Go About Your Work

Sometimes, when I get bad news, I just want to sit down and cry. I shared that Saturday I wanted to go back to bed after my relapse. I didn’t.

Every time I felt overwhelmed and teared up, I just did the next thing. Meals need cooking and laundry needs washed. Had I given in to my tears I would have been literally buried in laundry.

Friday, I poured water around the edge of my washer to clean it. The “lid lock sensor” got wet and the washer wouldn’t turn on. I called the repairman and he told me it may dry out on its own. I was grateful it started working again on Saturday. I did laundry all day.

After yesterday’s news, I hoped for an encouraging word in today’s chapters. Instead, I saw a command – twice!

Ezekiel 24:16, 17, “…But, please, no tears…. (17) Get dressed as usual and go about your work. …” The Message

* * * * * * *

Ezekiel 24:23, “You’ll get dressed as usual and go about your work. No tears…” The Message

I was already dressed and this blog is my work. I continued my devotions. In studying Proverbs 14:1, I read of the wise and foolish woman.

Proverbs 14:1, “The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.” New International Version

* * * * * * *

“She [the wise woman] is a source of strength and an example of diligence for her family (see Proverbs 31:10-31).” New International Version Study Bible Notes on Proverbs 14:1.

One of the cross-reference verses was Proverbs 1:7.

” ‘Fools’ are those who ‘hate knowledge’ (Proverbs 1:22) and correction of any kind (Proverbs 12:1), who are ‘quick to quarrel’ (Proverbs 20:3) and ‘give full vent’ to their anger (Proverbs 29:11), who are complacent (Proverbs 1:32) and who trust in themselves (Proverbs 28:26) rather than in God (Psalms 14:1).” New International Study Bible Notes on Proverbs 1:7

I have a choice: diligent (wise) or complacent (foolish). Even when wounded, crushed, or broken, God is still planting good things.

“The best things in life are the result of being wounded. Wheat must be crushed before becoming bread, and incense must be burned by fire before its fragrance is set free. The earth must be broken with a sharp plow before being ready to receive the seed. And it is a broken heart that pleases God.” “Streams in the Desert,” August 15

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No More “Business as Usual”

“They say sometimes you win some

Sometimes you lose some

And right now, right now I’m losing bad…

“It’s easy to sing

When there’s nothing to bring me down

But what will I say

When I’m held to flame

Like I am right now…”

“Even If” Mercy Me

Two members of my immediate family went to the doctor this week. They both received life-changing news.

Ezekiel 21:26, “…No more ‘business as usual.’ ” The Message

I found hope in my devotional, “Streams in the Desert.”

“Someone who was passing through the deep water of affliction wrote a friend: ‘Isn’t it glorious to know that no matter how unjust something may be, even when it seems to have come from Satan himself, by the time it reaches us it is God’s will for us and will ultimately work to our good?’… (Romans 8:28).” Hannah Whitall Smith, “Streams in the Desert,” August 14

I moved on to studying Proverbs 13. One of the cross-references for verse 24 was Hebrews 12:7.

Hebrews 12:7, “Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as His children. …” New International Version

The Message version made this verse and passage clearer.

Hebrews 12:7-11, “God is educating you; that’s why you must never drop out. He’s treating you as dear children. (8) This trouble you’re in isn’t punishment; it’s training, the normal experience of children. (9) Only irresponsible parents leave children to fend for themselves. Would you prefer an irresponsible God? (10) We respect our own parents for training and not spoiling us, so why not embrace God’s training so we can truly live? While we were children, our parents did what seemed best to them. But God is doing what is best for us, training us to live God’s holy best. (11) At the time, discipline isn’t much fun. It always feels like it’s going against the grain. Later, of course, it pays off handsomely, for it’s the well-trained who find themselves mature in their relationship with God.” The Message

These hardships are training. Discipline is not punishment. Another definition of discipline is an “area of study” or “specialty.” God’s purpose is training us in the “specialty” for which He created us.

As always, Steven Furtick’s “1:Minute Motivation” was on point.

“If your life is under attack, that means you must be carrying something good inside.” “How the Devil Plans His Attacks…” “1:Minute Motivation,” Steven Furtick, emailed 8-14-18

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