Stay my soul on Him

November 30, 2018

Resurrection-Doubting-Thomas

“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thess. 5:18). For the last two months, I’ve been really trying to live up to this verse, easy in theory, tougher in reality.

  Relief from pressure may seem merciful, but support in the pressure produces growth and maturity.

There is a greater blessing for us than relief; there is the Father’s support, for it imparts to you an acquaintance with Himself which relief does not. Relief makes one more satisfied with things here. I have known some who could tell you of a long list of mercies, most touching, truly proof of the tenderness of God.

Thank God, we all know something of His tenderness. But then there is a greater blessing, namely, that He does not remove the pressure, but raises you above it, so that, though you are not relieved, you are better off than if you were merely relieved, because you know His heart who supports you in the pressure. You have made a deep acquaintance with your Father, and your heart is more attached to Him.

 It is not getting away from our circumstances, our environment, our associations, that we need, but the need for our Lord Jesus’ likeness where we are. The Father placed us there, permitted the trials for a purpose, and He stands ready to bring us out into a life of liberty, if we will stand with Him in trust and endurance while He works it out.”

Have you asked to be made like your Lord; that it might be ‘not I, but Christ’? Have you longed for the fruit of the Spirit, and have you prayed for patience and love? Then fear not the stormy tempest that is at this moment sweeping through your life. A blessing is in the storm, and there will be a rich blessing in the ‘afterward.’

  “The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms” (Deut. 33:27).

Steady on, stay the course, there are plenty of slogans of that ilk, but they pale to the bible verses God lays in our heart in the darkest hour of the soul.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Richard Perales, dad and son, great changes have come into their lives, pray the see the hand of God.

Pray for Karey P, that she sees the need for salvation and that Jesus is the only way.

Pray for Xonia, recovering from a hernia surgery. She’s doing better than anyone expected.

Pray for Steve L, dealing with his mom’s downward spiral.

Pray for all the families we know that have been touched by dementia.

break me, mold me

November 13, 2018

  “God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble” (1 Pet. 5:5).

  Humility is the hallmark of the servant resting in, and sent from, the Father’s presence.

  There is a sense in which God’s true servant is always a defeated man. The one who drives on with a sense of his own importance, who is unwilling to appreciate the worthlessness of his own best efforts and is always seeking to justify himself—that one will not be meek, and so will lack the essential enablement by which God’s work must be accomplished. Our brokenness must not be feigned; we must not be content with the mere language and appearance of humility. We, too, must be as conscious of Divine mercy in our being recovered for God’s service as we are of the original mercy which drew us from the dark waters of death.

 Humility is quietness of heart. It is to have no trouble. It is never to be fretted or irritated or disappointed. It is to expect nothing, to wonder at nothing that is done to me. It is to be at rest when nobody praises me and when I am blamed or despised. It is to have my blessed home in the Lord Jesus, where I can go in and shut the door and be with my Father in secret, and be at peace when all outside is trouble.

  “The Father may allow His servant to succeed when He has disciplined him to a point where he does not need to succeed to be happy. The man who is elated by success and cast down by failure is still a carnal man. At best his fruit will have a worm in it.”

  “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time” (1 Pet. 5:6).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for those that suffer chronic pain

Keep praying for Richard Perales, it seems like the prodigal may be returning

THE BATTLE

October 24, 2018

  “For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works” (Heb. 4:10).

Any time there is effort involved in the matter of resisting sin, we can be sure that we are depending to some extent upon the flesh, instead of resting in the finished work of the Cross.

The question is ‘How are we to meet sin?’ ‘Reckon yourselves dead unto sin.’ The moment that you begin to fight with it—no matter how resolutely you may struggle against it—that moment you begin to experience sin as your master. For it is then that we forsake our true position, which is one of freedom from sin as a master.

Let it be remembered we are to fight ‘the good fight of faith,’ which consists of resting in our position of freedom, and not in obtaining that position. We are to fight not for it, but from it. He alone has obtained it. It is our Father’s free gift. Let us be fully abiding in the One who is Life, and sin when it acts, will find us dead to it.

Calvary is the secret of it all. It is what the Lord Jesus did there that counts, and what He did becomes a growing force in the life of the believer when it is seen, and rested in by faith. This is the starting point from which all godly living must take rise. We shall never know the fact of the Lord Jesus’ victory in our lives until we are prepared to count upon His work on the Cross as the source of our personal freedom from the dominion of sin and the old man within. There is no liberty for us that was not first His. The beginning of spiritual growth is faith in that fact

  “Stand fast, therefore, in the liberty with which Christ hath made us free” (Gal. 5:1).

