Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning,
for I am trusting you.
Show me where to walk,
for I give myself to you.
Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God.
May your gracious Spirit lead me forward
on a firm footing.
Psalm 143:8, 10 (NLT)
A few years ago my friend Denise and I went to spend a long weekend with another friend. She had a lot of things happening in her life that were creating a ton of stress and she needed to be kidnapped for a long weekend of girl time. Denise and I flew into town and she picked us up at the airport. We went back to her house, packed up the car and took off. As she drove us toward our destination, someone cut us off almost causing an accident. She moved her hand toward the windshield and said "Friend!"
Denise and I started laughing and making jokes about how that may not have been the "F" word we chose to use in a time like that. But that is her nature. She is probably one of the sweetest people I know. Made me wonder how you get to the point that you say "Friend" to someone who truly irritates you instead of other choice words.
Then I remembered a conversation I had with her a year or so before the "Friend" incident. One day we were talking and the subject came up about someone who had hurt her. As we started to talk she said "I really shouldn't comment on this because I haven't spent my time with God yet." And there you have it. Each day, she put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6). The covering that seeps into your thoughts and emotions so when things don't go just the way you want them to, it is God that comes through, not you.
That's what I want. I want to hear him first thing - to hear of the unfailing love that saved me - to talk about his plans for the day and to follow where he leads. I want to put on the armor that reminds me even when things don't go right, I am covered. And most of all, I want a heart that calls someone who really ticks me off, "Friend."
A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. (Ephesians 6:10-11)