Weeks Nine and Ten of Summer!

The summer is coming to a swift conclusion! It’s been a wonderful summer, but we are ready for the new things the fall has in store!

Most of our last two weeks of summer were spent in Florida! It was a last minute trip that fit perfectly in all of our schedules, so we did it. This is probably my favorite place on earth. I’m a Floridian by birth, so perhaps it stuck with me!

This is the single picture I got of my kids on this trip!
They have grown a lot since our trip last year over spring break.

Unlike our England trip, where I gave up my time in the Word while we traveled around so much (not a good idea! It was a loss!), I thankfully had time every day to read my Bible and pray each morning in Florida, and the Lord met me in very specific and needed ways. I returned with a heart overflowing with praise to God and awe of His personal care for us.

Here’s a verse from my Scripture reading one day that really ministered to me in what we were going through and that I prayed through:

Isaiah 43:18-21:

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. The wild animals honor me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen, the people I formed for myself that they may proclaim my praise.

“A new thing!” He provides and gives “that they may proclaim my praise” (note my blog name!).

A friend from Virginia who was praying for us that week wrote me that same day and shared this same verse from Isaiah 43! I told her I had prayed it that morning, and she wrote me that she had asked God what to share, and that was the verse He gave her.

My last night in Florida, I stood on the shore with the waves lapping over my feet, praying and asking God to “redeem this,” to redeem the hard things of the week. My friend wrote me the next morning, “I am praying God will redeem this.” I got in the car to travel home, and my Bible study lesson was on “Full Redemption.” (I love Psalm 130:7, with the Lord there is unfailing love and plentiful and abundant redemption!) I praise the Lord for this needed encouragement.

There were hard parts to the week as our car was wrecked by an uninsured motorist, we had brought some friends along for the kids, and just other circumstances that were good, but that revealed hard things. So I pray God uses it all for His glory.

I love this time of year when the academic year begins. My whole family lives by it, so this is always fun to get started again.

We have the school picnic today for my daughter. In my Bible reading this morning, it was in Jeremiah 17 which is where the school verses are:

Jeremiah 17:7-8:

Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.

This is contrasted with the person who trusts in man (Jer. 17:5-6) who is like a bush in the wastelands, dwelling in the desert. It sounds like a person who could use the provision of the Lord described in Isaiah 43 above: water, streams, drink! He is the spring of living water (Jer. 17:13)!

Oh, may we put our trust in Him for the coming year and each new day! I praise the Lord for the summer rest and provision and look to Him for the new school year!

A Couple of Quotes

I’m just posting some quotes that I’ve liked this week.

The first one my friend wrote about in our school newsletter, but I thought it was nice for this time of year:

Dietrich Bonhoeffer:

“Advent creates people, new people. We too are supposed to become new people in Advent. Look up, you whose gaze is fixed on this earth, who are spellbound by the little events and changes on the face of the earth. Look up to these words, you who have turned away from heaven disappointed. Look up, you whose eyes are heavy with tears and who are crying over the fact that the earth has gracelessly torn us away. Look up, you who, burdened with guilt, cannot lift your eyes. Look up, your redemption is drawing near. Something different from what you see daily will happen. Just be aware, be watchful, wait just another short moment. Wait and something quite new will break over you. God will come.”

I’ve also been reading in F. B. Meyer’s book The Secret of Guidance. I liked many of his quotes, but here is one I particularly liked:

“If you do not know what to do, stand still until you do. And when the time comes for action, circumstances, like glowworms, will sparkle along your path. You will become so sure that you are right, when God’s three witnesses [the Word, the Spirit, and circumstances] concur, that you could not be surer though an angel beckoned you on. The circumstances of our daily life are to us an infallible indication of God’s will when they concur with the inward promptings of the Spirit and with the Word of God.”

I suppose those quotes don’t even seem to be connected, but I just liked them both, each a reminder to look to Him and to wait on Him. When I wait uncertain of what to do, I can trust God will reveal to me perfectly the steps to take. And look up — keeping my eyes heavenward — when I’m tired and busy this season. I don’t want to miss either the beauty of the season or the beautiful things He does.