The Stubbornness of Beauty

In a world where pain and hurt scream and shout

Where the loudness of ugly leaves our faith in doubt

Beauty is not welcome, it should not exist

And yet it is stubborn, it always persist

In honour of grief, in honour of pain

All should bear Ugly’s dirty old stain

The birds should migrate, the flowers should die,

The smiling faces should turn to a cry

The grass should not grow, the sky should be black,

And yet, Beauty always comes back

I sometimes wish you will leave me alone

Let me wallow in grief, my heart turn to stone

What have you done, my sadness made me happy

I liked my dark corner where life was quite crappy

My piercing pain silenced the song of a bird

My heart was reserved for my deafening hurt

In a world where everything is torn apart

Ugly banged at the door of my heart

But Beauty is rude and it tenderly radiates

Always cautiously, delicately creates

Your stubbornness shines even in the darkest of days

It’s hard to avoid your luminous rays.

It appears when my kids ask a silly question

When I smell my clean washing it demands my attention

The web of a spider, so intricately made

Leaves me in amazement, not even afraid

The smell of rain, a beautiful sunset

The changing leaves take away my regret

The fresh air of the forest, a beautiful flower

You act like you’re frail, ignoring your power

You transform my pain into the aching beauty of life

Your tenderness can be brutal; it cuts like a knife

You refuse to die, even when I’m upset

When I cry without end when my face is all wet

Even in war the flowers still bloom

There’s resilient hope hidden in all that doom

Beauty, you surprise me at every turn

You teach me to be grateful, I constantly learn

Always unexpected, always gently knocking,

You keep on appearing, you keep on mocking

Oh Beauty, I realise now, you stubborn old thing,

You don’t fear pain; remove its suffocating sting

You leave little room for the pain I embrace

You overwhelm me with your undeserved grace

Thus Beauty, I will acknowledge your existence,

I concede to your everlasting persistence.

In spite of all the pain and suffering that destroy

I’ll embrace your sudden gladness, your perpetual joy

And when your sweet quietness will be louder than pain

Your stubborn truth will be all that remain

 

© Marié-Louise Schreve    10/2015

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God’s cave of silence

I just love the story of Elijah who hides in a cave, probably because it is such a good metaphor for our own walk with God. (1 Kings 18 & 19)

Elijah-MtCarmelQuick recap: Elijah challenges the Baal prophets to a “whose-God-can-answer-with-fire” challenge. Elijah’s God does indeed answer with fire, even after Elijah pours water over his altar.

Filled with God’s spirit, Elijah then outruns King Ahab’s chariot. (Yea, not even Usain Bolt can do that!) Now, the evil queen Jezebel and her almost-as-evil husband, Ahab, want to kill him and what does he do? He runs away. Actually he flees! Really?!? Why? This guy experienced God’s power first-hand. He has seen God’s miracles. He has seen how God answers with fire. He has physical proof that God exists and now, he hides in a cave? Isn’t His God powerful and almighty? After what he experienced first-hand, why is he afraid of Jezebel? Shouldn’t he have said to Jezebel, “Do your worst, my God is more powerful than you and your gods combined. I’ve seen it myself yesterday!”  But no, this guy runs away and firstly sleeps underneath a bush in the desert, then continues on for 40 days and 40 nights until he reaches Horeb where he hides in a cave.

DSCF0167The only thing worse than hiding in a cave though, is hiding in a cave while being depressed. Yes, I’m talking about Elijah, the Usain Bolt of the Old Testament. Can you relate? Have you ever hidden in a proverbial cave while being depressed? Then welcome! There’s a nice little fire in the back, we have a support group on Fridays and we take turns doing the dishes.

Jokes aside, isn’t it strange how we experience God’s answers of fire, we experience how he helps us to outrun the proverbial chariots and then, we receive an unexpected, bad diagnoses, or we are fired from our job or we lose someone we love or we just do not understand the path we are currently on and suddenly we are not sure if God really exists. If He existed, why on earth did He allow whatever He allowed? For most of us though, we don’t ask the “how could He allow this” question, we worry more about His absence. Suddenly we have no answers. The quiet God! We don’t know what to think. If He really cared, why is He suddenly absent? Not a word, not a sound!  And suddenly, the God we faithfully served is nowhere to be found. Was it a farce? Are we being silly for believing in an almighty God when at the very moment He should be there, He is suddenly absent, missing?  Suddenly, you’re in God’s cave of silence and you wonder if the answers with fire and the chariots you outran ever happened. Maybe all of that was just a figment of your imagination.

