Great and Unsearchable Things

Things the Lord gives me, and then I write them.

Monday, April 25, 2011

We're Made for More Than This

Is this not the fast that I have chosen: to loose the chains of unjustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter-when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? THEN (caps, mine) your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rearguard. Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help and He will say: Here am I." Isaiah 58: 6-9.

     Once after reading these passages from the Word, my husband, saw something new and shared it with me. Even though the "no eating fast" was still going on, the Lord had something to say to those, who were refraining from eating, (as unto the Lord) and whose lives contradicted the things important to Him, which reflect one who is really following the Lord. Tom (my husband) said that these passages seemed to indicate that people were to fast from themselves and their own lives and satisfactions. All the things listed here involve being involved in others' lives, instead of our lives being about us. This is God's "formula" in us being healed or whole (v.8) Most people today have tapped into the well of understanding which says if you focus on helping others, instead of how you (or others) can make your life happy, then your life will be full. These Scriptures verify that.
      But, how do we "loose the chains of injustice, and break every yoke", and the other things listed in the "fasting from self"? When we give our lives to the Lord seriously, He will open doors for us to get knowledge of the needs of others, and then possibly direct us to help them. And that is good. But, sometimes we are in situations and places where that is not possible, then what? One of the best and most effective ways to participate in this fast, is to pray for others. Afterall, God says that His house (He lives in us) shall be called a House of Prayer for all nations.
      Just think, by lifting up the needs of others, the whole counsel of Heaven is taking note and listening, and we become part of that sacred assembly. Heb. 12: 22-24 refers to this gathering as "the church of the firstborn." (That would be Jesus, our elder brother)  Is there anything more powerful and exciting than to know that as we pray, things begin to "happen" in the heavenlies to enact the will of God, as we pray it, on behalf of others, and that situations really are changed. We know it by faith.
     We can pray for the needs of those in other nations, that they will come to know Jesus. And then God moves in hearts, so that begins to happen. One time I prayed that there would be a revival at Angola, the state penitentiary in Louisiana. I found out since that time, that the warden was a proclaimed Christian, and that he had opened a seminary at Angola. They were saying there was a strong core of Christians there, and a "revival" of sorts was going on behind prison doors. Wow! Even the unthinkable can happen as God responds to our brave prayers.
     So, the next time you wonder how you can spend your time, and only think in terms of what you want to do, slip away with the Lord and the church of the Firstborn, and be a part of the glorious happenings which will result because you made an eternal instead of a temporal choice. Do what we, as His children, we made for. How would that compare with the best movie,T.V. show, or restaurant you could ever find? We're made for more than this. And people's lives are depending on it.


Saturday, April 02, 2011

The Buck Stops Here or The Roman Shade in the Bathroom

     This past summer, my husband and I were able to buy a new house after 30 years of living in our old one. Because I love decorating so much, I tend to get overzealous by putting my marks on it. All well and good, as a home usually does reflect the likes of the people living in it. But, it all costs money.
     I discovered I was carrying around in my head, a future list of things to buy that I wanted for my house. As a desired "Jesus-follower" and His ways, I was reminded by the Holy Spirit within to not lay up treasures on earth where moths destroy and where theifs can break in and steal, but to lay up treasures in heaven. As I meditated on this, I realized that this penchant for buying could go on and on and on, and that it could become a bad habit. If left unchecked, soon my supply could be dwindled to where we would not have any resources to "give to the poor" in the Body of Christ. In other words, our treasures on earth could chip away at our treasures in heaven, or more pointedly, that each dollar spent for us, could take away a dollar that could be spent on real needs for others. Since we have been exposed to these needs, through In Jesus' Name Ministries, ( we can no longer ignore "the least of these" in the Body of Christ.
     I believe that it is fine to make our house a comfortable place to enjoy and for others to enjoy by creating a  nice setting, but I feel, as the Holy Spirit reminded me, that overtime, if not checked, this lust of buying and even of decorating, can develop into something else that would interfere with our walk with the Lord, and of walking in His ways.
     So, that brings us to the roman shade in the bathroom. As I was planning, in my mind, the new roman shade I was going to buy which covers the window in the bathroom, I thought, "What's wrong with that one?" (This conversation occured after the Holy Spirit had quickened my spirit, as referenced above) I answered myself, "Well, it's got water stains on it, and it's faded." "So, does that mean you need to get another one?" "Well, I guess not. It's not a NEED,  just a WANT." Putting that in perspective, I examined the shade. It seems like I could take it down, and easily wash it in the bathtub to remove the stains. Then it seemed possible to even bleach it, and possibly re-dye it and make it a brighter and a fresher shade of green. I was getting excited about the new project that had come to my mind. This could save me about 40 dollars to be available for the needs of others.
      So, the buck stops here. I am purposing to question my own wants of "prettying up" my new house, and in finding other ways to make money available to supply the needs of others, for the praise of His glory. Will you, as Christ-followers, join me in that?