Friday, August 28, 2015

Testing, Makes Us Fit for Use

Testing, Makes Us Fit for Use
Job 23:10 KJV
But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

When working with a horse that has never been ridden, trainers will lead a horse into a round pen to assist them in training. A horse that is not broken is not useable. The testing (training) in the round pen will either cause the horse to trust the trainer, or rebel against him. The purpose in utilizing a round pen in training is to help produce a horse that is fit for use.

To teach a horse to accept ridding gear, the trainer will rub the bridle on the face and neck of the horse. He will put the reins on his ears and let the horse feel every part of the bridle. As the trainer encourages the horse with soft words and gentle pats, it assures the horse that he is safe from harm. Sometimes, a horse will rebel during this conditioning time and the trainer will cause the horse to run in the round pen to get his attention. The horse needs to understand that when he does not obey or yield, there are consequences for his wrong decisions. The consequence being: running in circles in the round pen. When the horse gets tired of running, the trainer will stop him with his body position prompting the horse to come towards him. (One of the distinctive qualities a horse trainer must possess, while training an unbroken horse especially, is trust–––the horse must trust the trainer).

As our Lord has us in the round pen of life, we too, are running until we tire of our rebellious life and look to Him. The Lord’s encouraging words sooth our hearts and make us feel safe in His care. All of the testings, and trials of our faith are what is needed to bring us to the point of brokenness. In brokenness, we are ready for the Master’s use (2 Timothy 2:20-21).

Lord, help me to trust You in testing.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Is There Power in Jesus' Name?

Is There Power in Jesus’ Name?

Philippians 2:9-10 KJV
Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

Reverend E. P. Scott was a missionary, living in India during the 1800s. The Holy Spirit of God prompted him to go into a remote village to share the Gospel of Christ. He set out on this adventure alone; against the advice of his fellow missionaries.  He was determined to share the power of the Gospel with a dangerous savage tribe.

Several days into his journey, Scott was surrounded by a large group of warriors; each one pointing a spear towards his heart. Expecting to die, he made a decision to use his last few moments to glorify God and stir something within the hearts of his captors. He took out his violin (which he always carried on him), closed his eyes, and began to play and sing All Hail the Power of Jesus Name, in the native language of the warriors.

After singing the first verse, the second, the third, and then beginning the fourth, Rev. Scott realized he was still standing, and that all around him was peace and quiet. He opened his eyes and saw every spear lowered. The mighty warriors were standing before him with tears in their eyes. Throughout the remainder of his life, Scott spent much time with this tribe, sharing the love of God.

The name of Jesus has the power to save and to change lives forever. The name of Jesus Christ carries all the preeminence and authority that God gave to it. We know that God the Father, raised Jesus from the dead, and gave Him a name, “Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:" (Ephesians 1:21). 

Lord, I acclaim the mighty power in the name of “Jesus” alone.

Friday, August 14, 2015

"Will You Forgive Me?"

“Will You Forgive Me?”

Matthew 18:21
Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? (Read: Matthew 18:21-35).

True story of Corrie ten Boom

“The Hiding Place,” is a movie and book about the ten Boom family and their strong desire to rescue Jews from the shocking Holocaust of World War II. Their home became a refuge for fugitives hiding from the Nazis. They built a hiding place located in Corrie’s bedroom no larger than a small wardrobe closet behind a false wall. When security sweeps came through the neighborhood, a buzzer would sound and the refugees were given a little over a minute to seek refuse in the secret hiding place.

On February 28, 1944, the ten Booms’ were arrested. All the ten Boom family members were incarcerated, including Corrie's 84-year-old father, who soon died in the Scheveningen prison. Corrie and her sister Betsie were sent to the notorious Ravensbruck concentration camp, near Berlin. Betsie died there on December 16, 1944 and twelve days later, Corrie was released.  Some say that there was a mistake made in the prison paper work, but we know that God makes no mistakes in His purposes or plans. 

A prison guard, known to be extremely cruel from Ravensbruck was attending a meeting where Corrie was giving her testimony. He approached her afterwards saying, “I was a guard at Ravensbruck.” He wanted her to know that since that time at Ravensbruck, he had become a Christian. He had asked God to forgive him for all the horrible things he had done there and wanted to ask Corrie to forgive him in person. He put out his hand and immediately Corrie was faced with his question, “Will you forgive me?”  When she put her hand in his, a healing took place in her heart bringing tears of forgiveness to her eyes. With touching emotion, Corrie responded, “Yes, I forgive you, with all my heart!”

Lord, may I continue to forgive with all my heart.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Measuring the Strength of Your Faith

Measuring the Strength of Your Faith
James 1:12 KJV
Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. 

True joy is an attitude that is characteristic in the life of a genuine believer, even in the darkest of trials. True faith will persevere because trials can never destroy true faith, or change God’s eternal design. Therefore, real joy and faith are there in the midst of any trial. 

During the hardest trial of your life, allow God to do what He wants to do. Let this trial humble you teaching you the value of God’s richest blessings. Trials come to make you into the image of Christ and enables you to help others that are undergoing similar trials in their lives as well.

When you're going through a trial, wanting to understand, wanting to know how to be joyous, wanting to be willing to endure the trial, you're not going to find the answers you need in human reasoning. You need to seek after and ask for God’s wisdom (James 1:5). When you're going through a trial, don't lean on your own understanding but trust fully in the Lord (Proverbs 3:5-7).

Trials drive you to your knees and make you realize how bankrupt you are in your own human reasoning. The supernatural wisdom that only God can give helps you to understand that in the trials of life answers from the world are neither genuine nor beneficial. One of the greatest promises God gives in His Word is that you can go to Him and ask for His wisdom. 

Whatever the trial is, have a trusting heart that God allowed it for His purpose, and that He will give you the wisdom you need to endure it. When you go through a trial and do not turn away from God and His will for you, you prove your faith to a lost and dying world.

Lord, may each trial confirm the measure of my faith in You.