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Archive for September, 2012

Truths

I came across this list in a “Needs Done” (second priority) folder. I have no idea when I wrote it (a least a few years ago) and no idea where it came from (but possibly out of a devotional or Bible study). But apparently I had wanted to type it up and keep as a reminder. So I’m typing it now. Here.

Across the top is this word: Truths

  • God is good
  • God loves me and wants me to have His best
  • I am complete and accepted in Christ
  • God is enough
  • God can be trusted
  • God’s grace is sufficient for me
  • My past does not have to plague me
  • God’s Word is sufficient
  • God won’t ask me to do anything that I can’t do through Him
  • I am responsible to God for my responses (choices, etc)
  • True joy is in relinquishing control
  • My suffering will not last forever
  • It’s not about me

Then at the bottom there are verse references. For context, I’m going to include them here.

  • Romans 8:18, 32, 38-39 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us… He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? …For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
  • Psalm 23:1 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
  • 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.
  • Romans 6:12-14 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
  • Psalm 107:19-20  Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He saved them out of their distresses. He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions.
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.
  • 1 Corinthians 9:27 but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
  • Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
  • 1 Corinthians 4:17-18 For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, and he will remind you of my ways which are in Christ, just as I teach everywhere in every church. Now some have become arrogant, as though I were not coming to you.
  • Revelation 21:4 and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.
  • 2 Timothy 2:23 But refuse foolish and ignorant speculations, knowing that they produce quarrels.
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I hadn’t even begun my lectio yet. My Bible was still closed. I was simply sitting there recounting yesterday’s gifts.

I thought again how while I was dizzy and homebound from church I had sat and listened to the previous week’s sermon. Pastor Chris is doing a series on the names of God. The one for September 16th, which I listened to yesterday, was on El Olam – the Everlasting God.

His primary passage was the end of Isaiah 40.

I read along, listening closely and clinging tightly as he read

Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.

El Olam. Everlasting. As Psalm 90 indicates when it says, “from everlasting to everlasting, you are God,” olam reaches back into eternity past as well as reaching forward into eternity future.

The Lord is the everlasting God.

Amazing, then, isn’t it, how “He will not grow tired or weary”?

I get played out so quickly!

This past weekend I really struggled with fatigue. In fact, fatigue is one of my most pervasive (and annoying) fibromyalgia symptoms. When my body feels like lead, when my knees threaten to (or actually do) give way, when my breaths are shortened, when my hands shake from weakness, when every thought and movement is sluggish… I hate those times. And not only the physical outworkings, but such physical fatigue also weighs heavily upon my emotions. I’m simply… tired. Weary. Any way you took at it.

As I contemplated this all again in today’s morning light, I realized that a few months back I had made another wonderful discovery.

Jesus grew weary!

Back in March, so my lectio journal recounts, I was reading John chapter 4. And I came across a verse I’d read probably a hundred times but had never stood out to me quite that way before:

 So He came to a city of Samaria called Sychar, near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph; and Jacob’s well was there. So Jesus, being wearied from His journey, was sitting thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour. (vs. 5 & 6)

Jesus was wearied.

He knows what it’s like! I wrote in my journal that day how wonderful it was to know that Jesus truly understands what it is like to be weary. My fatigue is not foreign to him. He will never say to me, like the healthy often have, “It’s all in your head! It’s not as bad as you imagine! You’re just lazy! You simply need to exercise!”

This morning, it was the contrast, the paradox that stood out to me.

The one who “does not grow tired or weary” did grow weary.

Jesus, God incarnate, bearing human flesh and frailty, knew and understood weakness.

And yet, also as true, God does not grow tired or weary.

It is another beautiful truth wrapped in paradox.

Jesus can emphasize with us. He understands. We are not alone.

And not only are we not alone, but He then becomes our strength, our sustainer.

He who does not grow tired or weary.

He is not aloof to our human condition.

He is present. Providing.

He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

I really like how it doesn’t say “those who hope in the Lord will never grow weary.”

Instead it says they will “renew their strength.”

Because from everlasting to everlasting, we have a faithful Father and a Mediator who understands.

We are not alone.

Jesus understands weary.

And the One who does not grow weary sustains and strengthens us.

From everlasting to everlasting.

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