Archive for February, 2011

February 21, 2011

God’s Forgiving Mercy

“But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matt. 6:15. Nothing can justify an unforgiving spirit. He who is unmerciful toward others shows that he himself is not a partaker of God’s pardoning grace. In God’s forgiveness the heart of the erring one is drawn close to the great heart of Infinite Love. The tide of divine compassion flows into the sinner’s soul, and from him to the souls of others. The tenderness and mercy that Christ has revealed in His own precious life will be seen in those who become sharers of His grace. But “if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.” Rom. 8:9. He is alienated from God, fitted only for eternal separation from Him.

It is true that he may once have received forgiveness; but his unmerciful spirit shows that he now rejects God’s pardoning love. He has separated himself from God, and is in the same condition as before he was forgiven. He has denied his repentance,and his sins are upon him as if he had not repented.

But the great lesson of the parable lies in the contrast between God’s compassion and man’s hardheartedness; in the fact that God’s forgiving mercy is to be the measure of our own. “Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?”

We are not forgiven because we forgive, but as we forgive. The ground of all forgiveness is found in the unmerited love of God, but by our attitude toward others we show whether we have made that love our own. Wherefore Christ says, “With what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” Matt. 7:2. Christ’s Object Lessons, 251

February 11, 2011

A Heart that Forgives

His hand was thrust out to shake mine.

“Germany was a land in ruins, cities of ashes and rubble, but more terrifying still, minds and hearts of ashes. Just to cross the border was to feel the great weight that hung over the land.

It was at a church service in Munich that I saw him, the former S.S. man who had stood guard at the shower room door in the processing center at Ravensbruck. He was the first of our actual jailers that I had seen since that time. And suddenly it was all there–the roomful of mocking men, the heaps of clothing, Betsie’s pain-blanched face.

He came up to me as the church was emptying, beaming and bowing. “How grateful I am for your message, Fraulein.” he said. ‘To think that, as you say, He has washed my sins away!”

His hand was thrust out to shake mine. And I, who had preached so often to the people in Bloemendaal the need to forgive, kept my hand at my side.

Even as the angry, vengeful thoughts boiled through me, I saw the sin of them. Jesus Christ had died for this man; was I going to ask for more? Lord Jesus, I prayed, forgive me and help me to forgive him.

I tried to smile, I struggled to raise my hand. I could not. I felt nothing, not the slightest spark of warmth or charity. And so again I breathed a silent prayer. Jesus, I cannot forgive him. Give me Your forgiveness.

As I took his hand the most incredible thing happened. From my shoulder along my arm and through my hand a current seemed to pass from me to him, while into my heart sprang a love for this stranger that almost overwhelmed me

And so I discovered that it is not on our forgiveness any more than on our goodness that the world’s healing hinges, but on His. When he tells us to love our enemies, He gives, along with the command, the love itself.” (The Hiding Place, Corrie Ten Boom)

February 10, 2011

What Child Is This

February 9, 2011

Praise You Just the Same

Now my life is beautiful; praise comes easy to me.
But I felt when all was darkness, for the truth was so hard to see

Oh, but, thank You for the trial, if it will bring me close to You
Help me, Lord, to smile, when things don’t go the way I’d want them to
If I suffer pain, help me, that I don’t complain, but
Thank you, Lord, and praise You just the same
I want to thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same

Help me to remember that even You were made to cry
But, Son of God, Redeemer, You knew You were not to reason why
When I feel like dying, help me that I don’t stop trying
But, thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same
I want to thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same.

And when I think of You upon that tree
I know that what You did, You did for me
And so until my days on earth are finally through
Wherever I am led I’ll fallow you
Jesus! My Jesus!

If I suffer pain, help me that I don’t complain
But thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same
I want to thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same

Praise Your holy name.
Praise Your holy name.
Praise Your holy name.
Praise Your holy name!

February 8, 2011

Home Is Where I Belong

I have been to many places
I have seen the sun
Shine through many faces
But still the same sun

Going on a long, long journey
Looking for a home
A place where I could live
A place where I belong

Coming back from a long, long journey
With a brand new song
Now I’ve found the place where I belong
Coming back from a long, long journey
No, I can’t be wrong
Cause my home is where the Son is
That’s where I belong

Now I know that home is more than
Just a place to stay
Home is always near by
It’s never ever far away

And this is what I carry with me
Everywhere I go
That home is never good-bye
It’s a constant hello

Coming back from a long, long journey
With a brand new song
Now I’ve found the place where I belong
Coming back from a long, long journey
No, I can’t be wrong
Cause my home is where the Son is
That’s where I belong

Yes, my home is where the Son is
That’s where I belong
Yes, my home is where the Son of God is
That’s where I belong

By Ingemar Olsson

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February 7, 2011

Give Them All to Jesus / Broken Toys

As children bring their broken toys
with tears for us to mend,
I brought my broken dreams to GOD
Because He was my Friend.

