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Thoughts on life by Teri McCarthy

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I Shall Not Be Moved

Posted by admin in October 24th, 2018
Published in faith, Worship, Worship

This week our dysfunctional HOA board had four beautiful, healthy, 20-year-old Linden trees cut down. Their root systems were not a disturbance; they were not interfering with power lines. Without notifying the residents or even putting it up to a vote, the board made the decision to cut these amazing trees down. As it was happening, I was trying to contact the board, and no one would respond. So, I posted my protest on a popular social website “Nextdoor” and one of the members responded, “The leaves were getting in the pool.” (Which has been closed since Sept. 1). There is so much untrue about his statement and I don’t want to explain it all here, but this is what I have discovered in life: If something doesn’t make sense, or doesn’t add up, usually corruption is involved. Our HOA has cut most of our services and even stopped watering the common areas in order to “save money” and yet each of these healthy trees cost about $600 to remove. Four beautiful, joy-giving trees. I have never awakened in my house and not seen those trees. They have always been there to greet me each morning when I open our bedroom drapes. What is left behind are horrible stumps and bald spots on the grass and depressing emptiness. I understand Tolkien’s outrage better now, sadly.

Daryl and I grieved over the injustice and we struggled each time we pulled out of our driveway. I refused to open the bedroom drapes and I stopped taking Mindy out to the front. I don’t like it when things don’t make sense. I don’t like it when people act unjust. I don’t like it when I am lied to. In our world today there seems to be so much…well…craziness! It feels to me that our world is upside down, wrong-side out, topsy turvy. It feels like that because, in truth, it is.

And since the Garden of Eden, it always has been.

That’s why we need a Savior.

Last night lying in bed saying our prayers, grieving our trees and all the craziness of this world, Daryl quoted, “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal”(2 Cor. 4:18). We fix our eyes on what is eternal – Jesus. And we worship. WORSHIP! Of course. How easily I forget. We are told in Scripture to put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. We are encouraged to give thanks in ALL things. We’ve been promised that God inhabits the praises of His people. WORSHIP! It is the anchor of our souls that holds us steady in rough and dangerous seas. WORSHIP! It focuses our minds and our hearts on that which is eternal and reminds us that God has a better plan. This earth is not our home and though we are to live here and declare justice and truth and hope, we are never to become attached to the things of this world. The temporary.

Our bodies ache and diseases weaken us, but we praise. Relationships hurt and there are misunderstandings, but we worship. Our hearts break and we lose the ones we love, but we are able to look at that which is unseen and say, “I praise You God because YOU are faithful and trustworthy!”

I am not moved by what I see or feel, but I stand on God’s Word which is wholly trustworthy and filled with promises of hope and better things to come. As the old hymn states, “This world is not my home…” Our Father God has promised to NEVER leave us or forsake us. He has declared that He will work EVERYTHING to our good! He is faithful.

And as Anna, my niece, wrote to me this week, “My cry has been, ‘Lord increase our hope and our praise.’ He’s been faithful to show me the connection between the two – I can’t have one without the other.” Praise and Hope. Worship and Faith. Thanksgiving and Peace (Phil. 4:6).

When all the world looks upside down and trouble is at every turn, we praise our God and we thank Him for each and every moment. We worship God and declare, “OUR GOD REIGNS!” This is the greatest weapon against discouragement, depression, and disappointment. “Shout for joy, you heavens; rejoice, you earth; burst into song, you mountains! For the LORD comforts His people and will have compassion on His afflicted ones”(Isa. 49:13).

Because what is faith? Isn’t it the substance of things HOPED for, the evidence of things NOT yet seen? My faith is exercised and renewed as I praise God with all my heart and declare His truth in every situation. “God! You reign! You alone are my source! I love and trust YOU no matter what!!” Sing! Shout! Declare! Stand Firm! Because in truth, this world really isn’t our home and it isn’t the end of all things. And it is broken and fallen, but we serve a Risen Savior who has promised to come and one day, hopefully soon, HE WILL MAKE ALL THINGS NEW. And for that I am grateful. And He is worthy of my praise. Isaiah 6:13, “To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified.” The trees of righteousness will NEVER be cut down and are planted by the Lord’s own hand. Ain’t that good news?!? Don’t we serve a wonderful God? Isn’t the Lord Jesus amazing? Worship today and watch how God will release your spirit and give you hope, peace and joy. Worship allows us to take our eyes off of our circumstances and put our focus on what really matters most – Jesus. He alone can save. Peace.

Just over in gloryland
We’ll live eternally
The saints on every hand are shouting victory
Their songs of sweetest praise
Drift back from heaven’s shore
And I can’t feel at home In this world anymore
Oh lord, you know I have no friend like you
If heaven’s not my home Then lord what will I do
The angels beckon me From heaven’s open door
And I can’t feel at home In this world anymore
(Albert Brumley, 1936).

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39182. Cindy said,
October 24th, 2018 at 7:14 am

Oh girl! Amen!!! Hallelujah!!! Ps. 1:1-3…we shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of Living Water bringing forth fruit in its season whose leaves shall not wither & whatever we do shall prosper! Great post; gives such hope in craziest of times!!!! Praise Jesus!!! We would have despaired unless we had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living❤️

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39183. Cindy said,
October 24th, 2018 at 7:18 am

Oh this is sooo good! Great reminder of where we can turn in craziest of times & most importantly…Who we can turn to❣️ Praise & hope-AMEN!!!

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39184. Jim Alling said,
October 24th, 2018 at 8:31 am

Wow! You “hit the nail on the head” with this one, as always, of course.. But, this was just what I needed this morning. PTL! (As in PRAISE the Lord!). I love that old concluding gospel song too! Thank you, Teri.

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39185. Cuzzin J'Lynn said,
October 24th, 2018 at 10:57 am

Yes, that God would increase our hope and our praise. That we would put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Crazy about those trees. So sorry for that loss.

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39186. AnnaJane said,
October 24th, 2018 at 11:39 am

Amen Aunt T!! May we always have praise on our lips and hope in our hearts, even when all else fails/fades/dissapoints.

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39243. Robbie said,
October 28th, 2018 at 8:00 pm

As always, written from your heart Teri!! I hear you – & oh yes, so too does this world’s Creator!! Though dear friend, we have to acknowledge, truly – there is nothing wrong with this ‘world’ it has been perfectly created ‘Praise the Lord’!! It is ‘we, the people’ are the problem. I agree & you will know chapter & verse of these words “WORSHIP the Lord ALL ye people . . .”!! Blessings & thanks for sharing your blog w/me X

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