Intentional Reliance upon God

September 8

The past three days have necessitated a new level of relying on God. He’s asked us to “take it up a notch.” Our faith and hope and patience are being stretched. We are learning, again, to practice the spiritual discipline of meekness:

Meekness is an intentional reliance upon God to accomplish His will and His work in His way. “I tell you the truth,” Jesus said, “the Son can do nothing by himself: he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does…. By myself I can do nothing” (John 5:19.30). Meekness is . . . an openness to see God in the big picture of life and the recognition “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). . . . Think of meekness as bold humility or aggressive patience. It is the spiritual discipline that overcomes the world. (D. Webster in The Easy Yoke, p. 58)

Since Friday Lois has had a hard time keeping anything in her stomach. It’s not that she has a lot of nausea – just can’t keep any food or liquids down for more than a couple of hours. We know she is dehydrated because she can go up to 18 hours without urinating. So we practice meekness.

She sleeps all the time whether or not there is activity around her. Lois doesn’t seem to be in a lot of pain. Since she can’t keep liquids or food down for very long there is plenty of evidence that the meds are not being absorbed completely! When I ask what medication she wants, the only request is for more Tylenol.

Intentionally relying on God is both difficult and welcome. On the one hand I constantly ask, “What can I do?” But Lois always responds with, “You’re doing it.” Relying on God does not mean we do nothing; rather, we are required to do what God has set before us. Nothing more, nothing less.

I find myself repeating Jesus’ words, “By myself I can do nothing.”

My human nature compels me to “take action” but my steadfast commitment to “His purpose” is my constant reminder that God will work all this out. He is in control.

9 thoughts on “Intentional Reliance upon God”

  1. Our prayers are with you. My heart goes out to you.
    I keep trying to think, I will see Lois again at the Grand Reunion.
    We love you both more than you will ever know.

  2. My heart is aching for you both. The strength that you continually show during this time is amazing and I know it comes from your deep faith and love of our Lord. We will continue to keep you and your entire family in our prayers.

    God hold you in his hands each moment of the coming days.

    Terri and Tom

  3. Thanks again Jim. You continue to teach me through all of this. Thanks for being the man God created you to be- for Lois, your family and those of us blessed to have our lives connected with you all! Of course, our prayers are with you.

  4. Jim and Lois . . . the witness you continue to so generously offer to those of us who wait and pray with you is always so deeply profound,faithful, and meaningful. Your thoughts on meekness in the midst of the trials you face (with such patient reliance on God) remind me so much of this Fanny Crosby hymn: “Jesus, keep me near the cross; there a precious fountain, free to all, a healing stram, flows from Calvary’s mountain. In the cross, in the cross, be my glory ever, til my raptured souls shall find rest beyond the river.+++Near the cross, a trembling soul, love and mercy found me; there the bright and morning star sheds its beams around me. In the cross, in the cross, be my glory ever, till my raptured sould shall find rest beyond the river.+++Near the cross I’ll watch and wait, hoping, trusting ever, till I reach the golden strand just beyond the river. In the cross, in the cross, be my glory ever, till my raptured soul shall find rest beyond the river.”
    Love in Christ — Dave Nolte

  5. Jim, I don’t believe we’ve ever met, but I’m a member at NAC. I’ve been reading the words on this website, and am finding hope and encouragement in my own life…through the messages you’ve been sending to all of us. Thank you for sharing your faith and your wisdom by allowing Christ to work in and through you. What a disciple you’ve been to me. Thank you.

  6. Jim – Thanks so much for taking the time and effort to keep us all informed. Our love & prayers are with your whole family.

  7. Your update today was very encouraging to me. I have a circumstance in my life that God is asking me to trust him with and like you, Jim, it seems I should take some action. But He wants me to learn to obey and trust him and perhaps use it to take my pride down a notch or two in the process. Your definition of meekness is going to be really helpful for me.

    Tell Lois I’m at my sister’s now and we are making good progress cleaning and moving things out of the room we are going to be working in. It looks like we will have some help this weekend from her son-in law who works in the construction business, so we’ll have someone here who knows what they are doing. (That’s a praise!!!)

    I’m just so thankful for your faith in Jesus as Savior and Lord. Your family will stay in my thoughts and prayers.


  8. What a joy that HE provides us with the whole experience of intimacy. I was reading in Radical Reliance the following: “Intimacy is what we experience as we grow more deeply conscious of, connected to, and confident in HIM and HIM alone as our unfailing resource in life.” I am so greatful of my relationship to you and the whole family over the past several years…..the testimony you are “writing” for all of us touches the whole experience of intimacy with one another as it relates to our Heavenly Father. Thanks for your consistent witness in our Lord Jesus.
    The wonderful reality of that experience we enjoy “in the far country are in HIS home as well.”
    Your friend in Christ,
    Pastor Phil

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