Saturday, March 31, 2007
There is a path which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture's eye hath not seen."
Seems like there is a path, a life that is beyond, or above this life in the flesh that is sought out by the predators, scavengers, of this earth. Can we see God? Through the eyes of His Son, I think we can rise above to the heavenly places.
I pray He gives us each at least a glimpse of this life that we possess and yet most of the time do not realize it. The times that I have caught just a tiny, fleeting, moment of understanding, as I rest fully in Him, leave me craving and searching, ever searching for more of that deep well of Himself and the Life that He has given me.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
"A rabbi taught that experiences of God can never be planned or achieved. 'They are spontaneous moments of grace, almost accidental.' His students asked, 'Rabbi, if God-realization is just accidental, why do we work so hard doing all these spiritual practices?' The rabbi replied, 'To be as accident-prone as possible."
A Franciscan Benediction
May God bless you with discomfort
At easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships
So that you may live deep within your heart.
May God bless you with anger
At injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people,
So that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.
May God bless you with tears
To shed for those who suffer pain, rejection, hunger and war,
So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and
To turn their pain into joy.
And may God bless you with enough foolishness
To believe that you can make a difference in the world,
So that you can do what others claim cannot be done
To bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.
"This impossibility of empirical proof is a spiritual necessity. A man who knew empirically that an event had been caused by his prayer would feel like a magician. His head would turn and his heart would be corrupted. The Christian is not to ask whether this or that event happened because of a prayer. He is rather to believe that all events without exception are answers to prayer in the sense that whether they are grantings or refusals the prayers of all concerned and their needs have all been taken into account. All prayers are heard, though not all prayers are granted."
Yancey goes on, quoting Lewis, "Only faith vouches for the connection. No empirical proof could establish it."
Then Yancey says something that I think is so very cool and sings to me.
"We believe a prayer has been answered not because of any scientific criteria proving cause and effect, but because we have faith. Trusting God's character, we can see in the relation between our prayer and an event more than a coincidence. We see a true partnership, intimate and intertwined."
Sweet and smooth like honey.....this session I am having on prayer.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee; because he hath trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3 KJV
This is the word of the Lord God to thee:
Live in the wisdom of the life of God. And be still and silent from thy own wisdom, wit, craft, or policy that would arise in thee, stand single to the Lord, without any end to thyself. Then God will bless thee and prosper thee in his ways; thou wilt feel his blessing in thy generation.
And with thy mind stayed upon the Lord, thou wilt be kept in perfect peace, without any intent to thyself, to the glory of God. And there wilt thou feel no want, nor never a failing, nor forsaking, but the presence of the Lord God of life with thee. For now the state of this present age is, that the Lord is bringing his people into the life the Scriptures were given forth from, in which life people shall come to have unity with God, with Scriptures and one with another, for the establishing righteousness, truth, and peace, in which is the kingdom of God.
This is the secret of all blessing - giving the Lord the supreme place. Thinking first of what is due to Him, and losing sight of all else until this is rendered.
Monday, March 26, 2007
~Walter A. Mueller~
We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties.
Give a man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day; give him a religion, and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish.
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Friday, March 23, 2007
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Monday, March 19, 2007
Saturday, March 17, 2007
Friday, March 16, 2007
The paramount stigma of being today's man or woman is probably that of being misunderstood. Nothing is more painful than this. We can cope with a lot that people say against us - as long as they are fully in the picture and still disagree. But what hurts is when they aren't in the picture and they form judgments and perceptions that are based on limited information.
I sometimes think that much of Jesus' pain at His crucifixion was a result of His being misunderstood. Nothing made sense. It didn't add up that the same man who raised Lazarus from the dead a few days before was now hanging on a cross. Why didn't Jesus stop the proceedings that led to His crucifixion? Anybody who could control the wind and storm on the Sea of Galilee could surely have intervened before Herod or Pilate.
There were any number of ways in which He could have stopped being crucified. Common sense told everybody this. So why was He being crucified?
The disciples couldn't figure it out - they all forsook Him and fled (Matt. 26:56). Never once did Jesus explain Himself.
It must have been almost unbearable emotional pain for Jesus to see Mary Magdalene sobbing her heart out at the scene of the cross and not be allowed to whisper to her, "It's OK, Mary; all is going according to plan. I'm atoning for the sins of the world by My blood." But there was no hint of this. He had to bear the further stigma of being misunderstood, even by those closest to Him.
Whether others understood or not, He did the right thing - He listened to God.
Preceeding thoughts found in:
By Love Transformed by R.T. Kendall
(excerpted from The Anointing: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow)
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Monday, March 12, 2007
|by Philip Yancey|
"In a world that glorifies success, an admission of weakness disarms pride at the same time it prepares us to receive grace. Meanwhile, the very weakness that drives us to pray becomes an invitation for God to respond with compassion and power."
The Lord upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. Psalm 105:4
"In the presence of the Great Physician, my most appropriate contribution may be my wounds."
Friday, March 09, 2007
Asked for a little background on this author....check it out!
"T. Austin-Sparks was born in London, England in 1888 and was educated in both England and Scotland. At the age of 25 he was ordained as a pastor, however, a few years later his "career" took a decidedly different direction when a crisis brought him to a place of brokenness and he left the denomination with which he was involved and dropped the title of "Reverend"."
"Perhaps one of the earliest of his books can best give us a real clue to his whole life and ministry. It is called "The Centrality and Supremacy of the Lord Jesus Christ". This was where he began, and this was where he ended, for it became noticeable in his closing years that he lost interest in subjects and concentrated his attention on the person of Christ. Christ is central! None of us will claim always to have been "on centre", and he certainly made no such claim, but it was his life's objective and the aim of all his preaching and teaching to recognize that centrality and bow to that supremacy."