Ironically, that is the only thing you want when you find yourself in such a cave of silence. You want God to show His might, because we think, that is what we need. We believe that God’s answers of fire, His strength; His power will boost our faith.

When God does speak to Elijah, He asks him what he is doing in this cave and Elijah continues to pour his heart out. Next, God appears to Elijah.

First there is a tornado-sized wind.

 (STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)

Then there’s an earthquake,

earthquakes-300

then a fire.

God, however, did not appear in any of these. It is only when a “gentle whisper” (or gentle breeze) comes around that God reveals Himself.
Why did God decide to appear in a gentle whisper? What’s the deal with the wind, earthquake and fire? I think it speaks to two things. First, Eijah just experienced God’s power, wrath and might. He also experienced his own frailty. He must have been very upset and anxious. God however, reaches out in a gentle whisper. It must have been incredibly comforting for Elijah to have God reach out to him in such a way. Like cool water on a hot summer’s day. Almost asF1040009 if the fire, wind and earthquake were manifestations of Elijah’s anguish and the “gentle whisper” bringing God’s restoration. Secondly I think God wanted to tell Elijah, look, I sometimes answer with fire, wind or an earthquake, but you are closest to me when you experience Me as a gentle whisper in a breeze. Almost like saying, you’ve experienced my power and might, but come, get away from all that noise and sit with me. Fires and earthquakes have their place and of course they are important, but you bond with me most in the gentle breeze. “Gentle-whisper-time” is time set apart for you and you alone. Yes, look for me when I answer with fire, but look for me even more when I am only a gentle whisper.

When you find yourself in the proverbial cave of silence, first of all, please know that you are in good company. Elijah spent some time there too and he was considered so perfect that he was one of only two people who were taken to heaven alive. David and Joseph also spent some quality time in their respective caves of silence. If Biblical heroes like Elijah, David and Joseph spent some time there, why are we surprised if we end up there too?

The cave of silence is most often a very uncomfortable place. It’s that time that you want the world to stop so that you can have time to process. It’s that carpet-being-pulled-from-under-you sensation. But know this, the cave of silence is the place and time to pour your heart out towards God, just like Elijah did. Talk, write, complain, cry, spend time reading the Bible, whatever you do, spend time with God, especially if you’re just quiet and your prayers are a mere sigh. In my experience, God does not answer with fire when you are in the cave of silence, so don’t expect it. Instead, look for God’s gentle whispers. They are everywhere. Don’t dismiss those gentle whispers as fate or chance. You can only hear a gentle whisper when you stop expecting the fires and earthquakes.  It’s almost like being coached by Roger Federer. You’ve seen him take Grand Slam title after Grand Slam title, but when he trains you; your one-on-one time isn’t spent being cheered on by crowds. It is spent jogging, weight lifting, hitting tennis balls until you’re blue in the face and the only encouragement you receive is the water breaks between practice sessions.  Our faith is nurtured and built when a gentle whisper is all that you can hear. It might seem like the worst time, but in fact it is the most important time of your relationship with God.

IMG_0471And finally, do not forget the times that God did answer with fire. It is still the same God and He will answer again with fire, but now is the time that He wants to be with you and you alone. Your fires will come; your earthquakes will come, but for now, sit with God. Be still with Him. Welcome the Gentle Whisper into your life and know, you can be closest to Him now, because now is one-on-one time with the Maker of Heaven and Earth!

ISIS for Dummies: For anyone confused about the conflict in the Middle East

Isis

The Middle East is currently engulfed in chaos, war and brutality. At the moment, most people associate the Muslim world with refugees and masked people in black brutally killing their prisoners. But who is ISIS and how do they fit into the bigger scheme of things? I asked political analyst, Gerrie Terblanche, a few questions to help make sense of it all. But first, some background on ISIS:

ISIS actually started out as an Al Qaeda terrorist organisation. They have their roots in the Al Qaeda faction in Iraq, which was called Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). After some setbacks in 2007, they decided to exploit the Syrian conflict (that started in 2011) to expand their power base into Syria. By 2013, they expanded back into Iraq and renamed themselves the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It is believed that they did this to demonstrate their regional ambitions.

