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Power over Circumstances

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What a summer this has been ūüėĬ† All the grandkids’ alone weeks are finished, 3 more nights of VBS¬†(Vacation Bible School), the Mother-in-law goes back home, and I should have a bit of time for myself, and you!¬† In VBS¬†this week, we have been learning about God’s power.¬† Monday, we learned that God has power over all our circumstances.¬† What a powerful lesson, even for my 4th graders.¬† My 3 special needs students even joined in when coming up with things God has power over in our lives.

 

God has power over circumstances:

This morning, I was thumbing through my Bible.¬† A paper fell out that reminded me of one of the times¬†in my life when my circumstances needed some God power.¬† The year was 2002.¬† My father had Streptococcus agalactiae, a very resistant bacteria many of us carry in our intestines and/or female areas.¬† It used to be mostly known as a problem for babies after birth, but is increasingly a problem in older adults as well.¬† Let’s just say, it’s not pretty.¬†¬† He also had MRSA in there.

 

Man-eaters

The Strep ate up a heart valve as well as some other areas in his body.¬† I won’t go into all the details, but it wasn’t pretty.¬† I was in the middle of my final student teaching for my Master’s Degree at the time as well, teaching all week and heading to Louisville to the hospital on the weekends and working on my Capstone paper when I could.¬† (That’s another God story for another time.) We almost lost dad three times during this time (13 weeks in the hospital and a 3 month + stay in a rehab facility after to learn how to walk again, etc..

One night (details shared in a bit) they called the family into a private waiting room and told us his chances were not very good to make it through the current situation.  We all huddled in prayer and praise as we waited.  I had written out Psalm 3 as a prayer for my father:

 

Psalm 3

“O LORD, how my adversaries have increased!¬† Many (bacteria) are rising up against me.¬† Many are saying of my soul, ‘There is no deliverance for him in God.’ [Selah].¬† But Thou art a shield about me, my glory and the one who lifts up my head.¬† I was crying to the Lord with my voice, And He answered me from His holy mountain. [Selah.]¬† I lay down and slept, and I awoke for the LORD sustains me.¬† I will not be afraid of ten thousands of (bacteria) who have set themselves against me round about (my body).¬† Arise, O LORD: save me, O my God!¬† For Thou hast smitten all my enemies¬†(the bacteria) on the cheek; Thou hast shattered the teeth¬†of the wicked (bacteria).¬† Salvation belongs to the LORD:¬† Thy blessing be upon Thy people!¬† [Selah.]”

 

Journal entry on paper

6/1/2002¬† “Last night we almost lost Dad again.¬† His heart was having trouble pumping, his blood pressure dropped.¬† He stopped breathing and had to be¬†intubated.¬† They found fluid around his heart and had to open him up in the ICU.¬† They then rushed him into surgery.¬† The prognosis was not good. . .¬† BUT God is ALWAYS GOOD! !¬† His heart returned to a normal beat, and he’s STILL ALIVE ! !¬† God has spared him once again ! !”

‚ôę‚ô™Isn’t He good to you!

Isn’t He good to me!

Haven’t things always been the way He always said they’d be!

Hasn’t He done for you¬† all that He said He’d do!

Isn’t He grand!

Isn’t He kind!

Isn’t He good!‚ôę‚ô™

 

{Me again}

” Yes He is!¬†¬† He was!¬†¬† He always will be!

Regardless of outcome or what circumstances look like,

– – – – – – I KNOW MY GOD IS GOOD ! !”

 

Yes, had my dad died, God would still be good.¬† I am not saying that seeming good outcomes are from God and the others are not.¬† I’m just saying this is one instance in which God did a miracle and allowed my Dad to live (again – many near death stories with him).

 

No matter what the circumstance,

God is in it.

He goes with us through it.

He has a plan in mind.

He has HIS plan in mind.

He has His Best plan for me in mind.

He is in control.

He has power over all.

What a great place to rest!

 

Do you have a circumstance that looks impossible?¬† Do you worry or trust when life gets hard?¬† Do you have God stories about times when God’s hand was obvious in your life?¬† Have you learned to trust Him despite the waves crashing around you?

 

By the way.¬† I finished my Student Teaching (not as well as usual, but well);¬† I checked into a hotel to finish my paper and excelled; and¬†I graduated with my Masters of Education Degree.¬†¬†The only explanation for making it through all this at the same time:¬† God’s power ūüėĬ† Thanks for letting me share this story with you all.

