Turning from Vanity and Dissatisfaction
I continually need the Spirit to fan the flame of the mysterious longing for eternity that the Father has placed in my heart, and I’m so thankful he does.
The older I get, the more I gravitate toward prayer books and liturgy because they help to reorient me.
I’m on the lookout for a new car. That means my antenna, so to speak, is up, knowing I’m going to have to play a game. In my experience, that usually starts with a dealership’s website in which I input my contact info and am contacted by a woman. In this case, her name was Joy. Then, when you arrive at the dealership, a man named George approaches you with the hard sell. In this case, his name was Ralph.
It’s a classic case of bait and switch, as if I care who sells or leases me a car. I just roll my eyes and accept it as part of the dance.
This comes on the heels of a bad experience at a hotel, then with their corporate office. So, I’m tired, emotionally spent and probably not in a great frame of mind. Then I came across these words from a Puritan prayer book titled The Valley of Vision and they changed everything:
May I rejoice that, while men die, the Lord lives;
that, while all creatures are broken reeds,
he is the Rock of Ages, the Fountain
of living waters.
Turn my heart from vanity,
from uncertainties of the present state,
to an eternal interest in Christ.
We need these little reminders. I do, anyway.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Ecclesiastes 3:11 (AMP) recently. It says, “He [God] has made everything beautiful and appropriate in its time. He has also planted eternity [a sense of divine purpose] in the human heart [a mysterious longing which nothing under the sun can satisfy, except God] …”
I continually need him to fan the flame of that mysterious longing, and I’m so thankful he does. Car problems and bad hotel stays are temporary. But Christ is eternal. He’s the Rock of Ages; the Fountain of living waters. All earthly cares and concerns fade and wither as I’m brought back to this truth time and time again.
In the month of May, you can get the Finding Common Ground e-book boxed set (Books 1-3) for only $2.99 in the U.S. Don't miss out on this deal!
Grab a cup of coffee and escape into this collection of heartfelt essays (the complete Boxed Set of the Finding Common Ground Series).
Here’s what you’ll find inside:
Common Grounds will take you on a pilgrimage with the author to thirty coffee shops in Omaha, Nebraska. He spent $136.42 on coffee and a few donuts, but it was a small price to pay for the commonality he felt between the patrons, baristas, and himself. And standing on common ground gave him strength in the most unexpected of ways. Maybe it’ll do the same for you.
Sacred Grounds invites you to reminisce about your first loves, first experiences, and first favorites, all of which shape us in ways our second loves, second experiences, and second favorites do not. Dive into this section and go back to a simpler time in your life.
Higher Grounds will inspire you to always be on the lookout for God. You’ll read about him showing up in a nursing home during a Christmas caroling excursion, in a bowling alley during a rock concert, in a restaurant as two elderly people seek the company of strangers, and so much more.
Here are some tidbits you might find interesting this week:
The tallest building in the world is the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. It’s 828 meters tall (2,716 ft 6 in) and “designed to sustain seismic activities to a certain level. It can move in any direction about 1.5 metres” according to Guinness World Records.
"Restlessness and impatience change nothing except our peace and joy. Peace does not dwell in outward things, but in the heart prepared to wait trustfully and quietly on Him who has all things safely in His hands." -Elisabeth Elliot
Spotted on a meme this week: “Religion is a guy in church thinking about fishing. Relationship is a guy out fishing thinking about God.”
The Wilderness of Weakness by Bonnie McClure is excellent food for thought.
After reading this article about date stamps, I scanned the comments and found this one by Kathryn Marinaro to be fascinating: “I use a date stamp for my daily to-do list for work! I made a laser-cut box to fit 3x5 notecards, so each day I grab a card, stamp the date, and then write in the tasks for the day. If it doesn't fit, then that's too many tasks! The next day I put my list in the back of the box in case I want to reference what I did that day (and can match it to my notebook notes as needed).”
When Lee isn’t writing essays, devotional books, or Christian fiction, he is a freelance editor, as well as a freelance journalist who has written hundreds of articles for various newspapers and magazines. He’s also a fan of NASCAR, baseball, tennis, books, movies and coffee shops.
Yes. I’m so grateful for His faithfulness to bring us back to center.