Wednesday, December 2, 2009
When Satan tells you that your sins are such that you need not expect anygreat victories in God, tell him the Bible teaches that those who love most are those who have been forgiven most. Do not try to lessen your guilt by excusing sin. You cannot come near to God by faith unless you realize your sinfulness. Then you can place yourselves right on the promises, and with unwavering faith can claim a share in the infinite sacrifice that has been made for the human race. Cling closely to Jesus, and His great heart of love will draw you unto Himself.
I cannot bear the thought that any should go away . . . without having their faith greatly strengthened. . . . Every advance step they take must be astep of faith. If they have a religious experience that is rich in faith,one can chase a thousand, and two can put ten thousand to flight. But all the talents that they may possess, all the skill and eloquence that they may acquire, will effect nothing unless they are consecrated to God. . . .
The apostle Paul desired that his brethren should be comforted with "the consolation wherewith he was comforted." The Christian finds constant comfort and strength in Jesus. . . .
Let us have an eye single to the glory of God. Let us not allow anything to interpose between us and Him. "If we follow on to know the Lord," we shall know that "his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth." If we are partakers of the divine nature, we shall reflect in life and character the image of our divine Lord. We cannot be indolent in seeking this perfection of character. We cannot yield passively to our surroundings, and think that others will do the work for us. "Every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure." We must be workers together with God. Life must become to us a humble, earnest working out of salvation with fear and trembling; and then faith, hope, and love will abide in our hearts, giving us an earnest of the reward that awaits the overcomer.
A relentless and determined foe has prepared his wiles for every soul that is not braced for trial, and guarded by constant prayer and living faith. We cannot individually, or as a body, secure ourselves from his constant assaults; but in the strength of Jesus every temptation, every opposing influence, whether open or secret, may be successfully resisted. Remember that "your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." Therefore "be sober, be vigilant"
(Historical Sketches,pp. 135, 136).
From Lift Him Up - Page 334
Saturday, May 23, 2009
For ye are bought with a price
Paris Reidhead's convicting sermon 'Come'* struck me as he began to tell a story of an English goldminer in California, nearly in 1850's, who after success in mining, desired to return home to be with his people. After making many stops, he finally, arrived in New Orleans, where he would then take a ship to New York, and then to England.
As most tourists in New Orleans, he made his way to the slave market, for even then slaves were still being sold. And, there he saw many men crowded around the stage, talking about the new slave, who was for sale. He saw two evil-looking men bidding for her, as Reidhead puts it, very easily, so he went closer. There he heard what they had planned on doing with her and he could not stand to allow for them to commit such heinous, swinish things against her.
As the price was getting higher and higher, many bidders withdrew, but these evil men remained bidding for her. In disgust, he could no longer watch, so he bid a figure that was exactly twice the last bid, the most ever paid for a slave in that particular market.
He ascended the stairs and the auctioneer said, "Have you got the money?"
He replied, "Yea, I got the money." He, then, walked over to the block and collected the woman he had bought.
She came down one step and stood in level with his eyes, she had made a mouth full of spittle, and she spat full in his face. Through clenched teeth she said, "I hate you."
Saying nothing, he took the back of his hand and wiped the spit from his face.
He took her by the hand walked her across the street and down an alley to a small office building.
He went to the desk and began to speak to the man who sat behind it. The man began to protest, yet the Englishman argued, "I insist it's the law, I insist it's the law." Until the man granted him his request.
He paid the money and in his hands he held some papers, he walked over to the infuriated woman, who stood like a beast ready to spring.
He handed her the papers, "Here, here are your manumission papers; you're free."
She still said, "I hate you."
He replied, "Didn't you understand? I said, 'here are your manumission papers; you are free.'"
In disbelief, she stuttered, "I-I, no, you paid twice as much for me as was ever paid for anybody on that block. I don't believe it."
He said, "Yes, these are your manumission papers," and he put them in here hand.
Confused, she said, "Mister, do you mean to say, that you bought me to set me free?"
"Yes; that's why I bought you, to set you free."
Tears welled in her eyes, her face softened.
