When Nothing Makes Sense To Us, Praise Him!

John 9: 1-3 As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.

 Nobody will ever outgrow Scriptures. I have read John 9 countless times. Yet today was different. First of all, the whole chapter gave me goose bumps and teary eyes. But the things that struck me was the fact that this man or his parents have done nothing wrong. (This does not mean they were sinless)  It was decided since he was in the womb to be born blind because God had a plan that He shared with no one. His plan was to use this man years down the road to open his eyes and redeem his soul. He also wanted to share with those willing to believe, that He was indeed the son of God.  He also wanted to share with his disciples, use it as a stumbling block to the Jews who were dead set against His teachings and also share with us today so that we might be comforted and learn to trust His plans for us. Without knowing what God was doing in the background, this man was called to live out a lifelong blindness as a beggar, with no hope.

But, imagine being this man’s parents to find out your beautiful baby boy is born blind. The pain this must have caused them and all the unanswered questions they must have had. There is no doubt since the Jews regarded this as the effect of sin, that they had no compassion for the man and perhaps people were pointing fingers at the parents too. This man’s life has been affected completely since he grew up with his blindness well through adulthood.  

 I guess the reason I had teary eyes and goose bumps was the display of God’s sovereignty, the way He design things for us, through us and in spite of us. We are wrong to think God NEEDS us to receive glory because if we do not do it because of our love for Him and gratefulness for who He is, then the stones will cry out. (Luke 19:40)

Sometimes we cannot explain why life is what it is. Our endless trials and grievous calamities have purposes we have no way of knowing the impact and the depth unless we keep going on, in faith and steadfastness. We can find strength to go because we know He is Sovereign, He is a just God,  His goodness is beyond measure and His compassion limitless. In His appointed time, He will bring it all together for us.

 So, would you please find the strength in Him to hang in there even when nothing makes sense to you? In Him there is healing and there is hope.

PRAYER:

 Holy, Lord God Almighty, Heaven and earth are full of your glory. We praise you and worship you. We give you thanks for who you are. You are worthy to receive Glory and honor. Great are the works of your hands, Hosanah in the highest. Lord I pray that you would bring relief to the heart of those who are in pain. I pray that you would put your healing touch on them, and give them the patience needed to go through it all. Please give them such confidence in you that they would not be able to deny your presence. May your grace fall upon them. May you guide their actions, protect them from the evil one who is able to use their sorrow against them and against you. Through the darkness that surrounds them right now, may you become their light and allow them to see you through their despair. Most of all my Lord may their sorrow be used for your glory. To you be the glory my redeemer and I love you with all that I am, so please hear my plea. 

A Four Fold Salvation — Part 16 Last One

A Fourfold Salvation

Arthur Pink, 1938

The theme of Exodus is redemption—how striking, then, to see that God begins His work of redemption by making His people to groan and cry out under their bondage! The portion Christ bestows is not welcome—until we are made sick of this world.  no one tmp_220513_p6rDw7oTIv2JFRVM

Second, in Exodus 12 we have a picture of God’s people being delivered from the penalty of sin. On the Passover night, the angel of death came and slew all the firstborn of the Egyptians. But why spare the firstborn of the Israelites? Not because they were guiltless before God—for all had sinned and come short of His glory. The Israelites, equally with the Egyptians, were guilty in His sight, and deserving of unsparing judgment. It was at this very point that the grace of God came in and met their need. Another was slain in their place—and died in their stead. An innocent victim was killed and its blood shed, pointing to the coming of “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” The head of each Israelite household sprinkled the lamb’s blood on the lintel and posts of his door and hence the firstborn in it was spared from the avenging angel. God promised, “when I see the blood—I will pass over you” (Exo. 12:13). Thus Israel was saved from the penalty of sin—by means of the lamb dying in their stead.
Third, Israel’s wilderness journey adumbrated the believer’s

salvation from the power of sin. Israel did not enter Canaan immediately upon their exodus from Egypt—they had to face the tribulations and trials of the desert, where they spent forty years.

