The Waves of Life

When I was first diagnosed with fibromyalgia, (Ugh. Did I really just admit my illness, one with so many myths, judgements, and misconceptions surrounding it, online???) I felt ready to break—physically and emotionally. I thought the intense pain shooting through every ounce of my body would last forever.

I’ve since learned those waves, or flares, as the medical community calls them, won’t last forever, and knowing that brings incredible peace. Knowing there is an eventual end to the pain makes it bearable. And knowing God has a purpose in my pain, which He does, makes it glorious.

Life is like that, isn’t it? Stuck in the muck, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and defeated, to focus on the tumult rather than our Savior. But today my sweet friend and highly-valued critique partner, Majie Lane, MarjiLaine-260x300shares some encouraging thoughts on these “waves of life” we all go through and what each one can do for us.

The Waves of Life by Marji Lane

My latest release, The Love Boat Bachelor is set on a cruise. It had me thinking all things oceans. Looking back on the last few years which comprise my writing life, I can see how waves of circumstances can change the way I think. Even the way I live. I could get fancy like the Starbucks down the corner and call the different waves Tall, Venti, and Grande, but I think I’ll just call my waves small, medium, and large.

The small waves are circumstances that mold us. The way God teaches us through daily life. They tend to take on the appearance of seasons – football, holiday, busy, vacation. Even more seasons if you still have kids in your home – prom, musical, contest, performance, the list goes on. All seasons that enrich, but also complicate our lives.

These small waves can give us a beating when attitudes are sour or other waves are overwhelming.

Medium waves are those that are more of the way we define ourselves. Our jobs, locations, and relationships make up the medium waves. I’m a wife and an author. I’m also a wavesmom and a teacher. I’m a
Texan. I’d find it very hard to change that, but we’ve come close a time or two.

The medium waves aren’t usually the overwhelming ones, but they can throw in turbulence when they have a change. Even then, they only change our title and sometimes a perspective. They don’t actually change who we are.

The deep-water waves, those are the ones that can have the largest effect on us. They comprise the broader seasons of our lives: years with babies in the house or school children, supporting aging family members, retirement, having teenagers, being the aging family member that needs support.

wave 3In deep water, the waves seem to move slowly, almost imperceptive from the height of a cruise ship. In the same way, these particular waves of our lives change over periods of years, decades even.

It’s when any of the waves, especially the large or medium ones, are jarred that the Lord works in our lives. When the water shifts unexpectedly, He’s there supporting and strengthening us through huge directional adjustments.

But Jesus said He’d never leave us comfortless. (John 14:18)

When we are at our most vulnerable, we tend to listen to Him better. Pay attention more willingly. And we’re the most malleable. So that He can perfect us, His creations.

He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it. (Philippians 1:6)

When we are broken and humble before God, He can use us to do the work He needs us to do. And true contentment comes when we’re able to look at the waves we’ve been through and know that none of them conquered us. We can throw back our heads and smile at God, knowing full well He holds us close and will give us whatever we need to accomplish His work.

Your turn: What waves are you dealing with right now, and how is God using them to strengthen you?

Marji Laine, a homeschooling mom, lives with her husband, their four grown and almost-grown kids, and a spoiled black Lab in the Dallas area. When she’s not fighting for quiet time and a space of her own to visit with her characters, she’s indulging in photography, watching NASCAR, and lately helping her oldest with wedding plans.

She works part time as the children’s music director at her church, leads a college-aged Bible Study, and teaches high school writing. She loves acting in stage plays, sings in small groups and a large choir, and has a passion for sharing about the relationship that the Lord wants to have with His children.

She has so loved being involved with Write Integrity Press and their last four collaborative novellas. “What an amazing group of creative and talented people!:” Contact her at MarjiLaine.com or find her on Suspense Sisters ReviewsFacebookTwiiter,Goodreads, Pinterest, and Google+.

TLBB CoverThe Love Boat Bachelor:

Romance is a joke.

After the love of Brent Teague’s life came back into his world only to marry someone else, Brent is through with women. He might be through with being a pastor, too.

