May 8, 2021
In case you wondered, this picture explains where Joe got those pretty eyes–from his mama! Just look at her…she had pretty everything…and she still does!
But what I really want you to notice are her hands.
She is holding sweet little Joe. Her arms are wrapped around him securely. Does she look troubled? Insecure? Frightened?
Not only are her eyes beautiful, but they are also particularly serene in this photo. She holds Joe like it the most natural thing in the world. She knows she’s got him, and more importantly, so does Joe.
Word on the street is that, in later years, Joe might have tested her patience once or twice and caused her brows to furrow just a bit…but that is pure speculation and can be neither confirmed nor denied. You’d never know it by looking at this picture, that is for sure!
This week Joe’s lesson is about trusting and resting in the hands of Jesus.
Trusting God Enough
Many of us worry about having enough.
Do we have enough money? Do we have enough time to get all we need done? Do we have enough groceries? Do we have enough gas?
God freed about two million Israelites from years of Egyptian slavery. They crossed the Red Sea on dry land and headed for the wilderness. After a few days they started to complain—and began to wish they were back in Egypt.
Exodus 16:4-5 states, “Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions. 5 On the sixth day they are to prepare what they bring in, and that is to be twice as much as they gather on the other days.”
17-20: “The Israelites did as they were told; some gathered much, some little. 18 And when they measured it by the omer, the one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little. Everyone had gathered just as much as they needed.
19 Then Moses said to them, “No one is to keep any of it until morning.”
20 However, some of them paid no attention to Moses; they kept part of it until morning, but it was full of maggots and began to smell. So Moses was angry with them.”
Moses wasn’t the only one who was angry. God was angry, too. God gave them a test and they failed because they didn’t trust him.
I ask myself, “Do I trust God today?” Not yesterday, not tomorrow…but am I trusting in Him right now—today?
Jesus told us to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread.” Not this week’s bread or this month’s bread, but just the bread for today.
Here’s what I want you to know this morning. God will never put us in a situation in which He is not enough. God is more than enough, no matter the situation.
In the New Testament there is the story of Jesus feeding the multitudes—when did what those people had become enough? It was when it was placed in the hands of Jesus—and it is the same today. If we put our worries and cares in His hands, He will be enough for us.
Jesus doesn’t give us what we need.
Jesus IS what we need.
Ain’t no doubt in this world that Joseph Morgan Price had a set of baby blues that would make your knees weak. The first time I took clothes to the dry cleaners after we married and moved back home, I gave the sweet lady working at the counter my home address and she stopped right in her tracks. She looked up at me, grinned, and said, “Oh, you must be married to Blue Eyes! He is one handsome man!” Y’all…that did tickle JMP when I told him! 😀
He was just plain purty to me, and his eyes didn’t hurt his face one bit. However, his eyes were not my favorite feature.
I loved his hands.
Check them out:
Joe’s hands were big and strong, yet they were equally warm and gentle. Those hands could fix just about anything, from a leaky faucet to the best potato salad this side of the Neuse River. Those hands could sketch a monument, strum a guitar, and compose a love letter that still makes my heart flutter to this day…
No matter how bad the day had been, all Joe had to do was tangle his fingers up with mine and I knew everything would be ok.
He had good hands. I was in good hands.
This week’s lesson made me ponder how much faith I had in Joe’s hands….and that perhaps my sense of security was a bit misguided.
Stronger hands than Joe’s held me then, and stronger hands hold me now. You know where I’m headed with this, right? Of course you do. We are held, every minute, in the hands of Jesus.
Why, then, are we so quick to fret? To fix everything ourselves? To lose sleep over the what ifs and why nots?
Well…I think it circles back around to another pair of eyes—our own. We tend to trust what we can see. So, when we see God’s goodness, trust comes easily. We praise His name! Proclaim our trust! Hallelujah!!
But when we can’t see…we’ll, that’s a horse of a different color. Sometimes it is difficult to see because it is dark. Ask me how I know…I’ve got several months of darkness under my belt. Sometimes, though, we can’t see because we need to have our eyes examined.
Joe’s eyes didn’t just look perfect…they actually were perfect. Here I am, blind as a bat without my glasses or contacts, and Joe could read the bottom line of the eye chart from ten miles away. Of course, he could, right!?! 😇
I can’t blame all of my visual impairment on my eyeballs. My eyes get cloudy and I struggle to see. It’s not one thing in this world but doubt.
Joe said, “God gave them a test and they failed because they didn’t trust him.” The last five months of my life have been a test, for sure. To think back and know that I might have failed God in my lack of trust breaks my heart and makes me mighty ashamed. I could park on that sentiment for a while, but that is neither honoring to God nor helpful to me.
So, instead, I park on Joe’s next thought: Here’s what I want you to know this morning. God will never put us in a situation in which He is not enough. Joe came back into my life at a time when I believed I would never again find happiness. God did that. Joe’s hands worked hard to make my life a dream come true every single day. God did that, too. Joe went home to be with Jesus, and I have been surrounded by more love, kindness, peace and blessings than I deserve as I have struggled to make it through the dark days and months. God did that, too…and He will do it again tomorrow.
I only have to trust Him. God is always going to give me enough.
So much about my future is uncertain right now. I feel the weight on my shoulders and sometimes think it is just a matter of time before my knees buckle underneath me. Maybe you know that feeling, too? Then listen up….I’m talking to you. I’m talking to me, too.
There’s a set of Hands right in front us. We don’t have to carry the weight of this world on our shoulders. Jesus died so that we don’t have to do that, and He stands before us, asking us to share the load. Let Him hold it in His hands.
In return, let Jesus fill you with the strength to get through this day. And then the next. He will keep showing up for you, day by day (or even minute by minute…and that’s ok. I’ve been right there, too).
Go back to that sweet picture of Joe and his mama. Now, close your eyes and picture yourself sitting just like that in the arms of Jesus. Is there anything more precious?
The eyes of Jesus are serene (and blue…I just believe they are baby blue). He holds you like it is the most natural thing in the world to do. Jesus knows He is holding you safely and securely. The question is…do you know it, too?
Joe knew what he was talking about when he said this: When did what those people had become enough? It was when it was placed in the hands of Jesus—and it is the same today.
Jesus doesn’t give us what we need.
Jesus IS what we need.
And that, sweet friend, is enough.
-Words of Wisdom from The Book of Joe