Restored and Redeemed

Has your marriage been restored? Restored & Redeemed is a devotional for those in a restored marriage.

How To Handle The Stress Of Life

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Matthew 6:26

If I were in charge of my life, I would definitely plan a life without trials. There would be no conflict, no anger, no interruptions. It would be rainbows and unicorns over here in Lori-land. How unrealistic!

In the struggles and stress of life, I have seen my dependence on the Lord increase, which has only worked to increase my faith.

In my weakness, I can see the Lord more clearly. When trials come, my reaction to those trials is essential. Am I too bothered by an interruption to be a blessing to someone? Do I worry so much that I refuse to depend on God’s will for tomorrow? Do I get angry when things don’t go my way?

How can I say my hope is in the Lord yet walk in doubt, fear, and anger?

As I was thinking about this topic, I recalled a devotional my dad wrote several years ago.  I hope you enjoy this flashback to one of those days when I had to choose how I reacted.

 

Our son-in-law, Scott, and our daughter, Lori, who does so much for us in the ministry, are weeks away from an event that very few couples ever experience; the birth of a second set of twins! The number of our grandchildren will jump from six to eight in January, with the anticipated birth of another boy and girl.
 
In an effort to help Lori, I have offered to pick up five-year-old Ryan one day a week, when his school dismisses at noon. He and I go to lunch together, and talk about all the things that a boy and his Grandpa have to talk about. Each time that bundle of energy climbs into his booster seat in my van, I am reminded all over again of how important the restoration of your marriage really is. Future generations in your family, be it children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews, need the guidance that your prodigal spouse can provide, once they have reconciled with Jesus and with you. Did you ever think that your now-prodigal spouse might be the person God has to lead a family member to Christ?
 
Wednesday Ryan selected Cracker Barrel for his lunch.  As we were leaving the restaurant, Ryan spotted a small toy that he really thought he needed. A small box about two inches square was captioned, “Moody Face.” Through the box’s clear front, I could see what you and I might know as a stress ball, with a face painted on it. “Mold me,” the directions invite. Soon Ryan was happily displaying the faces he was creating by shaping his toy Moody Face.

Ryan and his new toy went home, and I went back to ministry work. The phone rang a couple hours later, and Lori asked, “Did you wonder what was inside the toy you bought Ryan?” I knew from her tone that we had trouble. Whoever had printed “Squish Me” on that toy’s box did not know my grandsons. Ryan, and his brother Kyle, had managed to “squish” Moody Face until it had exploded in their twice-pregnant mother’s van. Without waiting for an answer to her question, Lori volunteered that Moody Face had been filled with something that resembled compacted flour!

Lori had her camera handy moments after Moody Face blew up. Kyle, on the right, is holding the deflated yellow Moody, and Ryan, on the left is busy disavowing having had anything to do with the incident.

Are there days when you feel like Moody Face just before he exploded? It may seem that someone has hung a “Squish Me” sign on your back. Every aspect of your life seems to be testing just how much pressure you can take. Threatened legal action and financial pressures are pulling at you like two boys both wanting Moody Face.
 
Much like Moody Face, each morning you compose your appearance into a happy face, and attempt to get through another day, but all the while you feel like something inside is about to explode. What is a stander to do?
 
The answer is simple, yet it is complex; Give it all to Jesus. 
 
In many ways, giving it all to Jesus is much like learning to float on your back. The more a person attempts to float face-up, the faster they sink, but once they realize the water will support them, even on their back, they stay afloat.
 
How does an individual give all their concerns, their fears, their worries, to Jesus? By coming to three decisions, one after another:

1. “I can’t.”
 
2. “God can.”
 
3. “I think I’ll let God.”
 
By nature, we are all worriers. We want to worry, wrestle, and wrangle our way through problems. By doing so, we end up with man’s solutions, and not God’s. My prayer is that each of us will learn to allow God to handle all of the stresses of life.
 
What causes you to have more stress than Moody Face? By taking on the burdens, not only of today, but of yesterday and tomorrow as well. 
 
My prayer is that today you will put Moody Face back into the box, and allow our Lord Jesus to give you His peace, regardless of how much life is tugging on you. Allow Jesus to take away all the pressure. Only He can turn any face into a happy face.


Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.  2 Thessalonians 3:16

God bless,

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The Path To Marriage Restoration​

This teaching is Charlyne’s introduction to “How To Stand & Fight For Your Marriage!” Charlyne’s goal is to teach you, a stander, or someone you know with marriage problems, the path to marriage restoration that she has learned over the past twenty-five years.