Relationship

Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Genesis 2:24

With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.
Ephesians 4:2-3

I’m not a mistake, God wasn’t mistaken
when He made me,
this particular creation,
and when He made the woman,
who in grace took my hand,
the next permutation
of His divine plan
for this couple came to be.

To God be the glory.
Together, came to be,
the next chapter in the story,
together, came to be.

No, marriage isn’t for all,
and God is sovereign and faithful
to reveal to each their own unique plan.
If we seek Him in faith,
believing He will answer,
He’ll reveal His best purpose in time.

But what of this home
and this family,
beginning with these two?
Without God love is such an unruly word.
Show us what it means. We don’t have a clue.
God, we need You!

Football games and carpet stains,
budget and relation strains.
Misunderstanding and forgiving.
You scratched the car but it’s just a thing.
Children are here and then they’re grown,
visiting with their own.
It was the future, now it’s past.
How on earth did it go so fast?

And if we’re not careful,
we’ll miss the now.

God, in His grace, through His Son,
has brought us to and taught us
a saving relationship.
His Word keeps our home
and provides a forever one too.
Those He lets us learn from are precious,
So guided by gratitude,
we seek God’s view,
and prayerfully choose,
and prayerfully choose.

© Joel Tipple 2/23/2019
Author of “Written in the Light.”

Impossible Advice

faith

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God For all things are possible with God.”
Mark 10:37 ESV

Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
Isaiah 43:18-19 ESV

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
Walt Disney

Have you consulted an impossible advisor? Their offices abound.
They specialize in discouraging,
and harumph is their favorite sound.

They see a lack of reason
in every Christian’s step forward in faith.
For them, there is no good season
to favor the boldest way.

You’ve searched God’s Word,
and prayed, and sought good counsel,
but fear could stop you
from serving the Lord
by stealing the wind from your sails.

The assurance of things hoped for,
the conviction of things not seen,
the fuel of faith gives you power
on those hard
and harder days.

Don’t let impossible advisors
get in your head.
Don’t subscribe to their social media,
don’t take their calls,
block them instead.

Look for encouraging,
Jesus loving friends,
who see more beginnings
than ends.
Godly advice helps you stretch
beyond self-imposed boundaries.

Adventure awaits you
brothers and sisters
when you’re willing
to seize your dreams.
When you step out in faith
the din of fear will fade away
and you’ll experience
what victory means.

© Joel Tipple 2/16/2019
Author of “Written in the Light.”

Your Words

There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts,
but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
Proverbs 12:18 ESV

When you’re pondering what
you could possibly give,
and the thought of God
using you
seems absurd
consider what you share
for good or for ill.
Think about the power
of your words.

Choose…

Words spoken in haste,
off the cuff.
Words soaked with anger,
too rough.
Words intended to defend
what shouldn’t get defense,
words thrown into the air
with uncertain intent.
We teach children not to play with fire,
then we fire off our mouths
and burn our families down.

Or…

Word spoken with thought
for the hearer.
Words that consider others
more dear.
Words spoken
slowly
with careful inflection,
words the Holy Spirit
prods us to mention.

If we’re wise we beseech
the author of wisdom
for the best direction
of our tongue.
A college degree won’t help you
if your heart and mind
hasn’t learned
the message of the Son.

“I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words, you will be condemned.”
Matthew 12:36-37

The right words spoken at the wrong time.
Words spoken when silence would be better.
Words written,
then sent
when wisdom says
burn the letter.

Words go to war
or make peace.
Words give dignity
to the least.
Words can separate
or cement
the marriage bond.
And the examples go on
and on.

Finally,
if you would know
what God would have you speak
when the Spirit says it’s your turn,
seek first the wisdom of God.
Rightly consider
His Word.

© Joel Tipple 2/9/2019

God of the Undiscovered Country

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pasture. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Psalm 23 ESV

Shakespeare’s Hamlet wondered aloud
of “the undiscovered country,”
that place to which every human being
will someday journey.
But though by faith, followers of Christ
know the place we’ll someday dwell,
what of the many other
undiscovered destinations
we find ourselves?

God of the
undiscovered country,
the places we go by faith,
you know
leaving the familiar
isn’t our favorite thing.
Even when what we know
isn’t especially easy or nice,
stepping out and moving
can test our hearts and minds.

God of the undiscovered country,
you’ll meet us there.
What’s heavy to us is light to you,
so You carry our care.
What we don’t know
you have planned already,
and you’ve made provision
for our every need.
For the doors
we must go through
you’ve already cut the keys.

Sometimes undiscovered
isn’t far,
in terms of
what we ever
thought far would be.
But what’s easy for one
is a trial for some
and God knows what we need…
for the undiscovered country,
where He’s already been.

© Joel Tipple 2/2/2019