What a blessing to those that learn the battle is over, by faith you are born again and by faith you win over sin by believing in your death. Some will tell you the battle is in the heart, but in truth it is a battle for your mind. Every time you sin, be honest about what you were thinking, when we look away from the Lord, we open the door to look at the temptation.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Please remember Susan in your prayers, the funeral for her husband is over and in about ten days, (average) the well wishers will be less, the house more empty and the grief process turns to a new stage.

THE BURNING BUSH

October 21, 2018

I think this quote is from an Issac Watts, but I’m not sure; “I would fail neither man not Thee.”

Failure, not a real popular topic. People that recover from great failures are forged in a fire that makes them greater in faith, purpose and forgiveness than those that have never failed greatly.

A promising junior executive with IBM involved the company in a risky venture that resulted in a $10 million loss. When Tom Watson, IBM’s founder, called the nervous executive into his office, the young man blurted out, “I guess you want my resignation?” Watson replied, “You can’t be serious. We’ve just spent $10 million educating you!” (Christianity Today [8/9/85], p. 67)

God is in the business of using people who have failed. The Bible doesn’t paper over the failures of its heroes. Noah got drunk and exposed himself. Abraham lied twice about his wife being his sister. Isaac did the same. Jacob deceived his father and cheated his brother out of the birthright. David sinned with Bathsheba and had her husband murdered. The disciples all abandoned Jesus at His crucifixion and then doubted the resurrection. Peter denied Jesus and later waffled on the gospel out of fear of the Judaizers. Mark bailed out on the first missionary journey. And in our text, Moses murders an Egyptian, is rejected by his countrymen, flees for his life, and lives in the desert for the next forty years. This story gives us hope that God can use us even after we’ve failed.

  1. L. Moody said, “Moses spent his first forty years thinking he was somebody. He spent his second forty years learning he was a nobody. He spent his third forty years discovering what God can do with a nobody.” (Henrietta Mears, What the Bible is All About [Gospel Light], p. 33, in Charles Swindoll, Moses [Thomas Nelson], p. 20.) It is from Stephen’s testimony before the Sanhedrin (Acts 7:23) that we learn that Moses was about forty when he killed the Egyptian taskmaster and that he spent forty years in the land of Midian before the encounter with the burning bush (Acts 7:30). We joke about students who cram a four-year degree program into five years. Moses stretched his education out to forty years!

Stephen also gives us some insight into what Moses was like when he went out to visit his brethren and killed the Egyptian taskmaster (Acts 7:22): “Moses was educated in all the learning of the Egyptians, and he was a man of power in words and deeds.” Although it’s not inspired Scripture, the Jewish historian, Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews [Baker], 2:9:7), says that Moses was being groomed to be the next king, since Pharaoh didn’t have a son. Josephus also reports (ibid. 2:10) that Moses led a victorious Egyptian force against the Ethiopians. Perhaps that’s why Stephen calls Moses “a man of power in words and deeds.”

Why would Moses side with the Hebrew slaves and risk his place in the Egyptian court by killing this taskmaster? This action caused Pharaoh now to see Moses as a traitor who needed to be killed. Hebrews 11:24-26 tells us why Moses did this: “By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward.”

So Moses’ intentions were right when he went out to help his suffering Hebrew people. He had given up position, pleasure, and prosperity to take his stand with God’s people (Philip Ryken, Exodus [Crossway], p. 62). But he went about his mission in the wrong way, resulting in a forty year detour. From a prince in the palace of Egypt, Moses became a shepherd in the barren wilderness of Midian. From being in the limelight of Pharaoh’s government, Moses went into isolation and obscurity. From being a “somebody,” he instantly became a “nobody.” The text does not tell us what he felt, but he must have battled depression and confusion. His first attempt at leadership had been a dismal failure.

Some believe that Moses was right to kill this Egyptian oppressor (see Calvin’s Commentaries [Baker], on Exod. 2:12, p. 47). Calvin believed that Moses was not impelled by rash zeal, but rather acted because he knew that God had appointed him to be the deliverer of his nation (Acts 7:25). But I agree with the majority of scholars who believe that Moses’ action was not in submission to God’s will at that time. And even Calvin (p. 51) acknowledges that the forty years in the desert was God’s school to prepare Moses for his later more difficult assignment. This story teaches us that …

Our failures cannot thwart God’s gracious covenant faithfulness toward His people.

