Tag Archives: self

Peace In The Void

24 Jul

Have you ever had to walk only by faith in God’s promises because you can’t see or feel Him? Worse yet, a time when you need God most and He chooses to step His presence away?

C. S. Lewis stated “during one of the most painful times of my life, I cried out to God and got… a door slammed in [my] face, and a sound of bolting and double bolting on the inside. After that, silence. You may as well turn away. The longer you wait, the more emphatic the silence will become.”    He wrestled with his faith, this man that gave us a glimpse of light in his words.

He added: “There are no lights in the windows. It might be an empty house. Was it ever inhabited? It seemed so once… Why is God so present a commander in our time of prosperity and so very absent a help in time of need

Walking through such a time myself, I praise God for writers that share their testimony or the bible with stories of Joseph, and David. The sharing of testimonies help us relate and help us walk this life, including heartbreaking times in our journey where He simply doesn’t feel present.

I recently walked through a time feeling the void where God had been steady. I really had to dig deep in my faith and examine what I really believe.

He calls us to constantly grow in knowledge and strength of faith so we are better equipped to do His calling on our life. Our faith is not by sight and our faith will be tested and stretched fully. This time of void, where I can’t feel Him or find Him has been the greatest, hardest lesson of all for me.

He chose for me a time when I was already experiencing aloneness physically, and the loneliness of my divorce.  He decided to use this time to step back His presence. This void felt so devastating, cruel even. Yet, even as I could not find Him, I knew He was there, as if behind the door. I had to strain to find grace, strain to remain in His mercy. I had to work through deep anger at this abandonment, fear of rejection by Him.  I had to really stretch to draw nearer to Him and understand the blessings of grace even in this moment of empty.  I had to know His love remains. Grace is grace. It isn’t dependent upon our circumstances nor our sin.

Grace and God remain steady regardless of our feelings.

Learning to trust that He is still there because He says He is, I held tight to His word in my heart. I began to see Him everywhere, though I still didn’t “feel” Him. He was there in the sunrise and sunset.

I cannot find adequate words to describe this time. It was so lonely, so powerful in that I longed for Him in a way I never have and yet even in that longing, I was confident that He was there.

This was His great purpose for teaching me; Growing and developing my confidence in Him so I can be better prepared to fulfill His purpose for my life.  His refinement of my past, my belief of my worthiness for this journey, removal of all works based religion and the lies of the enemy.

This time. ‘A time such as this’,  there is a sense of peace from this growth. He promises us that joy comes after pain. He reminds us in His word, that hope lives on. We are here but a moment of time, like the wind. He remains. He is always there is the midst of darkness and trial as much as He is there in the mundane. He always has been and always will be.

This journey of life will bring times of abundance and times of lack.  King Solomon summed it up best when He said nothing matters but God.  God remains the same regardless of our circumstances or sin. Whether this world loves us, leaves us alone, recognizes us or ignores us;  God never loses sight of us. We are always within His hands.

What immense peace it is to know that I can sit in the center of His amazing love, feeling the fullness of the hurts and sorrows, joys and triumphs of this life, knowing with all that I am, nothing compares to just simply being in His presence.

Jeremiah 23:23-24 tells us: “”Am I a God who is only close at hand?” says the Lord, “No, I am far away at the same time. Can anyone hide from me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens  and the earth?”says the Lord. “

 

A Case For Christmas

23 Dec

A case for Christ, this Christmas.

It isn’t easy to believe, especially if you haven’t really sought to believe. Maybe you sort of believe. That’s okay too..it’s a start.

Our sermon was founded on a study conducted by MIT Calculating Odds Of Jesus Fulfilling 8 Old Testament Prophecies! I loved the mathematical implications for Christ! I needed to share this.

This study took the specific prophecies and layed out the odds (Jesus fulfilled over 300 prophecies) but these were the prophecies that Jesus could not have manipulated.

“Many of the prophecies concerning the Messiah were totally beyond human control: Birth: Place, time, manner of Death: People’s reactions, piercing of side, burial Resurrection: Where did His body go? By using the modern science of probability in reference to just eight of these prophecies, the chance that any man might have lived to fulfill all eight prophecies is one in 100 trillion!
To illustrate this point: If we take 100 trillion silver dollars and lay them on the face of Texas, they would be two feet deep. Now we mark one of these silver dollars and thoroughly stir the whole mass–all over the state. Now blindfold a man and let him travel as far as he wishes, but he must pick only that one silver dollar.

What chance would he have of picking the marked one? The same chance that the prophets would have of writing just eight of these prophecies and having them all come true for any one man if they had written them without God’s inspiration!
The chance of any one man’s fulfilling all of 48 prophecies is one in ten to the 157th power. The electron is about as small an object as we can imagine. If we had a cubic inch of these electrons and tried to count them, it would take us (at 250 per minute) 19,000 times 19,000 times 19,000 years to count them.

Now mark one of them and thoroughly stir it into the whole mass. What chance does our blindfolded man have of finding the right electron? “

There is so much out there, so much attached to the name of God, man made thoughts, legalistic ideas, religions and extremes. Thoughts that can keep a person from seeking Jesus all together. Be curious.

I spent years trying to find the measure of good enough. Being self reliant, thinking religion was for the weak. Seeing the hypocrisy of Christians and scoffing. Now I get that. We find Christ where we are at, not from perfection and Christ like behavior but rather from our brokenness. For me, that was the only way I would be able to find him.

Christ isn’t always found in the behavior of Christians, but Christ is who He said He is, and He beckons and longs for ALL of us. But you must make the first step.

This Christmas, ask Him to show you. Ask Him into your hearts and let Him begin to change your life. Look at that baby and wonder about a God so loving he would become so humble to come as a small new life.

Merry Christmas.

John 3:16-18 “For God so loved the world,[i] that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
Lamentations 3:22-23 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
Hebrews 4:16 – Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.