Monday, 30 May 2016

Bite-Sized Bible for Bruised Believers

There are some big truths in the Bible. And there is a big understatement in that sentence!

Below I've picked out just thirty of them especially thinking about what it's like to be depressed, weary and overwhelmed. On those days when you can barely grasp a single positive thought, these are just five word truths, taken directly from the Bible, to remind even the most bruised reeds, exhausted minds and battered believers of the truly epic good news Jesus would have his blood-bought people delight in. 

I've tried to focus on truths that keep me looking away from myself, and to the incredible, gracious, and genuinely mind-blowing nature of Jesus, because that's what's helped me most in the miserable times. I've also tried to pick a verses from across the Bible to demonstrate the unchanging nature of God's power to provide and redeem. And hallelujah, he is coming soon! 

And I've chosen thirty: one for all day every day, each day of June! 

Of course, five word Bible bits are quite small. Of course, there's goodness in knowing the context of the verse, the argument, the chapter, the book, the big picture- but sometimes, and perhaps particularly in times of trouble, the enormity of the truths in valuable segments either get lost among the multiple words and pages, or get buried beneath the barrage of internal accusations and condemnations. I've deliberately only chosen five words so that even the most exhausted, energy deprived person might be able to read and meditate on it- and over the course of a day- learn it. I've tried to pick bite-sized bits that make sense in and of themselves (the first one might need a read of the chapter for a re-cap!), but of course there's great richness in knowing how they fit the big picture! 

What a wealth of mind blowing truths in these little nuggets of glory! I'm praying that June will be more joyful for turning my mind and heart back to the Jesus these words reveal! 

Over the past year, I have written up my thoughts on these 30 bite-sized chunks; feel free to read along with them as you journey through June.  

(Have mercy on me if it turns out some of them aren't five words long. Maths has never been my strong point!) 

God meant it for good.                              
Genesis 50:20

2 Kings 20:5 

Deuteronomy 33:27

1 Chronicles 16: 34

I know my Redeemer lives.                        
Job 19:25

The LORD is my shepherd.                       
Psalm 23:1

Joy comes in the morning.                        
Psalm 30:5

He remembers we are dust.                        
Psalm 103:14

The LORD sets prisoners free.                    
Psalm 146:7

The Lord is my portion.                             
Lamentations 3:24

I will be with you.                                       
Isaiah 43:2

He took up our pain.                                  
Isaiah 53:4

He ran and embraced him.                         
Luke 15: 20

Neither do I condemn you.                         
John 8:11

It is God who justifies.                                
Romans 8:33

Christ is interceding for us.                        
Romans 8: 34

God chose what is weak.                           
1 Corinthians 1:27

Christ died for our sins.                              
1 Corinthians 15:3  

What is unseen is eternal.                          
2 Corinthians 4:18

I am crucified with Christ.                         
Galatians 2:20

We live by the Spirit.                               
Galatians 5:25

He himself is our peace.                           
Ephesians 2:14

Our citizenship is in heaven.                    
Philippians 3:20

God has spoken to us.                                
Hebrews 1: 2

And he upholds the universe                     
Hebrews 1: 3

Now you have received mercy.                
1 Peter 2:10

He is faithful and just.                               
1 John 1:9

He gives us more grace                            
James 4:6

I make all things new                                
Revelation 21:5

Surely I am coming soon.                        
Revelation 22: 20

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Still Bright

Today this blog is one year and fifty one posts old.

Happy birthday, blog!

So, this post mainly comes to say- thank you for reading!

There is so much to say about the way writing these posts has helped me see the truth about Jesus- as a relentless redeemer who plunges the depths of our sadnesses, who brings meaning out of hopelessness, wit out of the pit (I like that one- maybe I should re-name this blog for year 2...)... but there's been something especially joyful and encouraging in finding that there are other people out there who've asked similar questions, felt the similar struggles, walked similar valleys- but gloriously, found similar joy, refuge and peace in Jesus, the Rock of Ages.

This morning I read this lovely quote by Spurgeon (#currentfave): "I have learned to kiss the waves that throw me up against the Rock of Ages." This is a far more eloquent way of saying what I tried to in this post, but it also sums up the profound goodness there is in having a Saviour who is working for our good in all things.

Thank you especially to everyone who has commented, "liked", shared, said they've liked even if they haven't "Facebook liked", or done anything encouraging to help it feel less like #shoutingintothevoid.

Here's to another year of knowing and being known by, loved by and warmed by the Light of the world.

Post Script: here are three of my least popular posts for you to read. Feel free to give them a read and explain why they didn't cut the mustard. Incidentally I don't understand the blogosphere other than to say that if you blog about singleness people fricking LOVE it. 

On Beauty (Part Two) Was it just not as good as the first one? #sequels #betterthanspeed2

Home is Where... Comedy gold. Ish. 

The Inner Pharisees - maybe I should have called it, Jesus: Friend of Sinners. 

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