Thursday, October 10, 2013

Unlike the Whitewashed Tombs...

We, as Christians are called to be full of Truth so that our outward appearance of serving Christ matches the inner reality of honestly serving Him.  We have a high calling in this life!  We, the Church, are the Bride of Christ and called to holiness, to be light in this world... to be a beacon on the hill. (St. Matthew 5)
I am feeling very blessed today, very humbled and profoundly grateful for the events that have come my way in the past three weeks.  For more than a year, since learning about human sex trafficking, I have felt compelled to do my part in stopping this horrific crime - to raise awareness, to pray for captives and encourage others to do the same.     At times I’ve felt despondent, even angry with God for not showing me what to DO with all the STUFF welling up in my heart.  
There are so many lessons to learn in our journey with Christ on this earth, not the least of which is from Isaiah 30 - to wait patiently upon the Lord.  All things come to us for our salvation and He grants us blessed freedom in how we respond to all situations.  We have a God of justice and he hears our cries, he works all things for good according to his purpose for those who love Him. (Romans 8) 
Sometimes I understand the answer to a particular prayer through a gradual unfolding of events... the words of a friend or certain passage in Holy Scripture or other spiritual writing.  Sometimes I understand answered prayers because of healing or joy --  but in this recent case, the answers came like a BOLT of lightning to my soul:  resources that I needed came abounding, people came into my life (very unexpectedly) who have the same desire of heart, and doors have opened... hearts have opened; prayer warriors have come forth.  I am renewed in my faith and that’s why I’m sharing this with you.

Tree of Life, Bahrain

Do not be weary, do not give up ~ you will reap a harvest when the time is right!  (a paraphrase from Galatians 6:9)  Like a tree during seasons of drought, the roots are made stronger by digging deep for nourishment... so is our faith made stronger by waiting upon the Lord.  Be faithful to Him Who created the world and holds us in His mighty Hands, do not fail the test given to you.  
Know this:  when you are doing something to advance the Kingdom of Heaven, be prepared for attack from our enemy.  It is precisely those who are on God’s path that the enemy wishes to strike down; be prepared for battle.    Yes, that whole Ephesians 6 thing.   The spiritual armor spoken of there isn’t literary eloquence, it’s quite literally the shield of the human race.  Remember this when doubt comes... when your ideas are opposed by mediocre minds..when depression seeks to rob your joy.  Remember that the enemy wishes to overwhelm you, to render you numb and voiceless.  Remember the flaming darts of the enemy are extinguished by faith in our risen Savior, Who has overcome the world. 
Higher ground in the spiritual life is not achieved by comfort, when life is sterling.  It’s achieved by digging in, by doing what’s difficult, standing firm in your faith when  prayers are dry and answers seem hidden. .. it’s achieved by seeking humility amid anger, discouragement and fear.    It’s achieved by obedience to God.

      Whatever your struggles are today, may the God of peace be with you.

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