Thursday, 5 April 2012

Trials, Questions, Suffering 2012

                                                       
Goals/Transformations

1- ‘I am in control of my own body!’ ‘It is my slave- not- I am its slave.’

2- I will not be dependent on emotion. I will be hard to tempt, Satan will not have his way.

3- I will not be so sensitive to ‘feelings’ that will can suddenly sweep through my body and scare me or upset me or change me. I know who I am, I will not be swayed but will stand firm in the assurance that I am perfectly made; God’s daughter.

4- God will deliver me. And only through him will I ever conquer, rather than through some theory or definition. I will trust in God because he cares for me and only wants the best for me.

5- I will not let Satan deceive me! He loves it when I am afraid, unsure, and only when I give in and act upon those spirits of fear, have I been deceived.

6- God’s plan for my life will not be easy, so that is why he will give me faith, endurance, hope and power to achieve his will. The minute I think over Satan’s plans and his ideas of an ‘easy life because that is all I could ever manage’ I have let him get a foot-hold in my mind.

7- I will resist Satan and then he shall flee from me! I have been given authority and power from Heaven!  ‘The Devil… the proud spirit… cannot endure to be mocked.’- Thomas More

8- ‘The best way to drive out the Devil if he will not yield to texts of scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn.’ – Luther

For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.’- Ephesians 6:12

So therefore we must tease Satan by doing the right thing. We must make it our aim to do absolutely everything that he hates but that God adores. The only time it is acceptable to be spiteful and cruel and hate with all your heart is when it is aimed directly in the face of our enemy- Satan. But we must surrender all to God-the loving father, because at the end it will be his final judgement that will banish Satan from this earth and all realms forever. Amen?

We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ.  It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God. He has enabled us to be ministers of his new covenant. This is a covenant not of written laws, but of the Spirit. The old written covenant ends in death; but under the new covenant, the Spirit gives life.’- 2 Corinthians 3:5

What are trials? Some see them as lessons, others reasons, others don’t understand them at all. I don’t think we will ever fully understand but we can at least try in some way or other if it increases our faith, but it is the faith without seeing that is best as then we are fully trusting God despite what some people may see as ‘unreasonable’ ideas . ‘The Screwtape Letters’ By C.S Lewis is one of the best most intelligent books I have ever come across. I was deeply changed and challenged by it, I would encourage every single person to read it, whether Christian or Atheist, it will reveal your own choices plainly, and will define your own beliefs. Here is a passage from it about suffering, (two devils are talking about Christians), ‘God’s human partisans have all been plainly told that suffering is an essential part of what he calls ‘redemption’; so that a faith which is destroyed by a war or a pestilence cannot really have been worth the trouble of destroying.’ If our faith is destroyed, it was not strong enough, but the faith that endures is worth everything, this determines our souls.

For some, the hardest part of being a Christian is the first few weeks after the excitement has died down and the hard journey of starting to live like Jesus and ‘breaking away from the crowd’, comes to take its turn. It is then that some new Christians have claimed to be ‘dropped’ by God, and feel as if God’s spirit has died away inside of them. I think God doesn’t leave them, but I think he does give them some time on their own with their own will and decisions. This is when God knows if you have the faith and trust to keep going. This is where your genuine motives come into play. Some people may have only become a Christian in the first place to please someone else or perhaps they may have been taken away with the loud music and saw others doing it and they got excited and thought ‘why not?’ Well it is then, after the first few weeks that the truth will suffice. ‘He wants them to learn to walk and must therefore take his hand away; and if only the will to walk is really there he is pleased even with their stumbles.’- Screwtape Letters.
Persevere; God is on your side!

That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.’ - “ Corinthians 4: 16-18

Another question that lingers to some degree at the back or front of the human mind is the fact of death in young age. We have been taught and expected to think that death at a young age is wrong, but is that only because people now see this life as ‘all we have, so you must make the most of it?’ And if it is ‘all we have’ surely it is unfair that a child should be taken when that was the only chance she got? This doesn’t seem right, there must be another realm, a better realm an eternal realm, where everything isn’t all about life and time and years and age because it endures forever? To Christians this earth and this life is only a training ground where what we do with our time will ultimately determine the next- eternal- life. 

The screwtape Letters, (the devils are again talking about humans): ‘How valuable time to us may be gauged by the fact that God allows us so little of it. The majority of the human race dies in infancy; of the survivors, a good many die in youth. Apparently He wants some—but only a very few- of the humans with which He is peopling to heaven to have the experience of resisting us (devils) through an earthly life of 60 or 70 years.’ Perhaps not so many humans now die in infancy as they have done in past decades, but the fact remains the same; our time on earth is dangerous, as the longer we are living the longer the Devil has to tempt us to join his side. We may fall off God’s path through our ‘experience’ of life. And just think of those who carry on and on until they are in old people’s homes, do you know how much the devil loves that? Just think of how long he has had with those dear people. He hungers for time, as much time as he can get and steal from you, and steal all the blessings and salvation that God once gave you and gives you still. He yearns for time to try your whole life to snatch you from God’s hand. But we mustn’t then worry like mad!