Brent was so sure that God brought Mara Adkins home to him so they could marry and live happily ever after. Six months after her wedding to another man, that theory is obviously a dud. If Brent could be so wrong about that, who’s to say he’s not mistaken about God calling him to pastoral ministry?

Tired of watching Brent flounder for direction, Brent’s feisty older sister boots him out of Spartanburg and onto a cruise ship. Brent’s old college buddy manages the ship’s staff, and he’s thrilled to finagle Brent into the role of chaplain for the two-week cruise.

As the ship sets sail, Brent starts to relax. Maybe a cruise wasn’t such a bad idea after all. But there’s just one little thing no one told him. He’s not on any ordinary cruise. He’s on The Love Boat.

What’s a sworn bachelor to do on a Caribbean cruise full of romance and love? He’ll either have to jump ship or embrace the unforgettable romantic comedy headed his way.

Grab your copy here!

Let’s talk about this. I know many of you are going through some very painful times. First, to those of you who have shared your struggles with me, know I’m praying for you. For all of us, may we draw ever-nearer livingbygracepic.jpto Christ when we feel ready to ship-wreck, for He is our strength, our comfort, and our closest friend.

To repeat Marji’s question, posed above:

What waves are you dealing with right now, and how is God using them to strengthen you?

I encourage you to prayerfully consider the latter part of that question, because that’s the glory-phrase. Share your thoughts here in the comments below or at Living by Grace on Facebook.

I’ll share mine. Living with chronic pain has a way of centering one’s heart in eternity, which in turn gives passion and focus to my ministry. Each day I’m reminded that this sin-and-pain-ravished world is not my home, and that’s a reminder I need.

The heat of Trials

I’ve often said parenting is the most excruciatingly rewarding job I’ll ever possess. Last night we had parent teacher conferences and learned of some things that made my mamma-bear rise up. I’ve been in prayer over this situation since, and though my husband and I feel the need to address the issue, we also realize God is using the incident to grow and strengthen our daughter. Nothing can level a parent like seeing their children struggle. Today fellow ACFW writer Karen Jurgens shares a similar situation and what she learned from it.

 

But first, I want to congratulate the winner of last week’s book drawing. Lourdes Montes, congrats! You won a copy of Smokey Mountain Investigation by Annslee Urban! I’ll be contacting you shortly. 🙂 

The Heat of Trials by Karen Jurgens

IMG_1360Years ago, I had lunch with my six-year-old daughter who was enrolled in a day camp during her father’s summer custody. She sat at a long, metal table dominoed on each side with children wilted from the noon heat. Brightening as I approached, she smiled at me with eyes that longed for freedom. The heat index that Texas afternoon was 108 degrees.

“Mommy.” Her enormous blue eyes sparkled with tears. “I wish I could go with you right now and get out of this heat. I’m sooo hot.

I smoothed the damp hair back from her face and examined the freckles on her sun-scorched nose. Longing to grab up my baby and head for the air-conditioning, I was forced instead to forget my agony for her by offering up words of comfort, along with a drink of ice water I had brought along.

“Honey, it’s almost over. You get to come home in a few days. Just wait a little while longer.”

I continued to tell her about all the wonderful, cool things we would do together. She seriously digested my words along with her Lunchable. When it was time to head back to the playground, she hugged me as hard as she could and took a final, cold drink. I watched her trudge off, still hot and sticky from the heat, but filled with hope that this uncomfortable time would come to an end.

As I drove away, now with tears in my eyes, I thought of Jesus who sees us through our trials in much the same way. As we cry out to Him to rescue us from the fierce heat of trials and persecution, He comes to us with His reassuring presence, bringing us living waters to revive our parched spirits. He often chooses not to take us out of the trial, but rather to carry us through the heat.

Remember the Old Testament story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego who walked through the fiery flames with the Lord by their side? The ID-100188329king had sentenced them to death for refusing to fall down and worship him, thus casting them into a furnace heated seven times hotter than usual. The king’s wide-eyed incredulity witnessed four men walking around in the midst of the fire. When he called to the three Hebrew boys to come out, he was amazed that not only were they not burned, but there was not even the smell of smoke upon them.