"Based in Honor Oak, London, he published a bi-monthly magazine called "A Witness and A Testimony" from 1923 until his death in 1971."
"TAS deliberately made no provision for the continuing of his ministry following his death as he believed that what was from God and of God would be taken care of by Him. Time has proved that his trust was not misplaced as God has indeed preserved what was His own. TAS left behind a treasury of writings filled with the Wisdom, Life and Revelation of Christ."
"Prayer Does It Make Any Difference?"
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair grows in me
and I wake in the middle of the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water,
and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water,
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Wendell Berry, Collected Poems
This poem has a serenity about it. The nature element provides this.
I almost find myself slipping into the imagery the author has created.
The quiet time that is difficult to find in this hectic paced world is found
in this poem. To find that place, my journey.
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
|The Centrality and Supremacy of the Lord Jesus Christ|
by T. Austin-Sparks
"...when we have received Christ, everything with which we have to do in relation to Him, anything which we have a voice or an influence, any part that we can take in the Lord's interests, must be wholly, utterly and always for the expression of Christ, the revelation of Jesus Christ,
the bringing into view of Christ. No assembly, no church, no movement, no testimony, no fellowship, is justified in its existence from God's standpoint except insofar as Christ is expressed by it."
"Beloved, we are speaking about the individual. I am not justified, and you are not justified, in claiming to be Christians except in the measure in which Christ is manifested in me, in you; and all the force and weight of hell is out against that. Believers have far more to provoke them to un-Christ-likeness than anyone else in this world. Believers have far more assaults to churn them up and to make them betray Christ than anyone else. Hell is dead set against the revelation of Jesus Christ. Everything begins with this, the revelation of Christ within."
"...Christ is the beginning and Christ is the end, the A to Z, the Alpha and Omega.....It is: "Christ in you, the hope of glory,"....."
Colossians 1 - Sparks says this ..."first chapter of Colossians carries us right back into the mind and heart of God before the world was, and we are shown what was going on in the mind and heart of the Father concerning His Son. It is called "the mystery," that is the Divine secret."
"O, to have the soul bathed all day long in this thought, "as the pebble in the willow brook" until the words come like the tears, because the heart is full, and we cannot help it; to feel, in the darkest hour, that there is an unseen Spectator whose eyes rest on us like morning on the flowers; and that in the severest sorrow, we can sink into a presence full of love and sympathy, deeper than ever breathed from earth or sky or loving hearts- a presence in which all fears and anxieties melt away as ice-crystals in the warm ocean. This is heaven."
Monday, March 05, 2007
"When you are studying the person and the life and the work of the Lord Jesus, there must be a Divine quest in your heart, and that quest must be for those features which suggest universality(existing or prevalent everywhere)(relation, extension, applicable to all)(the quality of being universal, or existing everywhere). Approach again the reading of the life of the Lord Jesus with that thought; you will not want for helpful, profitable Bible study, and you will find that things begin to enlarge in a way which throws back your horizon and enlarges your own heart and makes you feel the wonder of Christ. Looking for features of universality you will not go very far before you find them."
Sunday, March 04, 2007
Friday, March 02, 2007
Who is this King of Glory, Who pursues me with His love
And haunts me with each hearing of His softly spoken words
My conscience, a reminder of forgiveness that I have
Who is this King of Glory who offers it to me
Who is this King of angels, O blessed Prince of Peace
Revealing things of Heaven and all its mysteries
My spirit's ever longing for His grace in which to stand
Who's this King of glory, Son of God and Son of man
His name is Jesus, precious Jesus
The Lord Almighty, the King of my heart
The King of glory
Who is this King of Glory with strength and majesty
And wisdom beyond measure, the gracious King of Kings
The Lord of Earth and Heaven,
The Creator of all things
Who is this King of Glory,
He's everything to me
The Lord of Earth and Heaven,
The Creator of all things
He is the King of glory,
He's everything to me
by Third Day
I have been encouraged to look into the FREE booklet "The Centrality and Supremacy of the Lord Jesus Christ" by this author and have found that it is all that and more, for my particular questions at this time.
I don't know if RoG over there at walking church posted on this before but I know that I was just talking to a fellow saint yesterday about this very thing and some bell went off in my mind (which of course is the mind of Christ....and when I listen, it seems to undo me). This takes me to Sparks and this booklet, yet again.....
"The centrality and supremacy of the Lord Jesus is the pivot and the key to all the Scriptures."
"Of course the Lord Jesus Himself has told us as much. We know from Luke 24 that this is so. There we find Him talking Moses, the Psalms, and all the Prophets, and in them all speaking of the things concerning Himself. So that in our reading of the Word of God, wherever we happen to be reading, the question that should always be in our minds is "What has this to do with Christ?": and if you bring that question to your reading of the Word of God, wherever you may read (and that is not said without thought) you will at once get a new understanding of the Word, you will have a new value in your reading: for the Scriptures, and all the Scriptures, are they which speak of Him: although you may have difficutlty sometimes in tracing Him, yet He is there. The cumulative effect of all parts of the Word of God is to bring you to Christ."
Sparks goes on to suggest that whatever we read from the Scriptures to not limit the portion in terms of just historical, narrative, prophecey or any other such theme in itself....but to always have the question ..."What has this to do with Christ? This is the key to unlocking Scripture.
Now, you theologians out there.....know this already, I am sure....but for me....this was a real revelation. I knew this .... but to really think and meditate on this .....mind blowing!
Sparks reminds us that the reason for saying this is ...."the Lord Jesus is by Divine appointment, at the centre of everything in this universe, every phase and every aspect, and He is its explanation."
Way too cool!