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Thanksgiving and Trust
One of my favorite verses in Scripture is Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to proper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future."
This scripture reminds me that God has something more for my life than I can comprehend. He loves me and has the best of plans for my life. Plans He set in motion before I was even born.
I really try to hang on to that promise.
But if I am honest, I might say I believe it, but my actions don't always prove my words. When I get caught in a whirlwind of trouble, a lot of times from my own making, when I'm worried or feeling inadequate, I find myself asking where God went and what happened to the wonderful plan He had for my life. Certainly the mess I find myself, the mess that is now my life, isn't what God would call the best plan. Is it?
As I continue through the mess, I spend more time complaining than I should. Why can't God get me out of it? Why can't He snap His finger and make everything right again. Right the way I want it? He's God isn't He? Sometimes I treat God like a genie in the bottle, I call Him up when I need Him to take care of something and put Him back in safe keeping when things are fixed to my satisfaction. Sadly even when He does work a miracle, I still find reason to complain, especially if it wasn't the miracle I wanted. And it's so silly because usually after God has gotten me through and I look back, I realize it was the best plan all along.
I realize many of you will never have to deal with this. But for the sake of sharing my heart, and maybe touching another soul out there or even looking like an idiot, I figured I'd tell the truth.
I don't thank God for my past, my present, let alone for my future. How does one thank someone for something that hasn't happened yet? Maybe by the willingness to lay your life in God's hands without knowing the outcome is a good start. Maybe by trusting that He is who he says He is.
But of course I don't do that like I should. And thanking Him for my present. Ha. Maybe when everything is calm and running smoothly in my life. But when the storm clouds move in…
When I do what it says it 2 Peter 5:7 Cast all my cares on the Lord… I have stipulations. Do it this way. Do it in this time. And please don't make me go through it again. Usually I snatch my life and problems back up and try to fix everything.
Forgetting that He has a plan and cares.
Why is that? Why do I pretend to trust that God holds my future and trust that He knows my cares enough to take them on, yet I can't believe it enough to really lay my problems at His feet and leave them alone?
Knowing that when I do, I'll find rest. Just like God promises in another of my favorite verse is Isaiah 40:31 -- They that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles they shall run and not grow weary. They shall walk and not faint.
I suppose if I'm agitated and weary, and scared that would be a significant signal that I'm not trusting in the Lord. Because if I were… I could trust the words in the promises He's given and I could thank him even though I don't always understand.
Trust and Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving and Trust. They go hand in hand.
What can you thank the Lord for this holiday season? What can you put in His hands in trust, thanking Him for what will happen in your life without waiting for the outcome, knowing that He has the best plan for your life?
About Shadowed Dreams
Matthew has braved the war and near death with one thought in mind… Rebekah. He won her hand in marriage, and now he has a few short months to make her see how much he loves her. How much he needs her. Given the wall she's put up between them, he prays he'll have enough time.
After fleeing the war, Rebekah is determined to go west to Oregon, only to be turned down when she tries to join the train. Matthew's proposal of marriage, in name only to help her west, becomes the miracle she needs. Loving him as she does, she dreads the idea of letting him go once they reach Oregon, but how can she ask him to stay with her, to love her? How could he love her once he's found out her secret? She must guard her heart and his.
Caroline finally made it out of the store after wrestling herself free, and all but slammed the door behind her. She tugged her dress into place with a 'humph'. "Doesn't anyone know how to fix anything here?"
Her diatribe of complaints continued outside as she nearly tripped on a loose slat, and maneuvered around a couple of men who forced her to the outer edge of the walk. She continued toward the hotel, hugging the outer posts when she could. "I see manners are lacking here as well."
She was so busy mumbling complaints to herself she didn't notice anyone else on the walk. It was too late by the time she did. She ran into a man. It felt like she hit a brick wall.
Unbalanced, she teetered, grasping for air, and fell off the walk. She found herself deposited face down in the muddy street. She righted herself quickly, and sat there stunned and fuming. Her hat was down on her forehead. She pushed it back, and with clawed fingers dragged the mud from her eyes, then wiped the mud from her face, which only added more mud.
An open hand slipped into her limited field of vision. "Let me help you." There were
some gentlemen here, evidently. She started to accept until he added, "Sorry about this. Didn’t mean to knock you off the walk."
She snatched her hand back. This man, the one with whom she collided, was trying to offer her assistance. "How dare you? You weren't watching where you were going!" Caroline renewed the attack at the mud on her face with the backs of her hands.
"Ma'am, honest, I'm really sorry but..."
It was a good thing he stopped talking, because it sounded like he was going to blame the entire situation on her.
"There are no buts about it. You ought to be sorry! Just look what you've done! Do you realize how much this dress cost?" Muddy tears filled her eyes. Caroline lifted her arms from the mud. The sleeves, weighted and wet, hung heavily, like muddy flags in the air. She flapped them. "Look at this mess you've made!"
"Can't comment much on the dress, ma'am. But it was you who ran into me. I'd be happy to help you." He stepped behind her, reaching down for her, and caught her under the arms and began to lift.
Caroline craned her head back to look at the stranger. He had soft and strangely familiar blue eyes. He was even somewhat handsome.
But he was dirty.
The buckskin britches and the shirt he wore were filthy and sweat-stained. He looked like he hadn't seen water in weeks.
Caroline continued her rant as she flapped her arms. "How dare you touch me? Remove your filthy hands from me this instant!"
"I daresay my hands are a heck of a lot cleaner than you are right now, ma'am." He smiled. She noted he had nice white teeth, and a little dimple playing just to left of his lips. "Besides, I doubt you want me to let you go right now."
"I do." Caroline stiffened her legs, and used her dead weight against him. Tears rolled down her cheeks.
"Ma'am, you're in a precarious position."
"Only because you're touching me." Nice eyes, bright smile, and dimple aside. "I don't want your foul hands on me! Now let me go!"
"Whatever you say." The stranger shook his head. "Tsk, tsk, as you wish." He let go of her. She flopped back into the mud, making a sploshing sound when she landed.
"How dare you! How dare you!" She kicked her legs and screamed, like a two-year-old having a tantrum.
Tina Pinson resides in Mesa, Arizona with her husband of thirty plus years, Danny. They are blessed to have three sons, and six grandchildren with another on the way.
Tina started her writing in elementary school. Her love of writing has caused her to seek creative outlets be it writing poetry, songs, or stories. Her WWII story Trail of the Sandpiper won third place in the Genesis in 2003. In the Manor of the Ghost and Touched By Mercy and When Shadows Fall Book 1 in the Shadows Series are available through Desert Breeze Publishers.
To Catch a Shadow the next installment of the Shadow Series about the civil war and the Oregon Trail, will be available, June 2013. To Carry her Cross will be available January 2013 and Then There was Grace a Sept 9/11 type story will be available Sept. 2013 and Christmas in Shades of Gray an offbeat Dickens type tale releases December 2013.
Visit Tina at her Web site
Tina's twitter address: Twitter:@Tina_Pinson
Purchase Tina's Books at Desert Breeze Bookstore.
When Shadows Fall
Touched By Mercy
In the Manor of the Ghost