Monday, May 17, 2010

Is God Stretching You to the Breaking Point?

Dear Reader,
Today's post is from a pastor who's also a widower--he knows what it's like. Part of the way he cares for his church and family is to send out daily e-mails of encouragement and exhortation, which I'm fortunate enough to receive, too. I'd like to share this one with you:

"Have you ever got to the point where God has seemingly stretched you to your breaking point? The last couple of days have seemed that way to me. It causes one to wonder what God is doing…or if He is really there at all…or if He is, maybe He doesn’t care. Of course those are the questions of a forgetful heart. God does know what He’sdoing…He’s always there…and He does care. In fact, He puts us through the “stretch” because He DOES know what we need and He DOES have a plan and CARES for us.

“A saint’s life is in the hands of God like a bow and arrow in the hands of an archer. God is aiming at something the saint cannot see, but our Lord continues to stretch and strain, and every once in awhile the saint says, “I can’t take any more.” Yet God pays no attention; He goes on stretching until His purpose is in sight, and then He lets the arrow fly. Entrust yourself to God’s hands.” (from My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers).

When we’re going through the “stretch” we need someone to remind us that God’s ways are often not readily understood at the moment of the “stretch.” Sometimes He allows us to see His purposes in retrospect. Sometimes we won’t completely understand until we no longer see through a glass dimly and see Jesus face to face. Then He will make sense of our lives and the “stretching” times.

Until then, Chambers gives us sound advice: “Is there something in your life for which you need perseverance right now? Maintain your intimate relationship with Jesus Christ through the perseverance of faith. Proclaim as Job did, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” ( Job 13:15 ). Faith is not some weak and pitiful emotion, but is strong and vigorous confidence built on the fact that God is holy love. And even though you cannot see Him right now and cannot understand what He is doing, you know Him. Disaster occurs in your life when you lack the mental composure that comes from establishing yourself on the eternal truth that God is holy love.”

My prayer today is that we all learn to trust in God’s sovereign plan and purpose for our lives no matter what. I’ll be praying for you…you pray for me.

Pastor Dean

P.S. See Monday, April 12 "God's Grace for Dreaded News" for a bit of Pastor Dean's story.

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