Slightly Obsessed #049 "You Are Not Forsaken" (Weekly Devo) by Pamela Thorson on 2013-10-23 14:25:54
I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you. – Hebrews 13:5
One month ago she climbed a silo at an abandoned concrete plant and jumped to her death. Before that day, twelve-year-old Rebecca Sedwick endured nearly a year of bullying by as many as fifteen girls in attacks that began at school and continued online after Sedwick’s parents removed her.
There had been warning signs. Last December, she was hospitalized after slitting her wrists. People knew she was sad. Her death and others like it have led to a rush of community soul-searching. Her mother wrote a birthday message on what would have been Sedwick’s thirteenth birthday, saying, “I feel like I failed….”*
Don’t we all? Every day and in many ways? We’re just flesh and blood; clay houses for the soul. We regularly fail ourselves; our God; each other.
Because we live with failure every day, it’s hard to comprehend a Father who never fails. Because we are guilty of desertion under fire, we can’t fathom a God who has promised to fight for us. Because we don’t understand His ways, we struggle to trust Him in the desperate hours when He seems to have abandoned us.
Have you prayed to God fervently, only to be met with silence?
Do you live with unremitting pain? Does it feel like nothing ever changes for the better?
Do you feel utterly alone in your crisis?
Jesus knew what if felt like to be forsaken. At His execution there was no place for Him in either heaven or earth. On the cross He hung utterly alone, the object of the full wrath of God. It was not because His Father wanted to hurt Him, but because Father and Son and Spirit knew it was the only way to spare you.
Bloodied, bruised, and dying, covered with the filth of a billion sins, Jesus cried out:
My God, my God, why have you forsaken Me?
That is why you can never be forsaken by God. That possibility was taken away by Christ upon His own shoulders, borne for out of His great love for you.
Because we live in a fallen world awaiting the final redemption, we still have sorrow. Life will be filled with trials as we complete our pilgrimage to the holy city awaiting us in heaven. God has promised that for those who accept the sacrifice of Christ, hardship works for our good, teaching us perseverance and compassion for others.
This should inspire us to reach out to those we see suffering in silence around us. No person should live without knowing the comfort of the Holy Spirit. It is up to us, His hands and feet and heart, to reach out with His love to those like Rebecca who are hurting today.
You are not forsaken. God has written this in His blood. Accept this, trust in His faithfulness, and share His comfort with others as you await the day you fully understand why.
Pamela Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, author, and full-time caregiver. She pioneered in the homeschooling movement from 1982-2006 and authored her first book, Song in the Night, in 2008. She resides in the Northwest with her family.
Slightly Obsessed #192: Heaven Is Calling: Consider Jesus
Some days we can barely hear it. Other days it drives us to our knees. But it’s always there; that persistent tug in our souls. Whether we trudge through our days or chase the stars of fame and fortune, we can’t drown out the cry that sounds silently in the pit of our being, jarring us with its urgency and moving us with its tears.
No matter what you may be going through in life, I want you to know that God's grace is sufficient for you. You may have messed up, you may have failed, you may have gone the wrong direction, you may have gossiped, or much worse, but God wants you to know that it does not define who you are. He does. He and His grace is much more powerful than anything you might have said or done. Grace always shocks. It always amazes, and it always stuns. Grace is what we all need. It's what everyone groping around lost in the darkness needs to know.
Slightly Obsessed #191: You Can Give Others the Gift of Courage
My father lay propped up in the hospital bed, his face ashen against the white sheets. My step-mother and I huddled around him in the cramped space of the progressive care unit in which he was recuperating. He had suffered three heart attacks in the space of one month. None of us had gotten much sleep in the last few days. So far, we had seen little of either the hospitalist in charge of his care or the cardiologist on staff.
Slightly Obsessed #190: A Warbird’s Lesson
On a recent hot July day, we took in an air show in our town. Vintage planes, including a couple of impressive old warbirds, sat majestically on the tarmac for inspection as we darted from wing to wing to find relief from the withering heat.
These planes are still operable, so although some of them were open for people to walk through, the cockpits were off-limits for obvious reasons. No one wanted a tragedy to happen because an unauthorized person tampered with the controls. People who don’t know what they’re doing shouldn’t be in control.
Slightly Obsessed #189: The Calling
The sound must have been a maddening echo that haunted him at first, tormented by the rooster’s crow that mocked his empty proclamation of loyalty. For three days, his faith lay in the grave with the Savior’s body, darkened by the memory of his public desertion.
Slightly Obsessed #188: Freedom
He was shouting “Freedom” as he plowed his car at twenty-one miles an hour into the granite monument engraved with the Ten Commandments.
A video posted on the suspect’s Facebook page depicted the man in his car facing the monument as a women’s voice, presumably on a car radio, asked, “Where do you go when you’re faced with adversity and trials and challenges?”
Release Date: July 28, 2017 Reviewer: Andrew Funderburk Rating: 4 stars
MUSIC VIDEO NF - Outro
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