But what a gracious and full provision did God make for His people! Manna was given them daily from heaven—a figure of that food which God’s Word now supplies for our spiritual nourishment. Water was given from the smitten rock—emblematic of the Holy Spirit sent by the smitten Christ to dwell within us—John 7:38, 39. A cloud and a pillar of fire guided them by day and guarded them by night, reminding us of how God directs our steps, and shields us from our foes. Best of all, Moses, their great leader, was with them, counseling, admonishing, and interceding for them. This is a figure of the Captain of our salvation, “Lo I am with you always.”
Fourth, the actual entrance of Israel into the promised land foreshadowed the believer’s glorification, when he enters into the full enjoyment of that possession which Christ has purchased for him.

The experiences Israel met with in Canaan have a double typical significance. From one viewpoint they presaged the conflict which faith encounters while the believer is left upon earth, for as the Hebrews had to overcome the original inhabitants of Canaan before they could enjoy their portion, so faith has to surmount many obstacles if it is to “possess its possessions,” The land of milk and honey into which Israel entered after the bondage of Egypt and the hardships of the wilderness which were left behind—were manifestly a figure of the Christian’s portion in Heaven after he is forever done with sin in this world.

“You shall call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21). First, He shall save them from the pleasure or love of sin by bestowing a nature which hates it—this is the great miracle of grace. Second, He shall save them from the penalty or punishment of sin, by remitting all its guilt—this is the grand marvel of grace. Third, He shall save them from the power or dominion of sin, by the workings of His Spirit—this reveals the wondrous might of grace. Fourth, He shall save them from the presence or in being of sin—this will demonstrate the glorious magnitude of grace. May it please the Lord to bless these elementary but most important articles to many of His little ones, and make their “big” brothers and sisters smaller in their own esteem

A Four Fold Salvation — Part 15

A Fourfold Salvation

Arthur Pink, 1938 

 Not so much is revealed in Scripture on this fourth aspect of our subject, for God’s Word was not given us to gratify curiosity. Yet sufficient light is made known to feed faith, strengthen hope, draw out love, and make us “run with patience, the race that is set before us.” In our present state we are incapable of forming any real conception of the bliss awaiting us—yet as Israel‘s spies brought back the bunch of “the grapes of Eschol” as a sample of the good things to be found in the land of Canaan—so the Christian is granted a foretaste and earnest of his inheritance in glory.

“Until we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ” (Eph. 4:13). It is to the image of a glorified Christ, that we are predestinated to be conformed. Behold Him on the Mount of Transfiguration, when a foreview of His glory was granted the favored disciples. Such is the dazzling splendor of His person, that Saul of Tarsus was temporarily blinded by a glimpse of it; and the beloved John in the isle of Patmos “fell at His feet as dead” (Rev. 1:17), when he beheld Him.

That which awaits us can best be estimated, as it is contemplated in the light of God’s wondrous love. The portion which Christ Himself has received, is the expression of God’s love for Him; and as the Savior has assured His people concerning His Father’s love unto them, “and You have loved them—as You love Me” (John 17:23), and therefore, as He promised, “where I am—there you may be also” (John 14:3).

But is not the believer forever done with sin at death? Yes, thank God, such is the case! Yet that is not his glorification, for his body goes to corruption, and that is the effect of sin. It is written of the believer’s body, “It is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body” (1 Cor. 15:42-44). Nevertheless, at death itself the Christian’s soul is entirely freed from the presence of sin. This is clear from, “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor” (Rev. 14:13). What is signified by “they will rest from their labor?” Why, something more blessed than ceasing from earning their daily bread by the sweat of their brows, for that will be true of the unsaved also. Those who die in the Lord rest from their “labors” with sin—their painful conflicts with indwelling corruption, Satan, and the world. The fight which faith now wages—is then ended and full relief from sin is theirs forever!