That is one reason the bible has such great appeal to me, it is a catalog of men that have failed and often failed again. And yet God uses them, changes them. A quote that I am fond of and don’t know the author; “When you pray remember God will often do something to you before He does something for you.”

So, the fiery furnace you are in right now, it probably won’t last 40 years like Moses in the wilderness, good news, right?

The one important thing to cut a trial short, learn the lesson God is trying to teach you the first time. And it’s ok to ask, “what the heck are you doing to me.”

Sickness, pain, hardships, no money, friends leaving, disease, cancer, divorce, they are all like the burning bush, you just have to listen to hear the voice of God.

And don’t get me wrong, God doesn’t cause these things to happen, but He will use them to temper the metal, the trial will make you a better person once you get over your anger, your declaring your rights, submission to God, the breaking before the mending, never any fun, but the lesson learned, the time of closeness to Him, it’s sad we forget and have to learn it over and over again.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for the family of A.G. Russell, the knife community has lost a great man, remember the family and all the lives he touched.

I know of no verse in the Bible that is as concise and obvious in its meaning and yet so controversial and difficult to apply practically as Colossians 3:18. On the surface, it’s pretty simple:

Wives must submit to their husbands as is fitting in the Lord.

If there are no questions, we can all go home now! But the obvious simplicity becomes incredibly complex as you begin to sort it out. For one thing, there are probably thousands of subjective opinions about what a submissive wife is like. A husband once complained to me that his wife wasn’t submissive. I asked him what he thought that meant. He snapped, “When I say, ‘Paint the house black,’ she picks up a brush and starts painting!”

In a similar vein, some think that submission means the total passivity of the wife. The husband makes all the decisions without consulting her or taking her needs and desires into account. He controls the money, determines where the family will live, whether he will take a new job, whether they buy a new car, etc. She passively goes along. I heard of a seminary graduate who came home and without discussing it, announced to his wife that they would be moving across the country where she had no family or friends. He couldn’t understand why she wasn’t excited about this great ministry opportunity for him!

Others think that submission means that the wife should take care of all the household chores—cooking, cleaning, shopping, and dealing with the kids, while the husband works, brings home the paycheck, and watches sports on TV.

On the opposite side, many Christians now embrace “egalitarianism.” They claim that there are no distinctive roles for men and women in marriage or in the church. There should be “mutual submission,” with no one exercising final authority. They argue that the biblical commands for wives to be subject to their husbands were culturally determined. Paul told wives to be subject to their husbands in that male-dominated culture so that the truth of the equality of the sexes would not interfere with the gospel. But now that we live in a more egalitarian age, we should cast off all gender-based role distinctions.

As if the subject were not difficult enough to sort out, we also have widespread wife abuse, which is often blamed on teaching wives to be submissive. One in three women have been the object of some form of physical violence from an intimate partner. One in five women have been victims of severe physical violence by an intimate partner. About one in five instances of domestic violence involves a weapon.

If you think that such abuse is rare in the church, you’re not in touch with reality. The late Chuck Colson told this story on his “Breakpoint” radio program (10/20/09):

A woman I’ll call “Marleen” went to her pastor for help. “My husband is abusing me,” she told him. “Last week he knocked me down and kicked me. He broke one of my ribs.”

Marleen’s pastor was sympathetic. He prayed with Marleen—and then he sent her home. “Try to be more submissive,” he advised. “After all, your husband is your spiritual head.”

Two weeks later, Marleen was dead—killed by an abusive husband. Her church could not believe it. Marleen’s husband was a Sunday school teacher and a deacon. How could he have done such a thing?

Tragically, studies reveal that spousal abuse is just as common within the evangelical churches as anywhere else. This means that about 25 percent of Christian homes witness abuse of some kind.

And the statistics on physical abuse don’t include verbal and emotional abuse. So in light of all these confusing factors, how should we deal with Paul’s admonition to wives to submit to their husbands?

We had a wife in our church of a defrocked pastor. He wouldn’t come to church because he was embarrassed about losing his pastorate. During our very hot South Texas summers, I noticed she had long sleeves on and kept her sunglasses on during church. When I asked about the glasses she said she was having eye problems.

Then she came to church limping and said it was gout.

One Sunday a woman heard her crying in the restroom. The sunglasses were off and both eyes were black. By the grace of God, one of our sweetest, most caring “church grandmothers” finally asked her straight out if her husband was abusing her.

She broke down and showed the women the bruises on her back and sides.

