Edges of His Ways

Time flies. Days pass, moments disappear.
Life is full.
Full of study, of ministry, of simply living, of taking time amidst the crazy busy to remember that He is God and there is none else.


The sun that rises faithfully each morning.
The rain that washes clean the earth.
The heavens that sparkle with beauty.
The power that stills the storm.

All this is but the edges of His ways.

To watch plans seem to shatter, and then to see them rebuilt by a God who’s always right.
To see the workings of Providence.
To watch a life be changed by grace.
To see God work impossibilities.

All this is but the edges of His ways.

To wake up each morning, gifted with life.
To rejoice in a God that is true.
To live for His favor, to know His smile.
To know that in His service is joy….

All this, yet sill, is but the edges of His ways.

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(See Education, page 131; and Job 26)

2011

2011. It’s been an intense, yet amazing year.

It’s been a year of finding blessings in hidden places, of learning to find joy in pain, of discovering the beauty of rain.

A year of discovering the amazing grace of God that picks me up, time and time again.

A year of learning to let go, to surrender, to trust, to seek for nothing between my Savior and me.

A year of learning to depend upon God, that in my weakness His strength is made perfect, that there is no fear in love, for perfect love casts out all fear.

A year of fighting giants.

It’s been a year of wonderment, of amazement.

A year of discovering that God is faithful, that He delights in answering prayer, that I am never alone.

A year of learning to love the dreams that God has for me.

A year of learning to be willing to let go of the life I have planned for myself in order to have the life that God has planned for me.

A year of learning that His plans are so much better than mine.

A year of learning to listen.

A year of learning that it’s not about me, but about Christ.

 

 

This year I’ve sensed more than ever how intense the battle between righteousness and unrighteousness is and at times I’ve wondered how I could possibly press on. But this year I’ve also learned that no matter what my natural inclinations are, no matter what temptations I struggle with; God has promised grace sufficient to overcome. I’ve learned that God never gives us anything but what He knows we can overcome. I’ve learned that I can’t even walk without Him holding my hand.

At the beginning of this year I thought I knew who I was and I was shocked to discover that all is not as it seems and when I asked God to do whatever it took to change my character into His I never imagined that He would move with such life-shaking, life-changing action. But I’m grateful, for He’s teaching me to trust Him even when I don’t understand, even when I can’t see the path. Yet, through it all I see a God who never fails. A God who is teaching me, day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment, that He is faithful and that through Him I can overcome.

And through the pain,  the tears, the rain…I’ve learned God is faithful and that He never fails. His promises are sure. His love is everlasting and without limit.

Thanksgiving came and went this year, and back then I didn’t feel very grateful. But the past week and a half has taught me that a spirit of thankfulness can lighten the darkest cloud. And so today I’m thankful.

I’m thankful for

Rain and it’s cleansing properties.

The little things, for sometimes they are really the biggest things.

Darkness, for it is there that light shines most brightly.

The laughter of children.

A God who delights in doing the unexpected.

God’s faithfulness.

Memories.

Calvary, for it is there I am set free.

Love, stronger.

Songs that express my thoughts.

And if you’re broken, if you think you can’t go on, if you’re at the end of your rope, if you’ve spent your resources; just know, God can heal the broken, He can give strength; He can teach you to hold on; and His resources are endless. And remember, that as God is shaping, molding, chiseling you; He is making you into what He wants you to be. Only His precious stones are polished after the similitude of a palace.

The darkest night is often the bridge to the brightest tomorrow
– Jonathan Lockwood Huie


Fighting Giants

David faced Goliath with only a sling and five rocks.

He accomplished the impossible.

How?

He was fighting for the honor of God.

He did the impossible because God stood there beside him and worked a miracle through David.

 

We two have giants.

We fear them…we hide from them…we run as fast as we can in the opposite direction.

But why?

Is it that we have become weaker, more cowardly?

Is it because the longer we persist in sin that harder it seems to overcome?

Or is it because we no longer know for ourselves what God can do…

Is it because we lack faith?

 

The God that David served is still the same today.

He has not changed.

He still works miracles in people’s lives…He still is willing to stand beside us a fight right along with us.

 

God can do the impossible through us. We don’t have to face our giants on our own.

 

So no matter what giants you are facing today, remember that we serve the God of the Impossible…and nothing, absolutely nothing, is impossible with Him.

 

Simply Trust

For 80 years the children of Israel were daily reminded of the miraculous provision of God, of His unfailing care and tender love.

They saw the plagues in Egypt….

They saw the red sea part…

They saw the cloud that led them….

They saw the water come from rock….

They ate the manna….

