Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Worry NOT!

This weekend, I attended my church's ladies annual retreat... and it was wonderful. The location was gorgeous, quiet, and man-oh-man was it ever dark at night and in the wee hours of the morning.

We arrived early so we could set up, but when the Associate-Pastorman's wife showed up to set up the keyboard and microphone and begin to lead us in worship ... the keyboard wouldn't work. Well, it worked, but you could only hear sound coming out of the microphone (WEIRD) ... and we just didn't see 22 women crowding around one microphone to listen to the music, so she nixed the piano ... and let me tell you ... when we began worship A Capella, it felt as if the spirit descended upon us in a heavy, tangible way (and stayed with us throughout the weekend). It was amazing to hear the blend of voices singing songs to their Maker in a true spirit of worship sans any distractions!

Our speaker was amazing. She was a spit-ball of energy from Ohio, and sadly for the men... she left us with a burning desire to be RADICAL women for Jesus! RADICAL, I tell you ... not just radical. There's a difference!

She taught us how in Exodus, the Israelites were hungry. In fact, they weren't only hungry, but they were grumbling. Can you relate to that? But God was telling them not to worry because ... now, get this ... HE would take care of them. Novel idea, huh? But yet, when we are in the midst of our daily fires, and in the midst of all the things we can actually "worry" about, it sometimes escapes us that GOD CAN TAKE CARE OF US just as God took care of the Israelites!

"The Lord said to Moses, "I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites. Tell them, 'At twilight you will eat meat, and in the morning you will be filled with bread. Then you will know that I am the Lord your God.' " That evening quail came and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost on the ground appeared on the desert floor. When the Israelites saw it, they said to each other, "What is it?" For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, "It is the bread the Lord has given you to eat."
Exodus 16:11-15

Here's the most awesome part of the lesson... He comes down and meets us where we need him, and not only does he meet us where we need him, but he gives us our portion ... no matter what we need!

"This is what the Lord has commanded: 'Each one is to gather as much as he needs. Take an omer (a amount of measure that was about 2 quarts) for each person you have in your tent.' The Israelites did as they were told; some gathered much, some little. And when they measured it by the omer, he who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little. Each one gathered as much as he needed."

Exodus 16:16-18

The interesting thing about this scripture is that not only did God provide quail in the evening, and mana in the morning, but when each person collected whatever they thought they needed, it measured to exactly one omer! Here's the example she used: A huge, muscular man could go out and gather a LOT of mana, and a frail, elderly woman could go out and gather very little mana ... but when they came back to measure it, each of their portions measured one omer, and it was exactly what they needed!

Isn't it awesome, that no matter what we need, no matter how much it is, or how little, God will meet our needs and give us our portion? He is so faithful to us, even when we mess up. No matter what I do, no matter how bad it is, He loves us so much. His love never runs out, it never dries up, in fact, it is new every morning!

Praise God for his faithfulness, his love, his caring hand, his provision, his portion. He is the lifter of our worries, the eraser of our fear, the provider to the needy, the remover of our doubt. He never goes away. He never fails us. Isn't it amazing?

God's loyal love couldn't have run out, his merciful love couldn't have dried up. They're created new every morning. How great your faithfulness! I'm sticking with God (I say it over and over). He's all I've got left."
Lamentations 3:22-23 (The Message)

"Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."
Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)

Lord, help us to depend on you for our needs, to release our worries to you, and to trust in the knowledge that you are ever faithful, ever present, and our constant provider. Help us to be satisfied and content with "enough" and not want or crave "more than we need," because the portions we crave here on earth are of things that spoil and rot, but your portion is perfect, and lasts for ever, and stays fresh every day. Thank you so much for loving us and being faithful to us, Lord, and for showing us mercy and compassion even when we are filthy and full of sin. Lord, I want more than a morsel that will "curb my appetite." I want you to fully satisfy me, and fill me to overflowing, so that I can in turn share your blessings with others. Thank you, Jesus, for your many, many blessings! Thank you! Amen.


Sandy said...

Hi GiBee -- I'm so glad I popped over here because I wanted to know how your weekend went. Thanks for summing it up for all of us, and giving us food for thought!
BTW, I love A Capella, so I can only imagine.

I love the ideas you shared on my blog, and I will try to address them. All great stuff! :)

Susanne said...

Oh Gibee, this is exactly what I needed to hear right at this moment! Thank you for sharing what you learned.

Accapella worship is absolutely powerful. I love it.

Shalee said...

God sure knows what he's doing when it comes to all sorts of "inconveniences" doesn't he? Y'all got your spirits renewed and your hearts on the right track!

(We sing a capella all the time at our church. Although I have absolutely no guff with instrumental music at church and rather enjoy it when I do have the opportunity to attend a friend's service that has instruments/band, there's something about hearing all the voices blend that is very uplifting and inspirational.)

Jana (sidetrack'd) said...

Sounds like a great weekend, GiBee. Thank you for sharing this post; it is a powerful message and reminder!