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UNITY IN THE BODY

Armor of GodWell I heard a message today about putting on the full armor of God and the vulnerable spots we still had though fully dressed. The point he was making was that with other members surrounding Him then he was safe. That was the springboard for my thoughts.

How many times I have heard of the value of the body of Christ. Scripture supports the idea and I believe I tied it into a message that I gave before. Today I stopped to really consider it. Unity in the body of believers is not a reality in the churches I have attended or visited. A few good small churches perhaps have some pockets but that’s it. So if it is a good idea then why is it not like that any and everywhere? Here is some good instruction regarding this.

18 Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, 19 singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. 20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.21 And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

How many people are willing to submit to one another? What is it that holds us back? Here is the prayer Jesus offered up just before His sacrifice began. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me.UNITY

22 “I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one.23 I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.

So it appears that the key to the world at large receiving the gospel is based on our being unified with God and our brothers and sisters. What could possibly stop us from just doing this??

I propose to you that most people in the body of Christ are not willing to trust one another and very likely do not trust God either. How many people grew up in a home where they felt loved, valued, and experienced a great sense of belonging? There are a few such people but very few. What about relational breakdowns and betrayals? How many of us have dated someone who ended up breaking our hearts? Perhaps it happened when you were married or both. You lost your husband/ wife to someone else? Perhaps a best friend? In life we are facing things that are not honoring or above board all the time. The workplace may have been a place of betrayal for you. You worked hard to receive you reward but the reward went to someone else. The boss was won over by seduction rather then work performance. We all have faced something at one time or another in life that has made us wary of our fellow man.37819432-depressed-young-businessman-sitting-wet-under-rain

So we show up at church as a new believer and what do we learn? Do we see the scriptures being played out here? Sadly we will receive messages about what we should be like “ Someday “ but they are chalked up as loft thoughts that might happen with enough attendance and enough bible studies. One day it might just fall into place……. But it doesn’t.

Let me share a true story with you. My wife and I were returning home from a nice visit to South Carolina. The airport there was beautiful. It was springtime and everything was green and full of life. The people working there were friendly and polite that it was sad thing to have to leave. We landed in Newark Airport that just endured a storm that had flights delayed and the airport was filled with frustrated angry people. My wife and I searched for a place to sit and finally found two seats. They were far from our gate and not together. Across from me sat a lady and a man who were engaged in surface conversation. I picked up on the fact that the lady was very nervous and quite upset. After a while the man’s flight was called and he escaped the mayhem.

So now I engage her in conversation but not to talk about the weather. There is something strangely familiar about her pain and I want to know what it is. As we chat she shares with me that she is flying somewhere to pick up her son from the rat Womanfink dad. Ahh there it is. She is freshly wounded from tearing apart the two made one. This pain I was all too familiar with and I wanted to encourage her. As I shared a little of my story I told her how God had picked up the pieces of me and put me back together and that I had even been remarried and was very happy once again. Well that triggered an angry response as she tells me that if she was to ever remarry that there would be so many prenuptial agreements to be signed that he would never get anything in the event of divorce. You see she was very hurt from her last relationship and her short term husband was trying to get all of her assets which spilled over into her dads assets who shared his things with her. I suspect that she felt terrible that her dad’s things were being jeopardized by her choice to marry this guy.

Now throughout our conversation she has been struggling to hold back a flood of tears. She would share something real and then have to cut herself all and say something silly as a method to save herself from coming apart. Her facade has almost completely failed. What if I knew she was not okay but was really broken. Surely then I would strike while she was weak. It may sound silly but when you are hurt and vulnerable this is a real fear. If people see you for what you really are then what? It’s a question that many of us ask ourselves.

