We had our family pictures made Saturday by my amazing friend Bethany. She gave me a sneak peek. I am so in love with that picture of Harper with her hand on her hip and the real smile! (It's usually fake) and I love my sweet Hollis with the apples.
(The dresses were made by SheSheMade.)
I think when things are tough or we are seeking God - it's so common to turn to the New Testament or to the Psalms to read what the Bible has to say. But I feel like all the sudden - God is really stirring up in me a renewed interested in the stories of the Old Testament. They are everywhere I look! I'm teaching 3 year old Sunday School and we have been talking Joseph and David and our pastor has been preaching a lot lately on the same things and in my Bible Study at church - James MacDonald has used the Old Testament to remind us of God's promises.
Those stories are NOT just stories. They happened. They happened and were recorded so we could see how God has been working for thousands of years and those stories mean more today than ever. I can't get them out of my mind lately and they apply to so many of us. Or all of us.
I think about Joseph. His life was a living HELL. He was sold into slavery, falsely accused, spent years in prison, false promises, more prison. And yet he trusted God. And God had a plan. Even when I'm sure Joseph thought he had been long forgotten. And at the end Joseph was made a ruler and the puzzle pieces of his life finally made sense.
I think about David. He was just a little red headed guy who had nothing but a few rocks and yet he fought a GIANT. And God was with him. God helped him fight that giant when it seemed hopeless. I think about all my friends and so many of you who are fighting GIANTS. So many of my friends and loved ones are fighting cancer and other illnesses and it seems insurmountable and hopeless. God is with you - helping you fight.
I think about Daniel. He and his friends were thrown into a FIRE. And yet they came out unharmed and someone actually saw God in there with them walking around. I think about so many of you who are in a fire and though you can't see Him - God is right in there with you in the fire. And He will bring you out.
And then I think about the Israelites who God took out of slavery and led them to the promise land. For forty years, God was with them and provided their EVERY need. And the minute they couldn't see Him or anything changed - they would grumble and complain and say "Why us?" and completely forget everything God had done for them. And I think we can be easy to judge and read that and think "You stupid Israelites - you were so selfish and childish" and then I think "Ouch". Because I am totally one of the Israelites.
I think about all the women in the Bible who fought infertility. I love that God shared their stories with us to encourage us - Elizabeth and Hannah and Sarah and so many more. And God was faithful and they all became mothers.
I think about Job - who had everything happen to him that could possibly happen. When people ask why bad things happen to good people - the ULTIMATE example of that was Job. And yet he said "Though you slay me - still I will trust you." Job said "The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord". Oh to have that kind of faith.
Have you thought about the old stories of the Bible lately? Have you considered how they still apply to your life thousands of years later? It's the Same exact God that was with them all those years ago who loves us today.