The fourfold salvation from sin of the Christian, was strikingly typified in God’s dealings with the Nation of Israel of old. First we have a vivid portrayal of their deliverance from the pleasure or love of sin, “And the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage. And God heard their groaning” (Exo. 2:23, 24). What a contrast does that present from what we read of in the closing chapters of Genesis! There we hear the king of Egypt saying to Joseph, “The land of Egypt is before you—in the best of the land make your father and brethren to dwell; in the land of Goshen” (47:6). Accordingly we are told, “And Israel dwelt in the land of Egypt, in the country of Goshen; and they had possessions therein, and grew and multiplied exceedingly” (47:27). Now Egypt is the Old Testament symbol of the world, as a system opposed to God. And it was there, in the “best part” of it, the descendants of Abraham had settled. But the Lord had designs of mercy and something far better for them—yet before they could appreciate Canaan—they had to be weaned from Egypt. Hence we find them in cruel bondage there, smarting under the lash of the taskmasters. In this way they were made to loathe Egypt and long for deliverance therefrom.

Leonard Ravenhill Quotes On Repentance

“The first epistle of John is merely an exposition of the new birth.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

 “Holiness is not a luxury, it’s a necessity. If you’re not holy, you’ll never make it to Heaven [Heb. 12:14].” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“Without holiness, no one shall see the Lord. Jesus didn’t die to save us from Hell. That’s a fringe benefit! He died to get total occupation of us. To be holy in speech…in actions…in everything. We want to give God our lousy sins. What do you think He does with them? He wants your will…He wants that career of yours…He wants that selfish heart not to live in selfishness.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“If weak in prayer, we are weak everywhere.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“A sinning man stops praying; a praying man stops sinning.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“If you tell me this, I’ll tell you how spiritual you are: will you tell me how much you pray. Brother, I’m not interested if you’re booked up ten years; I’m not concerned about how many books you’ve read, how many doctorates you have or how large your church is, tell me how much you pray!” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“If Jesus had preached the same message that ministers preach today, He would never have been crucified.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“What’s the condition of America like, spiritually, tonight? Zero. Why? Because we’ve got blind men coming out of seminaries. Men there don’t teach them; they don’t hear a word about Hell. They’re blind themselves, and as blind men, they lead the blind and they go to Hell.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Hell has No Exits.”

“You won’t become a saint by studying your Bible; you’ll become a saint by living it.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Hell has No Exits.”

“Are the things you are living for worth Christ dying for?” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“The cross is going to judge everything in your life: your eating, your drinking, your sleeping, your spending, your talking. Everything is cross-examined!” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“They’re called in the Scripture the Beatitudes. You know why they’re called the Beatitudes without being prestigious? Because they should be the attitudes of every believer. That’s the normal Christian life, not the abnormal Christian life. The normal Christian life is holiness.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Hell has No Exits.”

“If you’re going to be a true Christian, I’ll tell you one thing amongst others: it’ll be a lonely life. It’s a narrow way and it becomes narrower and narrower and narrower.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“Great eagles fly alone; great lions hunt alone; great souls walk alone—alone with God. Such loneliness is hard to endure, and impossible to enjoy unless God accompanied. Prophets are lone men; they walk alone, pray alone and God makes them alone.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Why Revival Tarries.”

“All you have to do is get in a closer walk with God and you’ll find your enemies are in your own church.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“If a Christian is not having tribulation in the world, there’s something wrong!” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“Why in God’s name do you expect to be accepted everywhere? How is it the world couldn’t get on with the holiest man that ever lived, and it can get on with you and me?” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“The early Church was married to poverty, prisons and persecutions. Today, the church is married to prosperity, personality, and popularity.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“We have too many preacherettes preaching too many sermonettes to too many Christianettes smoking cigarettes.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“The best title of the [professing] church of God today, in my judgment, is ‘Unbelieving Believers.'” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“You know, we’re the most undisciplined generation the world has ever known…how many of you are disciplined? How many go to bed at the same time every night, get up every morning at the same time? How do you discipline your appetites, how do you discipline your tongue? We’re the most weak, effeminate Christianity the world has ever had—no wonder nobody wants it. It has no strength, it has no character…” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Hell has No Exits.”