When confronted he denied it. We reported him to Adult Protective Services and he tried to run. He was finally caught and arrested. I think half the church showed up in court to support the wife.

With all the doctor and hospital ER reports and the wife’s sworn deposition, he landed in jail (not long enough). When he got out he tried to get a homeless guy to kill his wife. Turns out the homeless was an undercover cop.

Now the husband is in jail for a sentence of over 50 years. Even with time off for good behavior it is doubtful he’ll get out.

So, ladies, if you are being hurt, physically, emotionally, verbally psychologically, get out and get away, get somewhere safe and start the process legally. Never let the “accidents” go unreported. You didn’t walk into a door or tripped on the stairs. Some churches have safe houses just for women and children. Seek help but get away. it’s never your fault.

If you need help email us at scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for women and children that are abuse, pray they get to safety.

More than a muscle part three

September 13, 2018

The Heart Needs Giving

To balance out your character you need to do more than guard your heart. It is the flip side that makes you authentic … you also need to give your heart. To resist releasing yourself for fear of getting burned may seem safe, but in the long run it is lethal.

(1) Giving the heart means risk, entanglements, becoming vulnerable: It means having to step out in faith, believing God rather than one’s own strategies. It means having to give up something … sometimes a lot. It can even mean having your heart broken and wrung like a towel. But to fail to give it means to lock it up safely in the casket of selfishness. And like a body laid to rest in a casket, the heart will change; though safe, dark, and motionless, it will rot and become a bag of bones.

(2) Giving the heart also means accountability: “As the maxim goes, ‘People are willing to give God credit, but not cash.’ As long as accountability is in the future and suspended in space, I will accept it. But if it actually starts interfering with my personal life, forget it.”

To believe you can give your heart without accountability is like believing that you can raise children without discipline, run a company without rules, or lead an army without authority. Accountability is to the Great Commission what tracks are to a train. It is the means of quality control, facilitates leadership, protects the congregation, makes ministry a joy, helps people keep their commitments.

(3) Giving the heart means involvement: Involvement with God, involvement with family, involvement with other Christians, and involvement with non-Christians. And what does involvement include? It includes: sacrificial love, walking by faith rather than sight, spontaneity rather than rigidity, the risk of vulnerability, and a willingness to become accountable. In Webster’s Dictionary, we find that being involved means “to draw in as a participant, to relate closely, to connect, to include.”

Religious striving is far too often egocentric, and though this can be purified and brought into the service of God through His Word, too often true fellowship with God and loving Him with all our heart is corrupted and nullified by craving and striving for power, security, or other selfish desires that stem from a heart that is kept from God as our source of strength, joy, and meaning in life.

Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words, But they remove their hearts far from Me, And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote, Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, wondrously marvelous” (Isa. 29:13).

Obviously, withholding the heart means our inability and our unwillingness to give our hearts to either God or ministry to others. Certainly, since we never arrive at ultimate maturity in this life, there will always be room for growth in giving the heart because it is so difficult to give up our various methods of self-protection.

The Heart Needs Preparing

Psalm 78:8 And not be like their fathers, A stubborn and rebellious generation, A generation that did not prepare its heart, And whose spirit was not faithful to God.

Psalm 108:1 A Song, a Psalm of David. My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing, I will sing praises, even with my soul.

The word “prepare” in Psalm 78:8 and “steadfast” in Psalm 108:1 is the Hebrew, kuwn. Its basic meaning is “to be firm, established, stable.” From this it came to mean (a) “be set up, established, fixed” and is used in the Old Testament of a house fixed on a foundation, of the establishment of a throne or kingdom, and of persons being established, secure and enduring. (b) Then it came to mean “to fix so as to prepare, be ready, arrange, set in order.” As such it was used of preparing words for wise speech, of the preparation of food, of preparing the foundation for the temple of Solomon, of prayer being prepared, arranged, and set in order before God, of preparing a road, a sacrifice, one’s steps or path (Ps. 119:133), of God’s creative activity, of what He has established as the heavens by His understanding, and of preparing the heart.

This word is used in Psalm 78:8 of preparing the heart to be firm, focused, and fixed on the Lord in the sense of trust and rest in God’s love, goodness, wisdom, grace, and power (cf. Ps. 112:7-8). The point here is that the heart can only become steadfast, stable, when it has been properly prepared in a biblical sense.

