Monday, December 22, 2008


By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11:8

Houses can be built in a month but it takes years to build a home. That’s because home is much more than the place in which we live. Home is people and routine and familiarity and refuge. Home is where we fit; it’s a sense of belonging. Home is the God-ordained anchor for the rhythm of earthly life. The deeper the roots of home, the more of our identity is wrapped up in it. Sooner or later, though, we are called to leave home, and it is often not until then that we discover just how deeply our souls are entrenched. Teenagers head off to college, professionals face job transfers and missionaries are sent overseas. And no matter how good and right and exciting the opportunity, there is sadness.
What we call home is always changing. Sometimes it is not we who leave home; it is home that leaves us. It changed for me when my brother got engaged to be married. I was thrilled with the prospect of a sister-in-law, and I loved the woman he’d chosen, but mixed into my joy was a good bit of sadness. My brother was, in a very real sense, leaving our family to start to a new one of his own. “Every change, not matter how good, involves loss,” my mother told me at the time, and over the years I’ve learned how very right she was.
When we are the ones who leave, we find that the excitement of our new adventure fades quickly, and once it does, homesickness so easily creeps in. We miss our family. We miss our friends. We miss our church. We miss the familiarity. We miss the unconditional acceptance. There’s isolation in the pressure we feel to hide who we really are until we know people well enough to let our guard down. There’s strangeness in having to rely on Map Quest to get, well, everywhere. For those who leave home often, starting over yet again—new friends, new church, new neighborhood—feels like a heavy weight.
Leaving a well established home was one of the most difficult things I ever experienced. The homesickness was overwhelming. Where did I belong? Where was I going—really? To whom did I belong? Did my presence or absence in a particular place really matter to anyone? I didn’t know who I was anymore. But God was teaching me something important, not only about home but about people about you and me. Home is not who we are. And all we have at home is not where our comfort and security really lie. If we seek contentment from home, we will never find it because all that makes a home is constantly shifting, either we leave home or someone else does. Our employer comes under new management, turning a good job sour. Our church falls apart because the pastor has a moral failure. Home is a lot more fragile than we realize.
Back then I was learning this lesson, but in the unfamiliarity of yet another new place I was still homesick. I questioned my decision to live so far from home. Had I done the right thing? Life was good in the new place, but I missed my people, my church, and the customs of my community. Right around this time I learned that a pastor friend had been approached about pasturing a church in the town where he’d grown up, a town far away from where he was currently serving. Despite being far from home, my friend had made a lifetime commitment to the church where he served, and I wondered how he was handling what was surely a strong temptation to return to his roots. When I asked him, he was honest about how very appealing the offer had been to him and his wife, but he said, “We aren’t taking the offer because this life isn’t about going home.”
His words uncover for all of us the path to contentment in a faraway place. Contentment comes when we discover that home is much more about where we are going than where we have come from. Home is about the people of God more than about our families on earth. But that doesn’t mean we must do without the blessings of home in the here and now. Here is God’s promise: “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in His holy habitation. God settles the solitary in a home” (Ps. 68:5-6a)
We can have the contentment of home right now, wherever we are, because home for us is wherever God has us. In fact, home is more than this---home is Christ, who unites us to God our Father. In this home alone can we find contentment because it is the only home that we will never have to leave?


But just as prosperity does not lock in happiness, awful circumstances don’t have to lock it out. Do we believe that? Most of us don’t when we are faced with unwanted singleness, an unhappy marriage, infertility, financial hardship, broken relationships, terminal illness, or regret. In such circumstances we can’t imagine anything but unhappiness. What choice do we have? We do have a choice, actually. We can be happy, not necessarily in the American way but in the Biblical way. It is all a matter of what we live for. If we live for the good times even for those given to us by God, we will never find happiness because seasons of wilderness, waiting, and withholding are just as much, if not more, a part of life on this earth as seasons of ease and peace.
Happiness, or contentment, comes from where we look and what we believe, not from what we have. In determining how to think and feel about our lives, we tend to create separate categories for happiness and contentment. In our mental hierarchy we put happiness at the top. Happiness is when we get the things we have dreamed of and when life goes our way. Contentment, so we think, is secondary. We see it as the consolation emotion we must settle for when actual happiness is lacking. “I’m not really happy with the way things are, but I’m content for now.” Yet contentment and happiness are one and the same if we understand these words from a Biblical perspective and orient our lives there.

Have a Merry Christmas and May Christ be Your ALL.