When our spirits are hot and weary from the fiery flames of life, Jesus is waiting to bring comfort. Drink deeply of the icy, cool water of His Word. Allow the Comforter to whisper encouragement to your spirit to be patient a little while longer.

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing;” (1 Peter 4:12-13a NASB).

And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you” (1Peter 5:10).

“And let the one who is thirsty, come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost” (Revelation 22:17b NASB).

Take heart, beloved, the end is in sight.

***

Karen Jurgens has been a high school English and French teacher all her life. She has recently retired and is beginning a ministry to encourage others going through life’s trials. Her current WIP is about her own powerful testimony. She speaks to Christian groups and blogs at KarenJurgens.com.

LivingbyGracepicLet’s talk about this! Are you in a trial right now? How might knowing God sees you and is walking beside you–even carrying you–help? As a parent, do you struggle with seeing your children go through trials? How might remembering God loves and is with them help? During a difficult time, for you our your children, how might focusing on God’s character give you peace and strength? Share some of God’s character traits you find most encouraging. You can share your thoughts here in the comments below or on Facebook at Living by Grace. 

For those of you who have been following my blog tour, here’s where I’ve been this week:

On Friday I visited Everyone’s Story to talk about one word that makes all the difference, regardless what task or endeavor we undertake. You can read my piece here.

On Inspy Romance I finally finished my serial story. You can read the ending here, and if you haven’t been following, you can follow the links on the page to read the other portions of the story.

I’ve been on Shannon Taylor Vannatter’s blog three times this week, sharing a real life romance story, doing a character interview, and on Friday, she’ll post an excerpt. You can read my real life romance here. You can get to know Ainsley, the heroine in Beyond I Do, here.

I also visited Christine Lindsay’s blog to talk about… heart rot. You can read that post here.

Yesterday I received a pleasant surprise when a friend alerted me to a post Shannon Vannatter wrote, in which she mentioned a fun memory, my second novel, and why she purchased a copy of Beyond I Do. You can read that here.

Today I’m on Zoe McCarthy’s sharing my thoughts on something that will probably get me in trouble. 😉 You can read that post here.

Have a blessed fall day. 🙂

 

The Blessings of Trials

I’m formatting this post through tear-blurred vision, amazed once again by God’s mercy and grace. Those who know me personally know I’m not the most advanced-thinking, detail-oriented writer on the web. Lately, with book edits and launch responsibilities, this has proved more true ID-100160717than ever. The result–I don’t often read the guest posts authors send me until the last minute. (Which can result in scrambling if I find what my guest has written isn’t a good fit. You’d think I’d learn.)

Similarly, with the gunk I’ve faced these past two years, you’d think I’d learn … to choose to praise when I want to isolate. To persevere when I’d rather stay in bed. To lean on Christ, who’s strength is made perfect in my weakness, when I feel defeated.

I’m learning. Slowly, and at times with gritted teeth.

Profile Pic mainLong intro to say, today is one of those days, and just when I was beginning to slip into poor-me mode, I read Misty Beller’s post on trials and reminded myself once again, God is in the gunk and the glorious, and He can and does use every tear, trial, and triumph for eternal good.

The Blessings of Trials by Misty Beller

“That which does not kill us makes us stronger.”

I’m not sure who came up with this nifty saying, but for so many years it’s been my life’s motto.

The fact is, trials happen. Life is hard. But through the pain, God has taught me two vital truths.

  1. Sometimes you just have to buckle down and get through it.

Over the last year, my family’s gone through a lot of hard “stuff”, from a miscarriage, to an accident where my husband broke multiple bones in his face and neck. Since then he’s had six surgeries, each rendering him mostly an invalid for about four weeks, and me the sole breadwinner and caregiver for our girls, age seven and three. There were so many times that I could only take one day—one hour—at a time. There was no room to worry about the future, I could only buckle down and focus on what had to be done in the next hour.

But that was a hard lesson for this former control-freak to learn. It took God stripping away layers of my perceived ability to control. I couldn’t know which doctor appointment would bring to light more broken bones, requiring immediate surgery. I couldn’t know when the call would come from the babysitter that one of the girls had thrown up five times in the last hour. God was the only one who could see ahead, and I had to trust that He would bring us through it. There was no other option for me.

