Monday, March 2, 2015

Not So Big

My 7th grade daughter recently came home with a massive school assignment:  memorize all of Asia in three nights.  And I thought to myself, "Really?  These were the kinds of assignments given to my older kids in their high school advanced placement classes."  However, keeping with the mantra that we must do what the teacher requires, we grabbed the Atlas, put on our positive surrendered attitude, and sat down to tackle this task.

Yet, despite feeling bristled, I found myself thoroughly enjoying the process.  From Turkey down to Sri Lanka, across all the 'stans, through Mongolia and to Japan, and then all the way south to the islands I learned of places I didn't know existed.  I found myself wondering, who lives in Dili, East Timor or Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar?  Or, here's a mouthful.  How would you like to be from Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei! 

But one thing was certain.  When we arrived at Jerusalem, Israel, it was soothing to our brains.  Finally, something familiar! 

In my personal study of Hebrews, I've been fascinated with this country and specifically, the roots of this city.  From what I can tell, its first mention is when Melchizekek met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings.  (Gen. 14:18) This mystery man, Melchizedek was "king of Salem...", which became known as Jerusalem.  Later the passage goes on to tell us that  "king of Salem means king of peace." (Heb. 7:1-2)

Peace?  I know we are instructed to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, but surely, it is anything but peaceful right now.  Yet, my thoughts were drawn to the end of the age when all nations will covet the land of Israel.  These massive countries of Russia, China, India, Japan, and all the 'stans, let alone those not so prominent, will one day gather together to fight against this tiny piece of land pushed up against the Mediterranean Sea. 

However, with one swift swipe, God Himself will step down and defend Israel.  Against all the nations of the world, against all odds, they will be the victors because God remains true to His Word.  He loves His people and will not let them go!   Wow!  I'm overwhelmed with the thought!

Studying the map of Asia has made me realize that my problems today are not so big.  Surely, God knows what He is doing, not only with the nations, but also with that which concerns me. 

Over a month ago, my sister sent me a card with a picture of a bird on the front.  But I've kept this card sitting on my desk because it reminds me that God is aware of even the sparrow that falls to the ground. 

This same God who numbers the stars and calls them each by name, knows my name.  And when life falls apart, He's got this!  He can handle it.  Why do I sometimes find it so hard to trust?  More often than not, its because I am leaning on my own understanding. 

Not surprisingly, my daughter aced her test.  I just hope I can ace mine. 

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight."  Prov. 3:5-6

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