It was never about you

“ When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.” (John 11:4)
Outside of our Lord’s resurrection, the story of the raising of Lazarus is probably the greatest miracle performed in scripture. Any time Jesus stayed in Bethany, he stayed with Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. You would think with all of this fellowship and service for Jesus nothing bad would happen to them. You know the story, Lazarus gets sick. They send word to Jesus. He (seemingly) ignores them. Lazarus dies.
Four days later Jesus shows up. You haven’t lived until you have dealt with an angry church woman. They tell Him “If you had been here, our brother would not have died.” You know the story. ( I could write about 4 different posts on this story alone). But even in their anger, they say “Even now (!) you can fix this! Jesus goes to the tomb and calls Lazarus out.
Here is the point. Jesus shows up four days “late.” The Sadducees believed that the spirit left the body three days after the body died. Had Jesus showed up any earlier, they would have said that Lazarus wasn’t dead anyway. But when Jesus showed up (somebody help me get happy!) and raised him from the dead, everybody knew that God did it!
Now you listen to me. Setting aside the current crisis, let’s talk about the crises we all face. It would be so much easier if God just made the crises of our lives just go away. But sometimes God has to show up as the God of the Impossible. Sometimes God lets us go through an impossible situation that the preacher, the boss, momma and daddy or anyone else can’t fix. Then when it is determined that it is a lost cause, God shows up and does the impossible. If He doesn’t do the impossible, He doesn’t get the glory out of the situation.
Many times when we go through a trial we look at it as a personal attack, when the truth of the matter is that God wants to use us to get some glory. God does not share His glory with anybody. This too will pass, and when it does may He get the glory.
God’s gonna get some glory out of this! Somebody help me get happy!

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Feel After Him

The following blog posts are posts that I was invited to do for our church Facebook page during the shut down due to Covid 19.  I trust that you will be blessed reading them as I was writing them.

“That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us.” (Acts 17:27)

I’m getting old.  One of the signs of getting old is insomnia.  Every so often, I get up in the middle of the night and go into our living room to watch TV.  I very carefully walk through the house, because I’m convinced that toes are made to find furniture in the middle of the night.  Eventually, I do get there and sometimes I have to feel around the living room to get to the light switch so I can find the remote.

Sometimes it’s easy to see God.

It’s easy to see Him when all is well.  The money is coming in when its supposed to.  Our health is fine.  Relationships could not be better.  We are working consistently and in some cases working overtime.

But darkness comes suddenly.

It comes in the form of financial reversal.  In comes in an unwanted diagnosis.  It comes in a threatened relationship.   So what do you do when the lights go out?

God tells us what to do.  We can’t always see Him, but if we can’t see Him, blessed be God we can still feel for him.  He is still there!

You can feel Him in the preaching of His Word.  Brother Steve reminded us that “though He slay me I can trust Him.”  We have a Word that is forever settled in Heaven!

You can feel Him in your worship and in the music.  I can’t help but get happy when the choir sings “I’m undone by the mercy of Jesus, I’m undone (somebody ought to get happy!) by the goodness of the Lord!”  I feel Him in that verse that says “’tis GRACE that brought us safe thus far, and grace will lead us home.

You can feel after Him when you start thinking about all the times He helped you and he shouldn’t have.  If you think very long all of a sudden a memory comes up and rolls down your cheek.  And then I remember if all I got was Heaven, that’s far more than I deserve.  But we get so much more!

Rachel sang on Sunday, “He was faithful then, he will be faithful again.  I don’t know about you, but I’m going to trust God today because of what He did yesterday.

“Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.”  Somebody ought to get happy!

 

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