But then instead of leaving Him
in peace to work alone,
I hung around and tried to help
With ways that were my own.

At last I snatched them back and cried,
“How can You be so slow”?
“My child,” He said,
“What could I do?
You never did let go.”

Lauretta P. Burns

 

February 6, 2011

Woman, Son, Mother

Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon

Why do we honour? Do we base our honour on a principle of the heart or do we honour because someone has done something honourable?

As children we are privileged to honour our parents. “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” Exodus 20:12. Do we honour our parents because and only if we can conclude they’ve done honorably/earned it? Or do we honour our parents because that’s just what we do? God doesn’t qualify the command with any ifs, ands, or buts. Then we shouldn’t either. And we can be sure that there’s a world of good awaiting the child and the parent as this law of love is obeyed.

Honour:  To revere; to respect; to treat with deference and submission, and perform relative duties to.

Respect:  To view or consider with some degree of reverence; to esteem as possessed of real worth.

Compassion:  a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

Humanity:  the quality of being humane; kindness; benevolence.

As Jesus hung upon the cross those dreadful hours of agony, he did not forget his mother. She could not remain away from the suffering scene. Jesus’ last lesson was one of compassion and humanity. He looked upon his mother, whose heart was well nigh bursting with grief, and then upon his beloved disciple John. He said to his mother, Woman, behold thy Son. The said he to John, Behold thy mother. And from that hour John took her to his own house. Spiritual Gifts, Vol. 1, pg. 60

As the eyes of Jesus wandered over the multitude about Him, one figure arrested His attention. At the foot of the cross stood His mother, supported by the disciple John. She could not endure to remain away from her Son; and John, knowing that the end was near, had brought her again to the cross. In His dying hour, Christ remembered His mother. Looking into her griefstricken face and then upon John, He said to her, “Woman, behold thy son!” then to John, “Behold thy mother!” John understood Christ’s words, and accepted the trust. He at once took Mary to his home, and from that hour cared for her tenderly. O pitiful, loving Saviour; amid all His physical pain and mental anguish, He had a thoughtful care for His mother! He had no money with which to provide for her comfort; but He was enshrined in the heart of John, and He gave His mother to him as a precious legacy. Thus He provided for her that which she most needed,–the tender sympathy of one who loved her because she loved Jesus. And in receiving her as a sacred trust, John was receiving a great blessing. She was a constant reminder of his beloved Master. The Desire of Ages, 591

Jesus’ care for his mother during her time of grief and his concern for her future well-being is a moving testament to the pure goodness of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Listen to: The Rose of Sharon by Steve Green, Wayne Watson, Twila Paris

February 1, 2011

Moses’ Supernatural Love

“Moses had been a man greatly honored of God. He was greater than any who had lived before him. He was privileged to talk with God face to face as a man speaketh with a friend. He was permitted to see the bright light and excellent glory that enshrouded the Father. Through Moses the Lord delivered the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. Moses was a mediator for the children of Israel. He often stood between them and the wrath of God. When the wrath of God was greatly kindled against Israel for their unbelief, their murmurings, and their grievous sins, Moses’ love for them was tested. God promised him that if he would let Israel go, let them be destroyed, he would make of him a mighty nation. Moses showed his love for Israel by his earnest pleading. In his distress he prayed God to turn from his fierce anger, and forgive Israel, or blot his name out of his book.” Spiritual Gifts. Volume 1, Page 40, 41

I couldn’t help but notice Moses’ love for Israel during a time when one naturally finds it easier to do anything but love an offender. Put yourself in his place and you’ll see how supernatural his choice to love really was.

Moses had the “this mind” that was in Christ Jesus which is why his love reminds me of Christ’s love for humanity. Jesus didn’t have to die for us. But He loved us so much that He endured 33 years of life and then a cruel death on the cross.

Lord, today, please help me to stay in and walk in that supernatural love.

“Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus:” Rom 15:5