Sunday, July 5, 2009

Psalm 111:4-6 (New International Version)
4 He has caused his wonders to be remembered;

the LORD is gracious and compassionate.
5 He provides food for those who fear him;

he remembers his covenant forever.
6 He has shown his people the power of his works,

giving them the lands of other nations.

Though this whole experience of being thousands of miles from home, on my own in a foreign land has been extremely difficult... Not once have I had to wonder if God had forgotten about me. He is so loving and kind to me, when logically as far as any human relationship operates, He has every right to just shut me out.

Friday I recieved my phone bill. It's supposed to be a flat rate of 50€ a month. It was a whopping 216,89€. Ouch. I wasn't exactly sure what my financial state was as I don't have any way of checking to see what transactions go through... so this was just a bit shocking and stressful. I went to the bank today to find that I just have the right amount in my account. A friend offered to call the phone company since I am never available when they're open. My cupboards are fully stocked with food... (I got a bit ambitious Friday before I got my mail and bought rice and lentils and muesli.) Let's see... o! I have a friend moving to the states in September and she's offered to let me have her wardrobe and pots and pans and such which is perfect since I'll be moving into a different apartment at the end of this month. I've been kind of discouraged that I haven't been able to do more traveling since I've been here and was offered to join in a road trip in a few weekends to Torino, Italy. Seriously. This all happened within like 4 hours.

This morning at church we had a guest speaker come from Youth for Christ in Bologna, Italy. She spoke on success in God's eyes being love and faithfulness to Him. The world measures success as reaching goals and numbers and visibility... not that these things are bad or that we shouldn't set goals or hope for a change that is noticable from our efforts, but first and foremost, our allegiance is to God. When we practice love and faithfulness to God we win favor and good success in the eyes of God and often in the eyes of man as well. God opens doors and it's my part to stay faithful.

Hebrews 12:1-3 says, "1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."

This is just a paraphrase of the first bit I shared. I read it and realized it is exactly what I'm thinking this evening. :)

Psalm 111:1-10 (The Message)
Hallelujah! I give thanks to God with everything I've got—
Wherever good people gather, and in the congregation.
God's works are so great, worth
A lifetime of study—endless enjoyment!
Splendor and beauty mark his craft;
His generosity never gives out.
His miracles are his memorial—
This God of Grace, this God of Love.
He gave food to those who fear him,
He remembered to keep his ancient promise.
He proved to his people that he could do what he said:
Hand them the nations on a platter—a gift!
He manufactures truth and justice;
All his products are guaranteed to last—
Never out-of-date, never obsolete, rust-proof.
All that he makes and does is honest and true:
He paid the ransom for his people,
He ordered his Covenant kept forever.
He's so personal and holy, worthy of our respect.
The good life begins in the fear of God—
Do that and you'll know the blessing of God.
His Hallelujah lasts forever!

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