I crack my eyes open to the dusty light… stretch beneath the comforter and yawn, filling my lungs with the cool, crisp air of an early morning. Slowly, I become aware of the creaking, murmuring noises my husband makes as he brews coffee and tends our wood-burning stove. I’m not alone… glancing at my canine companion I see her stretch… and roll… stretch again in her own fleece lined dog bed. I’d like to remain there… snuggled in sweetness and warmth. Thank you Jesus, for the goodness of the morning!
Not all my days begin with sweetness. The alarm clangs; the dogs whine and bark; the phone shatters the stillness or the door slams shut as my husband exists for work. Instead of the gradual stirring of thankfulness, my thoughts assault me with expectations. The day looms with tasks to be completed, frustrations to be faced, and temptations to be resisted. I must rise and sort out all the “what’s next… what if… why does it have to be this way” questions that din around in my head. I’d like to bury my head beneath the covers and shut out the day… sometimes my heart prefers darkness to light, foolishly thinking I’ll find refuge there. Help me Jesus, to face this morning!
- The goodness of Jesus prevails
No matter how I experience the morning, God promises His child…
Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. (Psalm 23:6)
God’s goodness is simple and awesome; majestic and comforting all at the same time. God’s goodness has poured out of Him from the beginning of time; His goodness is the essence of all creation. Goodness inhabits the starry sky, towering mountains and massive seas… all because He called them good. Overcoming our sin, Jesus is the redemption of that good. Bright sunshine and moonlit nights proclaim… the goodness of the Lord will prevail.
- Goodness is intentional… not accidental or natural
Too often I forget the goodness of Jesus living within me. My view of Him is clouded and distorted by… well, by me! I’m focused on my past failures or my present circumstances. I remember the false excuse I gave, the food I couldn’t resist and the anger I unleashed… it’s easy to see I’ve been anything but good. The moment I forget about His goodness and begin relying on my own I’m in trouble… there is only one who is good, Jesus. His goodness and His love are intentional and he demonstrates them to us every moment of every day. No failure or disappointment will cause Jesus to remove it.
- God’s goodness leads us to repentance.
It’s easy to see the turmoil in every part of the world today… it’s all over the news. I experience fear and uncertainty, anger and frustration, greed and lust splattered everywhere around me. Sometimes I want to tuck my head under whatever is handy and shut out the day… maybe I can find refuge in food, drink or Facebook… only to have my heavy heart get heavier and my dim spirit struggle against the darkness. But Jesus is light. If instead I focus on Jesus goodness He warms my heart and comforts my soul.
Jesus was focused and intentional when He suffered and died for the everyday sins that I commit. The mark of His life within me is His goodness. Goodness deliberately, intentionally prefers right and resists wrong. There is always the opportunity for wrong… goodness is the choice to reject wrong in favor of good. An easy example… it’s my choice to reject the hurtful words I want to say in favor of good, uplifting or forgiving ones. When I focus on all the ways Jesus has been good to me today I have the opportunity to allow the goodness of Christ to reign in my heart.
- The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble…
Without a sense of God’s goodness I struggle to experience His love – that’s why the devil uses my bad to convince me how unlovable I am. It is the realization that even when I’m not good enough… “Jesus in me” is my good enough.
Every evening we have a routine… my little, aging Chihuahua needs to be placed in her spot to sleep. It has to happen or she will wander, whine and create a fuss. For a tiny dog her yowl can be ear piercing. She demands our attention, refuses to settle herself and shows no appreciation for anything we have provided that day. No one is going to rest in the house until she is tucked securely in her spot. First we lay a polar fleece baby blanket at the foot of the bed, place her gently on top of one half and fold the other half over her. Then, a second fleece is laid over her to form a cave… a refuge from the night air… a place she can burrow and tuck her nose for warmth. Quiet and goodness rest there all night.
That is the picture of God’s goodness caring for you. It is goodness and love coming together in you… to create your relationship with Jesus. He is your refuge… your goodness… and every day you can trust in Him. In the midst of your busyness, frustration or pain; God’s goodness and love will follow you all the days of your life, and you will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Scripture: Psalm 23:6; Nahum 1:7; 2 Peter 1:5
Thank you Father, that your goodness and love truly follow me all the days of my life. In Christ I find refuge from the struggles of life; His goodness reigns in my heart. You pour out your love and comfort; you quiet me and give good gifts to me. Help me open my eyes to see you are the source of all good things… every morning. Help me rest in the power of your great love forever.
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