Celebrating God’s Goodness

Wow. What a year. Earlier this year we found out that my husband had thyroid cancer and had to have his thyroid removed. Between the discovery of the cancer and the actual surgery, Covid-19 hit. After surgery he had to have an ablation to confirm there wasn’t any lingering cancer cells. Here we are in November and my husband finally had his ablation. Now most people when they hear the word ablation they automatically think heart. Not in this case. He had to swallow a radiation pill. Yep, a special diet for two and a half weeks, 2 days before the procedure he had a shot and the day before the procedure he had another shot. Then he was quarantined for three days at home where he couldn’t be around people. Room Service please! 😉 Thinking about the past few weeks with the strict diet and then the quarantine, I thought about how God can use those minor distractions in life to encourage us, to help us grow stronger in our relationship with Him. It can also, if we aren’t careful, be used by the enemy to try and discourage us to take our eyes off of the Lord.

For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; in the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock.

Psalm 27:5

It could have been so easy to become discouraged during this time. Sometimes we can take things for granted and don’t realize it until we are forced to take a step back. We had to read the labels of everything we bought. If it had salt, we had to avoid it. Dairy products we had to avoid. (Egg whites were allowed) We became rather proficient with label reading. (Something we probably should be doing all the time.) We did find some new permanent food fixtures in our house as a result of the diet. Hamburger buns made from scratch. 😉 (Hubby decided he liked them better than store bought. But guess who gets to make them? 😂 Although I will admit that it isn’t that hard to make so I don’t mind.)

The care we had to take in making sure we were following the diet brought to mind how we nurture our relationship with the Lord. Do we spend quality time in His Word? Do we spend quality time in prayer talking and listening to Him? If we don’t take the time to nurture our relationship with God then we are neglecting the most important relationship we will ever have. How can we expect to nurture and grow our relationships with our family and friends if we neglect the most important relationship of all? How we nurture and grow our relationship with God reflects how we will nurture other relationships in our lives. If our relationship with God is one of little communication, our other relationships will suffer the same lack of communication.

O God, Thou art my God; I shall seek Thee earnestly; my soul thirsts for Thee; my flesh yearns for Thee, in a dry and weary land where there is no water.

Psalm 63:1

and

You will seek Me and find Me, when you will search for Me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13

My husband had a post ablation whole body scan to make sure there were no lingering cancer cells. PRAISE GOD he is cancer free! To God be the glory! Thank you to those who prayed for us. God bless!

Hooked

It doesn’t take much these days to become hooked on games. I checked out some of the more popular games played and wasn’t surprised to find quite a few were fighting type games, sports, and a some fun looking games that upon closer inspection were also fighting games just made to look innocent. The titles alone for some of them make you wonder, why on earth people would even play such a game. Whatever happened to Mario Kart? Whatever game, your children (whether young or older) play or even if you play them yourself, if you aren’t careful you may find yourself hooked. It can consume you to the point where you neglect those around you and even yourself. I should know. I’m hooked on games and I’m not even considered a gamer. My games are mostly puzzle gaming apps that you download to your phone, you know, the ones that aren’t addictive? Right. Keep telling yourself that.

“I can stop anytime I want.” “Just one more level and I’ll quit.” “What’s the harm?” “At least I’m not out running the streets.” Excuses and poor ones at that. But still excuses nonetheless. Do you hear the enemy whispering in your ear? Did you know that a person could end up spending hundreds of dollars on those In-app purchases that come with phone games? (And for the record, no I don’t spend money on the In-app purchases for that very reason.) There’s even a new incentive out there nowadays, look it up and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

The enemy will take something tantalizing to use to lure you away from Christ. Away from studying the Bible, from praying, even from your family. Games are one thing he uses and in this day and age it’s easy enough to use to distract you. If I were your enemy, I would delve into the deepest darkest areas of your life looking for that one thing that could lure you away from the Lord. It could be anything. Temptation comes in many forms. For me eBooks are my weakness, worse than the games on my phone, and the enemy uses it against me every chance he gets. As I write this post, I discovered that I have actually gone five months without purchasing a book. A record for me considering I would buy anywhere from four to eight books a month! Temptation can be something that seems good on the surface but in reality it isn’t. Sound familiar?

James 1:14 says “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed.”

Matthew 26:41 says “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

It’s no wonder we are given instruction to watch and pray.

Decide today to carve out time for you and your family. Reconnect with each other. More importantly, be sure to take the time to reconnect with God through prayer, reading and planting His word deep in your heart and mind. Talk to Him like He is a friend or even family and not some unreachable person that you can’t talk too. He’s reachable, you need only to seek Him out. God bless!