Into Your Hands

“Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’

When he had said this he breathed his last.” Luke 23:46

cross-sunset-sunrise-hill-70847.jpeg

The verse we read in Luke 23:46 as part of the Easter story is also referenced in Psalm 31:5. Several sources I came across while researching indicated that the phrase “into your hands I commit my spirit” was how the Jewish people ended their evening prayers.

I would imagine that like other Jewish children, Jesus was taught this prayer as a young child. It was a familiar practice that was an act of trust. To commit something of value to another is not a small thing.  By definition commit means to entrust something to someone; it also means to put into a place for safekeeping. (Merriman Webster).

By committing their spirit to God each evening they were submitting their soul for safekeeping.  What a beautiful picture of complete submission to the will of the father. We know that Jesus had prayed on the Mount of Olives asking for this cup to be taken from him but he surrendered by concluding his prayer with “not my will but thine be done” (Luke 22:42). This too would line up with committing his spirit to Father God.

Then, we have the account in Mark 15:34 of Jesus crying out asking God “why have you forsaken me?” According to Mark, this was at 3 O’clock.  Luke’s account begins at noon, followed by three hours of darkness and then right before Jesus says, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” Luke mentions that it is 3 O’clock.  This would imply that only moments after asking why God had forsaken him, Jesus then acknowledges that he is committing his spirit to the father.

In his darkest hour, burdened by the weight of my sin and the sins of the whole world, sins that had not yet been committed, sins that God in his holiness could not look upon, Jesus felt the crushing despair of complete and utter abandonment.  But yet, he still trusted that his spirit would be safe with the father.

His loud proclamation of “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit” tells us all we need to know about God’s faithfulness.  It tells us that a daily practice of committing our spirit (soul) to him is how we develop trust in him, it is how we surrender to his will, not ours, and it is how we can face our own mortality with confidence.  When the time comes, just as Jesus did, we can breathe our last breath knowing that we will be united with our Father eternally.

Maybe you are facing insurmountable trials that are shaking your very foundation.  Maybe you feel that God has turned his back on you and your world has gone dark. Maybe you are crushed under the weight of despair.  I urge you to remember that if you are a born again believer you have hope and even when it seems that all is lost, you can confidently say, “Father, into your hand I commit my spirit.” You can trust him with the safekeeping of your soul.

If you have not accepted Jesus as your Savior I can’t think of a better time than during the Easter season.

“All I have seen teaches me to trust the creator for all I have not seen”

Ralph Waldo Emmerson

Committing with Grace,

Teresa

Advertisements

Prompted By Work

prompted button.3

Today’s post is Part of a 31 Day writing series where I will choose moments from my life and let them be my writing prompt for the day.  I am in office manager mode today getting ready for piano students to show up this afternoon.  I decided to write about our work reality and how God is providing. Click the image for the complete series.

 

100_2131.2

 

Today is a work day for me and I say that very loosely. Very. Loosely.    I may have mentioned that Mr. Piano recently started a Piano Studio. I am the Office Manager. Pretty much volunteer, but still things have to be organized.

We finally decided in August, after several months of waffling back and forth,  to open our doors beginning in September.  We put an add in the local paper and started a Facebook page.  You can go there and like it if you wish.

100_2712

It was a slow start with one student, and then a couple weeks ago, we added five more almost all at once.  That was encouraging. Five weeks in and we have six students.  Now, we just need to keep adding. The goal is to eventually have enough students that we can find a studio space separate from our home.  We trust God to provide the students we need and who need us.

We are loving our students and getting to know them.  They have supportive parents which is a blessing.  And they are a bright group.  We are thankful that God is blessing our home business and we are excited to see how he continues to provide.

If you have been reading my blog for awhile, or if you know us, then you know that my husband graduated with his DMA in piano in 2013. When he went back to school, it was to fulfill a dream and also with the goal of pursuing teaching at a University. He has been applying for positions since 2012.  Every door that looked like it might open was abruptly slammed shut.  He also applied for several Minister of Music Positions (this is what he did before going back to school).  Again, every door that looked like it might open was slammed shut.

100_0247.3

 

It is hard not to take a slammed door personal, even when you are doing your best to trust that God has a plan for you that is better than what you can imagine.   It is hard to let go of the dream and trust that God may have other plans or a different timeline. It is hard to wrap your head around the fact that a professional musician can find paid work in a small town.  Paid being the key word.  It is easy to find plenty of volunteer positions.  And volunteering is great and necessary and we want to continue giving back, but if you want to pay your bills you also need a source of income.

All that I have seen teaches me to trust the creator for all I have not seen. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

We realized we we had been putting God in a box, and we finally had to acknowledge that he is the man with the plan.  It is not our decision.  He knows what is best for us now and in the future.  We knew this of course in theory, but still the doubts were looming large. So, we put our faith into action and believed that God would provide work for a professional musician in a small town if we would make ourselves willing and available. It is going to be exciting to see how he provides.

In addition to teaching Mr. Piano also gives concerts in churches (he has openings) and plays for weddings, funerals and other events.  He does music accompaniment at a University in a neighboring town; this winter he will be accompanying the theater department as they perform Cabaret.  He has also been substitute teaching.  His plate is getting full.  It’s piecemeal work that fluctuates rather than a job with certainty but he is using his gifts and we are thankful.

rockys hands

I have changed the way I pray about the future.  Instead of praying for God to open up a certain type of door for my husband, I have been praying for him to send us the work he has for us to do.  I have been asking him to provide our needs the way he sees fit.  I have been trusting that if our savings runs out before our income catches up that he will still provide all our needs.  He always has.  Why would he stop now.

Today is a day that I wear my office hat and hope that the furnace guy is done soon and I have time to mop the floor before the first student arrives.

Working in Grace,

Teresa