On the way to church on Saturday, I began to feel deflated, like my usually jocund spirits had been pricked with a pin. I knew exactly why. I had to preach and it was the work of the enemy trying to discourage me. The irony is that the sermon I delivered was on the topic of encouragement. Fortunately, the churchies gave me many smiles and great feedback afterwards, which encouraged me even further. Here's a quick note from the sermon:
In Exodus 17, Israel is still wandering in the wilderness. They run out of water. They blame Moses. God tells Moses to tap his stick against a rock and wouldn't you know, water starts to flow. In verse 7, the people name that place Massah and Meribah to note that this was a place that Israel tested God.
But down in verse 15, God helps Israel triumphs once again (this time over an enemy territory called Amalek). This time, Moses built an altar and called it "The Lord is my Banner."
I was convicted by this contrast. In the map of my life, do I consider the places I have been as places where I did something (such as being a complaining, sullen malcontent?) or do I recall the places where God did something to show His care for me?
Did I ever show y'all a picture of me with my churchies? Here's one from just before we got married a few years ago. I call this picture "Where's Kendra?"