Thursday, August 10, 2017

Where Guide God Guides, God Provides- Believe It Or Not

Let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good… —1 Peter 4:19

{CHAMBERS}  “Choosing to suffer means that there must be something wrong with you, but choosing God’s will— even if it means you will suffer— is something very different. No normal, healthy saint ever chooses suffering; he simply chooses God’s will, just as Jesus did, whether it means suffering or not. And no saint should ever dare to interfere with the lesson of suffering being taught in another saint’s life. The saint who satisfies the heart of Jesus will make other saints strong and mature for God. But the people used to strengthen us are never those who sympathize with us; in fact, we are hindered by those who give us their sympathy, because sympathy only serves to weaken us. No one better understands a saint than the saint who is as close and as intimate with Jesus as possible. […] God places His saints where they will bring the most glory to Him, and we are totally incapable of judging where that may be.”

{ELGIN}  When I was in the Army I used to say that “In the Army we practice to be miserable.”  Actually that was not too far from wrong.  We had to train in harsh conditions so when it was time to go to war, we would be ready to face harsh conditions wherever we went.  I met a young Army officer in a restaurant the other day.  I noticed he had a 4th Infantry Division patch on his shirt and I was assigned to an armor battalion in the 4th Division as a young lieutenant. He said that he was going to his next assignment, but when he arrived his unit was deploying to southwest Asia.  I told him that at least he would be warm.  He said oh no, he was going to be in the mountains.  To him, not a big deal, that what he was trained to do.  Well, in much the same way, God will allow difficulties in our lives. James said to “count it all joy”.  (James 1:2-3)  Remember that joy is a fruit of the Spirit, not a happy time, and so is patience.  We endure because we are empowered by faith and the presence of the Holy Spirit in each of us.  I remember when we were in Mississippi after Katrina, in the midst of the devastation, a volunteer asked me if I liked being in Mississippi.  My response to him was this, “Geography or circumstance has nothing to do with it.  There is nothing better than being in the center of God’s will for my life. And so, “yes” I like being in Mississippi because this is where God wants me to be.”  My wife and I lived in a pop-up camper for 6 months.  A 28 foot travel trailer for 2 years. And a 500 square foot house for the rest of the time we were in Mississippi.  Was it hard? Yes, it was a very difficult place to be, just like Haiti.  Was it right?  It could not have been more right.  Did it require personal sacrifice, of course it did, but we have been called to follow Jesus, wherever that leads.

A song just popped into my mind, “Wherever He leads I’ll go.”  “Wherever He leads I’ll go. I’ll follow my Christ, who loves me so.  Wherever He leads I’ll go.”  Is that true for you?  It should be.  You may not be called to do what we did, but maybe you will be.  The thing is, will you follow Jesus or will you walk away?  Will you endure the hardship, or will you look back at Sodom and long to be where you were before God said go?  Only you know the answer.

No comments: