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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Suffering, Failing, and Success

“Suffering and success go together. If you are succeeding without suffering, it is because others before you have suffered; if you are suffering without succeeding, it is that others after you may succeed.” -- from Edward Judson, Adoniram's father 

We've often felt like failures, suffering our own mistakes , and seeing our children suffer for our own sins....but "Thanks be to God who always leads  us in triumph through our Lord Jesus Christ!" And His power is perfected in our weakness, as we fall upon Him for help and mercy.

If we had no suffering, we wouldn't need God, and we wouldn't see how He can do abundantly above all that we ask or think. He delights in showing His mercy by doing the impossible for His children. I read this morning, Oswald Chambers' idea on prayer- 
"If our Father knows what we need before we ask, why ask? The point of prayer is not in order to get answers from God; prayer is perfect and complete oneness with God. If we pray because we want answers, we will get huffed with God. The answers come every time, but not always in the way we expect, and our spiritual huff shows a refusal to identify ourselves with our Lord in prayer. 
Children of God never pray to be conscious that God answers prayer, because they are so restfully certain that God always does answer prayer."

So, if we're suffering, can we become one with Him, who cried out to His Father, "not my will but Thine be done, Father?" If He doesn't answer our prayer the way we want, will we get disappointed or "huffed" with Him? He knows what is best for us and understands all our circumstances. He knows the end from the beginning and He will bring glory to Himself if we can say with all our hearts, 'Your way is BEST, Father.' He will make our way successful by our acceptance of the suffering He has allowed, and if that perfect will is to conform us to the image of Christ, must we not gladly be perfected in Him?
Am I willing to be sanctified by many little deaths, many "chances to die," so that His life may be seen in me? I recommend my mother's book A Chance to Die, a biography of Amy Carmichael.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Family-June 14-22, 2014

God gathers us in and we often scatter. I'm so thankful to have most of our family visiting this week! From 2 yr old Jennifer, a grandchild, to our oldest son, Walter. He brings about the gathering and I pray we can always encourage being together!