The Morgan Church Devotional

a pastor's thoughts about...uhm...stuff

Location: Morgan, VT., United States

follower of Jesus. husband & father. friend. pastor.

Friday, April 20, 2007

In Times Like These, What You Believe Matters

there are always sermons that stand out...sometimes bc of delivery...sometimes bc of content...many times bc of what we are going thru when we hear them.

in my freshman year of college, the college president preached a sermon where this line resounded. he related it was spoken to him by his dad while his dad was on his deathbed, and he (the son) took great comfort in hearing those words from his dying father.

somewhat miraculously (or, at least, surprisingly) the father ended up living for some 10 more years.

it stilll matters, in times like these, what you believe.

whether it's in living, or in matters, always!, what you believe.

in my senior year (i think) the (college) president preached that sermon again...this time his dad was dying...he was noticably sadder (of course)...but, he still was full of faith as he said "in times like these, what you believe matters".

it is true.

spring is (finally!) starting to spring here in northern vermont. the grass is still brown, but hey, at least we can see the grass! the air is warming...the trees are starting bud (which means the sap run is finished for the year)...

yet, our hearts are heavy. how could they not be? it's a heavy time...there are wars abroad and wars at home and there are even wars in our homes...

there is a bob marley song "so much trouble in the world"...and a ub40 song called "the earth dies screaming" that i think about in times like these.

but then, i remember what i believe. bc what i believe matters.

i believe, that yes there is trouble, and that trouble may come close to my life...

but God is for, who can really be against me?

i believe i will face trouble in this life...and the battles will rage...

but God's power will allow me to be triumphant.

i believe that even tho hell and it's minions will line up against me...even tho i may have moments when i'm ready to quit...even tho i may fail in my own power...

that thing...nothing...nothing can ever separate me from God's love expressed thru Christ Jesus my Lord.

i believe that even when i fall into sin...even when i jump into sin...

when i turn to Jesus, He will forgive me. there is no condemnation for me bc of what He has done for me.

i believe that even when the horrible happens...the terrible...the unimaginable...

i believe God is able to take those things and work them to my good.

may God help those who have experienced that this week (and every week).

so, as i sum it up, i echo St. Paul' s words in the book of phillipians:

you will do well to spend your time thinking about good things...about godly things...when you find your self thinkging about bad things (or bad things are presented to you)...think about them in a godly a grace full way...

bc grace is able to make even ugly things beautiful.


Anonymous Bridget said...

When ugly "things" are presented to me my perspective is completely changed when I try to see it, or them from God's perspective. The trouble doesn't go away, but the weight of them is truly lightened. Then I am able to see the larger picture beyond the mess.


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