The leader of ISIS then had a very public falling out with the leader of Al Qaeda about the role of another Al Qaeda branch in Syria. Al Qaeda consequently severed all ties with ISIS (which now functions independently). The leader of ISIS also declared himself the “caliph” of the Islamic State and by doing so indirectly challenged Al Qaeda.

M-L: What do you think of ISIS? I know you don’t want to have afternoon tea with them, but what is your opinion in terms of their future and survival? Do you think they will conquer the Islam world or do you think their power base is limited to unstable areas like Syria? What I am trying to get at is, do you think they will ever take over stable Middle East countries like Saudi Arabia or any other prominent Arab country?

GT: Remember, ISIS is fundamentalist Sunni, or otherwise called, Salafism. (Salafism is an ultra conservative, orthodox movement within Sunni Islam which also supports the implementation of Sharia law.) The biggest supporter of Salafism in the Middle East is Saudi Arabia. The latter apply Salafism (just like ISIS) already for decades. Heads and other body parts are publicly chopped off, offenders are publicly flogged, women have no rights, gays are executed, Christians are persecuted etc. ISIS is merely Saudi Salafism in its extreme form. Because of this, ISIS will not bite the hand that feeds it. With this I also include other Gulf States like, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, etc. ISIS’s long term aim is to establish a caliphate (a form of Islamic government led by a caliph) – at the expense of Shiite Muslims, Christians, women and other minorities. The reason nothing is said about the Saudis, is because of the frightening amounts of money and investments that essentially buy the West’s silence. They are also seen as essential for the safety of Israel.

Especially now with the possible deal between the USA and Iran, it is more important than ever for Saudi Arabia to fight Shiite Muslims. Saudi’s biggest enemy is the Shiites (Iran). Remember that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States are Arab, while Iran is Persian. Both Al Qaeda and ISIS’s biggest support comes from Saudi Arabia. In Yemen for example, Saudi Arabia is itself fighting against Shiite Muslims and they are also helping to brutally suppress the Shi’a minority in Bahrain. They also desperately want to bring about the fall of Assad (Syria’s embattled leader), because he is Shi’a (actually an Alawite which is a branch of Shi’a Islam) and an Iran ally. I therefore believe that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States have no reason or political will to see ISIS as a threat. On the contrary, I believe they support ISIS.

It is interesting to note that the Shiites (mainly Iran) are traditionally much more tolerant towards minorities than Sunnis, especially the Salafist version of Sunni. Probably because they themselves are a minority and were persecuted and killed by Sunnis. Also note that ISIS has never (of which I’m aware) threatened or targeted Israel or any Jewish interests, exactly like Saudi Arabia.

M-L: Are you therefore saying that in the unlikely event that ISIS does conquer the Middle East, they will be supported by currently stable nations like Saudi? Are we therefore looking at a very extreme, fundamentalist  Middle East in the nearby future? More than they are currently?

GT: I think that stable Middle East states will not necessarily support ISIS actively and openly, but definitely passively and covertly. I think the Middle East will remain an unstable place for the foreseeable future with the primary conflict between Iran (Shi’a) and Saudi Arabia (Sunni). Meanwhile, Israel is sitting on the sidelines, enjoying the fact that they are not involved in this conflict. It fits them like a glove and they definitely side with the Sunnis.

M-L: The Middle East is definitely out of balance. What would you say triggered this imbalance?

GT: It was in balance till Bush #2 invaded Iraq. Till then there was a balance between the autocratic regimes of Saudi Arabia (Sunnis), Iran/Syria (Shi’a) and Iraq (mainly secular Arab nationalism). Syria and Iraq managed to suppress sectarian divisions with brutality and force. After Bush’s imperialistic adventures and the revolt in Syria, the two ethnic divided crock-pots literally exploded. (Lebanon is definitely next.) There is now only sectarian conflict left after the fall of the Pan-Arab nationalistic Iraq: Salafist Sunnis vs Shi’as (and actually all other minorities).

M-L: I know Iran is supposed to be “the Devil”, but aren’t they the West’s most stable ally against ISIS? Isn’t the enemy of my enemy my friend? Besides, in terms of tolerance towards minorities they are a much better deal than e.g. Saudi. They are much more “democratic” than many other Arab countries. By the way, what is your opinion of the deal between Iran and the USA?

