THROUGH A STRANGER’S EYES by Tammy Glover

“Blessed is he who has regard for the weak; the Lord delivers him in times of trouble.” Psalm 41:1, NIV

What if you were granted the ability to see through another person’s eyes? What do you think you would see? Do you think that you would see that the well-to-do couple down the street is completely happy or would you see that they are stressed out because they are living above their means? Do you think you would see the little boy that has been causing trouble on the block is being told by his parents that they wish he was never born and that he will never amount to anything?

Do you think that you would see your boss gleefully finding ways to make your life difficult or instead would you see that his boss is threatening to fire him if he does not perform? Do you think that you would see that the coworker who couldn’t be bothered to say good morning to you, weeping in her car because she found out that the lump in her breast is cancer? Do you think you would see that the coworker in everyone’s business is so lonely that she is contemplating suicide?

Maybe you could see the lady that cut you off on the way home was running away from an abusive husband? Could you see that the cashier that was rude to you just buried her eleven year old son and she couldn’t afford to take time off work to properly grieve? Could you see your friend who refuses to return your calls was raped a week ago and she’s ashamed to tell you?

If you could see these things, would that change the way you felt about them? Would you still be angry and judgmental or would you pray for them? Would this be the only way you could feel compassion for them? Well, we don’t have the power to see everything that is going on in someone’s life, nor can we see what people are thinking. We all have emotional scars that we’ve caused each other and ourselves. God still expects us to have compassion for each other just as He has compassion for us. We all need to be shown love, even if we don’t show it.

As difficult as it is, before you become angry or start to complain about someone, try to take a step back and consider that maybe something deeper that you can’t see is going on with that person. Show compassion. Pray for those who hurt you because you never know what that person maybe going through.

“Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were harassed and helpless; like sheep without a shepherd.” Matthew 9:35-36, NIV

SEE THE RAINBOW By Tammy Glover

“Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” Genesis 9:15-16 NIV

Are you in the middle of a flood? Is the rain falling so hard and fast that the water is rising all around you? Does it feel like the rain will never stop? Sometimes, life can feel like this. Family, work and bills can turn into wave after wave of problems that knock you up against jagged rocks. You wonder if the next hit will finally break you.

You think that if you could just grab a hold of a branch, step foot on a patch of land or if you could just see a sliver of sunlight through the clouds, you’ll be ok. You look around and see miles and miles of water and it becomes harder and harder to find joy. You start drifting aimlessly in a sea of negative thoughts. Thoughts like, you’re not going to make it, this is too much for you, even if you do survive this, you’ll never be able to handle the damage left behind.

I imagine this might have been how Noah felt at times during the flood of his day. It must have been overwhelming and extremely stressful being cooped up in that boat with animals. I’m sure his family may have gotten on each others nerves too. He may have even wondered if God had forgotten him. Even through the discomfort and stress, Noah still trusted in God. He knew that God was a faithful God. He wouldn’t have told him exactly how to prepare for this disaster if He wasn’t planning on seeing Him through it. The Lord kept Noah and his family safe when the world around them was being destroyed. After the rain, the sun shined again and the Lord gave Noah a sign, a rainbow, to remind him that, “never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life.” Genesis 9:15

When the floods of life hit and it feels like all will be destroyed, trust in God and see the rainbow. Problems will come but God will not let it destroy you and He will never leave you alone. You are always safe in His presence and He always has a plan to see you through whatever life throws at you.

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth, and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.” Isaiah 60:1-3 NIV

I KNOW YOU… By Tammy Glover

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14 NIV

“Excuse me, don’t I know you,” I ask staring into a pair of eyes full of tears. I take a step closer, “you were there when my heart was broken. When I was rejected. When I was at my lowest. You said that fighting was hopeless. You said that I wouldn’t make it. You said that my situation would never change. I heard your voice in the middle of the night begging me to give up because it was just too much.

“I almost believed you. Your voice was so familiar and soothing. It felt like you were trying to spare me further pain, but before I gave up, I had to face you one more time. I had to look into those eyes so that I could know for sure what I was dealing with. I can see that you’re scared and frustrated. Life has beaten you down. You’re tired of crying yourself to sleep. I understand, but it’s time for you to shut up and listen to what God has to say. It’s time for you to be still and stop trying to fight this battle alone. It’s time for you to let go of your pride.

“I know it’s scary and it hurts. I know it feels like this struggle will never end. I know it’s lonely. Your Heavenly Father is with you. He loves you dearly. He loved you before you were even formed in your mother’s womb. He created you in His image. He knows exactly how many hairs are on top of your head. He knows how many tears you’ve shed. He knows all your weaknesses, all your secrets and all your dreams and yet He still loves you and wants you to succeed. He has been trying to get your attention. He wants you to open your eyes and see the blessings He has in store for you. He wants you to fully receive His gifts. He has plans for you that are so amazing you can’t even begin to imagine. You have to allow Him to mold you and guide you. You have to place all your worries and fears in His hands. You have to let Him heal your emotional and spiritual wounds.

“Yes, I definitely know you. I’m looking at my own reflection in the mirror. I’m going to keep on encouraging you. I’m going to keep on being patient with you. I’m going to keep on loving you. I will never give up on you and neither will God.”

“How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.” Psalm 139:17-18 NIV

THE DEAD SHALL RISE By Tammy Glover

“With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.” Mark 10:27 NIV

Is there a dream or situation in your life that seems dead? Even though it looks hopeless, it is still tugging at your heart. It could be a business you wanted to start, a book, play or movie you wanted to write. Maybe there’s a house you wanted or a degree you’ve been wanted to go for. It could even be a situation you’ve been struggling with, such as a failing marriage or a troubled family member. You’ve all but given up on losing weight, having children or finding a husband or wife.

Have you allowed these hopes and dreams to become a passing fantasy? Was it because you’ve allowed doubts and negative thoughts to creep into your mind; thoughts like, I’m too old or young? I’m not smart or strong enough. I don’t have enough money or connections. I’m not gifted enough. Do you feel like you’ve made too many mistakes or you have missed too many opportunities?

Let me tell you something. God’s calling on your life is still there. God’s word will not return void. Even if you have veered so far off the path that He has laid out for you, and you feel hopelessly lost, God still knows where you are. It doesn’t matter how deep in darkness or how close to rock bottom you are. God can lift you up and turn you around. He is the author of life so He already knows the ending. Pick up your faith and get back into agreement with the Lord. He will bring those dead things back to life. Just as He called Lazarus to arise and live again, He will speak the same thing in your life.

Don’t you ever give up on something that God has called you to do. Whenever those negative thoughts slither inside your mind, remember what the Lord says about your life. Continue to stay in faith. Continue to read the Word. Continue to pray. Stay close to the Lord, He will give you strength and wisdom, which is always plentiful and yours for the taking.

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened” Matthew 7: 7-8 NIV