Monday, October 26, 2009

Sleep Escapes Me

In the wee hours of the morning, sometimes sleep escapes me. Like tonight, I was really tired earlier, only to go to bed and then not be able to sleep.

God is working in our lives and it's truly amazing. We are one of the families that is undergoing a financial upheavel. Dramatically reduced pay, attempting a work-out plan with our lender, uncertainty of our future - all these would be very legitimate causes for lack of sleep. But, that's not it. Despite all the great reasons to worry, God has given me peace. He has assured me that He will provide for us. So, why can't I leave it with Him? Why must I continue to pick up the burden?

It's the "I can't see how He's going to do it" that's keeping me up at night. At various points of my life, through bad car accidents, major illnesses and other life-changing events, God has held me in His arms, healing and restoring me. Many times I would give Him ideas on how He could accomplish things in my life, solve problems, "fix it". I am sure I gave Him many a chuckle. Every time in the past, He has done it His way, and not mine. Shocking! A mere mortal such as myself having less knowledge, insight and capabilities than the All Powerful Creator of the Universe who is accomplishing His Plan with or without me!

So, is this part of the overall plan - to have us suffer like those around us? Will this be used now and in the future to minister to others? That would be great. For now, I think I need to focus on learning how to cast my burdens upon Him. In addition, a lesson that needs to be learned is how to share my burdens with others so they can help me carry it. Galations 6:2 tells us to "Bear one another's burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ." (NASB) This particular situation has been very private and painful. Like many around me, I feel it is too embarrassing to share. But, if I as a believer am having trouble with this scenario, how much more so my non-believing fellow Americans? How can they even begin to go through this without the hope and assurance of Christ?

Well, this problem will not be solved in this post. But, this life with Christ is an adventure. It isn't over till He says it's over. Until then, I will continue on to the best of my abilities. And when that isn't enough, He'll take care of the rest.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Each heard in his own language

Acts 2:3-4 "And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterence...And when this sound occurred, the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own language." (NAS)

Regardless of where you are on the whole "tongue" issue, you must admit this is a powerful demonstration of the awesomeness of the Holy Spirit. Can you imagine, being part of the crowd of this diverse multi-cultural group, and hearing the gospel proclaimed in your language, while your neighbor is hearing it in theirs. No special headphones, no electronic translators, everyone hearing God's message as if He were proclaiming it specifically for them.

This weekend we heard a message at our church about how God truly cares for the whole world. We've heard a lot of teaching about having a relationship with God, and how we are so very precious to Him. This is all true. Let us not, however, lose sight of the mission. Matthew 28: 16-20 tells us (The Message) Meanwhile, the eleven disciples were on their way to Galilee, headed for the mountain Jesus had set for their reunion. The moment they saw him they worshiped him. Some, though, held back, not sure about worship, about risking themselves totally. Jesus, undeterred, went right ahead and gave his charge: "God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I'll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age."

Lord, we ask You, we beseech You, give us opportunities to train everyone we meet, far and near, in this way of life. You are with us as we do this - day after day after day. Give us a sense of Your presence, and the courage to speak Your Truth to a lost and dying world. In the name of Jesus. Amen.