So let me finish the story. After some time passes and she seems to have quieted back down I engage her again. My heart was really going out to her because I identified with her pain and suffering and I wanted her out of it. So I go back to the marriage discussion with her and say “ You know you really can’t do that don’t you? ( I am referring to her prenuptial agreement plan ) She responds much like I expected. “ What do you mean that I can’t do that!” I believe it was God who spoke to her through me at that moment. “ If you do that then you will never know love again.” To really know love then we must make ourselves vulnerable to another. Love allows us to view a person with a different lens and to see the person more like God sees them, more like the truth about them. I know that she left with a bit of truth and encouragement that day but ultimately it is up to her what she would choose for herself. Every wall of protection we build potentially cut us off from a source of life.hole in wall

So who’s to blame? I would say you and I are to blame. Rather then walk according to the Spirit of God we walk by our many excuses as to why we are not following Jesus in the ways He laid down for us and prayed for. “But Jesus, The church I went to had nobody doing as you did so I couldn’t break rank could I?” Jesus, “I had been hurt so many times by people that there was just no way I could trust them enough to be in unity.”

As I type these words to page I feel a little sick about how I have settled for the luke warm Christian life. It seems that we are resisting the very thing that Jesus prayed for. I would so love to see revival in my land but I may be the reason in my church that I don’t see it or at the very least, one of the reasons.

We are called to follow Jesus not man. We have figured out by now that man is lost. We are also called to submit one to another….. why?? Out of reverence for Jesus. That is that person who thought you and I were worth losing his life to save ours. He’s that one person who has never lied to me, cheated me, abandoned me and never rejected me. So when He tells me to love my neighbour and to be humble and to submit myself to others for His sake is He doing it to break my heart? My trust? Is He hurting me in some way or can I just trust that if He loves me more then any other person then I know that what He asks of me is good.

luggage  Most of us are still carrying baggage from the past that needs to be released. The walls that we built to imprison us that we thought would protect us need to come down. Wounds that we have need to be dealt with and not just covered up. We need healing and I only know one doctor who is able to help, but the good news is that he will. We just need to show up and surrender our wounds to Him and let Him do the rest. Proverbs 3 : Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Rather then have Jesus ask us “ Why were you not willing to…… let us follow Him and then hear “ Well done my good and faithful……. Or at least that is what I find myself…….. Just Thinking.

“Ponderings of The Shack”

The Shack

Well I am sitting here “Just Thinking “ about the book/ movie called “The Shack”. It was probably my most favorite book of all time. It goes where no one else goes and that is where you get hurt and angry with God. We all know that He is God and that He is good all the time at least that is our confession. When great tragedy strikes you or someone you love our confession is tested and it our confession may be “ I Hate You God!”. I don’t think any of us ever plan this or even see the day coming that we would ever turn against God but yet for many of us it does.

The Shack takes you on a journey of a family that undergoes something horrific and the way it changes each person. It is not a book to create a new theology and to tear down anything though it gets accused of it but it is a book that leads you into the depths of your heart to discover what lies beneath the surface. We all need to really do that because you may be surprised at what you find.

Some real difficult things enter each of our lives at some point along our journey and how we react to them is what makes or breaks us. I have people in my own circle who have suffered things and their reaction to the things has ruined their lives, as they live in a pool of bitterness and unforgiveness. They meditate on the wrongs done to them by others. Well if you live on this planet people are going to do bad things to you that are not fair or just. The answer though is not “ getting them “ back but in forgiveness. Forgiveness is not what good little doobies do because they are just so nice, but is what wise people do so they can get past the wrong done to them and enjoy life again. If you don’t, you won’t. None of us ever feel like forgiving someone who hurt us directly or through a loved one but we want justice and we want them to suffer. We choose to forgive them for the sake of ourselves really. We do it because it is the road to freedom not because they deserve it or you just feel like doing it.37819432-depressed-young-businessman-sitting-wet-under-rain

I am a person who likes the truth whether it is a little painful or not. This book/ movie allows you into a person’s head as they process but ugly stuff and even how a person concludes things be they right or wrong. Today I visited a couple and had time to sit & listen to some of their stories of life. They had to watch their daughter die slowly by being rejected by others her own age. I love my children and would never want them to be rejected but it happens to most people. For this young girl it continued until she took her own life. Her mom had to find her in bed lying in pool of her own blood. I suspect that someone unknowingly murdered her that day with words designed to destroy her self worth. I’m not sure if the person who did that carries the burden of guilt today or if they forgave themselves and learned a huge lesson.

