Have you ever felt like it was you verses the universe? Me too. But here’s the thing, this universe isn’t fighting against you! For the universe to be opposed to you, the creator of the universe would have to be against you.I’ve experienced deep, life-altering sorrow in many years. I’ve been accused of horrible things. Some of which were true. I’ve had seasons when I’ve lost everything I owned and seasons when I felt so alone that the walls of my home were closing in sync with death. I’ve placed a gun to my head with the intent to end my life. I’ve been lied to, had obscenities screamed in my face and actually spat upon. I’ve preached the funerals of my spouse, my parents and dear friends. I’ve had people gossip about me and I’ve had my family attacked with mean-spirited accusations.
If the universe is collaborating with Satan himself, then why am I so grateful for my life? How could I possibly be more passionate for life and leadership than at any other time in my life? How do I sleep well, love my job, my church, and my community with such enthusiasm? How do I ignore the negative vibes that so desperately want to rob my life of joy, peace, hope and grace? How do I look forward to tomorrow, next week, and the years to come?
Three reasons in particular order:
- I am Loved, especially when I am not very lovable. Through it all – I have known God’s Voice as He spoke hope into my tired soul. Through it all – I have known the never-ceasing love of the Divine as He carried me through the Valley of the Shadows of Death. Through it all – He has always been a just in time God that provided a way to straighten my path, to strengthen my heart, sharpen my mind and carry me to tomorrow. Tomorrow is a fascinating place. Every single day, His mercies are fresh and new. I love that He still loves me in all of my selfish and sin-filled ways. Aren’t you?
- I believe in the power of DAILY MEDITATION with the Divine. I haven’t always lived with that firm and certain belief system. But in the midst of every heartache, I heard from Him every single time that I came to Him. Some people use terms like centered prayer, or centering prayer. I’m not really in that camp, but I know this for sure. When I meditate, it always starts with gratitude. This attitude of gratitude brings with it, generosity, kindness, humility, and peace. I need those powerful words to ring true, every day of my life. I “see” a warm room with a warm fire, old plank floors, big windows exposing a large lake and in the old, well worn leather chair sits the Divine. This is what meditation is to me. A time to tell the Father that I’m grateful, I need Him, and we talk. His part of the talking is key to me. He has a lot to say, so I’m working on my listening skills.
- I have a wonderful family. We are as dysfunctional as any other family, but they didn’t give up on me. They never looked on my life when I was down and piled on. They never tried to take advantage of me when things seemed great. The forgive me when I’m too grumpy, bossy, aloof, or fretful. They accept the fact that I am a bit complex. And they have somehow survived everything the universe has thrown at us thus far. Having said all of that, I say with great anticipation – Even so, come Lord Jesus.
Friend, I’m not worthy of any of these three parts of my life. I have not and could not do anything to garner more or less of God’s love. He offers that to every human on the planet. I do, however find myself more drawn to knowing Him more than ever before. And that is such an intricately significant part of my life.
My daily time of meditation isn’t one of long walks and long talks with the Master. It is a focused and intense time of meeting in the big chair with my Heavenly Father. And family, well they keep tolerating my impatient, imperfect, intolerable self with another day of love.
The universe is not against you. Because the Creator of the universe is for you!
Nothing Can Separate Us from God’s Love – Romans 8:31
“What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?”