  1. The blessings can’t come without the trials.

This concept didn’t become crystal clear for me until recently. It’s not just that God will bless us through the hard times, with patience and strength, and maybe a few token bright spots. But it’s not possible to receive the best He has in store for us, unless we go through the hard times. Kind of like looking at a river on a map. You can’t reach the ocean until you’ve followed the path of the river.

My writing journey is a great example of this. There were so many times I thought I’d found the perfect avenue for my book. An agent or editor would send an optimistic response to my initial query, and they would ask for the full manuscript. But God gently shut each of the wrong doors, opening little windows of light in the direction He had planned. At the end of the day, I’m so thankful for the “No” answers I received, because they brought me to the point where I could see Him pointing toward the right door. And now, my debut novel The Lady and the Mountain Man released in September, and I have no doubt I’m exactly where God has planned for me in my writing journey. But I wouldn’t be here now if it weren’t for the awful times of rejection and uncertainty and frustration.

These two truths aren’t new, and may seem fairly obvious. But when you’re in the darkest times, wondering if you’ll even make it to morning, knowing these two facts—along with the absolute truth of God’s love for you, His child—may be just what you need to see the light. I know that’s been the case for me.

I’ll be praying God blesses you with perseverance and the fullness of His plan for your life, even through the hard times.

Blessings,

Misty

***

Misty Beller was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and two daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Writing is a dream come true for Misty. Her family—both immediate and extended—is the foundation that holds her secure in that dream.

You can find Misty on her website, blog, Goodreads, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

Mountain Man coverThe Lady and the Mountain Man back cover blurb:

Leah Townsend, a recently orphaned heiress, flees Richmond after discovering her fiancé’s plot to kill her after their wedding. She needs a safe place to hide, and finds herself accepting a newspaper marriage proposal from a God-fearing young rancher in the Montana Territory. But when Leah arrives at the mountain ranch, she learns her intended husband was killed by a grizzly, leaving behind a bitter older brother and a spunky younger sister.

When Gideon Bryant finds a city girl standing in his log cabin, his first thought is to send her back where she came from. He’s lost too many people to the wild elements of these mountains––his parents, his wife, and now his brother. His love for this untamed land lives on, but he’s determined not to open his heart to another person.

But when an accident forces Leah to stay at the ranch for seven more months, can Gideon protect his heart from a love he doesn’t want? Has Leah really escaped the men who seek her life?

Buy it here:

On Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

livingbygracepic.jpLet’s talk about this. When I’m going through a tough time, physically or emotionally, it’s easy to focus on the here and now and forget the eternal. But God is ever faithful to remind me of His sovereignty and love, a love that is bigger than anything this sin-cursed world can throw our way. And He sees. He knows. He cares, and He is always working to mold and equip us and to fulfill His eternal plan.

Eternal. I often lose sight of that, but in truth, trials are a tangible reminder that this world is not our home. (Praise God for that!)

What about you? When have you received blessings from your trials? How has a trial (grief, sickness, material struggles, etc.) encouraged you to remember and focus on the eternal?

Share your thoughts here in the comments below or at Living by Grace on Facebook.

And now, for those of you who aren’t on FB, here’s where I’ve been this week.

Yesterday I shared an article on Rest Ministries that fits quite well with today’s theme. In it I share how God has used my chronic illnesses to bless and grow my family. You can read this piece here.

Yesterday I also learned my debut novel had been nominated for the fiction category of the ECPA awards. Yay!

Today I’m on Deborah Piccurelli’s chatting about my novel, where the inspiration for the story came from, and how I hope the story will impact my readers. You can read the interview here.

Deborah also read and reviewed my novel. I enjoyed reading her perspective of the story. You can read her review here.

I also did a book give-away on fellow author Sara Ellen’s blog, one which she has extended. So, if you haven’t read my novel yet and would like a chance to win it, or if you’d like to win it as a gift for a friend, you can enter the drawing here.

Author Catherine Castle invited me to visit with her readers on her blog. You can join our chat here.