“The king in America…you say there isn’t one. Yes there is, his name is King Sport and his wife is Queen Entertainment.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“Entertainment is the devil’s substitute for joy. The more joy you have in the Lord the less entertainment you need…when you can say, ‘Thou, O Christ, art all I want.’ But listen, be careful: it may strip you of everything else you have; you may lose some of your best friends who think you’re fanatical; they don’t mind you being kind or good, but you become holy and zealous…” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“Your doctrine can be as straight as a gun barrel…and just as empty!” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

“He cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue.’ You know what? That man is going to be chewing his own tongue for a million years [in Hell] and he’ll see people sitting at the marriage supper of the Lamb drinking the wine of the ages.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill, sermon, “Hell has No Exits.”

“The sinner’s prayer has sent more people to Hell than all the bars in America.” ~ Leonard Ravenhill

Courtesy of: http://www.truthsource.net/quotes/?q_sort=authors_list&sort_author=Leonard_Ravenhill

A Four Fold Salvation — Part 14

A Fourfold Salvation

Arthur Pink, 1938 

Therefore, when it is said that the believer “allows not” the evil of which he is guilty, it means that he seeks not to justify himself or throw the blame on someone else, as both Adam and Eve did. That the Christian allows not sin is evident by his shame over it, his sorrow for it, his confession of it, his loathing himself because of it, his renewed resolution to forsake it.

IV. Salvation from the PRESENCE of Sin.

We now turn to that aspect of our subject which has to do solely with the future. Sin is yet to be completely eradicated from the believer’s being, so that he shall appear before God without any spot or blemish. True, this is his legal status even now—yet it has not become so in his present experience. As God views the believer in Christ, he appears before Him in all the excellency of his Sponsor; but as God views him as he yet is in himself (and that He does do so is proved by His chastenings), He beholds all the ruin which the Fall has wrought in him. But this will not always be the case—no, blessed be His name, the Lord is reserving the best wine for the last. And even now we have tasted that He is gracious—but the fullness of His grace will only be entered into and enjoyed by us, after this world is left behind.

Those Scriptures which present our salvation as a future prospect are all concerned with our final deliverance from the very presence of sin. To this Paul referred when he said, “Now is our salvation nearer than when we believed” (Romans 13:11)—not our salvation from the pleasure, the penalty, or the power of sin—but from its very presence! “For our citizenship is in Heaven—from whence we also look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil. 3:20). Yes, it is the “Savior” we await, for it is at His return, that the whole election of grace shall enter into their full salvation; as it is written, “Unto those who look for Him—shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation” (Heb. 9:28). In like manner, when another Apostle declares, “We are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time” (1 Peter 1:5), he had reference to this grandconsummation of the believer’s salvation, when we shall be forever rid of the very presence of sin!

Our salvation from the pleasure of sin is effected by Christ’s taking up His abode in our hearts, “Christ lives in me” (Gal. 2:20). Our salvation from the penalty of sin was secured by Christ’s sufferings on the Cross where He endured the punishment due our iniquities. Our salvation from the power of sin is obtained by the gracious operations of the Spirit, whom Christ sends to His people—therefore is He designated “the Spirit of Christ” (Romans 8:9 and cf. Gal. 4:6). Our salvation from the presence of sin will be accomplished at Christ’s second advent, “We are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior. He will take these weak mortal bodies of ours and change them into glorious bodies like his own!” (Phil. 3:20, 21). And again we are told, “We know that when He shall appear—we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2). It is all of Christ from beginning to end.

