Tag Archives: Soul Talk

America the Beautiful – God Shed His Grace On Thee

America the Beautiful – By Katharine Lee Bates

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet,
Whose stern, impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine,
Till all success be nobleness,
And every gain divine!

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

How long is “too long” to wait on God?

Have you been waiting for provision in some area of your life?  A job? A place to live?  A meal?  Or just someone to smile at you so you don’t feel so lonely?

God is faithful.  How many times have you heard that and yet you are still in the same situation you were in six months ago?  You scream, “If God is faithful, why am I still praying for changes to take place?  When will life take a different turn so I can get back on track?”  Frustrations have mounted and questions swirl around in your head.  Waiting for God feels like a lost cause and you are totally drained to the point that there is nothing left inside of you that even wants to cry out to God.

 Now you are right where you need to be.  Totally drained of yourself so God can start pouring Himself into you.

What would it look like if you found yourself wanting God more than wanting anything else in life?  Wanting him more than you want that job.  Wanting him more than you want your marriage to work.  Wanting him more than you want your daughter to stop seeing the boy she is dating.  Wanting God more than you want your next meal.  Its a new way of thinking.  In Larry Crabb’s book SoulTalk, I like the line that says:  I want to experience God through whatever means he provides and keep trusting him whether life gets better or not. 

Recent circumstances could have caused me to question God’s goodness.   My husband and I have been challenged in the area of jobs, finances, and health.  All major issues looming over our heads while we have waited on God to show himself.   However, we have committed to standing on the promise that God’s peace is enough to get us through until the thing that needs to happen to make our circumstances better actually starts happening.  We have waited and trusted, waited and trusted.  Slivers of doubt have tried to creep in.  Discouragement has tried to get us to distrust God’s word.  But we keep turning our eyes back to Him.  We are determined that whether or not our circumstances change, we still have a beautiful relationship with God and that will never change.  As we wait our faith is growing, our dependence on Him is deepening.  Good things are starting to happen.  Is it all perfect?  No.  But circumstances are improving.  More importantly, our dependence on Him has grown.

You get what you get!  I’ve always said that about the way God created our individual bodies.  However, that also goes for life in general.  Whether life has recklessly tossed a bag of bad apples your way or gently placed a golden nugget in your lap, either way you have to do something with what was given to you.  We prefer the gentle placement of things in our life, but that doesn’t mean that the things that are thrown at us are any less precious.   Ask God what He would have you learn from your present circumstances.  “God, what do you want me to do with this bag of rotten apples?  Can I make a difference in anybody’s life with this?”   You could cut out the seeds and plant them.  Eventually something beautiful and fruitful will come out of it.  Some day it might bless a family and feed them when times are tough.  It is difficult in the midst of trouble, but try to envision what it will look like beyond the present circumstance.

How long do we wait on God to act?     We wait as long as it takes to see his hand in our circumstance.  In the meantime, we get to know Him better.  We cultivate our faith.  Determine to allow life to be well with your soul, no matter what you face.   Nothing can improve upon our life more than the way He fills our soul when we lean completely on him.

I leave you with the words to one of the most beautiful songs ever written:  It Is Well With My Soul – – –

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

God bless you on your journey.

Do not grow weary in well-doing for in due season you will reap, if you do not lose heart.  Galations 6:9