Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Welcome to our "Be of Good Cheer" blog! We've designed this blog with the hope that will inspire and edify those who walk in the faith or are searching for direction, hope and answers in a confused world. We hope that it will provide encouragement for those who seek THE abundant life that only our Savior, Lord, and King can provide both now AND in the Kingdom to come! The entries here are a result of inspiration, life experiences, trials, studies and the living Word of God Who gives us every reason to be encouraged and put our hope and trust in Him.
In the words of the One who is faithful and true: "These things I have spoken to you that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:32-33
Sunday, June 27, 2010
A deluge. And, what a deluge it was, too. Torrents of rain came tumbling out of the charcoal colored sky with what seemed like the force of a waterfall. It came fast and furious without warning, proceeding to drench the house and everthing around it for a least five solid minutes. For a fleeting moment, I thought of Noah and his ark and wished I'd had one. Thankfully, the rain began to subside gradually turning into a sprinkle and then, in a moment, became a faint drizzle.
All the while, I sat in my very warm, very dry home enjoying the sound of the rain clacking on my roof and windows. I was amazed by the volume that poured out of the sky and was thankful for the many wonderful things that water brings and the God that created it. And, yet, I was ever so very grateful for being inside rather than out, dry rather than wet, and for the provision of having a solid roof over my head with no cracks, crevices or leaks. No matter how the rain came down, I had a roof over my head.
This downpour did bring to mind another time, in another very wet year, when our first home could not keep out the rain. It seeped through the outer stuccoed walls creating damage to the insulation, dry wall, and flooring. Our home could not weather the storm. It was hastily constructed by unskilled craftsmen and a builder of little integrity who was very eager to put quick dollars in his pocket. Several public protests and a lawsuit later, our family and home went through the painstaking process of months of mold remediation and repair.
My mind and heart, prompted by His Spirit, was suddenly reminded of the trials that come our way, seemingly out of nowhere, trying to drown us with confusion and dispare much like this torrent of rain.Then, ever so gently, our everpresent, everfaithful God reminded me as to just how much greater is He that is my covering and my shelter than the temporary structure around me. He reminded me that He is my only true source of comfort and shelter in any storm that life brings my way. And, if I diligently seek Him, the intensity of those storms and resulting damage will be much less than if I travel through it relying on my own self sufficiency.
My God is the Master craftsman who is the expert at molding me and shaping me to be like Him. Nothing is too difficult for Him. 'I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.' Psalm 139:14
He will never abandon me to weather the storms of life alone. In Deuteronomy 31:8 and throughout His Word, He tells us that "The LORD Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." In 2 Samuel 22:2, David says "The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer."
God's love is infinite and unfailing. Romans 5:8 tells us "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
With Him, there is no doubt of His faithfulness to us. James 1:17 states 'Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.'
God cannot lie; He is true to His Word and promises. "The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.” Isaiah 40:8. And, from Titus 1:1-3 '..... according to the faith of God’s elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began, ....'
My temporary dwelling may sprout leaks in every corner reflecting the unreliable work and false promises of men but God's provisions will stand strong and fail not. Psalm 27:5 says 'For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling; He will hide me in the shelter of His tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.' As I struggle against the torrents life brings my way, I must dutifully remind myself of in what and in Whom I should be placing my trust. I must pray for others who do not know of Him, nor embrace His power or provision.
In times of distress, who do I call to shelter me from the storm? My Lord and my God. When life's circumstances hit me with a downpour that seems will never end, who is the guide who leads me through the raging waters to a place that is warm and dry and safe? The Light of the World who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Despite my faults and failings, who covers me with His blanket of loving grace? My Savior who is the Bright and Morning Star! In times of tumult where my life has seemingly turned upside down, who guides me to a place of safety under the covering of His wings? My Abba, my faithful Father. Who covers me with His armor when Satan fires his fiery darts at my weaknesses? My Protector and Prince of Peace. Whose blood has covered all my sins, past, present, and future, and cloaked me in a robe of righteousness? My Redeemer and my King.
Psalm 18:30 says 'As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the LORD is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him.' And, He, the Great I AM, promises me, when the storms of this life cease, that I shall dwell in the house of the Lord which will stand forever and ever....