Tuesday, February 09, 2010

A few words...

I didn’t get into law school but I’m at peace with that. I pursued it hoping to serve in a different way but in my prayers deferred to God’s plan whatever it may be. So it isn’t law school, but I’m sure it is something I’ll love to do. I’ll just wait for my next step to be revealed to me.

Great news about Delaine, Cameron’s mom. We raised 50% more money than our goal! She’s completing the transplant application now and soon will be eligible for a lung transplant. There’s a few legal details to be taken care of and we are attending to those this week, so we’re making huge steps toward changing this woman’s life! Praise God and thanks to all those who prayed, donated or both!

The Prison Pen-pal Ministry is growing slowly. I’ve had to put some time into convincing the inmates it is a ministry, not a dating service, and a few are getting it. Several of us are now in regular correspondence, sending words of encouragement and testimony to the prison. It may be years before this tree bears fruit, but it will. Nothing done for the glory of God is wasted!

I’m doing the devotion tonight for the Stephen Ministers, and here are the notes I’ve put together to help get me through those few minutes on stage (thanks to all those great online resources!):

From John 16:

“A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”

…and later…

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

In this world we will face all kinds of trials, and we should be wary of any suggestion that we shouldn’t have to face them because the Lord said we WILL have tribulations. The encouragement He is giving us is simply this: You’re going to face trials, but GOD is greater than any problem you will face in this world!

TRIALS TEST THE STRENGTH OF OUR FAITH

God doesn't need to know by testing what was in our hearts. He already knows. God tests us so we can find out.

TRIALS HUMBLE US

Trials remind us not to think too highly of our spiritual strength. When Paul complained about the thorn in his side, Christ answered: My grace is sufficient for you.

TRIALS REVEAL WHAT WE REALLY LOVE

If we supremely love God, we will thank God for what He is accomplishing through our trials. But if we love ourselves more than God, we will question his wisdom and rebel against our trial. If anything is dearer to us than God, then He must remove it for us to grow spiritually.

TRIALS ENABLE US TO HELP OTHERS IN THEIR SUFFERING

Sometimes when suffering comes, it may have no other purpose than to make us better able to assist others in their own suffering.

TRIALS PRODUCE ENDURANCE AND STRENGTH

One of God's purposes in trials is to give us greater strength. As you go through one trial, your faith is exercised and strengthened for the next one. The result is that you can face greater foes and obstacles, thus becoming more useful to the Lord. And the more useful you are, the more you will accomplish His will in the power of His Spirit for His glory.

As problems present themselves, we should face them and overcome them with Him -– because every problem is an opportunity to exhibit the love and power of God in our lives. It is through our trials that others get our true testimony as believers.

Let’s go to the cross and pray to the one who endured the greatest trial, who, for our sake, bore the heaviest burden.

OK, gotta run. Now go out there and hug somebody!

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