Tuesday, June 29, 2010

God Doesn't Sleep by Jaye Lewis

Hello friends,

It seems like forever since I’ve written. First, I had an asthma attack, and at sixty-four I don’t have the ability to shake things off so easily, it was really bad. It was my fifth attack since the arrival of the H1N1 virus, last year, which hit us with a vengeance. Was it really just a year ago? I can’t believe it. It seemed like it would never end. Well, we survived, praise God. Only by His grace. I’m better now, able to eat healthfully and bike at least two miles a day, sometimes three to five.

This spring, however, we’ve had other difficulties. Many of us, across the U.S., have had rain, rain, rain. We have fared better, than people in flash flood areas, although we’ve had our share of anxiety, as the river and streams rose to flood stage. Most of us in the higher elevations of Virginia have been blessed with no flooding or rock slides. However, up the road, at the top of our ridge, there’s been some clear cutting. So, we’re beginning to rethink that whole “flood insurance” and rock slide insurance. We don’t want to be insurance poor, but we want to protect our family and our home.

The Blue Ridge Mountains are a beautiful green, atop a granite and sandstone base. It must have been a popular place for Paleo-Indian to hang out, because most people I know can turn over artifacts, simply by putting a shovel in the ground. It can be very exciting, just to peer through the grass and hope. I’m a rock hound. I cannot throw away a rock that looks remotely interesting. Usually I find that I’ve “ooohed and ahhhhhhhhed” over a “road rock,” basically granite. We have occasional rock slides, where the ground has been cut away for a road, but we have been blessed with few casualties. God bless the rescue teams all across this land. They are the unsung heroes. And common citizens have also risked their lives to save others.

I, presently, am laid up with plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation in the tendon on the arch of my foot, which has made it unbearable to walk, or do my favorite chores. Both my daughters have been afflicted with injuries, too. My youngest daughter twisted her ankle, then fell down the stairs, so she’s on crutches. while my oldest suddenly flared up with two herniated discs. We have all been experiencing excruciating pain. So, in my beautiful garden, tall weeds have taken over, and my house…well, let’s not mention the floors, the laundry, and the dishes.

So what do we do? We are a close family, and we work together. We do what we can, and when we can’t, then we wait until we can again. We love God, and we each have a personal relationship with Him, as well as family worship. God knows us, and He loves us. He’s shown us this in the protected region where we live. He’s shown us in the relationships we have with Him and one another. He’s shown us in great ways and in small. Yet, still he allows us to suffer and fail. Why?

Is it because He is an unjust God? Does He no longer love us? Does He like watching us suffer? Or does He not exist at all? All of these accusations have been thrown in my face from time to time. However they are all lies. Not only do I know that God is just, but I have seen His mercy in my own life, and in my family’s. I know that it pains Him when I suffer; that He comforts me in my sorrow, and He has proven to me time after time, just how much He loves me. But most of all, I confess, GOD IS REAL!! So, we can’t see Him. He lives! The evidence is all around us. No accident gave us the beauty of this land. He loves us, all of us, and He is as close to each of us as is our next heartbeat.

I’m always amazed when a self-professed atheist goes on the attack. There is no God. There is no proof. Prove it. All this and more he accuses. Okay, here is my argument.

Tell me, what is gravity? Can you see it? Can you touch it? Are you willing to accept that gravity cannot be seen? That one can only know it is there, by observing it’s effects? So it is with God.

He is alive and with us, even though we can’t prove it by sight or touch, but we can see his effects. Can you have a relationship with gravity? I doubt it, nor would you want to; however, a relationship with God is constant, growing from grace to grace. He is with you in ways that gravity fails. I don’t know why He is not irresistible to everyone. He is warm and wonderful, and He fills my heart with His love, which I accept with all my heart. God fills me with love for others, even when, and perhaps, because they are different than I.

So, argue away, atheist. Believe in nothing, and when you die, quite frankly, you will receive a reward equal to your beliefs here on earth. I am quite certain that the only thing that you can take with you when you die, are the things you have given to others while you were here on earth: your service, your love, your forgiveness, your time, your energy, your encouragement – all the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said that even a cup of water to a thirsty soul, is more important than all the gold in the temple. A cup of water. Blessing one another. Respecting His earth, without being ridiculous. There are so many things that I could mention, but each of us must investigate with our own hearts. I Corinthians 13 Chapter is a good place to start.

I’ve thought a lot about the oil spill in the Gulf, I have shed many tears. It is a horror beyond imagining. My heart and my prayers go out to the people in the Gulf, many who have lived there all their lives. Many families go back hundreds of years. Why has this happened, aside from human error? I don’t know. It’s certainly not an Act of God, nor do I lay the blame on those who make their living in the Gulf. Perhaps there was greed. Was the company in a hurry? Were they neglectful regarding safety? Did they disregard the harm they could do? Yes, I believe they were callous, but I also have seen that they are trying to make amends, and, sadly, their efforts may have proven too little, too late.

So it is with all of us thoughtless human beings. We sin. It’s as simple as that. We make excuses, perhaps we repent, but then we sin again. Each person faces his own conscience. Each person to His own God, whether it is a false God or true. I only know that I worship the One, True, Living God, and at His feet I ask forgiveness.

God Doesn’t Sleep

God doesn’t sleep,
I’ve heard it said.
He hears our every cry.
He’s with us through every sorrow
And every last good-bye.

God doesn’t sleep.
His eyes can see
The trace of every tear.
He hears every child’s whisper
That is lisped into His ear.

Once I didn’t know Him,
And, yet, He carried me through
My deepest, darkest valley,
Saying, “Child I’m still with you.”

I’ve heard His voice within my heart,
A caress sent from above,
Saying, “Child, no matter your suffering,
“I command you now to love.”

To love? Where could it come from,
In a life filled with hopeless dreams,
Where hate was my only weapon
To take away the screams?

God made Himself so lovely
That I longed to feel His touch.
How pleasant was my sorrow
With a God who loves so much!

A paradox, I know it is.
How could God fill the dark
And reach inside my terror
To touch my trembling heart?

I don’t know how He did it.
I only know He did.
He opened all my secrets
Where I thought they were safely hid.

He banished all my sadness.
He gave me a life of hope.
He shows me how love triumphs,
When I’m at the end of my rope.

God doesn’t sleep when my eyelids close
In the bleak, uncertain night.
He rocks me in His gentle arms
And turns the dark to light.

I promise you, that God is here
No matter your sorrow or woe.
He’ll open His safe and gentle arms
And give you a place to go.

Run to His arms, He’s waiting.
His arms are big and wide.
He’ll rock you in His certain love
And give you a place to hide.

I should not be here, not at all,
And yet I’m here to say,
That God can take a weary life
And brush the tears away.

Trust His love, no matter what
Life has dealt to you.
He’ll turn your sorrow into joy
Before your journey’s through.

© Jaye Lewis, 2002

With love,
Jaye Lewis

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