On Monday I stopped by Jessica Everingham’s to talk about living a life without regret. You can read this post here.

That’s my week. (Most of it, anyway.) What about you? What have you been up to? What has God been showing you?

On Monday I talked about the life-transformaing power of grace on Wordsmith Woman. You can read that post here.

Hope Lives Here: Lost and Found

Janet w leather scarf 1Today I am thrilled to have Janet Bly, widow to the legendary Stephen Bly who passed away in 2011, as my guest. I was honored to read and review her husband’s last novel, Stuart Brannon’s Final Shot, and I loved it! But what I loved even more than the Stephen’s literary genius was the fact that Janet and her sons finished the novel after Stephen’s passing. What a way to honor a husband and father! Today, Janet speaks on hope–something I believe is crucial to mankind’s survival. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, mankind can endure heartache and trials unimaginable, if they have hope. But if hope is gone … Today Janet shares the story of one woman who was in the depths of despair and found hope through the love and words of a faithful friend.

But before we go any further, I wanted to announce the winner of Arkansas Weddings by Shannon Taylor Vannatter!

SusanMSJ, congrats! You won a copy of Shannon’s novel. I’ll shoot you an email soon to find out how best to get this novel to you.  And for the rest of you that didn’t win this go round, no worries! Another give-away starts today! Winner will be selected randomly from the comments below and will when one of Janet Bly’s books!

Teri finally got her life together. She had endured years of a long series of deadends, painful losses, and tragedy. But that was the past. Now she had a loving husband, three wonderful children, and no major crises.

Then her husband plotted a surprise. He had found a way to find her two other children she had lost contact with long ago.

“I was 21,” Teri explains, “an orphaned divorcee with only a basic education. My first husband had an intact extended family, education, and financial resources. He got custody of our kids.” Eventually, due to circumstances beyond her control, she no longer knew where they were.

Her husband’s news delighted her. She would be complete now. “I had in my hands a computer printout that told me all about my firstborn son. He was 5’10” tall, weighed 160 pounds, had hazel eyes, dark brown hair. He started driving on his 16th birthday, the year before. I also had a contact phone number.” Then Teri noticed a word that chilled her: “Deceased!”

Why was that on the page? Deceased? That couldn’t be true. How could my son be dead?

A police report was included: suicide. Teri’s mind and emotions shut down in shock.

“My heart turned dark. I felt God was out to get me, punish me for my many wrong choices. It was like a cruel joke. My poor husband tried to do what he could, but I felt I no longer existed. What he meant for joy turned into trauma. He took care of the family because I checked out. My firstborn was dead and later my firstborn daughter refused to meet with me. And who could blame her? I was sure I was the cause of her brother’s death.”

Teri had struggled with depression before and learned how to pull herself out. But not this time. All she felt was hopelessness.

In time, Teri’s hope revived again. But it didn’t just happen. Time by itself healed nothing for her. She needed time plus gutsy love. Teri’s load was lightened when a certain someone sat beside her and listened while she poured out her soul. When someone had the right words and actions at a critical juncture. God worked through her family and also a special friend to soften and redirect her exploding anger, gripping regrets, and gaping wounds of sorrow.

God uses people to kindle hope. Human relationships are among His finest gifts. We need at least one capable, willing confidante. Someone who has been trained in the fires of experience and the furnace of faith. Someone who will come alongside, go through the stuff of life with us. Or you can be that person for another.

 

BlyBook HopeLivesHere1AFind out more about how Teri survived in Hope Lives Here.

Today, shut out the world for a few minutes and treat yourself to one of these 31 short meditations. A month-long devotional guide with true stories, enriched with relevant Scripture passages, and prayers to encourage your heart.
Life offers enough troubles to keep things interesting. You may become impatient for relief under the load of heartbreaking problems. But God’s delays achieve fulfillment of His highest aims. He carefully prepares you for what lies ahead. Hope Lives Here weaves stories of humor and pathos with the display of God’s wisdom and goodness. God brings to each life the people and events designed to reveal the ultimate hope in Christ and keep attention on the future eternal glory of heaven.

