God’s plan for each of us includes premeditated & strategically designed trials. Pits, prisons, enslavement, mistreatment, betrayal, slander, theft, abuse, wilderness seasons, loneliness, service-to-the-ungodly, and on and on. The key is turning from trying to get out of them, and learning to respond to them in faith & the Spirit. In this, we are transformed from depressed whiners and complainers into overcomers.
God’s not raising spoiled brats, but mighty sons to send as ambassadors into the world to take dominion in Jesus’ name and for His glory.
[Jas 1:2-4 NKJV] 2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have [its] perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
[1Pe 1:6-7 NKJV] 6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, [being] much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
Problem solving: a wrench or a flow.
Many times, we prefer to reach for a “wrench” when we “need to ‘fix’ something”. The wrench makes us feel in-control, and gain a sense of accomplishment, if it works. Even though the wrench-fix may just be a temporary fix. And wrenches can be good tools for small fixes. But for really big problems, I think we need a flow.
Years ago the Lord gave me a vision of His version fixing big problems. I saw a river that hadn’t seen any rain in a very long time. It was flowing, but quite shallow; and there was a lot of exposed banks. Lodged all in the banks were dead tree trunks, rocks, all kinds of trash & debris; and even some big stuff like chunks of barns and old cars. The amount of junk lodged in the banks was overwhelming. Wrenching each huge thing out one-by-one would be a lifetime endeavor, even with a crew to help.
But then the rains came, and a flash-flood overwhelmed the river. The soil in the banks loosened up, and the debris became less and less stuck, and eventually just washed downstream by the dump-truck load.
So, the lesson to me was when I’m facing big problems, to resist the urge to reach for the wrench, and fast and pray until the big rain-of-His-Spirit
1. Rise up, O men of God!
Have done with lesser things.
Give heart and mind and soul and strength
to serve the King of kings.
2. Rise up, O men of God!
The kingdom tarries long.
Bring in the day of brotherhood
and end the night of wrong.
3. Rise up, O men of God!
The church for you doth wait,
her strength unequal to her task;
rise up, and make her great!
4. Lift high the cross of Christ!
Tread where his feet have trod.
As brothers of the Son of Man,
rise up, O men of God!
Text: William P. Merrill, 1867-1954
Music: William H. Walter, 1825-1893
Tune: FESTAL SONG, Meter: SM
Do you fear the force of the wind,
The slash of the rain?
Go face them and fight him,
Be savage again.
Go hungry and cold like the wolf,
Go wade like the crane.
The palms of your hands will thicken,
The skin of your four head tan –
You’ll be ragged and swarthy and weary
But – you’ll walk like a man.
Posted in Manhood