I’m not sure who the parents handled it at the time it happened but even to this day there still is pain. She told me that her peer group would sit at the back of the church and her daughter would join them. They would immediately move and leave her behind. One would assume that church would be a safe place but no rejection knows now bounds. The parents carry no bitterness toward anyone today but I can’t help but think if it was me how I would handle it. That situation would shame me on so many levels that I don’t know if I could recover or avoid killing someone or even a group. But wait I’m a good doobie so I’m sure I would just do all the right things. I am a person. I cannot predict how I would handle it until I am actually there. I would talk to God but how those conversations would go is anyone’s guess. When Christian passed away I had some pretty angry, accusing, screaming “conversations” with God and it shook my relationship with Him.

I suspect my story is not uncommon but I never left my pain all buried where it can’t get light to heal it. The Shack is all about helping people like you and me along their journey and helping us to discover God the person like we may never have known Him before. To all the religious people out there slandering the book/movie that they may have read or NOT I say stop it! This is a fiction that I believe is God inspired as it will bring many people into healing and restore relationships. “The Shack” is one of those gifts that get released by one ordinary man to help us ordinary people with seemingly extraordinary troubles and that is what I find myself “ Just Thinking”

My Moral High Ground

 

 

In the book of wisdom ( Proverbs ) WAR & CONFLICT BOOK
ERA:  WORLD WAR I/PATRIOTISMit says this.

23 “Guard your heart above all else,

For it determines the course of your life.

24 Avoid all perverse talk; stay away from corrupt speech.”

 

This is a safeguard for us that will keep us on the positive side of life. It is hard these days not to be pulled into the negative news stream of the day. The election in the U.S. is long over but the camp that lost has never accepted the outcome. The slanderous things that are spoken out against their own president is going to bring change but not the change they want. When you spew out poison on someone whether it’s a president or your waiter in a restaurant, it will come home to roost, and when it does you will not like it. I know I have done that more then once and I wasn’t happy when I was on the other end of things.

When you hear a story about someone you really need to be careful with the information you get. Our emotions can guide us into jumping on a bandwagon that we shouldn’t be on. It won’t be taking us to any place we want to be. We all hear now about “ judging “ and it being a bad thing. Some of the very people who would say they live by that are judging Donald Trump. Are there exceptions to the rule?

I try and live a good life and treat others with respect and kindness but if you dug all through my past and picked out some of my biggest screw ups you could certainly paint me to be a horrible person and have the records to prove it. So am I my past? Am I not allowed to change and be given another chance?

What is the moral high ground that I am standing on that makes me a better person then say Donald Trump? The truth about us humans is that lots of are natural desires are selfish and our choices are what is best for the “almighty me.” We lust for things and if we think we can get it without being caught then we go for it. That can be material things or a person that we find very attractive. It isn’t love but that person can be used to satisfy MY need.

So what is my point? My point is that unless you have a spotless record you & I really should be treating and speaking things about people that we would want people doing to us. GUARD YOUR HEART! Nobody else will and that is what I find myself…… Just Thinking

 

 

THE GOSPEL OF JESUS

 

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What is that gospel message anyway, and just who is it for? Well I can start by telling you what it isn’t. It is not a message promoting a weekly gathering of people who try and separate themselves from the ungodly. It is not a list of do’s and do nots that we can measure ourselves and those around us. Church has an important role in the life of the believer but the good news that is known on the inside needs to be delivered to those on the outside. The reason the majority of us are on the inside is because someone shared the good news with us when we were knee deep in the mess of our own making.