This same word is used in Psalm 108:1 of preparing the heart to worship the Lord. The KJV translates this as “My heart is fixed” while the NASB, NIV, and RSV all have “My heart is steadfast.” The Amplified Bible has “My heart is fixed—steadfast [in the confidence of faith].” But the idea here is that it is steadfast because it has been spiritually prepared. Remember, “faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” As the heavens were prepared, fixed, and established by God’s understanding, so our hearts are made stable by the understanding which comes from God’s Word (cf. Col. 2:1-6).

Just as the human heart needs preparation through proper diet and exercise in order to handle strenuous activity and be healthy in general, so one’s spiritual heart must be properly prepared if it is going to be able to effectively respond to God in the varied situations of life.

This is one of the ways we can guard the heart, but the emphasis here is on the need of spiritual preparation through the various biblical disciplines—honest, deep down confession of sin, fervent prayer, careful Bible study, meditation on the Word, Scripture reading and memory, and fellowship with believers. We need these disciplines to stabilize the heart so we can respond positively to God in trust for the varying situations of life.

The Heart Needs Purifying

Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

(1) The heart is purified by being renewed. The mind needs renewing in its ideas, values, motives, and beliefs. The thoughts and intents of the heart need to be changed through storing and meditating on the Word. Included here is the idea of exchanging our viewpoint for God’s (Rom. 12:2; Isa. 55:8f; Ps. 51:10; 119:9-11; Pr. 3:3; 7:3; 2 Cor. 4:16; Eph. 2:23).

(2) The heart is purified by being tested (Deut. 8:2; Jer. 17:10; Ps. 139:23-24). One of the reasons for suffering and trials and the varied irritations that God either brings or allows is to reveal the condition of our hearts, to show its true colors that we might see our sin and deal with it through confession and faith in God’s provision.

(3) The heart is purified by confession or repentance (Acts 8:22). This is vital to the whole process, of course.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Ronne and Tim, their only child, a missionary to Africa was martyred this week and they just found out.

WORD OF MY DEMISE IS PREMATURE!

Imagine my surprise today to find out from my insurance company that my family (mother’s side) have signed and witnessed a statement that I’ve been dead three years now and they have collected the death benefits.

The insurance company is admitting negligence on their part and will be asking the family to return the money (good luck).

At first, I thought it was funny, hey my family is very dysfunctional. But as the day wore on it became a very grievous thought. That my family, full well knowing that I’m alive would have that much animosity to commit a crime and be that thoughtless of my feelings about my very own death.

Then I remembered this was the same family that never notified me of my mother’s death, or of my grandmother who raised me.

Now I will be the first to admit that as a kid I was one rotten hooligan.

I will take responsibility for being a delinquent. And I did give my mother a nervous breakdown. But hey, that was over 46 years ago.

Which proves a point, unforgiveness will lead to bitterness and possible revenge.

I took me a better part of the day to go to prayer and ask God to help me forgive them. I also know that this is a bridge that I burnt, and it will never be rebuilt.

I’ve never been home after I joined the military, my mother gladly signed the paperwork when I was 16 years old to get me out of her life. I thank God for the surrogate family that He gave me and the same for my children. That we were “adopted” by the family of God; and given new parents and my children their own grandparents.

And the irony has not escaped me that I haven’t heard from my daughter or grand-daughter for over 20 years. They followed the same destructive past I did. I can only pray (which I do) that they are godly adults, love the Lord and Serve Him.

Maybe our reunion may have to wait until we meet in heaven. I honestly don’t know what my initial reaction would be if I were to see my daughter. Hopefully not in a morgue.

Well enough of that gloom and sadness. I don’t have a monopoly on dysfunctional. Each of you could probably tell a tale yourselves.

But for the grace of God, thank God, that He gives us grace and gifts of wonderful people to fill our lives. I’m especially blessed as a pastor to have baptized infants and then did their weddings and now get ready to dedicate their grandchildren.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

And a word of advice, if your family is abusive, toxic and harmful, get out, and get away. It is not “the Christian thing” to do and be harmed mentally, sexually and or emotionally. Run for your life and sanity.

sometimes the rod

August 29, 2018

Well here’s a very unpopular topic and one not found in to many pulpits. But the truth of this is freeing and not a burden.

  “My son, do not think lightly of the Lord’s discipline, and do not faint when he corrects you” (Heb. 12:6, Wey.).

  Most of us sought to avoid our natural father’s discipline, when he sought to administer it. And most of us seek to avoid our heavenly Father’s discipline, until we finally learn that “He does it for our certain good, in order that we may become sharers in His own holy character” (Heb. 12:10, Wey.).