She slipped down on her hands and knees, placing her hands around those rough miners boots, she laid her cheeks down on the toe of one of them. Through her tears, she sobbed, "Oh, you bought me to set me free. You bought me to set me free. You bought me to set me free. You paid more than has ever been paid before, just to set me free." Through her tears, she looked and said, "Oh, sir, all I want in life is to be your slave. You bought me to set free."
* * * * *
In this story, I learned two things:
- I realised that woman, was me, He had bought me to set me free. The chains of sin which once bound me to the devil, were now broken. He bought me to set me free. Though, I lived a selfish, unworthy life, Christ paid the price so that I would be free from the wages of my past actions.
- Her response to the man brought her on her knees not only to proclaim that, he had saved her. Yet, because of his apparent care, and his redemptive concern for her, she was further moved to say, "All I want in life is to be your slave."
The latter of these concepts seems extreme, yet in deep consideration, we realise that our allegiance to Christ means just that, being in submission to His command. Not in misery or contempt, but love, for He came and saved us from the wily one, that we might be free!
How can one understand such a love that endures beatings, whips and mockery from those who He came to save?
How humbling, the thought!
Yet inspiring, I see the example that Christ has set for me, as His follower, who cowers behind His cross.
I see His pattern that as His servant and daughter is mine with which to conform, as I cling to the hem of his garment.
An example and a pattern, that He has promised to help me follow, not in my strength but in HIS.
How can I but smile and acknowledge again, "His grace is sufficient."
Learning more about my Saviour,
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
2 Corinthians 12:9
The above was just a text I thought would be really helpful and has been something that has got me through quite a bit this month.
I have to say, I have never grown bored of His love, nor His mercy and grace. It is so fathomless, that I hardly understand the God that I find myself falling in love with.
- To His eternal love, I ask WHY LORD?
- To His omnipotence, I ask WHAT NEXT FATHER?
- To His able grace, I ask HOW IN THE UNIVERSE WELL-BELOVED?
He has whispered to me, like Solomon to the Shumalite woman,
Arise, my love, my fair one, Come away.
Songs of Solomon 2:13
This Sabbath after a week of composing music, writing and forcing myself to study for ruthless CXC Geography, He has called me and said come away and rest in Me, abide in Me, My maidservant, My child.
This week, He has shown me a peace, that I honestly have not come to understand, yet where I went, songs of praise were always ready on my tongue to be raised to the throne of Grace which exists through ceaseless ages.
He's teaching me to be content, though I am quite the professional complainer, and He is, most of all, teaching me patience, something that I cannot attain on my own - no matter how hard I try.
The point of this post?
Only a few months ago, was I awakened by something He showed me: I was like the Ephesian church, hard-necked, critical, I had lost my first Love.
Christ was not my Focus, my Example, my Portion, my Song, my All in All, rather He was just a God, I worshipped. I didn't know Him, deeply, I had experienced His power in my life, so many times, but it became so unfamiliar that rather than ceaseless praise, I complained and was always ready to insult.
For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.
That was me.
I forsook Him, the fountain of abundant life and joy- the One, whose presence brings the fullness of joy. And made myself, imitations that could not bring me the peace and love that He bestowed so lavishingly upon me, they held no water, they are not the sustaining power, that He is.
Until one night, quite late, I couldn't take it any longer, I wondered why do some Christians have that joy and radiate Christ's love so easily and I just can't?!
And in my importunity, I feel on my knees and prayed
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise...but is longsuffering to us-ward
I prayed that prayer, according to my prayer journal on the 9th April and it's nearing the end of May.
Where was God?
Melting my heart of cold wax, and guiding me along each path, even though I turned around and went the completely opposite direction multiple times!
Being longsuffering to me[:D]-ward.
I think of that song, 'were it not for grace?'
The thought in a way makes me shiver, where would I be without His saving grace? Where would I be headed? What snare would I fall into, spear-headed by the father of lies.
Though only now, am I awakening to that melodious cadence of His speech, I cannot resist as my Prince, beckons me, 'Come away, my love, my fair one'.
Yes, the thought has crossed my mind- maybe I'm just rambling, but I delight in rambling about the God who has ransomed me!
That's all I have to say for today about what God has taught me as I TRY to live day to day, and not jump ahead.
Friday, February 13, 2009
1) Get up. After you finish reading this is the best time, before you get distracted again (because you will).