Here are some great quotes from Jesus Himself that will reveal His character and what His purpose is.

  • For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
  • “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
  • John 6:35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”

 

These are just a few I can think of but you can see even in these few quotes of His that the message He brought was not one of condemnation but is great news as it promises to take you from a lost and deathly ill state to one of life. If we are willing to trust Him with our lives then you will see that He is able to do what He says. It is not a self help program showing you how to be better behaved. The actions of sin are clearly spelled out in the bible so we can all see that we have that disease with no exceptions other then the son of God Himself.

He is still coming to people all over the earth today to receive them into the kingdom and show them a new and better way. You go from only being sort of loved by others that is very conditional, to being adopted into a family where you are wanted & loved. Jesus pays the ransom for you in blood and your name is added to the book of life.

The Spirit of God Himself now resides in you and will lead and teach you how to live this life as a son or daughter of the true king. It is a time to learn and unlearn. The laws of the kingdom of God are very much opposite to the laws we learn here. Since we are citizens of God’s kingdom we learn kingdom ways. If you want to prosper you become good at giving part of what you have away to help someone else. This world is full of lack but the kingdom of God is a kingdom of abundance and fullness. Want to climb the ladder of success now? Then forsake pride and it’s ways and walk in humility, seeing others as greater then yourself.

Although we are now new and different then we were before Jesus saved us, we are not without trials and suffering. These things can be tools to transform our characters into the very likeness of Christ. Seeing God’s faithfulness in these times will establish God as very relevant in your life and His reality in this world. I have a caution for you that I will illustrate with this picture.

Imagine yourself sailing in a land where pirates are plentiful, and there is a pirate ship bearing down on you. You know if you are caught by them that you will be one again made a slave and be tormented the rest of your days. Jesus is your captain and you are the 1st mate. Your blood is pumping fast and your ears are open to every command. You discover that your captain is very skilled and has no fear at all. You begin to realize that although there is danger all around you, that you are safer then you have ever been. His strategies seem odd and you think you know better but you submit to Him and discover that His ways lead to success. You grow in trust and wisdom in this environment and discover more about who you are and who you were created to be. The challenges of this voyage has made you more like your captain.

Now let’s suppose now that you are sailing in a sea that is calm. You are in a land much like the Caribbean that is warm and the scenery is beautiful. You see the palm trees on the islands you sail past and in these waters there are no pirates in sight. You are here with your captain Jesus. He teaches you about the ship and how to sail it. At first you are interested but as time goes on you become distracted and want to relax. You don’t feel that what He is sharing with you is really that important as you see no threats. So you recline in the sun and the voice of Jesus begins to fade away as you drift off to sleep. Drift is the operative word here. If we do not live our lives intentionally then our lives will drift. This strategy of the devil has proven successful against me personally. Once the devil discovers where you are weak he will try and exploit it.

When something wakes us from our sleep we will discover that we have drifted way off course and we are no longer going towards the kingdom. In fact you will be confused as to where you are and what your status really is. Your eyes will not see your captain nor will your ears hear His voice. The person whom you took for granted will be sorely missed. Now we find fear overtaking us and the beauty that was around us when we closed our eyes has gone and now we see pirate flags and ships bearing down on us. We try and get our sailboat to sail quickly away but we realize we never learned everything we needed to know to sail this vessel.

What happens after that is anyone’s guess. It is our reaction to things that will determine the course from this point forward. Some will be captured and taken back to where they began. Some will try and fight the enemy but will just get beat up worse. Some will fall to their knees and cry out for Jesus. Whatever we do we need to remember that our situations are very fluid. Even if we make bad choice after bad choice it is the desire of God that we are restored. He is never looking at you and thinking “ this will teach you to reject or ignore me. I hope you suffer!”. The liar may speak that in your ear but God will never say or think that. While you have breath in your lungs you have the choice to fall to your knees and get right with God. Turn your heart towards Him and you will start to hear and see Him in you life again. He is always within earshot and He has never really abandoned us but why we are in rebellion or going our own way our spiritual senses just fall asleep and remember that God is spirit.