Among the many issues with my dad is a fun one. Look closely at his eyes. Have you ever met someone with “buffalo eyes”? This is one thing he is in medical journals for. The other we’ll save for another time.

What? I have to repent?

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Salvation involves three steps.  I will use the ABCs that we use for Vacation Bible School to simplify.

A — admit to God that you are a sinner and REPENT and turn away from your sins.

B — believe that Jesus is the Son of God, and accept His gift of forgiveness.

C — confess your faith in Jesus as your Savior and your Lord, forever more¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† (Partial lyrics from the Tumbleweed song)

btw – believing is not enough.¬† I can believe that a chair will hold me, but that belief means nothing till I test it out by sitting in it.¬† The Bible says that “…the demons also believe, and tremble.” (James 2:19)

~*~

This post is born of my prayer time this morning.¬† It makes me so sad that people I know and care about claim to be Christians, and yet live as if they are anything but.¬† Even Christians are not perfect by any means, but when you live in blatant sin, with no idea that it might be wrong (or not caring), that’s a problem.

~*~

Problem 1:  Ignorance

One problem¬†we can lay at the feet of the church and the lack of Christian mentoring and teaching.¬† The newest generation is more ignorant about the things of God than any one I have seen before it.¬† I am often amazed at what they do not know — even the basics are new to them!¬† How did this come about?¬† What went wrong that in a matter of a few generations, things have changed so much?¬† So many churches seem to have a watered down version of Christianity, or they just do not meet the teaching/discipleship¬†needs of upcoming generations (I know, personally, I¬†had many discipleship opportunities that are not available today).¬† How can these kids make it in such a wicked world without a foundation?

~*~

Problem 2:  Church drift.

This concept is not new to me and relates to problem 1.  Often as the world drifts farther and farther into wickedness, the church drifts right along with it.  We are still different from the world, but we are both far away from the standards of God.

<———–World————————–Church——————————————————GOD

. . . . . . . . . .|____________________| |____________________________________|

This may remain static               But this grows larger and larger

When the Church (the Christian body, not a building) drifts from the things of God, God calls for them to REPENT.

If my people, who by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”¬† 2 Chronicles 7:14¬†¬†¬†¬† If the church needs repentance, what hope has the world?¬† How many people do we send to hell because we do not repent?

~*~

Problem 3: Lack of Repentance

I see those who want to skip the repentance part of the equation.¬† They are among the “God is love, so He will forgive me later.” crowd.¬† Or, they are among the crowd that now insists on saying that sin, especially those things specifically covered in the Bible, are not sin at all.¬† Our children, indoctrinated¬†in the schools, by Television and Movies, by their role models, etc., come to believe that sin is not such a bad thing or that sin is not sin.¬† May it never be!

Some know of their need of repentance, but choose not to.

Others are told¬†there is no need of repentance, either because they don’t realize they are sinning, or because they just don’t see the need to change their lives.

Repent —->¬† TURN AWAY —->¬† Make a U-Turn¬†—> Stop going one way and go the opposite way.

That in a nutshell is repentance.  If I sin as a Christian, I do not do it with impunity.  The law of God is inside my heart, and it causes me to have a deep sorrow for blowing it.  This draws me back to God through confession and repentance.

“To be sensible and truly discerning of sin is to sorrow for displeasing of God; to be afflicted that He is displeased¬†by us more than that He is displeased with us.”¬† John Bunyan

~*~

Today’s Christian¬†seems to want the benefits of forgiveness without the burden of repentance.¬† Drugs, addictions, sex outside marriage, language issues, and so much more abound within the “Christian” community.

Why?¬† Because there is no repentance of sins?¬† I’m sure it’s not as simple as all that, but that’s a big part of it.¬† This makes me so sad because I have to wonder if we have people walking around thinking they are Christians when they are not.

The solution?¬† Well, I guess that goes back to the verse above.¬† “If my people….”¬† If those of us who know get right with God, He will heal our land and wake up our zombyism slumbers and heal our land.

~*~

As always, my posts are often me thinking aloud, trying to make sense of the¬†things I see around me.¬† I have a knowledge base to work with, but I’m not God, so I get things wrong sometimes.¬† I hope you’ll be patient¬†with me and join along with me as we seek understanding of God’s truth.

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