How to Navigate the Times

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” So opens Dickens’ famous novel, A Tale of Two Cities.

Lately I find my days opening with one or the other description. No, I’m not going through contradicting circumstances; certainly not a revolution. My life consists of the daily duties of homemaker and Teacher-Mom and, for a few sparse hours a week, a writer.

Some days open with “the best of times.” Everything and everyone is cast in this congenial glow and most everything looks possible and positive. These days it’s easy to think the best of everything and everyone, and my heart swells to know how I can do each person a good turn.

Other days…

–I confess, depending how I slept, how much I’ve been affirmed, or how much I compared with others, and how much time I’ve invested in my relationship with my Heavenly Father–

…other days everything and everyone is cast in dark, irksome shadows. And sadly, critical opinions and hopeless thoughts churn in my mind and mood until my own sharp words and tones jolt me into the realization that I am in “the worst of times.”

So much of life is perspective; how I view people, how I view the times.

Hebrews talks about “sundry times” during which God spoke to the people through the prophets. The very next line talks about the present times and how “in these last days” God has spoken to us by His Son, the Word.

God loved us enough to send His Son, Emmanuel God with us, to face the worst of times on the cross to purge our sins. The manger and the cross and the empty tomb signify the best of times for us–times of hope and victory.

Through Christ I can navigate the times by seeing people and circumstances through His perspective, through His hope, through His love. And instead of allowing my emotions to pilot my day, I can choose the course of prayer!

God, who at sundry times…spoke by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son… when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. Hebrews 1:1-3

The Impression of the Season

T’is the season to gather with family and friends, to read Luke 2, to eat lots of chocolate, to make New Year’s Resolutions.

The Christmas holidays come around once every year and I have to be careful that its true meaning doesn’t become cliche. So each year I ask the Lord to impress something special and specific upon my heart.

This year it was a little phrase found, not in Luke 2, but in Matthew 2. The phrase reads “Fell down.” It describes the action of the wise men after they’d found the newborn King of the Jews. The Common English Bible reads, “Falling to their knees, they honoured Him.”

The wise men knew that the Christ Child was a King, and therefore did what is proper and right to do before a king; they bowed.

Image result for free images nativity scene

Jesus is the King of kings. He deserves for me to bow before Him. To fall on my physical knees in prayer, thanksgiving, and worship. To bow my heart to His will and to His plans.

And when [the wise men] were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him. Matthew 2:11

What has the Lord impressed upon your heart this season?

Zeiset’s New Blog

A year ago at this time we were preparing for our trip to Tanzania. You can read about it here.

Three months prior, I had recovered from sciatica pain that had left me hindered to the point that I couldn’t walk. How was I going to make it, flying over seas and living in a simple African village for two weeks. What if I had a relapse?

God was good–great!–in fact. I had no issues the entire trip, and my heart still glows with the fulfillment of doing something that was hard for me, that required faith.

Anyway, on to the point:

Get Zeiset’s missionary updates in your inbox.

Tim and Sheryl Zeiset will be sharing their missionary updates through their blog Splinters from our African Log. You can sign up for their updates here.