God is our refuge and strength,
a helper who is always found in times of trouble. (Psalm 46:1)
"Christ under me," prayed St. Patrick. It is a simple little phrase, but so very visual. Christ under me, my strength and support. It reminds me of the Apostle Paul's prayers for strength:
I pray that He may grant you,
according to the riches of His glory,
to be strengthened with power through His Spirit
in the inner man. (Ephesians 3:16 HCSB Read this in context here: Ephesians 3:14-21)
May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father,
who has loved us and given us eternal encouragement
and good hope by grace,
encourage your hearts
and strengthen you in every good work and word.
(2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 HCSB Read this in context here: 2 Thessalonians 2:13-17)
Notice that Jesus strengthens us to work and speak. I remember when my parents' church would sing the hymn "Standing on the Promises" the congregation would automatically stand up whether the song leader asked them to or not. Believing God's promises is not a passive activity--it puts us in motion.
O God of endurance and encouragement,
You are my faithful helper in times of trouble.
When I am weak and weary,
I find strength in your word.
I am revisiting the themes of several of my books as I seek to “just be with Jesus." Today's post is adapted from my book Sacred Signposts. I am putting aside lengthy readings for a season, and instead looking for one word or phrase from a scripture portion to carry through the day. Today’s word, for me, is "encouragement."
photo credit: Trim Castle Is A Large Norman Castle On The South Bank Of The River Boyne In Trim, County Meath, Ireland. via photopin (license)