GT: I think after all the years of cold war between the USA and Iran; they are now beginning to see Iran as a necessary ally against Salafist Sunnis. I think the USA is beginning to realise who the long-term enemy really is (although Israel will definitely disagree). Personally I fully support the deal with Iran. I think Kerry did a really good job. Better relationships with Iran will also make Israel safer. Of course the flirting with Iran leaves the Saudis and other Gulf States very uncomfortable, not even to mention Israel

I can maybe just add that it’s not only the Middle East that is or will be unstable. Europe is currently engulfed with refugees due to instability in the Middle East. This in turn feeds anti-immigrant sentiment and right-wing parties in Europe. I believe we can expect a huge backlash against immigrants in the near future. Not even to mention all the Muslim extremist terrorists who now gain entry into Europe due to relaxed laws to help refugees.

I hope this helped you understand the Middle East conflict a little bit better. We can definitely expect some interesting times ahead. Especially now that Russia is openly sending military support to help president Bashar al Assad. The plot thickens…

If you have any more questions, please write in the comment box below.

The God of Contradiction

My brother passed away 9 years ago. Robbers broke into his house, a struggle ensued, they shot him straight through the subclavian artery (if my biology is correct – basically the artery left, above your heart) and fled. He bled to death and died about half an hour later. I later spoke to a doctor friend who was first on the scene. He said that it was a deathblow. His words were: “even if he was on an operation table in the best hospital in the world with the best doctors in the world, they would not have been able to save him”.

What a shock! You can only imagine what my poor parents went through. After the funeral, my youngest brother and uncle drove my deceased brother’s car with all of his earthly possessions back to Cape Town from Johannesburg – a 12-14 hour drive. We expected them late that evening. I went to the movies and when I returned my mom was waiting for me at the door. Immediately I knew something was wrong. My instinct was right. A truck driver fell asleep at the wheel, swerved into their lane, taking away almost the entire right side of the car. Miraculously they only sustained minor injuries. Had the truck swerved 10 cm more to the right it would have driven right over them ad they would have been dead!

The next day at lunch my dad prays and thanks God that my youngest brother survived. Suddenly I’m thinking, are we hypocrites? One of my brothers die, we’re sad. Another one miraculously survived, now we’re suddenly thankful? Why couldn’t the God who protected one brother also protect the other?

Everything was so precise, almost too precise. The bullet went straight through his artery. Had it been even just a few millimetres to the left or right it would have only been a flesh wound. Had the truck swerved a further few centimetres to the right, both my uncle and youngest brother would have been killed. To me, this was way more than just mere fate.

So many people have said so many things about suffering and why bad things happen to good people and how can a God of love allow bad things. Please allow me to add my two cents. While I was playing around with those contradictions in my mind, I realised, this is nothing new. Our entire faith is based on contradiction, contradiction to what the world offers.

I found that thought extremely liberating. Think about it, The Lord asks us to love someone if we really want to “get back at them”. He asks us to serve if we want to be leaders. He asks us to become like children if we want to be mature. He asks us to feed and clothe the poor, serve with love if we really want to be important. He asks us to die (first figuratively and then physically) if we want to live. He asks us to be weak if we want to be strong. He asks us to be broken bread and poured out wine if we want to be whole. He asks us to be weak if we want to be strong. He asks us to become foolish if we want to be clever. He asks us to become poor if we want to be rich. He asks us to forgive when everything inside us wants to hate. He asks us to surrender if we really want to be in control.

Even while on earth He was a living contradiction. The Jews awaited their promised king. They wanted a fighter, a warrior, someone to conquer the Romans. Instead they received a humble carpenter who loved His enemies, healed the sick and chose fishermen for disciples. Not your average gladiator. Not only was His life a living contradiction, His death was probably the biggest contradiction of all. All His enemies – physical and spiritual – thought that they killed Him. Yet, He rose from death and what looked like His biggest defeat became His (and our) biggest victory!

The God of contradiction wants us to see the world through His eyes, and not surprisingly, it is exactly the opposite of what the world would like us to think and do. And maybe that is why so many people find it so difficult to believe, precisely because Jesus is the God of Contradiction. The world says, be the strongest, be famous, be selfish, do it for yourself, be important, be mean. Jesus had nothing what the world deem as important and yet He had everything that the world craves: love, peace, truth, control, good relationships, purpose and of course, hope!

