Wonder- Hillsong United

Friday, March 4, 2016

The Sermon I Preach to Myself

We all go through trials, heartaches and hardships that come to us seemingly out of the blue.  Things that can leave us reeling and wondering what God can possibly be thinking.  And it is true that, if we do not take care to do good "soul care", we can develop a hardness toward God; a doubt in his goodness and love for us can grow into bitterness and anger at the One Source of our hope and help.   What I have found to be of help are these 4 truths that I repeat to myself frequently and meditate on them during the long watches of the night when pain and sometimes medicines like steroids rob me of sleep.

Here are my truths:
  1.  God is in this, it is he who allowed this into my life
  2.  although I do not like this, I know and can trust that God is good.
  3.  God will not leave me here without his resources
  4.  God intends me to learn his grace through this trial and in his time, and by his means, the trial will end.
 1) If we can maintain our grip on the Love and Wisdom of God and guard our heart against blaming him for knocking us to the ground  it will go a long way toward allowing us to turn to him for comfort and encouragement and strength.  It will keep our heart open to the many Scriptures that exist for our comfort and help.  The whole "trick" is to remember that God is all wise, all knowing, and completely loving and to understand that we are finite in our own wisdom and that our judgements about what it is that we need and how to get it is skewed and flawed.

2) And as I said --it is critical to understand the inherent, permanent and absolute goodness of God and to trust that he is not sadistic or cavalier about throwing traps for our feet and hardships in our paths.  If we can cling...even desperately and against all rationale...to the assurance of God's integral goodness, then this will go a long way toward preventing bitterness and resentment to cloud our relationship with the only one true source of help for us.  And please note the corollary in this theology, we can be HONEST at expressing our dislike for the circumstances in which we find ourselves. Face it, God knows when you are lying through your teeth. You don't have to pretend that  you are enjoying heartache, pain or bereavement.  God is big enough to take your discomfort and maybe even anger and to offer you  the assurance that he knows what he is doing and that HE MUST BE OUR SOURCE OF HELP AND COMFORT as he is the only one qualified to give it.

3) God is the surgeon in this area of your soul and heart that he is working his own purposes and he knows exactly the resources and the "medicine" that it is that we will need in order to get through this trial and to have it benefit us in the way he intends ...and he will give you every benefit that you will need in order to bring you to the place of strength and blessing that he is leading you to.

4) God does not randomly subject us to struggles like some Auschwitz  "doctor" performing sadistic experiments on humans for his own evil benefit or interest.   No, God's purposes are so that we can grow in trust, in experience of his  love and in the knowledge of his character.  He wants to give us a greater capacity to trust and lean on his strength and all the paths he leads us to take are with this objective in mind: to give us more and more of himself ---and there cannot be anything greater than to have a bigger capacity  to hold and experience the character of God and see it develop and change our character as a result.


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