God says in John 10:38, ‘I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand.’ Then why have I said all that before about the Devil taking you and always pressing down on you? Well here is the significant point that can answer a lot of questions: The devil cannot snatch you out of God’s loving hand BUT, you can choose to walk out of it. And there is the difference. I know people who once gave their lives to the Lord and have slowly, with time have back-sliden. The choices that they made and the things they submitted themselves to eventually caught up with them and Satan slyly took them back! But the most exceptional, the most important thing you can have in your life is Jesus Christ- so please Don’t EVER Give Him Up!

So perhaps those that leave this life early are being spared the trials and tribulations of what this life could have thrown at them. Perhaps something terrible might have happened later on and God was just saving them from that pain and grief. Remember God has the best planned for you, and through him everything happens for a reason even reasons we cannot see.

At the end of the day it is not whether we have read a novel or the Bible or whether we have prayed 4 times or haven’t at all, God has ways of drawing us closer to him even by things like singing a tune (Christian or not) or by watching a sunrise or by spending time with a person. What actually matters is the given state of mind, in given circumstances which could move us to act in a certain way at a certain moment that will either draw us nearer to God or nearer to Satan. The worst part of this spiritual battle is that so often we are not aware that the feelings over-taking us or the thoughts or ideas are being slyly threaded into us by the Devil, and he loves it when we blame ourselves, but he loves it even more when we are not even aware of his deceit within us. We must be aware and prepared for this battle that we must fight and face each and every day of our lives no matter how long.   

But we mustn’t worry because God’s side is far more superior and far more powerful than Satan’s side! He loves you dearly and can’t wait to meet up with you in eternity.  All the best to you children of God! Through God we can do all things! Never forget- it is us the Children of God and all the Heavenly host that win in the end- not Satan and his spirits!  

Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.’- 2 Corinthians 12: 8-10
 

2 comments:

  1. To be honest, my goals have always been materialistic in nature. I always write them down on New Year's in the very early morning (night) hours after dinner with the family (I don't like to call them new years resolutions as everyone keeps forgetting theirs.) I like to think that when so many outside are partying and wasting their time to celebrate 365 days since the last time they celebrated the same thing, I am coming up with my little plan to "take over the world." Well, not really take over the world, but at least I'm trying hard to accomplish my plans and I am doing alright so far.

    It took me a very long time to realize who I am and what I want (I was 21 at the time); and even though I still come back to those same questions, I am finally able to concentrate on a fairly clear path I have chosen. You appear to be truly committed Jo; follow through on your goals and you will not regret it!

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  2. I ask myself very often this: Have I really submitted to "GOD" and allowed him to change me? This change Involves deeper than attending, Church, or reading the Bible. It Is a complete change of life that Is needed the most. It may seem or feel righteous for us to publicity denounce the big one to stand against, or something else, but before we can call on society to repent, we must first humbly repent ourselves.

    Interact with “GOD” personally. Abraham, the Father of the faithful did. (Genesis 17:1:22) Jacob, the grandson of Abraham did also, face to face. (Genesis 32:20) Moses who led Israel out of Egypt spoke with “GOD” as I am talking to you now. (Exodus 33:11)

    “GOD” wants to prepare us all for the greatest revival the world has ever known. It Is more than a dream, and It Is a better future. We will all receive workable solutions for our lives. Christ Is returning to lead this revival. He will establish this earth as “GODS” kingdom. He wrote about our world as It Is today, thousands of years ago. (Luke 16:16) & (Ezekiel 7:19)

    Revelation (12:7-12) Michael and his angels fought Lucifer, and cast him to earth which he Is still here today roaming. By refusing to do all that “GOD” wants from us, we will be cast out to.

    If you trust In “JESUS” and believe him to be your Lord, and savior. To repent all of your sins completely, to do all that he wants from you, you will be saved In his loving arms, and to feel no more pain. Satan has many ways to get Inside of you, but If you follow the shadow of the cross, “GOD” will cast him out yet again.

    All of us fall each passing day, so let “JESUS” pick you back up, and set you on the right path. He set me free a few years ago, and now, I exalt to him as my last breath. “GOD” called me. I was Invited. He called me because I did not view myself as someone high, and mighty, but only saw problems In myself. Lucifer saw this weakness Inside of me, and tried to gain access, but I got saved. I felt weak, used, battered, and bruised, because of my foolish mistakes. I even realized this to, and could not pick myself up. I still have this shadow over me, but “GOD” told me It`s OK. Do not worry anymore. It wasn’t your fault. You did nothing wrong.
    (1 Corinthians 1:26-27) & Matthew 11:25-26)

    There Is nothing more greater than the Love of “GOD”

    Like Jo said above: Don’t EVER Give Him Up? “JESUS” never gave you up, so what gives you the right to give up the person who saved you, who helped you, who loved you? He died loving you.

    Many of us are taken from us while we are still young, but “GOD” takes them for a reason, a better place to be. It Is so hard to justify why me, why us, but I trust “GOD” In all that he says. I will not let fear get Inside me. I will not let my failures hold me down, and If you’re not In my life, then you won’t get In without an Invite.

    Life Is sometimes unfair, but the key principle In how we react. Read: (Hebrews 12:2) but most Importantly, (Ephesians 4:31-32)

    “GOD” bless you, Jo, and this was a very good write up. Thank-you for sharing your thoughts :)

    Happy Easter!

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