You see God is good and His ways are higher then ours. Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” John 16:11 Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.

You see the gospel of Christ truly is good news for everyone who has an honest look at themselves and see their situation as it truly is. He is the hope of every man and woman alive. If you are a believer now then please don’t keep the good news to yourself like it is a secret. Tell someone for God’s sake! The gospel of Jesus is what I find myself….. Just Thinking

 

 

Norman C

THE FIREPLACE

fireplace

 

As I sat by the fireplace early this morning I seemed to have a million questions for God. I wondered why His power seemed to be absent from my life in these days. I wondered why the things outlined in the bible were not being carried out in my life. I know that I am not able to heal but I also know that He is. He is living within me yet I am seeing nothing. These and other questions flowed from me to Him.

I sat there with my eyes closed waiting for an answer. It seemed that only a few minutes had passed when suddenly the wood I put into the fireplace burst into flames. It gave me a start so my eyes opened and I stared into the flame. I felt that this is what He said to me.

“ Our relationship is much like this fireplace. First you must stir up the coals that are still in there from times past. Coals are the remains of the love that burned so bright between us. Next you add the fuel so there is something to burn. I feel like the fuel is time and interaction that is invested with Him. Without these it would seem odd to be still hoping for a fire.

The first thing you will notice is that smoke will begin to rise. This scent will be picked up by anyone within your surroundings. Not everyone will know what that smell is but it will be a sign. Next the fuel will ignite into a flame. The light that comes from this will be cast out from within. This will enable you to see the next step or two you will make on your path. It will also allow those who are close to you to see what they may not have been able to see in the dark. As the fire continues to burn, warmth will be released that will make a comfortable atmosphere around you. It will draw those who are cold and remember what it is like to be warm.

This is what you are longing for. It is this that you lack. It is here at the fireplace that all the questions you have in your heart will be answered. It is time to make a fire.”

 

Norman & God

December 12th 2016

AFRAID

 

37819432-depressed-young-businessman-sitting-wet-under-rain

 

The life I used to know

has somehow disappeared

The control and order in life

Is now replaced with fear

 

My confidence has been taken away.

Yet I still go through the motions

A part of me is dying

So for comfort I look to potions

 

Where is the God who saved me

Tonight while I feel this doubt

Is He still here with me

Or now alone I walk this out

 

He promised me He’d never leave

I will not be left an orphan

Guess He knew what He was getting

When He made me His own son

 

So by faith, I’ll praise my Father

and I’ll praise the 1st born Son

And I’ll look to find my teacher

Beautiful Holy Spirit, You are the only one.

DAY 1 AT THE WELL

 

wellwall

I am here at the well so to speak, to be alone with the one I love. I had forgotten what it is to come here with You and waiting on You to fill me with the living water that only you have.

below referring the woman at the well

What appears to you to be a chance meeting at the well was not that at all, but rather me being at the place and time that my Father revealed to me. I am who I am and you are who you are. Our Father made us both with great joy and great purpose. I know you feel as though you have missed your time but there are many appointments and opportunities available in one’s life. It is just a matter of you listening and then making it to your appointment. For the woman at the well that appointment changed both her destiny and that of her town’s. You see, not only was she a woman covered and crippled by shame but so also was her town.

The religious system of the Jewish faith had rejected and condemned the Samaritans’ and so hope for them seemed to be lost. Such is the time that you are in as well. The world has chewed up and spit out many and there are many more, who hide their secrets for fear of rejection. As you know, things that are hidden in the dark they will never heal but are an open gate for the tormentors.

How would you like to be one who happens to be at the appointment for someone and reveal to that person that God has not rejected them. Not only that but he has sent you there specifically for them. Would you like to be part of that Norman? A real rescue mission where the rescued are used to rescue those in jeopardy. You know what it is, to be sought out by the Lord, and how it changes things and also De-bunks so many lies.

