September 8, 2008
Here we are in the year 2008 and I can hardly believe the holidays are just around the corner. Fall is in the air and this is my favorite time of the year! Such a relief from the long, hot summer and high electric bills. I like the sudden and crisp coolness of the air. I love to pick a bushel of apples and spend my time cooking up a homemade apple pie!
Thinking today about the changes which have no doubt occurred in all of our lives this past year, I stopped to think about those things which will never change. What will never sway while the seasons and years roll by? As the leaves turn from summer green to fall yellow and red with the changing of the season, those beautiful fall colored leaves will soon drop to the ground because winter is on its way and we better be ready to bundle up! Then comes the precious springtime when everything becomes new again. Thinking on these things, I wanted to write on what we can count on in a world where much changes for us throughout the year (sometimes for the worst) and it can happen to us at the drop of the hat. There is one thing I can think of and it's below, written in red:
The Word of God. Isn't it comforting to know in a world where change is a sure bet, we have a constant when we look at God's truth as it is recorded in the bible?
Do you remember when God spoke from the cloud and told Peter, James, and John,
"This Is my beloved son, Hear Him"?
Mark 9 2-9: And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them.
3 And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them.
4 And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus.
5 And Peter answered and said to Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.
6 For he wist not what to say; for they were sore afraid.
7 And there was a cloud that overshadowed them: and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him.
8 And suddenly, when they had looked round about, they saw no man any more, save Jesus only with themselves.
9 And as they came down from the mountain, he charged them that they should tell no man what things they had seen, till the Son of man were risen from the dead.
Friends, I am convinced these seven words are for our benefit today just as they were beneficial for Peter, James and John on that mountain. God would tug on our hearts today and tell us these very same words that he told Peter, James, and John so long ago.
Jesus was the word of God made flesh:
John 1:14: And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
How do we hear God's son?
By delving into the word of God. By pouring over his truth. God's word contains everything we need to live a whole and victorious life. Why do we spend so much time looking for new words from the Lord? If God gives you a word or a vision or dream, there is nothing wrong with this just so it jives with his word and it is wonderful if the Holy Spirit chooses to do this, but we simply must give priority to "Hearing Him", Jesus Christ, through the Word of God. We must give this the preeminence in our lives.
I have heard this year of so many tragedies people have had to endure. It seems at times the very foundations of our lives can be shaken and we can be caught in the most dire situations right out of the blue! Well, these things we deal with on this earth are never easy and seldom are we ever able to meet the distress with a calmness. I have never been tranquil when it seems the rug is being pulled out from under me. What do I do? How do I react? First I am shocked, then perhaps I feel anger rising in me. Then I maybe take a few hours and ponder the mess I've been dealt, then after a while I realize that God sees my mess and he is the strong one and I am the weak one.
Then this process (if I allow it to and I don't get a case of the stubborns) will strengthen my faith and my life in the long run. Notice I said in the "long run". But in the present it really irks me :) And aren't we all pretty much the same? We don't want to have to put up with grief and troubles, trials and temptations, but remember what Jesus said:
In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.