Saturday, April 30, 2011


Such a pretty word!  Three little letters that can completely discount any negatives faced throughout the day, week, or even years.   There was darkness for three days; yet the Israelites had light in the places they lived (Exodus 10:23). The Israelites wondered around in the wilderness for 40 years; yet their clothes never wore out, nor did the sandals on their feet (Deuteronomy 29:5). 
My job was eliminated yet God provided a better job.  We couldn’t afford to take Ryan for hyperbaric oxygen treatments; yet friends raised all the funds we needed to take him in June.  Insurance placed limits on Ryan’s therapy that reduced his therapy to far less than he needed yet God gave us favor and the additional visits were approved. 

Matthew 28:8
So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell His disciples.

Lamentations 3:21-22
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail.

Habakkuk 3: 18
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.

On the flip side there is the word wait, which isn’t nearly as pretty. Sometimes the impact of yet is preceded by wait.
Psalm 27:14
Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait on the Lord.
Psalm 33:20
We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.

No matter how painful, no matter how overwhelming, no matter how scary - your situation can turn around with one beautiful yet.
…….we wait in hope for the Lord and HisYet that is to come; He is our help, our shield and our Yet.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter Just Shouts of God's Love For Us

A little more than 7 years ago, I sat in a movie theatre with my husband watching “The Passion of The Christ.” As I was leaving the theatre with an overwhelming heaviness, all I could think about was, “God, the Cross was more than we deserved. Why the horrific beating to pay for our healing? I would have just made us wait until eternity for healing.” I think that God wanted that part to stand out to me as an encouragement for the coming years.

John 16:33

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

He knew that in less than a month our unborn child would suffer a stroke. He knew that his stroke would lead to seizures, visual impairment, Cerebral Palsy, and developmental delays. I think He was saying, “Take heart! Here’s a gift of hope to pull you through this difficult time. I have overcome the world, cerebral palsy, visual impairments, and seizures. Here is a gift of peace; hold onto it.”

Some would say, “Why did He allow His own Son suffer? Why didn’t He prevent Ryan’s stroke?” Some even focus on the wrath of God over the love of God. I have questioned God at times but it seems we should question ourselves rather than God.

I’m not a great theologian but when Jesus cries out, “Father, why have you forsaken me?” I wonder if God the Father was looking away in an effort to contain the wrath of a Father whose heart was breaking for His Son – a Son who was perfect in every way.

If God, at His greatest moment of pain, was able to allow His love to control His wrath then isn’t His love far greater than His wrath? If God could wait for His Son to pay the full price for our son, then shouldn’t I be able to thankfully and patiently wait for this gift to be displayed in his life.

If God was willing to suffer more than we can even comprehend to give us more than we could ever deserve, who are we to question Him? And yet – He graciously takes our questions and uses them to lovingly teach us.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Perception Deception

One of the ways I know God is speaking to me is that He keeps bringing the same question or word to my mind until I sit down and follow His lead. This week the word is “perceive.” It all started when Emily and I were laughing about my van and its many noises. I was telling her that the squeaks must scare people because now people seem to scurry across the street much quicker these days when they are in front of me. She said, “Mom! It’s not the squeaking! It’s the sound of the engine revving like you are going to run over them!”

I’m the only one who is still willing to drive the van so I’m only used to the interior noises. Apparently, it is idling high and sounds like I’m on the verge of road rage to pedestrians. I began to think about other misperceptions of the Howell family.

Once when Wes was in the Army, we were being transferred from Ft. Bragg to Ft. Lewis. We went to Las Vegas on the way. With all of the lights and things to see, Wes incorrectly perceived the slope in the white sidewalk to be an entrance into The Mirage. Much to the dismay of the Asian sightseers with their brown sandals, white socks, and expensive cameras, he had no other option but to turn left onto the sidewalk. When I saw their faces and heard the string of foreign obscenities, I dove to the floor to spare my dignity.

To fall in line with his day of incorrect perceptions he belted out, “What are you doing in the floor?!? Get up here! I look stupid up here alone!” How someone sitting in the passenger seat hysterically laughing at him could somehow make him look intelligent as he drove through the Asians is beyond me. I correctly perceived that he could look stupid alone or we could look stupid together. Either way, a personal sacrifice of my own dignity would not alter his perceived intelligence in any way, shape, or form.

With all of the fallacies of our understanding of even the simple things, there is no wonder God felt the need to give us Proverbs 3:5:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.
Even though He often reminds me of Proverbs 3:5, I still find myself fretting over the what-ifs or trying to imagine a plan that works all of our circumstances out for our good. Thankfully, God is helping me to grow stronger at resisting the thoughts that go against His Word.

In light of our family’s perception track record, the thought of depending on our own understanding makes our driving issues look intelligent.  We’ve actually made God’s Proverbs 3:5 case for Him. How can such limited minds, however self-imposed some limitations may be, correctly perceive the detailed plans of such a limitless God?

Friday, April 8, 2011

My Provision Will Never Run Out??

So many things in 1 Kings 17 and 18 seem to be jumping off the page at me lately.  Today it is the widow at Zarepath (1 Kings 17:7-16).  I can't help but wonder if she doubted the Word of God that came from Elijah.  Can you imagine what people this day and age would say?  Really? This jar of flour and jug of oil is going to last me until it rains again. Please!

She knew how much was in there.  She had already decided that there was only enough to make one last loaf of bread and that they were then destined to die of starvation.  I wonder if it was said with the over dramatization of Scarlet O'Hara, like I've often done. 

As a reformed (or nearly reformed) control freak, I've looked at our checking account and wondered how in the world things would work out.  As I drive a van with  more warning lights than a 747 (ok - slight exaggeration Ms. O'Hara), I sometimes wonder if it will really last until He provides another.

With each new expense or new van noise I think, "It must be about to rain soon."  But regardless, the provision in the flour jar and oil jug are just as impressive as the coming rain.

I love you Jehovah Jireh, my Provider...even when you have me working on a need to know basis.