Man was originally created in the image and likeness of God, reflecting the moral perfections of his Maker. But sin came in and he fell from his pristine glory, and by that Fall—God’s image in him was broken and His likeness marred. But in the redeemed that image is to be restored, yes, they are to be granted a far higher honor than what was bestowed upon the first Adam—they are to be made like the last Adam. It is written, “Those God foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son” (Romans 8:29). This blessed purpose of God in our predestination, will not be fully realized until the second coming of our Lord—then it will be that His people shall be completely emancipated from the thralldom and corruption of sin. Then shall Christ “present to Himself, a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault” (Eph. 5:27).

Salvation from the pleasure or love of sin takes place at our regeneration; salvation from the penalty or punishment of sin occurs at our justification; salvation from the power or dominion of sin is accomplished during our practical sanctification; salvation from the presence or inbeing of sin is consummated at our glorification, “Whom He justified, them He also glorified” (Romans 8:30).

What Is Spiritual Growth?

Years ago, I remember getting on the bandwagon when people were talking about the Israelites in the wilderness and the fact that they missed out on God’s plan for them. If I was writing down all the derogatives comments made about the Israelites for having God right there with them yet they failed, I would have enough material to create a book by now. As I grow spiritually, I realized how juveniles those comments were. We can afford to make such comments because we truly do not know God the way we think we do. If we did, we would learn through God that there is no difference between us and the Israelites when it comes to serving and loving Him.

As the matter of fact, we do not only have Christ in front of us as a cloud and our high priest, we also have Him inside of us, so in a way, we are worse than the Israelites. We are stubborn people, we enjoy living a double life, hence why we do not want anything to do with a life of abandonment at His feet. We follow after anyone willing to dilute the gospel to make things easier for us. We are great at giving Him lip service. Not interested in anyone’s report that does not match what we want to hear. We have hard hearts, idols coming out of our ears, and we are fascinated by what the world has to offer, and the list goes on. 

The key thing here is “spiritual growth.” Spiritual growth isn’t about how active you are for God, or about accumulating knowledge. While these things make us feel good, and even the Church tends to evaluate most of their staff and what they label mature Christians, by accumulated knowledge. But, that’s not what God’s word value, for spiritual growth. Rather, it’s a process by which we are slowly becoming more and more like Christ while taking on His characters.   

As we grow spiritually, God keeps pushing the veil back for us which takes away the limitations God put on us after we died spiritually when Adam and Eve sinned. Only as we let Him remove the veil in increment that we understand how much we human beings have a limited understanding of the depth of spiritual growth. Imagine with me that God is working in each one of us to make us like Christ. Now, picture Christ’s character and everything He was when He walked the earth, then picture yourself and tell me in comparison to Christ you do not see almost an impossible challenge. If you can see the difference between the two, you will be able to accept the fact that there is so much work to be done that it is almost discouraging. Yet, the task is not impossible to God, all He asks is that we make every effort to keep up with Him so that He can prepare us for the future life.

Christ first Sermon was the Sermon on the Mount and should be a very good starting point for us. In reality this sermon signifies the starting point of our spiritual life. I was made to understand that I did not have to worry about the Sermon on the Mount and that God would work it out in me even after I die. As I walk closer with Christ, I found out this is something He needs to work in me and you now, and it is just the beginning of a life in spiritual adulthood as we leave behind the child life stage. As the Holy Spirit enlightened me to see the starting point with Him, it made me sad to see how today Church is trapped in a perpetual infancy stage – like the Pharisees.

Sure there is an ultimate end to our spiritual growth when we will see Him face to face just like He is. But like the Spirit taught me, there is nothing that limits Him from working most of it in us right here right now, except us getting in His way.

2 Peter 1:3-8 New International Version (NIV) Confirming One’s Calling and Election  “3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

I worry when I hear people say: “may be it is His plan for you and not for me” to grow so much in Him. This excuse has become so universal that I can only see Satan in the midst of it all. How then can we read the Bible, even reading verses like 2 Peter 1:3-8, then still not moving forward like we are participating in a course for our lives? If we truly get the gist of the Bible, how then can we explain that most of us are not making the commitment to follow hard after Him? Something is amiss. 

