Seeds of the Kingdom | Ellel Ministries UK
Jesus welcomed the people, taught them about the Kingdom of God and healed those in need. Luke 9:11

Seeds of the Kingdom

Although

by Julie Smith

Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Saviour.
Habakkuk 3:17-18, NIV

What do you do when life is hard? If I’m honest, over the years I’ve tried to cope in all sorts of different ways. I’ve kept busy, overriding things and pretending the trouble wasn’t there. Or, seeing the painful issues and feeling the distress, I’ve striven for all my worth to somehow try and fix them, with an attitude of: ‘If I do this and this and this … it’ll all be OK.’ Then when that hasn’t worked, I’ve gone through times of trying to get someone else to fix things for me. Other times I’ve angrily complained to God, with unbelief in my heart that He would hear and respond to my prayer.

Of course none of these responses brought any true peace and resolution to the struggles. Ultimately they just led to another spiral down into hopelessness and misery. But at times, when I’ve come to the end of myself, in His love and mercy the Lord has spoken. He’s lovingly challenged me. He’s called me to a much better way in the midst of pain and struggle: to look upwards, with expectation and hope in Him, instead of downwards, in despair at myself or others. It’s not easy when the Lord calls us to account, but what a blessing that He gives us the opportunity to learn, and to begin to change and grow.

Most of us in our walk with the Lord, I imagine, are still learning these lessons. I certainly am! And this week the Lord used someone to really inspire me. She’s a very good friend and fellow ‘Seeds of the Kingdom’ writer, who’s facing a number of difficult issues at the moment. But in the midst of it all she wrote this poem and sent it to me:

Although

Though my eyes are failing
And my hands can’t write the words.
Though my back is creaking,
And I can’t quite make the kerbs –
I will praise You Lord.
While the sun shines,
While the wind blows
Through the rain the flowers grow on -
I will praise You,
I will worship.
This will be my grateful song.

Though my house has changed its face,
You’re my home and resting place.
Though my loved ones fret and fail,
I will praise You for them all.
I will praise You Lord.
While the sun shines,
While the wind blows
Through the rain the flowers grow on -
I will praise You,
I will worship.
This will be my grateful song.

Though the thoughts that flood my soul
Keep going down ‘the big black hole’,(pc)
Kept inside a grateful heart,
Treasured as a piece of art,
Still I praise the Lord who gives
Songs to sing and breath to live.

Pam

I was so touched that I asked my friend’s permission to share her poem in a Seed. Like Habakkuk (in today’s verses) she’s honest and real about her struggles, yet in the midst of hardship she chooses to rise up in her spirit to praise and worship the Lord God for who He is, and to thank Him for the blessings that come from Him. What an inspiration she is! Don’t we all desire to have that genuine response to the Lord, no matter what we’re facing in life?

Prayer: Father God, I can be so tempted to focus on the hard and painful things in my life and to forget the blessings and the good things. Thank You that You chose me and adopted me as Your child. Thank You for pouring Your blessings out to me every single day. Please help me to look up to You in the reality of all that I’m walking through at the moment. Help me to remember the joy and strength I have in You, to praise Your name, and to know that You will bring me safely to the other side of this mountain. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Julie Smith is married to Roger, and they have two grown up children. Having received deep healing in her own life, primarily through ministry at Ellel Grange and then attending the Modular School at Glyndley Manor, she went on to join the Glyndley associate ministry team. She now works part-time for the International Director’s Office and is an associate teacher for the ministry. She is passionate to see others restored and released into the abundant life Jesus won for us all.

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