If The Lord applied this contradictory thinking to worldly wisdom to almost everything He did and say while on earth, why would it be any different today? Does this then not also apply especially when we do not understand? When everything in front of us seems unclear and dark? Doesn’t He ask us to trust if nothing makes sense?

If we want to have what the God of contradiction offers us, if we desire to be like Him, we need to see the world how Jesus saw it. We need to think the way He thinks. He needs to become more and we less.

So, if I believe in a God of love and mercy, why did He allow what He
allowed? I don’t know, but I do know that things are very seldom what they
seem. Defeat is sometimes the biggest victory and failure is sometimes the
opportunity that changes your life. Death is sometimes the beginning of life
and trust is sometimes the gateway to understanding. He cares even for
the millimeters and centimeters in our lives.

ScanImage54    In loving memory of my brother, Stefan…

DSC02766 DSC02769 DSC02773  A very close call…

A Timely Miracle

My dad passed away a few months ago. It was a really big shock for me and my whole family since he was in very good health even though he was already 80 years old. My mom phoned me the afternoon to say that my dad was not feeling well and he asked that we pray for him. The next thing I knew, I receive a phone call at around 23h30 to say that my dad passed away. My dad… such an example to all of us. I do not say this often and I do not say the following sentence lightly: he was truly a man of God.

We are currently spending the year in Germany and I had to make immediate plans to return to South Africa (SA) for the funeral. My sister lives in the USA and when we started to make plans to return to SA, we saw on the internet that we can both fly to Amsterdam, meet each other there and then take the same flight to Cape Town from Amsterdam.

Of course we wanted to be seated next to each other, even more so since we are both in shock and very emotional. I decided to reserve our seats on the internet, but when I wanted to do that, the site informed me that I couldn’t. I was already very sad and now also very despondent. Almost half-heartedly, almost out of habit, I asked God for a miracle so that my sis and I can sit together, not really expecting anything. I phone KLM the next day and they told me that it is too close to the actual flight. They close seat reservations a few days before departure. I explained my situation to her, but she couldn’t do anything and instead suggested that I change the seats when I check-in – online or at the counter. Very long story short, I couldn’t check-in online for both my sister and myself. The next option was to try finding someone at the KLM desk at the airport the night prior to our flight when I will be spending the night at the airport hotel. However, when I checked, there was no KLM desk. We then decided that since my sister starts flying before I do, she will try to organise seats in the USA.

I knew that her flight takes off at 20h00 my time and at around 19h30 I received a text from her only giving her seat number. I texted her back, asking about my seat number, but I did not get a response. Thanks to the hotel wi-fi, I connected on my very basic smart phone, ready to check-in online.  To my delight I saw on my small smart phone screen that there was a seat open right next to her and I immediately reserved it. Thank God, I thought, she managed to arrange that we sit together. Very relieved and happy I boarded the plane to Amsterdam the next day, looking forward to meet up with my sister at the airport. (She almost missed our flight, but hey, that is a story for another day…)

A little while into our almost fully-booked flight I asked her if it was difficult for her to arrange that we sit together. I almost couldn’t believe her answer. “I didn’t,” she said. “I tried to find someone from KLM to help me, but it was chaos at the airport and the one lady I did ask, was really busy and said she couldn’t help me. I proceeded to check-in at the machine at the airport and only texted you the seat number it gave me. I actually wanted to ask you how you managed to arrange that we sit together?”

Can you believe it? That she is assigned the only seat on the flight that has another seat open next to it? We had such a great flight and wow, what an amazing miracle for a despondent heart!

The God of Trust

There is a specific outing that my son has been nagging us for weeks to do. We’ve promised him that we’ll do it. In fact we are doing it next week, but not wanting to spoil the surprise, we’ve decided not to tell him until we are on our way. This morning it reached its peak when my son entered our room crying, saying that waiting to do this outing “just takes too long”. Of course my son takes after me. I am one of the most impatient people I know and I hate waiting. But why are there times that we have to wait so long when we are Christians? Often God’s answers to our prayers are to – wait for it – WAIT!

I answered my son that most often the wait is worth it and that the lesson of patience is one of the most important lessons that we will ever learn. I told him that patience makes us stronger, because it teaches us to wait on God not men. I also told him the story of Abraham. How he had to wait for very long after God promised him a son. So long that he decided he obviously didn’t hear God correctly and that He probably meant that he (Abraham) had to do something about it himself. We all know the rest of the story: Abraham had a child with his maid and that caused all sorts of bickering and fighting – even till today.

