The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. –Lamentations 3:22-23 NLT
I am not a good sleeper. Some nights I struggle with insomnia and some nights I sleep great for a few hours and then toss and turn the rest of the night. Either way the nights often seem endless and the dark is overpowering. The mornings bring such a sweet relief to the dark that seemed to never end. I love the quiet and stillness of the early morning. I enjoy seeing the sun break through the dark and the world waking up. There is such a peace in the early morning and such calm after the darkness of night. Lamentations 3:22-23 brings such great promises to remember in the dark nights of our lives. I think the verse is not just about mercy in the literal mornings but about God’s love and faithfulness before, during, and after a dark time. It’s His ability to bring light forth after the darkness.
Dark times come in our lives and often it seems like the night lasts forever. Sometimes it’s the result of a bad choice of our own or sometimes its things we have little control of. This verse makes promises we can cling to both during the dark times and when the sun finally comes out in the end. The first promise is the Lord is faithful and His love never ends. His love is there before, during, and after the dark times in our lives. The second promise is His mercy never ceases. Mercy is defined as compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one's power to punish or harm. God has every ability to punish us for our mess ups but He never gives us the punishment we deserve. He constantly shows up with compassion and forgiveness. His mercy never ceases, even in the darkest of times. He doesn’t have to be that way but because He loves us in ways we can’t even fathom, He is. And then the beautiful part of the verse: His mercy begins afresh each morning. God loves us ALWAYS and He shows us mercy when we don’t deserve it, BUT if we ask for forgiveness He forgets our wrongs and new mercy shows up like a sunrise. The light comes streaming through the darkness! When our faith and trust is in Christ, He can bring the most beautiful sunrises in to our life!
A little homework for you! Even if you are not a morning person get up early one day. Listen to the stillness of the darkness and then go for a walk to see the world wake up. Spend some time thanking the Lord for His faithful love, His unfailing mercy and for His forgiveness that gives you a new start!
Written By: Heather
I’ve always been my own biggest critic. I often hold myself to unachievable standards, and blame myself when I cannot reach them. I like to do things for myself, and often don’t ask for help because I think that’ll make me weak. Of course I know in my head that God did not create me to achieve perfection by societal standards, or to be able to do everything by myself, but I often forget that. Does that sound like you? The lies of self-sufficiency and perfection are challenging to conquer, but they’re just that: lies. One of my favorite Bible verses, 2 Corinthians 12:9, has served as a reminder of this:
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
When I mess up and sin, God’s forgiveness is more than enough.
When I need help, God’s design of community is more than enough.
When I don’t meet my own standards, the way God created me is more than enough. When I am not enough, God is more than enough.
The beauty of 2 Corinthians 12:9 is that I am free from bondage to perfection and impossible standards. Not only is my weakness permissible, but it should be gladly welcomed. My weakness highlights His strength, and isn’t my purpose in being to bring glory to God?! Therefore, when I fall short, I should not be ashamed. Rather, I should rejoice in seeing God’s power at work in my situation and boldly point the glory to Him rather than haphazardly attempting to hide my own shortcomings.
My inabilities are covered by His abilities. When His glory is on display, my inadequacy doesn’t matter; it fades into the shadows. In such a self-centered society it’s hard to understand that someone else can make up for my weakness, and to point glory away from our own selves. But what I’ve learned over time and through Scripture is that anything I may think I deserve glory for is a result of a gift of God. God’s power covers me in more ways than I know. All I am is dependent on all of Him.
When you notice your own weakness, look for God’s strength in that facet of your life and bring the attention and glory to Him. Our weaknesses are not something to be ashamed of; rather, they can act as a tool in witnessing. Think of a time recently that your weaknesses have stood out to you. (Did you blow up at a friend? Did you fall back into a pattern of sin? Did you act against something you read in Scripture?) Rather than trying to hide or compensate, how could you or did you focus on God’s perfection and power?
Written By: Emily
When it comes to scripture, it is hard to pick just one verse that stands out above the others. I personally have dozens that I could quote and pinpoint how they helped me through a specific time in my life. However, there is one verse for me that stands out above all the rest: Isaiah 43:2.
“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” NIV
This verse has meant so much to me over the years in so many different seasons of life. This verse speaks greatly into the constancy and power of our God. He emphasizes here that no matter what the circumstance is, He will never abandon us, He will always be with us. He also declares that not only will he be with us, He will not allow us to be overtaken. I can think of so many times in my life where the waters have felt like they were getting too high, or the fire was getting too hot, but the Lord took my hand and walked me through it each and every time.
I challenge you to reflect on this verse as you go throughout your week. Remind yourself that no matter what comes your way, the Lord is with you and for you. One of my favorite things to do is to write verses down in places where I can see them. Put it as your phone lock screen for the week! Remind yourself of the relentless pursuit of our God, in the deepest and darkest moments He loved you. He is with you and for you. Ask the Lord to make these words real to you this week.
What are some of your favorite verses? Leave them in the comments below!
Written By: Adyson