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Sunday, December 07, 2008

Quote From Amiel

"What dupes we are of our own desires! Destiny has two ways of crushing us--by refusing our wishes and by fulfilling them. But he who only wills what God wills ecapes both catastrophes.".

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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving-The Lord is Always Good

From “The Loveliness of Christ” by Samuel Rutherford 9562h

“Because I am his own (God be thanked) he may use me as he pleaseth.”

“… God be thanked, I gave nothing for Christ; and now I protest, before men and angels, Christ cannot be exchanged; Christ cannot be sold, Christ cannot be weighed.”

“If there were ten thousand, thousand millions of worlds, and as many heavens full of men and angels, Christ would not be pinched to supply all our wants, and to fill us all.”

“I am in as sweet communion with Christ as a poor sinner can be; and am only pained that he hath much beauty and fairness, and I little love; he great power and mercy, and I little faith; he much light, and I bleared eyes.”

“Acquaint yourself with Christ’s love, and ye shall not miss to find new goldmines and treasures in Christ.”

“His ‘well done’ is worth a shipful of good days and earthly honours.”

“I know no sweeter way to heaven, than through free grace and hard trials together, and none of these cannot well want another.”

“No pen, no words, no image can express to you the loveliness of my only, only Lord Jesus.”

May you have a blessed Thanksgiving Day,

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Friday, November 14, 2008

Half Truths

A half truth is the biggest lie of all.-- Benjamen Franklin

Thursday, November 13, 2008


It's hard when people let you down. When a close person, a special person in your life chooses to lie and deceive you and others, it hurts the worst. Do you hold your tongue? Do you call them on it? Or just wait and let the Lord deal with them?

A deceptive person is not a godly person. A person who withholds truth, or states half truths, is a person who lives in a lie. They will spin webs and spin people and events in order to weave their own world of half truths, lies, and the effort to keep from being found out is their ongoing mission. A person who deceives to protect their image, or to give an illusion to an image they perceive others to have about them is ungodly--and when they hurt you in order to play out their deception, it's hard. Where are men with character, integrity, and a heart to love Christ and honor Him?

When someone you trusted is found to have woven all sorts of lies and twisted half truths, it is devastating. When you fast and pray and ask God for the truth, and He gives it to you on a silver platter, in near supernatural, only God ways, what do we do?

A person walks in from out of state, doesn't know you from the man in the moon, and then talks of events, people they know, where they've been, who they've been with--and you realize the one you care so deeply for has been in another state deceiving you--the devastation is almost unbearable. Affliction of soul. How do we go through such deep afflictions when they concern those we have trusted so deeply?

The last pang, and groan, and tear!

(J. A. James, "Afflictions")

The Christian also looks to the end of afflictions! The end
may sometimes come in this world. In reference to this, the
utmost that the believer can be sure of is--that they will end
in God's time.
They may last for his whole life. The sickness
which afflicts his body may be unto death! The loss which he
has sustained in his property may be irreparable, and poverty
may go down with him to the grave! The trial which beclouds
and distresses his spirits may be his lot for life! But on the other
hand, they may not! God may be bringing him "through fire and
through water to bring him out into a wealthy place." But the
Christian leaves this in the hand of God, and endeavors to
maintain a hope which shall save him from despondency--
checked at the same time by a reverence that guards him
from unwarranted presumption.

But if the end of the trial should not come in this world--it will
come in the next world--when they will not only forever cease,
but leave an eternal blessing behind! "I reckon that the sufferings
of the present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory
which shall be revealed in us!" "Our light affliction, which is but
for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal
weight of glory!" Four things are set forth in these passages.

1. Our afflictions will have a termination! This is sweet. They are
to end--they are not to last forever! The last pang, and groan,
and tear
are at hand--and how near the Christian never knows!

2. Our afflictions are not to end like those of the brute creation--in
the grave merely--but in heaven! The last pang, and groan, and
are to usher in that blessed state of which it is so beautifully
said, "The Lamb who is in the midst of the throne shall feed them,
and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters--and God shall
wipe away all tears from their eyes!" Heaven shall terminate the
afflictions of the righteous!

3. Heaven is so glorious, that the first view of its scenes, and
the first moment of its enjoyment, shall make amends for the
longest life of the most protracted and intense sufferings!

4. The sufferings of our earthly pilgrimage will
enhance and increase the felicities of heaven!
Their submissive endurance;
the graces which they call into exercise;
the sanctification which they promote;
the heavenly temper which they cultivate,
will be the means of ripening the spirit, and
making it fit for its eternal inheritance!

