You will wear funeral clothes
and shave your heads to show your sorrow—
as if your only son had died.
How very bitter that day will be! Amos 8:10, NLT
God knew the deep loss of an only son’s death. When I read scriptures in the Old Testament that hint of Jesus, my heart gives thanks. Thank you, God, for sending your son to die for me.
Jesus speaks to his disciples. The Pharisees certainly knew the right things to do, the right things to say–but their hearts were far from the Lord. Jesus looks at the heart, and he warns of the blind leading the blind.
13 Jesus replied, “Every plant not planted by my heavenly Father will be uprooted, 14 so ignore them. They are blind guides leading the blind, and if one blind person guides another, they will both fall into a ditch.” Matthew 15:13, NLT.
Lord, I pray that I keep my eyes on you for direction and instruction.
23 But Jesus gave her no reply, not even a word. Then his disciples urged him to send her away. “Tell her to go away,” they said. “She is bothering us with all her begging.” Matthew 15:23, NLT.
Lord, in your silence, you listen. Where the disciples saw her words as bother and begging, you saw faith.
32 Then Jesus called his disciples and told them, “I feel sorry for these people. They have been here with me for three days, and they have nothing left to eat. I don’t want to send them away hungry, or they will faint along the way.”
33 The disciples replied, “Where would we get enough food here in the wilderness for such a huge crowd?”
34 Jesus asked, “How much bread do you have?” Matthew 15:32-34, NLT.
I’m deep in preparation for a new school year. I’m encouraged by these scriptures. God’s great love for me means I don’t do life alone. If I keep my eyes on him, he will guide me in the right direction. He wants my heart. My mind is a steady state of “on” and he hears the stream. He listens and loves. When I talk to him, he calls it faith. He performs miracles still, and when I bring my offering–as limited as it is–he makes it enough. Because he is enough. He will not send us away hungry. And we will not faint along the way.
Lord God, thank you for this gift of time. Thank you for the time to plan and prepare. Thank you for this time with my children. Thank you for filling these days with enough minutes to do the things you want me to accomplish when I keep my gaze fixed on you. Help me to be careful of the influences I follow. Help me to steward my time, talent and treasure for your glory. And, please, help me to guard my heart.
(Thankful for Matthew 15 and Jesus feeding four thousand. Currently reading “Teaching From Rest: A Homeschooler’s Guide to Unshakeable Peace” by Sarah Mackenzie. It has been a great aid in planning my school year, preparing my heart, and affecting my focus as a teacher and as a mother. In it, she writes of bringing [your] basket, and how God will use the offering. I receive no compensation for mentioning her book.)