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Acts of God

What was the man thinking when, in the tragic losses of war, fire, and wind, he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.  The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” (Job 1:21)?

Is it the hand of our Father that uses the forces of nature to grab, rip, and pound us into submission? Does he smile when we give him credit for what some call Acts of God?

Seems to me that Job’s initial confession may have helped him misread what was happening.

Yes, it was The Almighty who allowed The Accuser to rip into his life and loves. It was God who even ended up speaking from within a wild whirlwind to finally bring Job to his knees—without full understanding. But the reassurance of Gods’ presence in the violent forces of nature doesn’t amount to an explanation of what had happened to Job, or us.

What that reassurance did do was give us reason to believe that it is The Accuser who wants us to think the worst about our God—with resulting envy and contempt for one another.

But could The Deceiver also be the one who is first deceived? In the end, isn’t he the one who learns that he has overplayed his hand in his efforts to get Job, and us, to believe that what God allows are heartless Acts of God.

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152 Responses to “Acts of God”

  1. Mart DeHaan says:

    Since Steve from WV already spent time this morning adding thoughts to the conversation of the last post, am copying his comments here: Keep in mind that his comments speak to the previous post and conversation.

    SFDBWV says:
    September 10, 2017 at 5:28 am (Edit)

    If any of you want to, pull up the song “Somewhere over the Rainbow” as song by Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole

    If you like music, if you want to allow yourself to see beyond the rain and over the rainbow, he does the song credit.

    I have spoken of a merchant who once lived here in my little town, Mr. Curry. A more generous and gentle man I have not known, and yes Christian.

    He was not generous and gentle because he was forced to, he was a good man because he shown the gentle loving nature of Christ in his actions.

    He buried his eldest son Milo when he was only 21 years of age. Home from the Marine Corps and on his honeymoon he was accidently killed while deer hunting.

    Over the years his business dwindled to nearly nothing as he gave credit to all who ask it of him and when it finally reached that point where he had to close up his store, he sat there beside his old pot belly stove, reading all of the iou’s unpaid to him and remembering each person, threw each iou into the fire.

    If we look, if we open our eyes we can see God everywhere in the kindness of people and in the suffering of people as well.

    A dear old friend of mine suffered the loss of her eldest daughter. As we talked together about her grief I reminded her that the first recorded death in history was someone’s child. We were good friends she and I, we buried her a few years ago beside her husband and her daughter.

    Life isn’t easy for anyone, all we can do is make it easier for others where and when we can.

    35 degrees this morning under fog. I bet there is frost up out of here, higher up.


  2. foreverblessed says:

    Yes Mart, I do so agree: in the end, it turns out the deceiver is the one received!

    What Job says, is in the beginnings of his trial!
    He is still full of confidence in God!

    But Job doesn’t know that his trial has only begun!
    That God would wait a time,
    Maybe a time, times and half a time…

    And his confidence is going down and down…

    Till he accuses God for treating him unfairly.

    What is so amazing is, that God beforehand says: Job will be righteous!
    God is confidant that Job will make it!
    Even when Job sinks in the pit, deeper and deeper, being pushed by his friends, who do not understand the nature of Jobs trials.

    God already knew that Job would come out of this: glorious, and splendid in the Lord.

  3. Beloved says:

    God Works In All Things
    …29For those God foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brothers. 30And those He predestined He also called, those He called He also justified, those He justified He also glorified. 31What then shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?…romans 8

  4. poohpity says:

    A few months ago my study group finished a book called “Lies We Believe About God” by Wm Paul Young. One of those lies was “God is in control”. Young writes, “Admittedly we humans are control freaks, wanting to control everyone and everything around us so that the things we fear won’t happen. We inherently know that control is a myth, that one rogue cell or another person’s choices can instantly change the direction of our lives, but we still fight for it and even demand it. So if we can’t control, we want a God who does.”

    His friend Schleske, “a world class violin craftsman, puts it this way: “Scriptures show me that God has the heart of an artist, not a grim construction planner. If the world were the work of a cosmic engineer, he would be in a constant state of discontentedness. We would all suffer from the constant nagging of a dogged designer whose plans just never work out like he intended or expected. Reality could never live up to His spotless construction plans. But a true Creator knows He not only has to shape, but also endorse and allow. Wisdom allows things to grow and unfold.'”

    He goes on to say: “I don’t believe that the word control, in the sense of deterministic power, is part of God’s vocabulary. We invented the idea as part of our need to dominate and maintain the myth of certainty…..Control does not originate in God, but submission does. Domination does not find its source in God, but other-centered, self-giving love does. As our children’s choices affect our relationship with them, so too do our choices affect our relationship with God. God submits rather than controls and joins us in the resulting mess of relationship, to participate in co-creating the possibility of life, even in the face of death.”

    Some people try to make sense of things by saying it is part of God’s plan, hurricanes, tornadoes, natural disasters of many kinds seems so wrong. God can build purpose out of the evil mankind has created. He can turn a dark machine into a icon of grace like He did the Cross.

  5. jeff1 says:

    I think it is startling to think that for all the knowledge of God I have I can still be so ignorant of Him.

