For all of you who believe that things always come in three’s you’re going to love this week we’re experiencing:
1. Television broke: √
2. Computer Monitor broke: √
3. We’re broke: √
Is GOD still leading and in charge of it all?: BIG √
It is not always what you see, or what you experience. It is always Who you see and Who you experience it with. Everyday happenings allow GOD to do everyday √-ups on how you handle all that comes your way. I’m consistently in for a check up with God, and what He says to me, it’s not always good news, but it’s always Good News. See how this works? You getting where I’m coming from yet? No, not so much…
2 Corinthians 13:
The Message (MSG)
5-9 “Test yourselves to make sure you are solid in the faith. Don’t drift along taking everything for granted. Give yourselves regular checkups. You need firsthand evidence, not mere hearsay, that Jesus Christ is in you. Test it out. If you fail the test, do something about it. I hope the test won’t show that we have failed. But if it comes to that, we’d rather the test showed our failure than yours. We’re rooting for the truth to win out in you. We couldn’t possibly do otherwise.”
We don’t just put up with our limitations; we celebrate them, and then go on to celebrate every strength, every triumph of the truth in you. We pray hard that it will all come together in your lives.”
Prep Work Before the Visit–Preparing for GOD’s BIG “C”
Like all visits and tests there is prep work to be done. Why is it we think we can just skate along with God, leaning only upon our one act of salvation, and then when the tough times roll in we freak. We get consumed with the problem instead of trusting GOD with the problem.
Now I know we all get anxious. Come on, be honest. We do love to quote that verse to others from Philippians 4:13 “being anxious for nothing…” It’s just that when we go through it, having someone just quote a verse to us seems trite, and quite truthfully a little condescending. We forget we’ve been there, done that, and what we needed was not just the verse, but someone showing up in Jesus’ shoes and showing compassion. Correction as well as compassion. This is GOD’s big “C”. The test you and I go through isn’t totally and completely all about us. Unlike when we go to the doctor, and they are just examining us, GOD has us, and the people around us in His sights. Quite possibly even people who are not around us, but something from our situation can filter down and around and all across the world. I think if we are honest here to the outside world looking in, we have to admit this one teensy-weensy fact, we need encouragement. We need the Truth that when we are alone, we aren’t, because the Holy Spirit is always there for the Believer. We also need to realize that when we are alone, it’s a lesson for others to not walk away, but pray for all the options we have before us from GOD.
Now you’re getting it, right? No? Please don’t tell me this is to long for you. Please don’t tell me you are one of those fifteen minutes alone with GOD kind of people. Not much scares me, but that scares me. Maybe scared isn’t the right word. It saddens me. How amazing it is that we can sit and jibber-jabber about this and that, watch TV shows waiting with baited breath for the reality outcome, when in reality we only have minutes for GOD and His Word. Okay, I got off track… no, not really. You see, that’s part of the prep before the test. If you haven’t been taking so good care of yourself spiritually before you come in for this crucial moment of testing, you probably are going to go into a panic.
Before you get ready to tune me out, hear me out. What I’m saying is that yes, we should have been getting regular √ups in the Word of GOD, spending time alone with GOD, digging deep into the Word of GOD for personal growth, long before we got put into a situation where GOD is running some diagnostic on us. What, you don’t believe GOD runs diagnostics on us? Well He sure does. What do you think that Philippians passage is saying to us? It doesn’t say you are going to Mr. or Miss perfect, it just says that you’ll find some contentment when you go through the test. You can’t find that if you didn’t prepare ahead of time. What, you still don’t want to admit to the outside world that your testimony can now and again get a bit shaky? People, people, people, no matter how hard you prepare, how trained up you are, some words the doctor shares when you are in for your visit, or the phone call from the doctors office comes, or the test results come in, you can get a bit shaken up by what is shared, or what is being said, or occurring. Contentment comes, but it comes with a help from a friend. That friend is the Comforter. A lot of people don’t get that, but that is the Truth.
The Message (MSG)
Content Whatever the Circumstances
10-14 I’m glad in God, far happier than you would ever guess—happy that you’re again showing such strong concern for me. Not that you ever quit praying and thinking about me. You just had no chance to show it. Actually, I don’t have a sense of needing anything personally. I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am. I don’t mean that your help didn’t mean a lot to me—it did. It was a beautiful thing that you came alongside me in my troubles.
What? You still don’t believe me? Good, because I’m not the “Who” behind the wheel of your life.
The Message (MSG)
3 Join me in spreading the news;
together let’s get the Word out.
4 God met me more than halfway,
He freed me from my anxious fears.
5 Look at Him; give Him your warmest smile.
Never hide your feelings from Him.
So today, all you people who have no problem seeing things in three’s, the only three I know is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are a sure thing. It’s time you stop believing in what you can’t see, in seeking to look to water down God’s Word, and quite truthfully, GOD Himself. Every time you say you follow God of the Bible but still follow in nonsensical things such as: luck, gods, all religions, horoscopes, heaven, hell, but you stop short at believing in being Born Again, you need to start reading up on that very GOD of the Bible you once got introduced to, but never dug in to.
It’s not some evangelical, Baptist yielding, Bible thumping person who invented this, what you believe to be a concept, idea. It was GOD’s!!! For once in your life read it for yourself. Before GOD checks you into some time of testing, prepare for what is coming.
Take charge, take heart, but above all take GOD at His Word. No, really!!! Take GOD’s Word in your hand and start preparing for the life test we live out each and every day.
1-2 The Word was first,
the Word present to God,
God present to the Word.
The Word was God,
in readiness for God from day one. 3-5Everything was created through him;
nothing—not one thing!—
came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
the darkness couldn’t put it out.
What? You want some a prep sheet with instructions before the test? Sure you do? God was so prepared for you to come today, and He has a lot to say to you. Stop, drop, pray, read, and ask GOD what He truly wants from you. Trust me, all the people who misquote God’s Word, or claim to not need it for living, are only fooling themselves, and quite possibly you. However… it will not be them standing before God for you. It’ll just be you and GOD, and if you’ve not received Jesus into your heart and life, well people, Jesus won’t be there to get you through this one last final check in.
The Message (MSG)
11-13Scripture reassures us, “No one who trusts God like this—heart and soul—will ever regret it.” It’s exactly the same no matter what a person’s religious background may be: the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help. “Everyone who calls, ‘Help, God!’ gets help.”
14-17But how can people call for help if they don’t know who to trust? And how can they know who to trust if they haven’t heard of the One who can be trusted? And how can they hear if nobody tells them? And how is anyone going to tell them, unless someone is sent to do it? That’s why Scripture exclaims,
A sight to take your breath away!
Grand processions of people
telling all the good things of God!
But not everybody is ready for this, ready to see and hear and act. Isaiah asked what we all ask at one time or another: “Does anyone care, God? Is anyone listening and believing a word of it?” The point is: Before you trust, you have to listen. But unless Christ’s Word is preached, there’s nothing to listen to.
Until all have heard of His love,
Jeannie Bee–it ever so humble they’ll be no place like Home