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HEART * MINISTRY * MISCELLANIES *

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

When it all falls down ~

There is a DVD sermon series called "The Blazing Center" and there are so many powerful exhortations throughout - that I don't think I have time to blog them all.

Pastor Piper said something to the effect that when you go through suffering, not if, but when - that is when you will find out if all of your "Praise you, Praise you Jesus" in church was real or not. The props in your life, the things that are well with you right now are guaranteed to fail....eventually.....it's all a part of the curse that came to us because of sin.

Getting our hearts prepared for suffering has a deepening affect I'm learning.
For instance, thinking about "what ifs" is good for me I think.....like what if, my brother died today......would I hit my knees like Job and say "Blessed be the name of the Lord."
Man I hope so.....I feel like I would.....but man...I hope that I go first. (yikes, is that selfish?)

Then also, thinking about the smaller trials......what of them?
How will I react when I pop a tire driving down the road or if I run out of gas at the end of my driveway as I did the other day? Will I grumble, or by walking in the Spirit will I say heartily "Blessed be the name of the Lord" ???
What if....I got into a car accident and my face was all smashed in, broken and cut up......what then......do I think that I would be less useful to His Kingdom without that superficial confidence........I think that that would be a hard trial for any girl.......
Man, to go through some of these trials would be like gold being set into the hottest part of the fire in order to remove the dross. It's purpose is to prove that our faith is genuine, and to purify it further.....
I long for it and dread it at the same time. What if.....I get married and have children as I've always hoped for, and then in one night they get all get into a car accident and I lose everything that I had prayed for!!!??
I don't even know what my babies will be like, but that thought just makes me want to cry out to God.......I still love Jesus......and by God's grace alone He keeps us running to him. What a glorious thing that is. It's sort of like my little brother Jesse. When we were little he would get disciplined by my mom for something, (spanked) and then he would cry super hard and go to her to be comforted. I was like.....what the???? Why does he seek comfort from her, doesn't he realize that she just disciplined him ?!! Now, as a believer, I get it. :)
To be afflicted, but never abandoned - He's promised persecution and affliction, AND He's promised that He will never forsake us.......both are for our good.

I don't feel as though I grumbled necessarily the other day when I ran out of gas......I wasn't discouraged, but where was my thankfulness to God for the fact that I ran out of gas at the end of my driveway on Sunday morning and not at 11pm on a 35w or on a not-so-safe street?
I didn't even consider that until today. (Still, though, if my car had ran out of gas in some other place.......God is Sovereign and would have good purposes regardless...perhaps if the location was different, I might have given Him more of a thought in the situation for crying out loud!)

To be loved by the Sovereign God of the Universe is such an amazing thing.
We need only be more thankful in all things in order to walk in view of His Sovereignty.....as in this snip it I copied from my friend Joey's blog, which she copied from Pastor Piper's book. :)
(check out her blog - it rocks, at www.aspiringgirl.blogspot.com)

"Imagine for a moment that your city were surrounded by enemy forces who aimed to destroy you. And you are aware that enemy sympathizers live and work in the city with a view to undermining the city's defenses. And suppose you discover that there is song which the enemy and their sympathizers cannot tolerate or approach. Whenever they hear it, they pull back and run the other direction.Isn't it certain that you would want to learn this song? And after you learned it you would sing it when you went to bed at night and when you got up in the morning. You would sing it on the way to work, and whenever you were among strangers. And as your confidence grew you would even venture outside the city and sing it as you walked boldly through the enemy lines on your way to another town. The more deeply imbedded in your mind the song became, the more steady and deep and serene and fearless your life would become. Others would see and hear and learn the song from you. And in the end you would conquer the enemy, and there would be no threat at all. And there is a song that Satan and his sympathizers cannot tolerate or approach—namely, the song of thanks to God.…thankfulness is an essential guardian of the soul, and therefore we should guard ourselves with gratitude. Evidently we are fair game for the devil when we don't abound with thanksgiving. Unless the song of thanksgiving is being sung in our hearts the enemy outside will deceive his way into the city of our soul, and the enemy sympathizers within will make his job easy. So for the sake of your own safety, strive to fill your heart with thanksgiving! Guard your selves with gratitude!"

Look forward to the prize in light of the high cost of the calling in Christ Jesus ~
It's that 'sorrowful yet always rejoicing' deal. :)

Jen2

1 Comments:

At 9/19/2006 1:14 PM, Blogger Jennifer said...

-sigh-

Thank you, Oats...that was good. Good to read, good to think about... Thanks for writing that - love you.

 

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