Every tear that is shed;
every groan that is heaved;
every loss that is sustained;
every moment of suffering that is endured;
every disappointment that is experienced, which is borne
with patience, with resignation, with unwearied holiness--
will not only be followed with millions of ages of ineffable
felicity--but will prepare the soul for its enjoyment, and add something
to its weight and luster.


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Friday, November 07, 2008

Psalm 119:2 SEEKING GOD - Some Good Thoughts From Spurgeon

Seeking after God signifies a desire to commune with him more closely, to follow him more fully, to enter into more perfect union with his mind and will, to promote his glory, and to realize completely all that he is to holy hearts.

The blessed man has God already, and for this reason he seeks him. This may seem a contradiction: it is only a paradox. God is not truly sought by the cold researches of the brain: we must seek him with the heart.

Love reveals itself to love: God manifests his heart to the heart of his people. It is in vain that we endeavour to comprehend him by reason; we must apprehend him by affection. But the heart must not be divided with many objects if the Lord is to be sought by us. God is one, and we shall not know him till our heart is one.

A broken heart need not be distressed at this, for no heart is so whole in its seeking after God as a heart which is broken, whereof every fragment sighs and cries after the great Father's face. It is the divided heart which the doctrine of the text censures, and strange to say, in scriptural phraseology, a heart may be divided and not broken, and it may be broken but not divided; and yet again it may be broken and be whole, and it never can be whole until it is broken. When our whole heart seeks the holy God in Christ Jesus it has come to him of whom it is written, "as many as touched Him were made perfectly whole."

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Thursday, November 06, 2008



Whatever others may say, I am sure there was nothing good in me to draw the Savior’s love. “I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion upon whom I will have compassion.” Here is the cause! Chosen in Christ before the world began; given to Christ in the councils of eternity; called; justified; and in due time glorified when the work of sanctification shall be complete. This is the glorious mystery which keeps the poor believing sinner low at the feet of Jesus! Boasting is here excluded! A sinner saved, fully and eternally saved through the all sufficient merit and atoning blood of Christ the Lord. It is a free grace salvation! Without money, without price! No other would have saved such a sinner as me! If there had been anything necessary in me, I would have been lost to all eternity! It is a free grace salvation!

My heart feels for you, my dear friend, in your deep, deep trial. This present world is a world of sadness; but when we think of that world which is to come, into which sorrow never enters, and how soon we may be there, we may well “rejoice in tribulation.” Our “light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” In all your sorrows, pour out your heart to the Man of sorrows. He will bow down His ear and listen to all you say, and will either remove or moderate your trial, and give you strength to bear it. Even this bitter draught He has given you to drink shall result both in your good and His own glory. Remember, not a sparrow falls upon the ground without His guidance, and that the very hairs of your head are all numbered. How much more has this trying event been ordered and arranged by Him who loves you! Infinite wisdom has appointed the whole! Never doubt that He loves you when He the most deeply afflicts. “When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.” May He lift up upon you the light of His countenance, drawing you nearer to Himself, that you may see what a tender, loving heart He has for you, and how deeply and tenderly and considerately He cares for you, as if there were not another poor sorrowful one to care for on the face of the whole earth!

I wonder what business a man, declaring himself sent of God to lead poor sinners to Christ, has to do with the sights and shows of this perishing world! How can he exhort his flock to live above the world and all its vanities, while he himself is going after them? I cannot understand some Christians, and they do not understand me. I may be wrong; but when I read, “Come out from among them, and be separate.” “Do not love the world, nor the things that are in the world;” and many other such solemn exhortations, I realize the way a believer in Christ should live, and have only to regret I so often wander from it myself. Oh, how the world, with all its cares, crowds upon the poor pilgrim, even in his most solemn moments! “Dear Savior, keep me near, very near Your blessed heart. Shelter me under Your almighty, protecting wing, until the storm of life is past.”

Broad is the road to destruction, and many go therein; narrow is the road that leads to glory, and there are few, comparatively, who find it; happy few! And, oh, what a mercy that He has guided our feet there! Our souls and bodies ought to be devoted to Him, to glorify Him for His distinguishing grace! For what are we more than others, that He should fix His everlasting love upon us while we were dead in trespasses and in sins? Blessed be God, who passes by so many, and who has deigned to look upon us who were lying as others, dead in sin. Infinite in sovereignty, infinite in goodness, infinite in power! Why He passes by some and calls others is only known to Himself. But He will have mercy upon whom He will have mercy. Blessed, forever blessed, be His adored name! Oh, for grace to serve Him better, and to love Him more!

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