Friday, April 25, 2014

True comfort is found in His Word

In my last post, I told you that I had started an inductive bible study on Isaiah and had found that it is important to God for us to know Him (Isaiah 5:13)...not just know who He is, but KNOW HIM.
As I dug further into Isaiah, I also found COMFORT in the words I was studying.... Isaiah speaks of how BIG God is, His sovereignty, His holiness (Is 5:16).  You see, several years prior, God had called us to a church that was struggling.  They had been through several splits and had been without a pastor for almost 2 years.  When we arrived, we found a church that had been hurt and was still hurting, some in ways they didn't even realize. The people were fractured and distrusting of leadership.  For years my husband and I had been working to heal our congregation and move it forward, but it was hard work and we were tired, a bit beat up and questioning if we were really where God wanted us. And then I read...

Isaiah chapter 14:24 where God says “Surely, as I have planned, so it will be and as I have purposed, so it will happen”.

This is repeated over and over in Isaiah! These words told me that no matter what was happening, God’s plan WILL be accomplished and they brought comfort I truly needed....understanding that no matter what people did or said, they couldn't thwart God's plan.  I didn't need to worry about what others were doing/saying, I just needed to listen to God and do what He asked ME to do.

   During that time I was also reading the Psalms and came upon..

Ps 16:5-6…”Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure.  The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance”  

HE assigned me my portion..THIS...where I am, is what He has for me.  Here is where He wants me.

Psalm 139:1-4 says “ O Lord, you have searched me and you know me.  You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.  You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with ALL my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.”

Isaiah 43:1 says "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine."!

 What COMFORT it brings when you realize (or are reminded) that God really is completely in control of your circumstances and knows them and you intimately!! No matter what was going on in our church, God had called us there and He had work for us to do.  He knew exactly what was going on and exactly how I was feeling....and He had a plan that would be completed. 

Later that year as things had really started getting hard in our ministry, I picked up this book called Anything: the prayer that unlocked my God and my soul This is a book that will turn your world upside down.  It asked me two significant questions…

 what keeps you from praying to God.. "What do you have for me Lord? I am willing to do ANYthing you need me to"
what Anything are you afraid that God will allow or not allow?

 As I pondered these questions, I realized that what I was afraid of is that things were not going to get easier (and maybe even harder) in our ministry and that God's plan was for us to continue.  And that it would be more than I could bare. 

You know we always say to people…don’t worry, God will not give you more than you can bare.  In reality that is not a true or biblical statement.  God says in scripture he will always give you a way out of temptation.  It doesn’t say any where that he won’t give you more than you can bare…..Actually at times he WILL allow you to endure more than you can bare…ask any mother that has lost a child or someone whose spouse is an alcoholic….He will give you more than you can bare because at that point, you have to depend on HIM.

My circumstances at the time were not comfortable at all, they were hard and a struggle each day.  But it was very comforting knowing I was exactly where God called me to be and He would sustain me while there, if I stayed close to and trusted Him.

As I continued to study, I also found COURAGE in God’s word.... 


rita said...

Thank you for sharing!
Is your Bible study still going?

Mari said...

What an amazing God we have! Thanks for sharing from your heart. I was truly blessed in reading this.
This morning I was reading in Jeremiah, and you know how things strike you sometimes? I had this realization of how short our lives are in God's sight. He was God then and is still God now, the things that happened then were part of His plan, just as the things we go through. Really makes me realize how great He is.

Lynne said...

Thank you for sharing this message, it brings clarity to things that I had gone through, too. Amen!

Rebecca Jo said...

Yes... thank you! Someone who makes the point its not about how much you can bare. People that commit suicide obviously have more then they can bare... I like your thoughts on this..

I love the point in Isaiah that is made... God has a PURPOSE... & he fulfills it THROUGH us... that's so mind blowing to me. Use us Lord!

Cathy said...

Very good post. Thank you for the reminders. I think if God didn't allow us to have more than we could bare at times, how would we know that we can depend on Him and He will help us carry that load.

Thank you for sharing from your heart.