Sunday, February 15, 2009

ALL is of God!

Another experience this past week is yet one more reminder of the fact - FACT - that truly ALL is of God. Ray Prinzing's devotion for this date makes it wonderfully succinct:
"Even though at present you are temporarily harassed by all kinds of trials and temptations. This is no accident it happens to prove your faith, which is infinitely more valuable than gold, and gold, as you know, even though it is ultimately perishable, must be purified by fire. This proving of your faith is planned to result in praise and honour and glory in the day when Jesus Christ reveals Himself."
(I Peter 1:6-7, Phillips)
This is no accident. It is a HAPPENING that is PLANNED to prove your faith! The responsibility is Gods, according to His plan and purpose being wrought out in us, that we might be found to His praise. Let us not be so quick to look for secondary causes, and forget that God is working out all things after the counsel of His own will. Nor did He just allow it, nay, HE PLANNED IT. We need to know wherein we stand, and in Whom we believe, else we shall not be able to stand in the evil day. But knowing that whatever shall touch our lives in the days, months, years to come, is in the purpose of God, under His sovereign control, and that IT IS NO ACCIDENT, then we can rest in His power and sufficiency to bring us through victoriously. All our circumstances are not just casually permitted; they are planned in His love.
No wonder it is written, neither give place to the devil, (Eph. 3:27). You cannot be GOD-CONSCIOUS and devil-conscious at the same time. Since God is working in His elect to bring them to that place where the prince of this world cometh and hath nothing in me, (John 14:30), it is obvious that all the place in our minds where we have given room to the negative must be purged, and Christ totally enthroned, so that He alone fills our being with His consciousness.
Predetermined counsel working, Tis the Fathers will for thee,
And no accident can happen, what He planned is what you see.
From our God all things receiving, single eye, in faith to stand,
Strengthened with the blest assurance, none can pluck us from His hand.

Once again, a word from this precious saint (now gone) gave a needed reminder of what is true - God is in control of ALL...
Our daughter-in-law,Amy, being a Chinese born in Malaysia, carries a Malaysian passport; every year she must file with U.S. Immigration for a re-entry permit, to keep her Green Card valid. A new ruling - she must now submit a biometric "exam"; unfortunately, she was notified of this 3 days after she and family returned to Malaysia last July. If she cannot get it done at a U.S. embassy in Kuala Lumpur, or some other country, she must travel back to the U.S. to have it done - a long and expensive trip. It cannot be done in KL, but is possible in Bangkok...
The source of my experience of travail was - she was sent papers, with a very important envelope (had a scanner tab, so would go to the right individual).
she must mail the biometric in that envelope! I could scan the papers, but not the scanner tab. So, needed to send that. The problem? For some reason, in recent years, mail to their address is very "iffy". I could send it Fed Ex (through the p.o., and would be guaranteed overnight), or Priority Mail, which was to take 4-6 days. I chose the latter, because of the $25 difference (Priority Mail was $27). Yes, money was the criterion; the inner conflict was, the it was U. S. mail, and so would pass into the hands of the Malaysian postal system. However, I trusted Abba Father, and knew HE was bigger than all parties involved.
However (and thus came the "glitch" in my mind), time passed, and no word from Amy that the envelope had arrived. I knew it would be no simple matter to have Immigration send along another one. I prayed, and Father said, "Be still, let go, and know that I am God. I am in control of everything." Sounds positive enough, but...I truly wanted a more "definite" word (although surely that was very "positive".) Anyway, days passed, and I would cry out - this wasn't a matter of something hurting me; rather, it involved another person.
Yesterday morning, early, thought to send a "mea culpa" email to Amy, but would wait until Father gave me the words. And, PTL, after several different writings from others, and words, there was peace. Yes, I KNEW He was/is in control - that was never in doubt; but...alas, for that "but". Anyway, every Saturday evening, I call the family in KL, and talk to the boys. After, I asked to speak to Amy. Started out by saying I was so sorry to be causing her trouble. When she asked why, I said that the envelope had not arrived. "Ah, Mom, it has - I received it yesterday and was going to send you an email." Well, I exploded with shouts of praise and thanksgiving; and yes, truly "everlasting JOY" was upon my head, so thankful for His faithfulness...and (as He has reminded me) He is never early, AND He is never late. Also, my loving Abba Father simply loved me through it all - no recriminations, or telling me how faithless I was. Incredible love.
Then this word from Ray Prinzing this morning, a timely reminder of what I knew/know to be true. Father even brought Job to mind. Although we know that the Adversary is the one God used to deal out the woes, Job only saw God in it all. Amen.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

A thought or two

Often, when something unpleasant happens to a friend, or neighbour, the common response is that God "allowed it." Norman Grubb once wrote: "If and when disturbing things come to us or our neighbours, and we only say God 'allowed' it, we seem to imply a weakness in God, as if He is sorry about such things, but He cannot help it. NO! God causes; He ordains; He intends, but NOT He 'allows'".
Decided one day to check in the concordance to see if Norman were correct. "Allow" is used many times for man, but not for God. The only time there is something close is in Heb. 6:3, where it says, "And this we will do, if God permit." "Permit" sounds something like "allow", but has a different nuance. If you want to add a room to your home, the city will "allow" you to do it; but if you want to go through with it, you must obtain a "permit".
We do not have to apologize for God, or make excuses for Him. He has very definitely taken all responsibility for what has happened to His creation [after all, HE planned it all]. One place where we see this made clear, that God takes responsibility, is Romans 8:20, "For the creature [creation] was made subject to vanity [decay, futility, imperfection],not willingly [not by its own choice], but by reason of Him who has subjected the same in hope." Ah yes, all is of God, but always IN HOPE (expectation).
Something that happened to me a few days ago was an instance, to me, that ALL IS OF GOD. I was going out of the garage, using the back door [intending to feed the birds], when a gust of wind slammed the door on the middle finger of my left hand [PTL it was not the right hand). It hurt!!! I cannot describe the pain; I thanked God (yes, we are to thank Him IN all things, and FOR all things), crying at the same time because of the excruciating pain. As I walked to the bird feeder, a thought came to me (from my Abba Father, who is Love, Who gives me His thoughts) - it was a reminder that those who are being persecuted and tortured for Christ, experience such pain, over and over again. I was hit only once, not several times with rods, whips, chains, nor were my fingernails pulled out...or worse. Ah, it gave me a fresh, a real, understanding of what these people are put through. I volunteer at Voice of the Martyrs, and so hear of horrific things all the time; but may I say this severe blow to that small part of my body gave me a perspective, an awareness, I had not really known before.
God did NOT allow that - He did it. After all, is it not He who controls the "stormy winds"? Ps. 148:8 They "fulfill His will!" The pain eventually subsided, the finger was not broken (did turn a beautiful colour of purple), and I can use it, kind of (if am careful). Better every day...
Yes, it is an episode I would rather not repeat, but how thankful I am to know that there was a purpose in it all - a loving purpose.