Thursday, March 28, 2013

Dark Night of the Soul

This morning in my devotional reading from Our Daily Bread was a portion of the passage from John 13 from the Last Supper, the night before Jesus’ crucifixion.  It got me thinking about Jesus’ last “free” night on earth.  He knew exactly what was to come.  He faced the horror of the upcoming betrayal, pain and Cross. 

Have you ever had a time in your life when it was the eve of something tragic and beyond agonizing for you?  The night before a funeral of a beloved one?  The night before a divorce?  The night before surgery?  The night before some incredible loss that you knew was coming?  It is almost unbearable… you cannot find breath, your body is wracked with heartbreak, dread and mind-numbing disbelief.  You are unable to allow the grief to touch the root of your soul for fear it will take your own life right then and there.  Perhaps you even wish it would end your life as a means of escape.

How much more must Jesus have felt as His future loomed before Him?  To face not only the horrific upcoming torture of His body but the separation from His Father, to Whom He was in constant union since before time began?  To face that severance of blessed communion with His beloved Father, to have the Father turn His back on Jesus?  Is it any wonder that, in prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, He sweat drops of blood as He found one last shred of sanctuary in a time of prayer and fellowship with His Abba? 

And yet, in the midst of all this foreknowledge, in John 14:1 He is able to tell His disciples (and us) Let not your heart be troubled…”

Perhaps you are also facing a dark night of the soul.  If not now, I am sure you have in the past and can easily go back there in mind, body and soul – these are not nights we ever forget… ever.  May I ask you to momentarily remember that Jesus has been there and knows what you are going through or have experienced?  This is not a Savior Who sits high in some lofty throne in the heavens unaware and untouched by your tragedy and grief.  He has walked in your shoes… and so much more.  He has been crucified, buried, and experienced Hell.  By choice… for us… in our place... for our redemption.

Your life will never be the same after what you have faced or are about to go through soon.  But take heart in the fact that, when we have Christ as our Savior and Lord, we have One who ensures that your eternal life has also been transformed forver.  You will never have to face the torment of being separated from the Father.  Because Christ chose us by electing His painful path that night so many centuries ago, we can allow ourselves – in Him – to not let our hearts be troubled.  Right now you may not be able to wrap yourself around that eternal truth, but know beyond feelings… know the truth of the fact… that in Him your heart may rest.  And in time there will be the glory of a resurrected day for you in the here and now on earth, as well as the unspeakable joy and victory of forever with Christ, never to be separated, never to feel pain, but only the sweet victory of salvation through the One Who rose from the grave and conquered death… on our behalf.  He chose you and gladly went through everything because of His love for you. YOU.

As you turn off the light tonight and lie in darkness remember His dark night of the soul, and look beyond – as He did – to a time when there will be no more pain or sorrow… only the peace that will come in His arms… opened wide before time began, opened wide as He hung on the cross… opened wide now with love for you.  Accept this comfort… accept Him… and let not your heart be troubled.  Believe in Him.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Today as I was feeding my pinterest addiction (yes, it is a hobby, distraction, calming agent, procrastination tool of choice)...  but I digress...

I saw a pin that led me to the blog of Rachel Wojnarowski, and it seems we both share a common love of technology and the Bible.  She had a great little posting on "10 Groovy Ways to Use Bible Aps".  Being an old hippie, I saw the word groovy, my kinship grew deeper, so I just had to check it out.  It was a good 101 primer set of ideas for using your Bible aps, so I thought I'd share it here.

I've copied it below, or if you prefer, you can find it at  Be sure to surf over to her site and check it out!

Oh yes, and if you'd like to follow me as on pinterest, click here at:




10 Groovy Ways to Use Bible Apps by Rachael Wojnarowski

1. Read the Bible. I know, totally floored by that, aren’t you? Let’s keep going.

2. Easily use a Bible reading plan. For folks who like to have a printed Bible reading plan so that you can physically check off the paper- I get it. And I have one right here for you.  If you are not a paper person, but love to check off the plan as you go, then Bible Reading Plans on the Olive Tree App have accessibility to mark off the assignments as you go. This feature is highly popular on Bible apps in general.

3. Can’t remember all the words in a verse or you just want to know the reference?  Do a word search right there on the spot and find the verse you are trying to remember in a split second.

4. Keep your study notes or notes from sermons in the handy notes section of Bible apps.

5. Highlight your favorite verses as you read. Or highlight words that speak especially to your heart. One very cool feature is that the highlighters come in different colors. You could color code the highlights by topic or by personal meaning.

6. View a history of what you have read. When reading various references throughout a teaching or preaching session, if you need to go back to a previously-referenced section, simply tap the history and tap the appropriate reference on the list. Very cool for students AND teachers.

7. Utilize the various translations, Bible dictionaries, and commentaries that are automatically included in many Bible apps.

8. Go to any verse in the Bible in three taps or less.

9. Change font sizes to accommodate eyes that appreciate large font type.

10. Use the split screen feature to read two different resources at the same time. In the Olive Tree app, this feature allows you to view the Bible and a commentary that are synced to the same verses. By turning off the sync feature, you can also read two totally different selections.