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“Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One Who is leading.” (Oswald Chambers)

I read My Utmost For His Highest during my morning devotions, and so often I find these words of Oswald Chambers speaking right into the issue that I am currently working on. The one that I am working through right now? Is not knowing the next step, where God is leading me. In a world where I am used to planning and knowing the next step, it is hard when things seem to fall apart and I do not know what is the next thing.

But I am learning, encouraged and challenged by Oswald Chambers, to trust in the One who is leading me. He has my life in His hands. He is in control, always. I may not know where I am being led right now, but I sure know the loving heart of my Father. It will be alright.

This week has reminded me that the blessings of God do not always come the way we prayed for them to and that they do not always look like we thought they would. But they are there, the blessings full of grace and mercy: beautiful sunsets, friends who ask for prayers because they trust you to pray for them, God giving the words that touch someone’s heart, sunshine after rain and snow, a listening friend, good news, moments when you know your heart is aligned just right, time spent with Jesus…

Good reads from around the internet this week:

This resonated with my soul: So I Quit Drinking by Sarah Bessey. I have never really been interested in drinking and after coming to Christ, it has been my own choice — encouraged by my pastor — to abstain from drinking. But I have watched alcoholism creep in, witnessed the slippery slope of going from one glass every now and then to one glass every day to several glasses a day in my mother’s life. I have been there with friends who have lost their parents because of alcoholism. Alcoholism, it destroys goodness like no other. It destroys families and relationships, wounds loved ones deep. So I am wholeheartedly behind abstaining from alcohol.

The God Who Broke My Heart by Russ Ramsey. “Historically, God deals with those he loves by breaking them. He leads people to the edge of themselves and then shoves them off into the unknown. He topples the towers to heaven we try to build. He confuses us to the point where we have to stop what we’re doing and walk away because we can no longer carry on the work that once seemed so right and so clear.”

Are Christians Too Intentional in Dating? This article on Christian dating was just so, so good.

Three Promises For Those Who Are Hurting. Because of the Gospel, we grieve with hope and our pain has a purpose. This is a beautiful, beautiful read.

Lord, Tune My Heart for Worship. Here are four tips for how to prepare your heart for worship, and I think this list is a good one for all of us to read before we go to church on Sunday. Truly, worship starts already before we enter and it is important that we prepare our hearts.