Praising in the storm

Then the Lord answered Job… “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you know so much” Job 38:1, 4

Self pity has the power of shrinking our world instantly and make ourselves too big than we really are.

Self pity is actually being selfish – thinking our own problem, talking of our own problem and making ourselves more important than everyone else.

The only way to break the self pity and come out to the real world is to exalt the Lord Who created everything!

While Job was all caught up in his sorrow, self-pity, reasoning and boasting – God placed an icebreaker question – “Where where you when I…” to shook him and bring him out of the pit of being caught by himself.

Our whole life is insignificant compared with the eternity. Our struggles are not worth mentioning and painting a big picture as though it is the most difficult trouble mankind ever experienced.

Rather, a simple surrender by praising the Lord in the storm will take us to the shore we desired. Then, the only boasting we are left with is – more praise about the Lord and Who He is now in our lives!

When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. Psalm 91:15

The threshold of peace

Throw out the mocker, and fighting goes, too. Quarrels and insults will disappear. Proverbs 22:10

Every individual grows when there is a room for mistakes and room for correction.

Rebels grow when their mistakes are constantly tolerated and never corrected.

Any rebel would tend to think he/she is perfect while being wrong; as a result they mock others who are doing right, they constantly insults and brings shame if not sent away.

Lord has called us to live in peace and do the purpose for which He has called us. None are called to be drained out and be humiliated with mocking, false accusations and arguments.

It’s enough, let’s move on already!

No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way. Hebrews 12:11

The success tree

The only letter of recommendation we need is you yourselves. Your lives are a letter written in our hearts; everyone can read it and recognize our good work among you. 2 Corinthians 3:2

Success of an apple tree is not its apples but other apple trees from it seeds!

A father goes to bed relaxed when he know there is enough provision for the next day, a mother goes to bed satisfied when her children are fed well that day, and a Kingdom worker goes to bed rejoicing when his/her people are bearing good fruits.

Think of the hard labor your leader did/does to equip you spiritually. Believe and become who God called you to be. Your leader will succeed only when you succeed!

Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecy spoken over you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you. 1 Timothy 4:14

You don’t need a time machine

My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be… Psalm 42:4

Human mind loves to live in the present only when it is satisfied seeing all the parameters are met as expected.

Our minds swings into the future day dreaming when excited in hope, or swings back into the past and outcries to see if its possible to go back into those good times, when an unexpected bad event happens.

We all lost loved ones, lost opportunities, or lost relationships. Losing of these doesn’t mean we don’t have a future anymore.

None of us can go back into the same joy of the past time or the joy the lost person brought into our lives. But we can be healed by acknowledging of the privilege we had to be there and did what we did and had what we had!

Thanks be to God that we had a past which we could remember back as a time of joy.

It is unthinkable that our Lord Jesus Christ had to leave His place of uncontainable joy, and had to come and die on a cruel cross by the hands of cruel mobs for my sins!

“…keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” Hebrews 12:2

Every time you go thru a time of questioning ‘what ifs’ or ‘if nots’ – stare at the Cross of Christ and realize He isn’t dead anymore! Then look up (worship) and see for yourselves that He is seated on the High and empowering you to endure!

Come out of that heaviness, you’re called to be more than you ever know!

If we endure hardship, we will reign with him. If we deny him, he will deny us. 2 Timothy 2:12

So, let’s do what David finally had to do –

Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God! Psalm 42:11

Make that unbelievable decision!

Most of you opposed him, and that was punishment enough. Now, however, it is time to forgive and comfort him. Otherwise he may be overcome by discouragement. So I urge you now to reaffirm your love for him …so that Satan will not outsmart us. For we are familiar with his evil schemes. 2 Corinthians 1:6-7, 11

Everyone did mistakes and had acted foolishly in one point of time. As there is certain maturity that doesn’t come unless we hit certain age, there is a spiritual maturity we can’t attain unless we press ourselves up to a certain level.

World’s systems, laws, humanitarian rights, media, religion may dictate what is right from wrong for a common benefit, but doing what God commanded us to do will give no room for satan’s evil schemes.

Naturally, our flesh love to hate someone who is found guilty and has a great zeal to pass the judgment. And of course, going by the books would make us feel righteous and satisfied.

God’s Spirit can whisper a distinct counsel for the situation way away from the well known decision we would make. By obeying it would save many, and more importantly the individual that God decided to transform, for His glory.

Any man’s intention can be changed 180o when God interrupts!

And he said, “Who art Thou, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting, but rise, and enter the city, and it shall be told you what you must do.” Acts 9:5-6

What if Saul of Tarsus (before he became the Apostle Paul) was ambushed and killed by some zealous early Christians?

…even though I used to blaspheme the name of Christ. In my insolence, I persecuted his people. But God had mercy on me because I did it in ignorance and unbelief… “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”—and I am the worst of them all. But God had mercy on me so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners. Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life. 1 Timothy 1:13-16

When God wanting to give an individual a second chance, who are we to restrict it? “…it is time to forgive and comfort him.” – Let’s do it!

Blameless Comforts!

“…What miserable comforters you are! …I could say the same things if you were in my place. I could spout off criticism and shake my head at you. But if it were me, I would encourage you. I would try to take away your grief.” Job 16:1-5

Job was a powerful example of how powerless humankind is and what great potential we have to endure! Job was the best of the best of all people who lived on the earth in his time.

“There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” Job 1:8 (God Himself boasted about Job!)

What would happen when the best character and best quality was tested? That’s Job’s story!

Job still put us to shame the way we behave when we go thru’ times of trial and testing. Or, in the way we react to others when they go thru’ times of testing – we judge, backbite, gossip, slander, condemn, accuse, reproach… the list goes on and on!

“I am not the best just because I am blessed, and am not the worst just because I go thru’ suffering” is the gist of Job’s story, and the underlying message is God is in total control and will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can handle.

God knows our limits and knew there is nothing good in us. All our beautiful smiles are because of His grace, all our tender compassion is because of His goodness and all our strengths are because of His mercy. The moment He looks away from us we are doomed!

The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry. Psalm 34:15

What if we start looking thru’ the eyes of God on those who suffer and refuse to analyze the cause? What if we say nothing to them and start crying to God for them?

I need someone to mediate between God and me, as a person mediates between friends. Job 16:21

Hope for God’s mercy

“So who am I, that I should try to answer God or even reason with him? Even if I were right, I would have no defense. I could only plead
for mercy” Job 9:14-15

There is no way we can go argue with God and win. We can complain, murmur or scream in frustration – nothing could prove us correct to God.

Job couldn’t understand what was going on and was devastated. His friends came in the name of comfort but they end up poking his wounds and hurt him. In a way, the visit of friends was another assignment of devil to stir his mouth to speak things against God.

When our hopes are shattered and life is nothing but pain – it is absolute God’s grace every moment that we live. Even then, we don’t qualify to shout at God or argue Him, rather as Job declared we can only plead for His mercy!

As long as we set things right before God and know that He is good, and has total control on our situation – we simply have to wait for His mercy.

David said to Gad, “I am in deep distress. Let us fall into the hands of the LORD, for his mercy is great; but do not let me fall into human hands.” 2 Samuel 24:14

When all our hopes are gone, let’s hope in God’s mercy – He will never disappoint us!