Do you ever feel overwhelmed and tired? That's what emotional stress can do to a person ...including me. This picture is how I've been feeling lately.
My friend Kathleen of Sassy Granny had invited me to join her for church yesterday. Palm Valley Church was celebrating their first services in their new facility; a very large auditorium like building in Goodyear, Arizona.
I almost backed out because of how I was feeling. But at the last minute, I elected to go.
I'm so glad I attended this service. There was a sense of excitement in the air at Palm Valley Church. Everyone was smiling and very welcoming to me. I spotted Kathleen in the crowd.
We sat with Kathleen's home group and I was warned that it might be loud. The music started playing and a young man was rapping. (You can see this first song for yourself, if you click here.) As I looked up at the screens, the words he was saying were giving glory to God. The style may not have been what I'm used to in church, but I have to say there was standing room only and this was only one service out of three. I loved seeing all of the young people singing to the Lord, no matter how loud this Southern Baptist gal might think. :)
Have you ever gone to a church service and felt like the pastor was speaking directly to you?
Pastor Greg was talking at me or at least that's how I felt. Can you guess what the title of his sermon was?
When You're Feeling Overwhelmed
I think God has a sense of humor.
He was preaching out of Daniel 6. Daniel had been taken into captivity from Israel as a young boy when the Babylonians invaded. Fast forward to years later and now there was a Mede king named Darius in charge. He promoted Daniel as one of three administrators to rule throughout the Kingdom. Daniel distinguished himself among these administrators and you know what always seems to happen. They were jealous and tried to find fault with him.
They tricked King Darius into signing a law. Anyone who prayed to any god or man other than the king in the next 30 days would be thrown into the lion's den. Daniel was in the habit of spending time with God. He prayed three times a day in his upstairs room. This was something he did on a daily basis. Despite the new law, Daniel continued in his usual habit.
Daniel was arrested and thrown into the lion's den.
I can only imagine how I'd be feeling in the midst of ferocious lions licking their lips staring at me. Oh my; talk about feeling overwhelmed. (Somehow my situation doesn't seem so earth shattering by comparison.)
I'm sure you know the end of this Bible story. God shut the lions' mouths so they couldn't hurt Daniel. The king was so glad when he saw that Daniel hadn't been harmed. And the best part was that King Darius now issued a decree that in his kingdom the people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel. He acknowledged and saw for himself how the One Almighty Living God rescued Daniel and had power over the lions.
In the midst of feeling overwhelmed and challenged from so many fronts, I just pray that I would be a Daniel.
Pastor Greg gave two application points in this message:
- Develop the habit of spending time with God.
- Determine to trust God.
On the second point, trusting God is a major theme in my life this year.
Trust and obey!
Do you think God is trying to drive this home for me?
After the service, Kathleen took me with her as she had to speak with Lori, the pastor's wife. The whole family was there as the crowd was dispersing. After introducing me, Pastor Greg, his wife Lori and Kathleen joined together and prayed for me. Oh what a blessing that was for me!
I have to say that God is so faithful. He is my Rock and my refuge. No matter what may happen, He provides me with His presence and His strength for each new day.
Blessings and love,