As much as people say that they don’t believe, or care, they do. The lost are being tormented by the dark messengers of Satan every day. They have been convinced by the lies spoken to them that they are rejected, disqualified and unloved by me. We know that that is simply not the truth. It is time that they know the truth.

FREEDOM FROM BEING LOVED

risk-being-loved-500x500

My mind has been sent on a journey by hearing a quote from a man who knew Jesus in his imperfect life here on earth. In my journey here on earth I have experienced many things. As a young person I grew up in a home where my parents worked hard and we had the things that most children had. We took trips to places and camped and got to see more then many of my friends. The odd thing though is that I never really felt loved at least not always. My parents told me that I was loved just like many of us, but I perceived that receiving love was very much based on how I was performing. How we perceive things like love is very important as it is laid at the foundation of who we are as a person. If this is something weak, distorted or missing then our lives are easily toppled when adversity comes our way.

Since my perception of love was that I was not receiving it I was very needy and tried to convince myself and others that I was strong and did not need to be loved. So this was the lie that I tried to live out but of course it can’t be done with any success. I met a girl who was both beautiful and seemed to fill that need for love that I had and so we married. During the marriage I was faced with many things that I managed to avoid as a single person. With my many insecurities being challenged on a regular basis I became frustrated at every turn. I could no longer stay hidden and saw that I was failing as a husband and father. We had three beautiful children but again I felt I had nothing to offer as a parent and hoped that my wife could cover all those bases. Well divorce finally arrived at our home and my wife left with the children and I was now alone again.

Being alone allows time for reflection and I now was doing plenty of it. When I realized that being alone was a permanent situation I wanted to die. If I had not feared going to hell ( which may not be truth ) I would have done so. I remember one day in I was in the basement sweeping the floor getting ready to move out when I noticed a presence with me. I realized that God had not left me despite my many failures and wrong doings. I spoke out loud and asked Him why He was here when no one else wanted to be with me. I never heard an answer but really felt that He still loved me which seemed silly as I sure didn’t love me.

Well as I had mentioned earlier this need to feel loved was still very much in me so I started to seek out Jesus more as He had something I needed. Not only that but He had seen the worst of me and was still here and ready to love. How could I toss that aside. I was going to church more regularly but discovered that church and personal relationship were two different things. Church was me building friendships with others who had made Jesus a “ something” in their lives. As people we are in a constant state of change and so is our status with Jesus. Perhaps we will have a Christian Social Media site that with have “ Present status with Jesus”. In a public setting like church it was hard for me to receive love as I really didn’t believe people when They said that they loved me. I actually cringed when I heard the words and thought ” oh sure you do”, kind of like saying “ I love beer”. Perhaps it was this that kept me close to Jesus as He was my only source of love. I believed Him and trusted Him and so I could receive love. People I really didn’t trust and my heart was quite guarded from them.

Jesus began to teach me by His Spirit on a regular basis and we were like best friends. If I went to slander my wife to Him He would not hear of it. After I time I just stopped doing it as it was something He would never listen to. He did day to me “ She is not here to teach but you are so let’s work on you”. After a bit there came a change in me that I opened the door to my heart to a select few people. I started to visit a family who always appeared glad to see me. They too loved the Lord and really loved to see what He had to say in the bible. After a time another home open up and I felt like I was a part of their family as well.

I had migrated to a small church and I found the people to be like my real family. I so enjoyed them. It was a wonderful experience and I grew all the more as I was in good ground. Life began to expand and hope returned that life would be worth living. The kids came over on weekends and my friends would love on them which was such a blessing. Things had drastically changed since that day in the basement. He had found me and taken me from the depths of despair to the High Places where things are so bright and the air so invigorating. He even taught me so things about marriage and then brought me a wife that was more than I could have asked or hoped for.

