"My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness..." 2 Corinthians 12:9b

Monday, March 26, 2012

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain…I praise you
because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”
Psalm 139:4, 14a

          There was never much doubt about what career path I would follow. I can’t sit at the bedside of a loved one and do nothing. Even though my own health issues ended my nursing career many years ago, if someone I love is ill, I have to be washing, feeding, keeping track of vital signs and finding out test results.
  What has grown out of a lifelong fascination with the human body is an overwhelming awe of God. How someone could think the human body gradually evolved from some primordial slime is beyond comprehension.
         Whether assisting with the birth of a child, caring for someone as they heal from a terrible accident or illness, or standing at a death bed, I feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. Read Genesis 2 and imagine the Creator God kneeling, kneading and molding as He “…formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.” Psalm 139 says, “…you knit me together in my mother’s womb…my frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place…your eyes saw my unformed body.”
            I recently heard of a young man with terrible birth defects who came to know the Lord as his Savior when he heard those words and realized God made him just as he was meant to be for God’s purposes.
            As I stand in an Intensive Care Unit and watch the different indicators on the monitor, I measure how much man knows about the human body, yet truly how much more is incomprehensible. Conception, birth, healing, and death are cause for great wonder. God created something so marvelous, with such wonderful physical and mental capabilities.
            When you feel as if God is far from you, or question His existence, think on the loving care He took when He made you. You are a unique creation, different from anyone who ever lived or ever will live. God is never finished with us here on this earth. If you choose to follow Him, He will continue working to make you like Him throughout your life.
            What God is doing may be too lofty for you to comprehend, but you can trust Him to make all things right when you know that He, Himself, formed you for a special purpose. Seek Him and trust Him with all your heart.


Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2011. All rights reserved.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Gift of Friendship

“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” Proverbs 17:17

Sometimes life can get us down. However, this morning I heard from friends of over thirty years, relationships which have endured many trials and triumphs. They both brought great consolation and rejoicing to my heart as I thought of these dear ones who have been faithful friends for all our adult lives.
            In recent weeks I have been to a funeral at the church where I grew up and was married. God called my family elsewhere many years ago. The change left broken relationships, but over the years the differences faded, and those old friends now welcome us when we meet.
            I have sat with an old family friend and tried to bring a bit of encouragement as she goes through a difficult trial. I have been blessed to hear that a poem, written in my own time of difficulty, brought comfort to my sister and a friend in their own current trials. I will have lunch with two friends who now worship at another church, but rejoice in the common ground which continues to hold us close. Jesus is the great common denominator for His followers.
            Life is full of changes, but our hearts always need friends. God’s word is a guidebook to successful relationships. In the body of Christ, there are relationships which last for a season and some that last for a lifetime, but we will all be together in eternity where earthly differences no longer matter.
            An old adage says, “Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver, and the other gold.” Never neglect to pray for and be thankful for your friendships. Do your best to keep them intact, even when differences of opinion occur.
            Thank God for your best friends, the ones you run to knowing they will always be there, the ones who know you so well that you don’t have to explain details, just fill in recent events. Maintain relationships where you are the encourager and helper to a lonely soul with few to lean on in times of need. Keep a few friendships with non-believers, that you might be a witness in love.
            Thank God for the friends He has given you. Do your best to show love at all times, especially when adversity comes. Seek to settle differences without severing relationships.

Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2011. All rights reserved.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Palm of the Master's Hand

One after another like snowflakes
The trials keep tumbling down.
Sometimes hope disappears into silence
As the snowflakes cover the ground.

I forget as I stand there thinking
As it seems to cover my dreams,
There is a God Who is watching o’er me,
And the fear is the Enemy’s scheme.

Sometimes when I wake in the morning,
I feel still surrounded by night,
I forget the One I belong to,
It is not my battle to fight.

I hold onto things so tightly
I forget they are not really mine.
I fail to remember my Father
Makes things beautiful in His own time.

I get blinded by the blizzard around me.
I lose sight of the brightly lit home,
Forgetting there is a strong life-line,
If I hold tightly I cannot roam.

When I take time to look at the snowflakes,
When their difference and intricacy I see,
There is evidence of my dear Maker,
Who has a beautiful purpose for me.

It is never His purpose to blind me,
To wander helpless is Satan’s plan.
The loving God Who guides my life
Always stands, holding open His hands.

All the wealth of His great treasures,
The abundance of his magnificent stores,
Lie open before me for the taking
If I cling to my Master and Lord.

Every doubt and fear of the blinding storm
Comes from forgetting Who made the Plan.
He will never let go or leave me
When I rest in the palm of His hand.

Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2012. All rights reserved.
Do not use without permission of author.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Change

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”
Hebrews 13:8

            The decision was made. There was no going back. My husband and I, two city born and bred adults, moved to three acres in the mountains. Our grown children, our mothers, our church, and my husband’s job were in town, a minimum of thirty minutes away.
            In our first winter we had eighty inches of snow, an amazing amount in the desert southwest. No more quick runs to the grocery store, no more walking a short distance in my bathrobe for the newspaper, no more running to the next door for a cup of sugar. I don’t adapt to change easily, but my whole way of living changed.
            Changes take us out of our comfort-zone. They challenge us to add new dimensions to our personalities and our routines. They cause us to meet new people, learn new skills, and accept different ways of doing things. They can also make us uncomfortable, nervous, and in some cases, threaten our sense of well-being.
            When Jesus began His earthly ministry, He left a quiet life as a small town carpenter, to do things which were not well accepted by the religious authorities, his family, or hometown friends. He had no permanent home. His followers weren’t certain who they were following. He was misunderstood, threatened, and tempted by Satan. Through faithfulness to and trust in God, He made such an impact that human history, religion, and our calendar were forever changed.  
When changes come, Jesus would have me remember that He is sovereign over all. Nothing happens unless He allows it for His purposes. Understanding that, and trusting in Him, I can become more flexible. Trusting in His promises, even in times of turmoil will enable me to grow and mature, becoming more like Him.
            Lord, help me choose to face changes with a sense of anticipation, knowing that you alone are in control and will never let go of me. Guide me and help me grow when life brings changes and challenges. Help me trust you that, while things and people often change, you never will. Your person, purposes, and promises remain the same.


Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2011. All rights reserved. Do not use without permission of author.