They ate the fowls….

They experienced the majesty and wonder of God speaking to them…

They received the ten commandments, written on stone with God’s own finger…

They had the sanctuary, and the presence of God, right there with them….

And yet, it was not enough.

They still doubted.

They still murmered.

They still worshipped graven images.

They still wavered between two opinons.

They forgot the works of God.

They choose not to obey His law.

The cycle of backsliding and chastisement, of confession and deliverance, was repeated again and again.

Is it not the same today?

Do we not have plentiful evidence of a God who is faithful? Of a God we can trust?

Is God not the same today as He was yesturday?

Does He not still supply us with food and water?

Do we not see numerous evidences of His love and watch care over us?

Then why do we still doubt?

You can trust the hand that never wavers.

You can trust the God who never changes.

He’s faithful.

And He always will be.

We have nothing to fear for the future, except as we shall forget the way the Lord has led us, and his teaching in our past history

 

Alone against an army

This week, the little children are learning about Mount Carmel in their Sabbath School lesson. I’ve never really looked at this story before and it’s an impressive story. What happened that day is impossible, but the God of Heaven in a God of the impossible, and it was in His power that it was accomplished.

All Israel was summoned to Mount Carmel. They had turned away from God and were worshiping Baal. This had gone on for years. God had tried many different ways of turning them back to Him. A three-year long famine was in effect. They needed food, they needed water. Israel was desperate.

Elijah stood, apparently alone, before the whole nation of Israel and 450 priests of Baal. The multitude was afraid to acknowledge who they served.

The priests of Baal chose their bullock. Elijah then announced that they would call on their god, Baal and he would call on his God, the God of Heaven. Whichever God answered would be acknowledged as the true God.

The priests of Baal went first (for they were many). They pleaded for Baal to answer them from early morning until the time of the evening sacrifice…all day. They cut themselves until blood gushed from their woods.Elijah carefully watched everything they did for he knew that if they somehow managed to start a fire he would instantly be torn in pieces. They finally stopped from sheer exhaustion. Their sacrifice was still whole, Baal had not answered.

It was Elijah’s turn.

Gently he beckoned the people to come closer.

Reverently he rebuilt the altar of the Lord that had been broken down.

He dug a trench.

He prepared the wood and the bullock.

And then he said:

“Fill four buckets with water and pour it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood”

Once.

Twice.

Three times water was poured.

It filled up the trench.

It drenched the offering and the wood.

No man could light a fire on that now.

And then…..

Elijah simply prayed.

        He prayed as if he knew that Jehovah was there.

        He prayed simply and fervently.

Elijah prayed and fire fell.

Elijah prayed and the drenched sacrifice and wood were consumed by fire.

Elijah prayed and the stones, the dust, even the water were all consumed by fire.

                                  That prayer had power!

The people of Israel acknowledged God as the only true god.

The priests of Baal were executed.

It took a miracle for Israel to return to the God of Heaven.

One man, sure of his God faced down a whole nation terrified of the outcome of that day.

    One man of God fought against 450 men of Satan.

          One man, apparently alone yet not alone before a whole world on watchers.

                 One man who prayed with God’s power versus 450 men who mutilated and exhausted themselves.

                         One man-a few minutes where 450 men took a whole day.

                                 One drenched altar and one dry altar.

                                        One fire in answer to sincere prayer and nothing in answer to hours of torture.

But that one man had an all-powerful God on his side and that made all the difference.

>Faith is:

>

Faith Is……reliance on the certainty that God has a pattern for my life when everything else seems meaningless

Faith Is……remembering I am God’s priceless treasure when I feel utterly useless
Faith Is……depending on the fact that God is love – not on my ability to figure out why, in the midst of smashed hopes, reversal and tragedy
Faith Is……keeping on when I’m dog tired, discouraged, disillusioned, deserted, dusty, and dry and I cast on His strength alone
Faith Is……realizing that I am useful to God, not in spite of my scars, but because of them
Faith Is……confidence that God is acting for my highest good when He answers “No” to my prayers
Faith Is……accepting the truth that, in spite of the wreckage and grief I’ve caused, God has wiped the slate clean and delights in me!
Faith Is……recognizing that God is the Lord of time when my idea of timing doesn’t agree with his
Faith Is……not a vague hope of a happy here after but an assurance of heaven based on my trust in Christ’s death as payment for my sins
Faith Is……remembering that, though my way is as dark as night to me, God can see and guides me unerringly
Faith Is……doing the right thing regardless of the consequences knowing God will turn the ultimate effect to good
Faith Is……the conviction the Promiser keeps His promises

What is faith to you?