Saturday, October 30, 2010

Trust Him

"Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him." Job 13:15a

My first husband was diagnosed with a serious heart condition in 1995. Four years later he was hospitalized for two weeks in the cardiac ICU. After he came home, he suffered a stroke and was readmitted for another week. The prognosis for his recovery was poor. I remember one night my pastor called to check on me. He asked "How are you dealing with this?" I answered, "Even if the Lord slays me, yet will I trust Him." In my own understanding I could never have said those words. In my own strength I never could have endured the uncertainty of my future. My husband recovered and lived eight more years. Then the Lord took him home. Once more, Job's words came to me through the veil of darkness, "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him." Dear one, I don't know where you are today or what heartache you may be enduring, but I want you to know that God loves you deeply and no matter what happens to you, you can trust Him. I know this not only because I believe God's word that He is trustworthy, but because He's proven to me that He is.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Don't Give Up

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." 
Galatians 6:9

William Carey went to India as a missionary in 1793. He worked for seven years with no Indian converts. Carey contracted malaria, lost his five year-old son to dysentery, his wife plunged into mental illness, and he struggled financially. Carey wrote, "This is indeed the valley of the shadow of death to me. But I rejoice that I am here notwithstanding; and God is here." For 41 years he worked in India without a furlough and could only count about 700 converts out of millions of people in India. Yet through his faithful obedience to God's call he inspired missionaries like Adoniram Judson, Hudson Taylor, and David Livingstone, and earned the title "Father of Modern Missions". Whatever God has called you to, if the temptation to give up is very strong, remember William Carey and the seeds he sowed. He may not have seen the harvest while he was on earth, but he surely recognized it in heaven. How many millions of souls are there because of his faithfulness? And how many souls will be there because of yours? Don't give up. At the proper time, you will reap a harvest.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Unfailing Love

"For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." 
Romans 8:38-39

Life isn't always easy. In fact, it is often fraught with difficulties. God never promised that we would live here on earth without problems. But He did promise that He would always be with us. There are many things that can upset our lives, such as a long-standing relationship which suddenly ends. Human love can be fleeting, but the love that our Heavenly Father has for us is eternal. With Christ as our Savior, we are assured that nothing will ever separate us from God. We may fail Him, but He will never fail to love us. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Walk of Faith

And He said, "Come!" And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!" Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?" 
Matthew 14:29-31

Peter is filled with faith as he steps out of the boat to walk toward Jesus. As long as his eyes are focused on the Lord, he does the impossible -- he walks on the water. But when he takes his eyes off the Savior and looks at the wind around him, he gives in to fear and doubt, and then he sinks. What a lesson this is for us. In the midst of life's storms our Savior is beckoning us to come to Him. As we keep our eyes on Him, we rise above our circumstances. But when our circumstances become the focus instead of Christ, our faith waivers. It is then that we begin to sink into despair. Keep your eyes fixed on the Lord, and see the impossible happen.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Seeing Clearly

"For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known." 
1 Corinthians 13:12

In Ancient times, when Paul wrote these words to the Corinthians, mirrors were not as we know them today. The materials used for reflections were likely metal or a type of stone that would have provided an imperfect image to the viewer. So it is with us when we look into the things of God. As Christians, we have the Holy Spirit to teach us, and as we yield to Him we come to understand more and more about God. And yet our knowledge is still imperfect. As long as we possess these limited earthly minds, we will understand only a small fraction of what we are taught. But when we enter Heaven and see our Lord face to face, all hindrances will be removed. Then we will fully know God, just as He has fully known us. 

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pure Love

"And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ," 
Ephesians 3:17b-18

What indescribable joy comes to the person who begins to understand the great love Christ has for him. When the cross is no longer strange or abhorrent to him, but becomes the most awesome, beautiful thing he can imagine. That Christ would leave his heavenly kingdom and come to earth to willingly suffer on a rugged cross for our sins, is pure love. It is the widest, the longest, the highest, the deepest love there is. 

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Blessed Ones

Then He said to Thomas, "Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing." Thomas answered and said to Him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed."
John 20:27-29

Jesus' reaction to the doubt of Thomas is a wonderful example of the Lord's patience and grace. Instead of chastising Thomas for his unbelief, Jesus gives him the proof he asked for (see John 20:25). Thomas immediately makes a profession of faith, Jesus is his "Lord and God". The Lord is not put off by those who find it difficult to believe His testimony, but He does commend those who accept Him on faith alone, "Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed."
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