  “There is an idea that often troubles people, namely, that God always wants to bring us down when He chastens us. When He corrects a man it is not that He may bring him down, but that He may lift him up. He says, ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time’ (1 Peter 5:6). I discipline my child in order that I may exalt him morally.”

  “Our Father purges us on the principle of ‘we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake.’ In service you are sure to find some kind of pressure on you.

  “We come to feel our need, and often attempt independently to supply it by our own means; the Lord must confound us in the attempt; but having done so, He leads in dependence to find and acquire an inconceivably greater answer to our wishes than even that which we prescribed for ourselves. The prodigal only sought ‘sustenance’ from the citizen in the ‘far country,’ but back in his father’s house he found not bread merely, but abounding welcome and a fatted calf.”

  “For those whom the Lord loves he disciplines: and he scourges every son whom he acknowledges” (Heb. 12:6, Weymouth Translation.).

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Remember Barbara D and her cancer battle

Andrea and Todd, employment for Todd and a church home for both of them

Pray for Tony Ann, pray the she would have a complete victory in her life.

Pray for those suffering constantly with pain, crippling, depressing pain.

Oh,

August 24, 2018

good_shepherdblacksheep

JUST FOR A MOMENT

Today I had a moment, just a second, where I didn’t know what to pray, or say, I didn’t freeze. It was just to much information all at once. Let me start at the beginning.

One of my duties is to be a Chaplain at a Nursing home, they call, I go.

So a new resident was brought to the home and I have to meet the family if there is one and lead everyone of the directors and all in prayer.

There lying on the bed is a 77 year old female, born blind and deaf, born with hands and feet crippled. She has never uttered a word, has had a feeding tube since 8months old. Her two older sisters devoted their whole lives to taking care of her.

Frankly, it was a horrible sight. My first thought was how selfish of these two sisters to keep this woman alive. She has been on some sort of life support miraculously for almost all her 77 years. How she has managed to stay alive I don’t know.

And that’s when I froze, what do you pray in that type of situation. I did what 99% of all pastors do when they don’t know what to do; I read the 23 Psalm.

I’d like to tell you that after reading that I was filled with divine inspiration, nope.

The seconds began to stretch, and then a pray filled my mind and heart.

Afterward I was complemented on my moment of silence, acknowledging the Creator, a divine pause in an awkward situation. I was so surprised by the complement, I just dumbly nodded and smiled.

I don’t know how long it will take to get that image of the woman out of my head. And the ambivalence I feel towards the sisters. Was it noble of them to keep this helpless woman alive, not knowing if she’s in pain or thirsty or anything. How this woman survived all these years, I don’t know if it’s tale of courage, divinity or an act of cowardness  (yes I know that’s not a word) on the parts of the sisters.

They never taught her braille or any sort of communication, other than them cleaning her and touching her.

I know that I will be praying for this woman everyday that God’s will be done.

I wish I could tell you some great spiritual revelation, nope.

Some days this job sucks.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

dark days

August 17, 2018

rainy-sleepy-snoopy-peanuts

“For you have had the privilege granted you on behalf of Christ—not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer on His behalf” (Phil. 1:29, Wey.).

  The Father prepares His sufferers, by means of their sufferings.

  “I believe in perpetual favor with God, but I do not believe in unbroken sunshine here. On the contrary, ‘we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake.’ I say this that you may not think it strange when the collar which you have rightly accepted becomes trying or difficult to you; for surely if it be service it must be so; the servant must be more or less a sufferer.”

  “The Lord grant you to be so assured in heart of His interest in you, that daily you may more and more answer to His pleasure; and not be in any way cast down because you apparently do so little. The fragrance of His name is a crown of glory to the greatest invalid.”

  “‘Unto you is given on the behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake’ (Phil. 1:29). Yea, ‘if we suffer, we shall also reign with him’ (2 Tim. 2:12). The gracious gift of suffering is as distinct and specific a gift as any other of God’s gifts. But this gift transforms the blessed recipient more surely perhaps than all the others into resemblance to Himself, and is for this fellowship, the highest, greatest, noblest of them all.”

  “We naturally shrink from trials and sorrow, but when we find ourselves enjoying the resources that are in our Father, to which our trials have caused us to have recourse, we remember no more the path of affliction which led us thereto.”

  “The child of God is ever in the light, though not always in the sunshine.”

  “If we suffer, we shall also reign with him” (2 Tim. 2:12).

How different a message than what we hear from our popular authors and TV talking heads, that because they are false messengers. It will always be our lot to suffer sometime in some way. Think how oft you pray when in pain versus that shiny day.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com