Janet Chester Bly is a speaker on women’s issues, relationship challenges, and devotional themes. She authored 11 books, including Words To Live By For Women, Hope Lives Here, God Is Good All The Time, Awakening Your Sense of Wonder, and The Heart of a Runaway. She co-authored with her late husband Stephen Bly 19 other nonfiction and fiction books, including The Power of a Godly Grandparent, The Carson City Chronicles, and The Hidden West Series.

Janet and her 3 sons finished Stephen’s last western novel, Stuart Brannon’s Final Shot. Read about the family project at the Bly Books blog: http://www.blybooks.com/category/finishing-dads-novel/

Website: http://www.blybooks.com/

Check out Hope Lives Here:  http://www.blybooks.com/bookstore/true-life-stories-meditations/

Let’s talk about this. Share a time when you were struggling and someone gave you hope. What did they do or say? How did that help you? Or perhaps you’re on the giving end. Do you have a loved one facing tough circumstances? How can you give them hope without sounding cliche’ or minimizing their feelings? I rarely know the right words to say, so often, I’ll just listen, or maybe send my loved ones a verse or a link to a song. I hope it is enough for them to know I care.

Ultimately, our hope lies in God and God alone and His promise of heaven, but while we are here on His earth, He has given His followers the task of sharing His love, peace, mercy, grace, and hope with others.

LivingbyGracepicI’d love to hear from you! Share your thoughts in the comments below or on Facebook atLiving by Grace. 

In the Storms of Your Life by Lynn Squire

Today’s post comes to us from Lynn Squire, author of Joab’s Fire. Lynn is an avid writer who artistically intertwines Biblical truth with colorful narrative. Her childhood farm life, coupled with her equestrian experiences, brings authenticity and heart to her stories. Lynn actively serves her church through her writing in and in other ministries and is currently the president of the American Christian Fiction Writers San Francisco Bay Area Chapter in California, where she resides with her husband and three children. You can find out more about her and her writing at the following websites:

http://www.PresentingBiblicalTruths.com
http://faithfictionfunandfanciful.blogspot.com/
http://www.lynnsquire.com

In the Storms of Your Life
By Lynn Squire

In the storms of your life, are you hoping for God’s mercy?

Psalm 33:18-19 says:

“Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; to deliver their soul from death and to keep them alive in famine.”

Are you seeking God as a treasure hunter seeks the greatest treasure? If you are, you’ll find Him.

Many seek comfort. Many seek favors. Many believe that if they decide to become a Christian they will find these. Those who come to Christ seeking comfort will find it.

However, many who think God can be manipulated to provide for their wants will be disappointed. These, like the wheat that sprang forth without root, will wither and die.

What do you fear more? The loss of your comforts? The loss of man’s praise? Or God?

“Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in His mercy;”

If you claim to be a Christian, are you placing your hope in His mercy? To do that you first have to acknowledge that you need His mercy. Do you? Do you understand your spiritual state?

A trial comes your way. You think, “God, Why are you doing this?”

You do not receive an answer.

Do you give up on Him? Or do you put your hope on His mercy and acknowledge that He promises to keep you alive, even in famine, for example. That doesn’t mean that He keeps you from being touched by it.

“Our soul waiteth for the LORD: he is our help and our shield.” Psalm 33:20

How we approach our troubles reflects our trust in the Lord. It reflects our faith. When we are faced with disaster, yet praise God and seek His provision—seeking for His hand in the storm—we will find it.

We can wait for Him. He will help us…are you willing to trust Him?

“For our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name.” Psalm 33:21
How do you rejoice in trials?

1. Pass the trials to Him. Tell God about it.

2. Ask Him to supply His comfort through the Comforter.

3. Remember the eternal salvation He brought you through faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

4. Remember His great mercies. We see His mercy when we acknowledge we don’t get what we deserved.

5. Recall His many promises He’s given us in Scripture and meditate on them.

6. Sing to Him. Sing songs of praise. Sing songs that focus on what He has done for you, not what you do for Him or on how hard life is.

7. Rehearse to others every little blessing God has given you, from the food you’ve received to the miracles He’s performed.

“Let thy mercy, O LORD, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.” Psalm 33:22