...God is the strength of my heart ♥ ...

... i get a daily Bible verse on my phone, this morning, it was from Psalm 73, verses 25 & 26 and it read: "Whom have I in heaven but you?  And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.  My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."  GOD is the STRENGTH of my heart and my PORTION forever.  Exactly - I'm NOT strong, GOD is my strength, and He is my portion, and He is just enough for each day - JUST what I need, each day - as long as my eyes stay fixed on Him!

My devotional then read, "I am the PRINCE OF PEACE.  As I said to My disciples, I say also to you:  Peace be with you.  Since I am your constant Companion, My Peace is steadfastly with you.  When you keep your focus on Me, you experience both My Presence and My Peace."  Do you sense an underlying theme here?  PEACE seems to keep "sneaking" up on me!  But, in this devo, there is a command too, KEEP YOUR FOCUS ON ME . . . don't let it stray, don't let satan have a foothold, keep your focus on ME, and then you will experience both My PRESENCE and my PEACE!

I know I have said it before, but these words are as true today as they have been for the last 27 days, God is giving PEACE, truly a "PEACE THAT PASSES UNDERSTANDING".  It is not something that I can describe to anyone, because if they (you) do not KNOW that Peace that can only come from the Lord, they (you) will NEVER fathom how there can be PEACE in the midst of this storm. But, please, even if you don't understand, stay with me, you too CAN know this Peace, He is reaching out to you, even tonight, all you have to do is BELIEVE!  (go back to the post titled "how did he know, how do we know" if you didn't read it yet and you want to know how to find this peace!) ♥ I was talking to a lady at work today and I told her, I just want to shout it from a mountain top - how GREAT my GOD is and how He has worked in my (our) life these past weeks!

As I have "pondered" things over these last 4 weeks, obviously MANY things have gone through my mind.  One of those things that I have shared with some people is a discussion that Rick and I had over and over and over during our marriage (seriously, EVERY time he worked on a roof - which was many times a year!).  It, at times seemed almost a strange conversation, but now, I find it comforting as I believe the Lord orchestrated this repeat conversation, over and over and over!  The conversation usually went something like this:  Me, "Please don't even TELL me when you are working on a roof (I'm TOTALLY afraid of heights), just tell me when the job is done safely." To which Rick would reply, EVERY SINGLE TIME, "Bud, it's o.k. when it's my time, it's my time, it won't matter if I'm on a roof or sitting on the couch."  The conversation was based on the fact that the Lord numbers our days, we don't, and whenever it was that He called, Rick knew he was ready - and he couldn't change the number of breaths he would breathe here on this earth.  HE BELIEVED THAT WITH HIS WHOLE BEING!  You will notice that in my re-telling of this conversation, I and Rick both directly referred to being on a roof.  Rick's response to me always involved being on a roof.  He never referenced his "time" coming from a fall out of his hunting stand, or a hunting accident, or a car accident, or a plane crash (he traveled to the Bahamas a couple of times for "work"!), or disease, or any other means, it was always "on a roof".  I honestly believe that the Lord placed these conversations in our life purposely.  I believe these conversations are fixed in my mind so that I can now know that even though he fell off of a roof and was called HOME to HEAVEN during that fall, it was o.k.  It was in God's plan.  He (Rick) was at peace with it and I should be too - it is all in God's timing, not ours.  There are so many other things that God continually places in my life, reminders of his watch-care over all of us but this one has been bouncing around in my mind for days, and maybe it will help some of you who along with me are grieving the loss of Rickey in our lives on a day-to-day basis.  I also hope and pray as you are reading that you don't think I take the loss of my best friend lightly or "flippantly".  I don't at all, I just daily CHOOSE to TRUST that the Lord's ways are higher than mine, I CHOOSE to believe that I cannot understand all that He has planned for me.  I CHOOSE to believe that He is in TOTAL control and even though it does NOT make sense to me, I will be blessed by trusting and believing in His love for me - a love that no one else can match!

Today at work, I stepped out of the office for a few minutes and when I came back, one of the local florists was there, with a bouquet of flowers, "These are for you", she said!  For me?  My birthday was 2 weeks ago??  I chatted with her a bit and we shared a hug and then I opened the card.  The bright cheery bouquet was from a sweet friend - someone who I am really not "close" to, but who just wanted to let me know she was thinking of me today!  WOW, God used her today, just to remind me that I'm not alone!  Tomorrow morning, two dear friends who I used to go to church with are stopping over to visit, another reminder of God's constant loving hand on our days.  The love and support of Christian friends who are there, praying, loving, caring, taking time out of their busy lives to love on us! ♥  This little community that I am a part of is absolutely AMAZING! 

As this, another day draws to a close, I miss Rick with all my heart, I praise God for the beautiful family He blessed us with, I CHOOSE to rest in HIM tonight, I look to Him to be my PRINCE OF PEACE, to hold me tight tonight, to give me restorative sleep.  I trust Him to protect our family, to give us HOPE for tomorrow and to believe in this wonderful season of Advent the beautiful words from scripture, "For unto us is born this day, in the city of David, a SAVIOR who is CHRIST THE LORD"!  

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