“Grandma, let’s go to Palm Springs!” So chants one of my four-year-old grandchildren every time I see her. Four of our families went to a beautiful resort last May, and none of us could forget the fun at the pool all day. I’m a beach girl, yet the desert grew on me. With all the family fun, the sandy, cactus-filled landscape, and the myriad of palm trees, I started sketching. Inspiration flowed as long as I sat in my air-conditioned hotel room with a gorgeous view or drove along the sandy roads with the cold air blasting.
This morning, I envisioned the quiet serenity of those lazy days as I read the end of Exodus 15. Moses had just led the Israelites out of Egypt. God delivered them from four hundred years of slavery. Right away, they encountered an obstacle. The Red Sea. God parted it. Not more than three days later, they complained of thirst and hardship. God gave them water. Now here’s what caught my attention.
God is Faithful
“Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve springs and seventy palm trees, and they camped there near the water.” Vs. 17
Did you catch that? Twelve springs. Seventy palm trees. What a feast for the eyes and tired, dusty bodies. I would have jumped right in! He delivered yet again.
I love the picture of the oasis. When our family needed a break, God provided one. Although man created that lush resort hotel, it most definitely served as an oasis for us. As a side note, my son is a deputy sheriff, and my son-in-law is a firefighter. They got us First Responder rates at one-third of the standard room rate. Off-season helped too!
I often recall his faithfulness, and He knows when I need deliverance—His timing, not mine. God is faithful.
God is Powerful
As I continued my quiet time this morning in various books of the bible, the theme continued. God is faithful. In Psalms 62, David begins praising the Lord. Recognizing who He is. He goes on to complain not about but to his enemies. In verses 11 and 12, he ends with this…” One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: “Power belongs to you, God, and with you, Lord, is unfailing love”; and “You reward everyone according to what they have done.”
I found such comfort in the first and last words. Power belongs to you, God. Hallelujah. Not me, not anyone else. And the ending verse about rewards. Yet, not because of what I’ve done, but because of what He has done. As a believer, Christ alone is my righteousness, and He alone has done great things. If I focused on what I have done in my own strength, I’d be down and depressed one hundred percent of the time. But I try to remember what Jesus has done and seek my reward in Him.
I prayed these words this morning for friends and a relative suffering too many trials right now. They are godly women, not perfect, but righteous in Christ. I asked the Lord to reward them for their actions, for God is powerful.
God is All-Knowing
However, His power and faithfulness don’t end there. I continued my reading and flipped over to 2 Peter 2. The chapter exposes false teachers and their destruction while the godly suffer. And although the suffering is at the hands of the ungodly, I clung to vs. 9. “…if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials.” God knows.
My friends and sweet cousin are suffering trials, and I beg God to rescue them. But I always pray, thy will be done for His glory. Still, whatever He deems, I believe in His ways. He is the omnipotent God we can trust. The one we can hold on to. His sovereign merciful grace is a promise. Trusting and believing is not easy. Sometimes it feels impossible, but it helps me to remember other godly saints pray for me unceasingly. We are not alone. Not only is God there, but so are friends and family. They are lifting you and helping to carry your burden. How can we not remember that God is faithful? Through Jesus’ tortuous death and resurrection, with the Holy Spirit’s comfort and guidance, we can cling to God’s faithfulness. Believe in His power. Trust in the knowledge of His ways. Rest in Him.
Please let me know how I can pray for you. I’m signing off now. My granddaughter and her sisters will be here soon. “Yes, Avalynn. Let’s go to Palm Springs. I’m ready when God is.”