Whatever

6 10 2007

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“And they immediately left the nets and followed Him.”
(Matthew 4:20) 

“Lord, I am willing
To receive what You give,
To lack what You withhold,
To relinquish what You take,
To suffer what You inflict,
To be what You require.”

–from an ancient hymn
quoted in Jerry Bridge’s Transforming Grace, p185





Fasting for Life

12 05 2007

“But this kind does not go out but by prayer and fasting.”
(Matthew 17:21)

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When we fast, we are intentionally relinquishing the first right given to the human family in the Garden—the right to eat. We say no to food because we are intent upon others receiving a far greater nourishment. We are committed to breaking every yoke and setting the captives free. Our fasting is a sign that nothing will stop us in our struggle in behalf of the broken and oppressed.

We are depriving ourselves for the sake of a greater good. Our fasting has weight with God and effect upon others…Our fasting is part of our wrestling with God. It is part of the birth pangs we endure in order to see new life come forth.

–Richard Foster
Prayer: Finding Your Heart’s True Home, p226





What Lauren Said

10 05 2007

“But whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: he one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”
(1 John 2:5,6)

The purpose and love of my life is Jesus Christ. I don’t have to argue rlauren-mccain.jpgeligion, philosophy, or historical evidence because I KNOW Him. He is just as real, if not more so, as my ‘earthly’ father.

–Lauren McCain, 20, on her MySpace website
(Lauren was one of 32 Virginia Tech students killed last month)





The Cup

10 04 2007

“My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will but as You will.”
(Matthew 26:39)

The darkest hour of Christ’s life was when his Father forsook him — that gloomy hour when his Father’s remorseless hand held the cup to his Son’s own lips, and bitter though it was said to him, ‘Drink my Son — ay, drink;’ and when the quivering Savior, for a moment, having man within him — strong in its agonies for the moment, said, ‘My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me.’ Oh! it was a dark moment when the Father’s ears were deaf to his Son’s petitions, when the Father’s eyes were closed upon his Son’s agonies. ‘My Father,’ said the Son, ‘Canst thou not remove the cup? Is there no way else for thy severe justice? Is there no other medium for man’s salvation?’ There is none! Ah! it was a terrible moment when he tasted the wormwood and the gall.

–Charles Spurgeon





The Storm Before The Calm

18 02 2007

“In those days…the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory.”
(Mark 13:24-26, NIV)

As Jesus draws near, so rises the storm.

When Jesus draws near, He draws near as Lord, and He implicitly challenges all other lords. These lords—greed, lust, ambition, pride and so forth—do not care to be toppled from their pedestals, and during a crisis, when their lordship is challenged, they will demand even greater devotion…

…The closer Jesus gets, the more violent the storm within. It gets to the point that either we must die or Jesus must die, and our souls fight ferociously for self-preservation.

–Mark Galli
Jesus, Mean and Wild: The Unexpected Love of an Untamable God, pp157-8





A Greater Faith

14 02 2007

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“So Jesus said to Peter, ‘Put the sword into the sheath; the cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?'”
(John 18:11)

This was a greater thing to say and do than to calm the seas or raise the dead. Prophets and apostles could work wondrous miracles, but they could not always do and suffer the will of God. To do and suffer God’s will is still the highest form of faith, the most sublime Christian achievement. To have the bright aspirations of a young life forever blasted; to bear a daily burden never congenial and to see no relief; to be pinched by poverty when you only desire a competency for the good and comfort of loved ones; to be fettered by some incurable physical disability; to be stripped bare of loved ones until you stand alone to meet the shocks of life–to be able to say in such a school of discipline, “The cup which my Father has given me, shall I not drink it?”–this is faith at its highest and spiritual success at the crowning point. Great faith is exhibited not so much in ability to do as to suffer.

–Dr. Charles Parkhurst





He’s Not Safe

16 01 2007

“I know that You can do all things and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.”
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The sovereign God who holds your days in His Hand is not safe. He’s anything but. He’s the King, I tell you.

But He’s good.

–Joni Earkeson Tada, When God Weeps, p93
Adapted from C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe