Tag Archives: call

Isaiah 53-56; Colossians 1

Here is a portion of scripture that I have found on many church walls, well not the whole portion, just the first few lines, but the rest explains the vision of the church’s desire to see God grow the church.

“Enlarge the place of your tent,
    and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;
do not hold back; lengthen your cords
    and strengthen your stakes.
 For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left,
    and your offspring will possess the nations
    and will people the desolate cities.

 “Fear not, for you will not be ashamed;
    be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced;
for you will forget the shame of your youth,
    and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.
 For your Maker is your husband,
    the Lord of hosts is his name;
and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
    the God of the whole earth he is called.

 – Isaiah 54:2-5  ESV

While the tent is identifiable to me as something easily moved, it is not something that can weather a storm. That is why the following verses above means so much. My goal is not to stay  in one place – I need to move as the Holy Spirit leads. The only time I will be in a city and have a solid home is when I am called into the city of God. That is the idea I get through so many scriptures in the New Testament calling me to preach the gospel where Christ has not yet been named, to leaven with the gospel those who are strangers to it and ultimately, lengthen the cords of my tent so that more can be enclosed. With these promises comes divine power. That is why I will not be ashamed. I can remember when I messed up badly at the beginning, but those days are gone now that I walk in confidence with God. I find it hard to believe that I am actually married to Christ. He is my Redeemer for He brought me out from my captivity and my bondage to sin. As the Lord of hosts, He has this irresistible power that I am drawn to and I give Him, actually try to give Him, absolute sovereignty in my life. I know that one day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. Until that day, I plan on doing the same, each and every day.

And as for my call to enlarge my tent – I follow my call to be a disciple-maker.

Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. – Colossians 1:28  ESV

Father, thank You for my call, thank You for walking with me, thank You for Your power and wisdom that You freely give me to share the gospel for all who want to receive.

Erwin (evanlaar1922)

 

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Colossians, Isaiah, New Testament, Old Testament, Uncategorized

Numbers 8-10; Mark 5:1-20

Jesus said to His disciples, “Let us cross over to the other side.” Mark 4:35.  Awaiting on the other side was a demon possessed man which no one could bind and who roamed the tombs and mountains, crying out and cutting himself. Mark 5: 2-5.

In Numbers, we read the prayer of Moses who said, “Rise up, O Lord! Let your enemies be scattered, and let those who hate You flee before You.” Numbers 10:35

I appreciate the image of a God who is ready to defend His most precious creation, mankind.  I wonder if, when Jesus told His disciples to get in a boat and go to the other side, He knew that a legion of demons awaited Him.  And did Moses, too, expect enemies full of hatred to await the Israelites as they journeyed through the Wilderness?  It appears so since He entreated God every time the Lord told them to move. And oddly enough, the only thing that Jesus did on the other side was free the demoniac from bondage before shoving off to the next mission field.

So many times, and especially lately, I have prayed for peace and comfort from not only the storms without, as Julie described, (66 Books, Juliet2912, Feb 22, 2014), but the inner wrestling of my own fleshly soul. I think I am surrendering to Him my concerns by laying them at His feet.  The problem is, though, that I have usually started a fight then ran home to Daddy to protect me.  Yet here we find that our God and Lord Jesus knowingly marches us into the fray, not shielding us from the battle to come.  For me, the picture of God waiting around for the next bad thing to happen in my life so that He can show up right on time, changes to God already on the side of victory just waiting for me to walk through the battle. Now that is an idea I do not readily cherish!

Lloyd Ogilve once said, “It’s our struggle with His uncompromising call to make Him absolute Lord of our lives that causes us to continue to do battle with the anxieties of life.” (The Other Jesus, 1986).

So why do I react with incredulity at the troubles I experience at work, at home, or in relationship with others? Might these situations be occasions for God’s glory to blast open the hardened heart or spread His grace like sweet honey to cover the sins of those whom I would prefer He just plain blast away?  As is so often the case, my self-centeredness leaks toxic waste at the end of my prayers.  Toxic because I want justice (on others) and not mercy; I want to win to boost my pride; I want to be vindicated of any wrong in my doings to be satisfied in my self-righteousness. Instead, God calls me to the other side not for my comfort, but to watch Him free the demon possessed, and to learn to watch the Holy Spirit, much like the cloud, who says, “Follow me.” Is He calling me when I am whining about misfortune or squirming under authority?  Yes, He is calling me to walk toward Him, especially in these times. For then my eyes are on Jesus, and His image is what others will see in me.  No matter the outcome of my struggles – in my favor or not – there is no better place to walk than toward Him.

Janet

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Filed under 66 Books, Mark, New Testament, Numbers, Old Testament