We are so blinded that we lie to ourselves, yet we walk around as if God cannot see our excuses and the lies we tell ourselves to avoid a real commitment to Him. You are also kidding yourself if you think you can get there without making a painful mental effort to commit wholeheartedly to this walk. This is not a commitment to do more, but a commitment from the heart that says I want to stop playing with Christianity and learn to see things from His standpoint. I want to get to know Him intimately and I need to make things right with Him. 

Think of it this way and test yourself. If you cannot find it in you after you claim to be Christian for decades, to commit wholeheartedly to Him, how do you expect your work to pass the test of the fire? Because not being able to take that mental step to abandon yourself to Him, should be your answer.

Take the step to let the Spirit moves freely in your life!

The Never-Forsaking God

As I was reading Oswald Chambers today, I cringed, because I could still taste this lesson in my soul. You see it is easy to repeat those words and feel good about ourselves. It is easy to get all sentimental thinking, ‘I have His promise for ever He will not forsake me no matter what.’ Then we go on with a false assurance thinking that everything is be “groovy”. I know it because until I understood Salvation from God’s point of view, if someone would have told me that there was more to it than feeling good about reading these things, I would have been very unhappy. Why? Because when we live in our ignorance, it is not that we do not know something is missing, but we do not dare go deeper to find out what is missing. Somehow in our mind we convince ourselves to remain just where we are and live with some kind of emotional Christianity all the while convincing ourselves that God is satisfied and all is well.

 Imagine my surprise during the wilderness time that I was experiencing with Him, a time where my soul was already isolated, wounded, and hollow. I found out it was important to Him that these beautiful words I so treasure in my head and felt so good about, had to make their way to my heart. Frankly, I could not understand what God’s problem was since I was feeling so good when I read these things? Just the fact that they made me feel so good toward Him should be enough for Him. Besides, nobody ever told me there was another layer to it, so why was the Holy Spirit rocking my boat?

 You see, true Christianity demands that those words, enter our heads, go down to our hearts, where the Holy Spirit weave them in us. At that time, God made me experience the coolness of having ears in our hearts. I remember saying, wow! I have ears in my heart. Since this experience persisted and I woke up the next morning as if someone had put my ears in my heart and those two ears I have attached to my head, were completely irrelevant. In fact they were useless to God. Then I ask Him “why is it I only hear with my heart?” That’s when the Spirit explained things to me. Suffice to say I lived out three awesome days where I could have been deaf and it would not have mattered to me because I had a different set of ears which I found out is part of the new heart.

 There is a big difference between hearing with our heads and hearing with our hearts. The Pharisees who missed out on Christ, one of their problems was that the word of God could never take root within. All they possessed of their religion, was part of their intellect and they felt holier than thou, yet, that was enough for them. This is us today, if we insist living shallow lives and never let the Holy Spirit move freely in our lives. Again, the Israelites in the wilderness missed out on God’s blessings because they could not get that. Notice that every time they finished enjoying a blessing of God, He then tested them. They never passed one single test, because everything was at the level of their heads and emotions.

 When I lost everything in the wilderness, only one friend offered me a place to stay until I get back on my feet. Somehow I knew that’s not what God had in mind for me and He kept telling me in my heart where He wanted me to go. At that time, it defied logic that God would send me to live with one of the meanest person I know. Yet, it was amazing in the way it happened; I did not have to beg. Soon, I found out God intended to test my heart whether I believe or not that He will never forsake me. As far as I was concerned that was the wrong timing because too much was going on in my life at once. But, God did not care.

