Meet my friend, Kristi Butler! Kristi and I met at a writer’s retreat last fall, but to be around us you’d think we went to high school together. The Lord joined our hearts in an amazing way, and I love how I’ll get a random Facebook message from her that says,
“Isn’t it AWESOME the way
God brought us into each other’s lives?
I’m so thankful for you!”
Tell me that wouldn’t make your day! Kristi is that kind of friend. She shares her wonder of His goodness on her blog, A Matter of Grace.
An accomplished speaker and author, Kristi’s written two children’s books that feature the adventures of Gracie and Grover Groundhog. Fun fact: she was invited to Punxsutawney and appeared with Phil on Groundhog’s Day!
Another fun fact: Kristi pulls off the road to snap a pic of her furry friends.
(I know this first-hand.)
Quicksand or His Sand
“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.” Psalm 139: 17-18 (NIV)
Do you ever get consumed by what people think of you?
Or what you think they think of you?
I’ve got to admit. I can easily fall into the quicksand of insecurity and worry that engulfs as a result of that very thing.
As a preacher’s daughter and former preacher’s wife, I have anguished over people’s opinions of me, my family, my home, and basically every aspect of my life. Now, because I worry about what you will conclude from that statement…noting I’m a former preacher’s wife, I feel the need to verify that I’m still married to him (although at times ministry threatened to do us in), but he now is in an executive role in denominational ministry. And not because he was unsuccessful…or did anything wrong as a pastor. It’s because God gifted him enormously for that job!
See, what you think…what I think you might think…can do a number on me.
I love an illustration that my husband used to share from the pulpit on this subject.
When in a heart to heart with his precious grandmother regarding his concern over what someone might think about a certain situation, his Mama Butler, told him, “Sunshine (That’s what she called my hubby.), when you’re young, all you care about is what people think about you. And you get married and have kids and you’re too busy to care about what people think of you. You hit middle age and you don’t care about what people think about you anymore. But then you get old and realize that nobody was thinking about you in the first place.”
Whenever I take a stroll down by that quicksand, I often think of the words of Mama Butler.
And more importantly, I think of the fact that whether or not someone is thinking of me…whether or not it is good or bad or indifferent, that the only One who matters is thinking about me, sees me through the blood of Christ, and loves me unfailingly. And the key verse above is testimony to that! Imagine that! God’s thoughts of us “outnumber the grains of sand.” (I happen to be at the beach as I write this. That’s a lot of thinkin’!)
In my quiet time this morning, reading from Beth Moore’s devotional book, Praying God’s Word Day by Day, she said, “No matter what time of night you roll over in bed, you will catch God in the middle of a thought about you.” Don’t you just love that?
I am so encouraged by Isaiah 55:8 that says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts.” The passage goes on to say that His thoughts are higher! He doesn’t think the way I think. His thoughts of me…of you…are on a grand scale, better than anything we even dare to think! Oh, why would we ever sell Him short???
I’m ready to trade my quicksand for His sand! I am praying to “take every thought (of my own…those insecure, anxious thoughts) captive.” (2 Corinthians 10:5) And as Hebrews 3:1 says, I choose to “fix [my] thoughts on Jesus,” resting secure in the knowledge that He keeps me on His mind.
That’s sand I can sink my feet into!