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This week’s Five Minute Friday writing prompt is: MIDDLE
Setting my timer for five minutes, and . . . GO.
I have a bad habit (well, many, actually). One of my bad habits is that I too often look to the past or the future, at the expense of the present. I’m either reminiscing about days gone by — scrolling through digital photo albums and telling stories that begin with “remember when” — or I’m looking at the calendar and making lists in preparation of whatever is coming next.
I look for God’s hand in past trials and victories and pray for His hand in the future, but how often do I consciously rest in His hand today? In this moment? Right now?
Sometimes it’s harder to sense His presence in the moment. In the here and now. When the future is still murky and it’s tricky to trust. When we’re still in the messy middle, before the light at the end of the tunnel can be seen.
But that’s when we need Him most. When we’re desperate for His sufficient grace. When we’re hopeless without His sustaining power and divine intervention.
He is God of yesterday, tomorrow, and today. Even if we can’t see it.
His mercies never fail. And His grace is sufficient.
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One day, I was talking with my friend, Kate, about how I liked the beginning and the end of Job. I liked his faithfulness to God. I liked the revealed picture of the heavenly realm. I liked the poetic justice he received in the end. I liked his deepening of relationship with God. But I didn’t like the middle! I wearied with reading about his friends’ poor reaction to his suffering. Kate replied, “We live most of our lives in the middle.”
When I wake in the morning, I spend time in God’s Word, and journaling, and prayer. I want to be ready for whatever comes my way. At the end of the day, I lay it all down and tell myself it is time to rest. It is only in the middle of the day, that I find myself in a muddle, forgetting to trust God, forgetting to love well, forgetting that “these light and momentary afflictions” are more than worth it. Oh, if only so much of my day were not spent in the middle!
Sometimes I run errands and find myself ALONE in my vehicle with music and God and no real distractions. I remember that there is more to a day than doing, and looking at the clock, and moving onto the next thing. There, in the middle, I worship and restore my soul.
Yes! This is such a good reminder. God is present in the present! We can listen for the still, small voice at any time, and He’s right there.
This is one of my favorite prompts so far!
The middle gets a bad rap but it’s really a good place to be. There is progress. There is history. And, there is a goal. I like the middle.
Can we find a middle ground
between hard right, hard left,
where some healing might be found
for the warp and weft
of a fabric ripped in twain,
a nation torn asunder,
or will the flaming hate remain
to burn us down? I wonder!
Will an offered friendly hand
be roughly slapped aside?
Will all join an arm-ed band,
and with the devil ride
through the streets we’ve loved so well
and casually turned into hell?
I tend to be a dweller. Sitting in the past and trying to figure out what happened and why and wondering what I could have done differently? Then there’s looking ahead, fretting about the future. Well, just recently, I’ve started to realize that what happened, happened because God either allowed it or caused it. But the most important part of that scenario is that I have a much clearer perspective. I can see that all of it was for my good. Looking back is good sometimes because it helps identify the junk to leave behind. We can be more comfortable in the present and move forward with ease, knowing God is in control.