 Imagine having to live in a place where you are constantly reminded where the doors are? Imagine when you act as if you do not understand, it was spelled out for you over and over again? The daily roller coaster, the emotional torture and the fear of being on the streets were enough to drive me crazy. All the while God was making sure I knew that going to my friend’s place who invited me few months back, was not an option. I went through this for months with the wrong attitude and wrong beliefs. God was waiting for me to get to the right place, in the meantime, the Holy Spirit was working out salvation in other parts of me, within me. When over a year has passed and I had the same problem to deal with, the stress of this life was killing me. Only then, I was willing to HEAR God. You see, I was too busy feeling sorry for myself and what my life has become. Too busy feeling the pain of the true Christian life and too busy reassuring myself with the wrong Bible verses, to hear what He was trying to accomplish in me and with me.

 All He wanted was for me to change my attitude, stop fearing the idea of being homeless, and trust that He is in control. He wanted me to stop worrying. Yet, He offered no other assurance that if I stop fearing the idea of being homeless, I was not going to be homeless. Then, He made me understand that if I could not find peace through knowing that He is truly God, He is in control, and let go of my life in His care even when I do not understand. If I could not stop being afraid of the outcome where it seemed that nothing was to my advantage, and the end result was humiliation and dying on the streets, that would mean to Him that His word does not matter to me. It would mean to Him that I do not trust Him and I do not have faith in Him.

 Through this lesson I learned two things. When we can see the circumstances of our lives through His eyes, it is because the word of God has made its way through the heart, it is no longer at the level of the intellect and the emotion. Secondly, when we set out to obey His word through our circumstances, we make the decision to trust and have complete faith and no matter what He decides for us, it is well with the soul, then the impartation process takes place.

 When I made the decision to stop being afraid, just trust Him in whatever He decided for me in this situation I was in, I knew the worst could happen to me. I also had to find a peaceful way to live with it. When you find that peaceful way, it is all well with your soul, because you stop claiming and fighting for your rights (dying to self.) You stop feeding the self, the flesh.  By the way, this is part of the process of discipleship that Christ was talking about in luke 14:33 and it is also salvation being worked out in your soul. I truly hope through this you can see why salvation cannot be separated from sanctification and discipleship process. Anyway, as you stop claiming your rights to self, you realize, you actually stepped into the new life you have in Him. As you deal with these trials and circumstances, His way, those words like “He will never leave me, nor forsake me” become the fibber of who you are and what you are made of, because He works them out in you.

As I grew more and more spiritually, I found out these circumstances as I shared above, were only basic faith being worked out in me. When it comes to working out salvation in us, God usually kills 100’s of birds with one stone. Here is the kicker, you find that every day is a challenge to live out this life truly knowing in your heart and soul, that He will never leave you nor forsake you. Every day is an opportunity to truly trust and have faith In Him!

Courtesy of: God Endures Forever Blog
Courtesy of: God Endures Forever Blog

The Never-Forsaking God – From Oswald Chambers

06 04 2013

He Himself has said, ’I will never leave you nor forsake you’ —Hebrews 13:5

What line of thinking do my thoughts take? Do I turn to what God says or to my own fears? Am I simply repeating what God says, or am I learning to truly hear Him and then to respond after I have heard what He says? “For He Himself has said, ’I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say: ’The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?’ ” (Hebrews 13:5-6).“I will never leave you . . .”— not for any reason; not my sin, selfishness, stubbornness, nor waywardness. Have I really let God say to me that He will never leave me? If I have not truly heard this assurance of God, then let me listen again.

“I will never . . . forsake you.” Sometimes it is not the difficulty of life but the drudgery of it that makes me think God will forsake me. When there is no major difficulty to overcome, no vision from God, nothing wonderful or beautiful— just the everyday activities of life— do I hear God’s assurance even in these?

We have the idea that God is going to do some exceptional thing— that He is preparing and equipping us for some extraordinary work in the future. But as we grow in His grace we find that God is glorifying Himself here and now, at this very moment. If we have God’s assurance behind us, the most amazing strength becomes ours, and we learn to sing, glorifying Him even in the ordinary days and ways of life.

Courtesy of: http://utmost.org/

Living Out A Never Ending Love Story With My Master & Redeemer!

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