I sympathise with Abraham. Poor guy! Seriously, he had a promise which took forever to come true. I probably would have done something much sooner. Abraham however had to learn how to wait. God was not only teaching Abraham patience, but also trust.  Without patience there can be no trust. If we do not have patience, we will never learn trust. One of the stories in the Bible where that is (in my opinion) demonstrated the best is in the Book of Numbers, Numbers 14 to be precise.

This is the story of how the Israelites revolted against Moses and Aaron after Joshua and Caleb explored the “promised land”.  A quick, very concise recap: Moses sent spies from each tribe to go and explore Canaan. Everyone came back and said that they should not try to fight the Canaanites, except Joshua and Caleb. They said that Israel can take the “promised land”. However, the other spies were really afraid and they spread stories around the camp about the giants living in Canaan and how the Israelites would be killed if they would try and take Canaan.

The people of Israel started to revolt. Not only do they want to kill Moses, Aaron, Joshua and Caleb, but they also want to return to Egypt. By this time, God appears so that all the people can see Him. He wants to destroy them and Moses starts to plead with God not to destroy His people. Long story short, God says that because the ten spies did not trust Him, they will be killed and the Israelites will wander in the desert for an additional forty years (one year for every day they searched Canaan).

For me this piece is about trust, how incredibly important it is for the Lord that His children trust Him. That is the whole story of the wilderness: TRUST! Every single time the same thing happens: there is a crisis, the Israelites moan, they want to return to Egypt. God gets angry, but in spite of it miraculously saves them time and time again.

It seems like the Israelites reason like this: “yes of course God saved us from Egypt and yes He provided water from a rock and yes He gave us manna, but this time He will not provide. Surely His goodness has ended. Surely He is not that powerful. Yes, He provided in the past, but surely He will not provide again, this problem is way too big for Him…” Then they panic and moan and want to return to Egypt.

Let me repeat, wow, the Lord just really want His people to trust Him!

To me Numbers 14 is almost like a dad sending his son to his room, grounding him for a month. Almost as if God wants to say, ok, stop it now!! You know I am in control. It’s like a dad getting mad, not because his son made a mistake, but because he knows his son knows better, surprised that His son does not trust him.  Almost like God wanting to say, goodness gracious, this is logic! It goes without saying! I am your DAD! You can never not be My children. Haven’t I proved over and over and over again with miracle upon miracle.

I find this piece mightily encouraging that the Lord places such high emphasis on this. It really makes me quite calm. It makes me feel, if He gets this angry because people do not trust Him, then He obviously knows what He is doing. If He said the opposite,” poor you, I understand, it is difficult not to trust, I mean really, Egypt!! That’s a terrible place and poor you had to endure all of that…” now THEN I would panic.

I live in South Africa. A country plagued with violence and various other problems. I believe it is very personal for each and every person to decide whether they leave SA or not. You should go wherever God leads you, but this piece made me wonder about my own situation. If I believe God is and stays in control – always, then I should believe that He led my ancestors there for a reason. In a sense I can say it was their “promised land”. Now we panic and think, corruption, violence, crime, failing infrastructure and I’m wondering, am I now not like the ten spies who said, oh no, sorry, this land is too dangerous for us?  Doesn’t God ask me to say, look, He lead us this far. I have a million examples of how He led us and provided time and time again, miracle upon miracle. Did His power really run out? Did His mercy end now that things started to get difficult? Is He too weak to help now as opposed to the past when He was “strong enough”?

Whatever the case, whether He says stay or go, one thing I am certain of, God wants us to continue to trust Him, even if there are giants in our way, even if our opposition is strong, even if things ahead looks impossible. Remember who lead you this far. Remember what He did to help you get where you are at the moment.  Remember His goodness and mercy. Remember his miracles and His provision. Is He really too weak to help now?

What kind of “giant” are you facing now? Have you explored the road ahead and told yourself that it is too difficult, that you will just not make it? Have you forgotten how God provided for you up to now? Have you forgotten all the miracles He did to provide for you in the past? Have you forgotten how He led you out of “Egypt” and how He paved the way ahead? Remember to trust Him. He has provided in the past. He is still in control! Remember to trust Him!