Well I have traveled many miles since then and God has always had a home or two with people who loved me ( and now my wife ) and a place where I am loved for the person I am right now. In order to be truly free I must be open to receive love from my friends, family and strangers and there needs to be a dedicated love supply line attached to God when all three of them pour into you. I have such a line and mine has a valve on it which I control. I have made the mistake of cutting it back to near off when things happened that shook my trust in Them. Without that love flowing into my love tank I began to fall back into things like environmental control, self-protection and became a guarded person again as fear replaced love and lies became plausible. The wrench that opens the valve controlling God’s love is called trust. I couldn’t seem to find that wrench for a time.

This world and the dark ruler in it are trying to sever the line of love from God to every one of us at every moment of every day. He has more counterfeits for true love then there are hairs on my…. well my wife’s head. Much like Donald Trump’s solution of building a wall to create safety and protection I concluded that the same method would stop pain. I built one quietly around my heart thinking I was now protected when in fact I was now a prisoner. The most important thing in our lives is the ability to receive God’s love. Without His love we are empty vessels with many cracks and very unhappy. We often take solace in the fact that the majority of people are using one of those many counterfeits that the devil supplies.Then he convinces us what he offers is all there is. “Everyone is doing this so it must be right!” It isn’t! Freedom comes from knowing you are loved just as you are and that is what I find myself……… Just Thinking

Agonizing over Habakkuk

I wrote this a few years ago and recently rediscovered it. I thought others out there may identify with it and perhaps help with healing in some way.

Habakkuk 3

Even though the fig trees have no blossoms,
and there are no grapes on the vines;
even though the olive crop fails,
and the fields lie empty and barren;
even though the flocks die in the fields,
and the cattle barns are empty,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
He makes me as surefooted as a deer,[e]
able to tread upon the heights.

Even though Christian’s appetite is weak,

And his skin color is still yellow

The meat on his bones continues to vanish

And his strength is replaced with weakness

The cancer continues to grow and causes

Him to suffer great pain

Yet ………. Can I rejoice in the Lord? Do I trust that His strength will sustain us in this hour?

Will He again move in my life and lift us out of this pit?

 

Last night as I was going to sleep I heard Christian screaming. His mother exhausted from an endless shift of being mother and nurse tried to bring comfort to her son. Dad who is also battle weary from trying his best to lead and protect his family was with his pastor and a few of his friends being encouraged. I sat here in my room not knowing what to do. I felt like the men in the trenches who listened to the taunts of Goliath the giant. I wanted to go up and fix the problem but I felt powerless. Shame draped over me like a wet blanket So I sat on the floor and prayed however I felt like prayer wasn’t enough. I wondered if He heard me. My faith was waning. Then a bombardment of thoughts came to me causing me question was I of any value. Had I failed my family here? Where is the God whom I carry in this time of trial? Then I wonder about waiting on the Lord and searched out the verse and found this. I found more than I expected and felt like I was being spoken to personally.

 

Isaiah 26 Look up into the heavens.
Who created all the stars?
He brings them out like an army, one after another,
calling each by its name.
Because of his great power and incomparable strength,
not a single one is missing.
27 O Norman, how can you say the Lord does not see your troubles?
O son, how can you say God ignores your rights?

28 Have you never heard?
Have you never understood?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of all the earth.
He never grows weak or weary.
No one can measure the depths of his understanding.
29 He gives power to the weak
and strength to the powerless.
30 Even youths will become weak and tired,
and young men will fall in exhaustion.
31 But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.

 

And so once again I hear the voice of my heavenly Father and I am brought back to the path of truth. Though I still don’t know what will unfold in the days ahead I can trust that the one in whom I have trusted in the past will continue to be who He is in the future. He is not a man that He should lie and it is He who is always good, always pure and truly is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

So yes I can now come into agreement with Habakkuk and say:

18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
He makes me as surefooted as a deer,[e]
able to tread upon the heights.

 

Friday, December-21-12

Hab3.17-18

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