    If I had a £1 for every time I doubted God even after I seen Him work in my life. I wish I had that stubborn faith Steve because all too often when I don’t I cause myself much pain.

    I spend more time hiding from God than I do following Him because I would say hope rather than faith is my companion. I am hoping for a better world to come where I will understand God more clearly than I do and where distance shall no more separate us.

    I am weak, but Thou art strong;
    Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
    I’ll be satisfied as long
    As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

    Just a closer walk with Thee,
    Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
    Daily walking close to Thee,
    Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

    Through this world of toils and snares,
    If I falter, Lord, who cares?
    Who with me my burden shares?
    None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

    When my feeble life is o’er,
    Time for me will be no more;
    Guide me gently, safely o’er
    To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore.

  6. poohpity says:

    Another lie he talked about was: “God is a Divine Santa Claus”

  7. Beloved says:

    O God, our help in ages past,
    Our hope for years to come,
    Our shelter from the stormy blast,
    And our eternal home.
    Under the shadow of Thy throne
    Thy saints have dwelt secure;
    Sufficient is Thine arm alone,
    And our defense is sure.
    Before the hills in order stood,
    Or earth received her frame,
    From everlasting Thou art God,
    To endless years the same.
    Thy Word commands our flesh to dust,
    “Return, ye sons of men”:
    All nations rose from earth at first,
    And turn to earth again.
    A thousand ages in Thy sight
    Are like an evening gone;
    Short as the watch that ends the night
    Before the rising sun.
    The busy tribes of flesh and blood,
    With all their lives and cares,
    Are carried downwards by the flood,
    And lost in foll’wing years.
    Time, like an ever-rolling stream,
    Bears all its sons away;
    They fly, forgotten, as a dream
    Dies at the op’ning day.
    Like flow’ry fields the nations stand
    Pleased with the morning light;
    The flow’rs beneath the mower’s hand
    Lie with’ring ere ’tis night.
    O God, our help in ages past,
    Our hope for years to come,
    Be Thou our guard while troubles last,
    And our eternal home.

  8. foreverblessed says:

    That is Psalm 90!!!

    The verse of the day of Bible gateway is Isaiah 46:4(NIV)

    My mother just called me, she asked if I could pray for a good friend of her, who lives near Tampa, Florida.
    A few days ago she was alright, “we never had any issues with hurricanes where we live”
    But now the hurricane will pass Florida on the east side.
    So my mother phoned her this morning, and she admitted that she was very scared. So my mother said, I will pray for you, and I will ask my daughter to do that as well, that God may give you peace of mind!
    They both are well over 80.

    And then the verse of the day is:
    Even to your old age in your grey years
    I am He, I am He who will sustain you;
    I will sustain you and I will rescue you.

    What a promise!
    The lady said that the atmosphere in the neighbourhood was fantastic! Everybody supporting everybody!
    A younger couple are looking after her.
    She cannot drive a car anymore, and all the flights were booked.

    But we have a great God! The hurricane is now downgraded to 2! It is down graded fast now!
    Thank God!

  9. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry, I mixed up, the storm will pass on the west side.
    In 11 hours from now it will pass her home.
    She will take up an even older lady, with a dog and two cats, and the younger couple.
    I pray that many good things will come from this.

    The Dutch have an island in the upper Caribbean that was badly damaged, st Maarten. There were grim reports, about looting and fear, but today there were better reports, of neighbours helping each other, of a lady who made soup and handed it out on the street! Great report!

  10. Beloved says:

    The song I posted earlier is :
    “Our God, Our Help in Ages Past”
    by Isaac Watts, 1674-1748

  11. Beloved says:

    I’ve been watching live reports of hurricane Irma today, praying for all in Florida.
    So good to hear of good things happening despite the carnage in St. Maarten along with Texas. Gods creative energy is not hampered by destruction!

  12. Beloved says:

    Thinking about the deceiver being deceived and I think what made him think God was so fallible in the first place? Is that a consequence of following a black heart? (Not sure angels have hearts but they must have a mind to decide to follow their Creator)

  13. Beloved says:

    Or not follow, just as humans do.

  14. jeff1 says:

    When I falter myself I am not following God but resorting to my own thinking (deceiving myself) which is why I must bring every thought into submission or I am wandering from God’s way and doing it ‘my way’ which is not an option for a Christian.

    Discipline is the key to a life of devotion to God, easier for some than others i.e. obedience was my dad’s companion while I have a tendency to wander.

    As a wanderer I do not see myself as a good Christian because I do not believe that I can be a good ambassador for Christ today unless I can be consistently obedient as my dad was.

    My dad made Godly choices because of obedience because they go hand in glove so to speak so if I am a wanderer then my choices are not Godly as I know all to well from the consequences of bad ones.

    Obedience is a gift from God but it must be nurtured, I must be consistent in taking care of it, neglect is what takes me away from God, God never leaves me but I do leave God unless I am disciplined to do otherwise.

    Discipline is a higher calling for those with the capacity to lead others. Their short on the ground these days, more old school rather than new school to my way of thinking but never the less God knows what He is doing even if I do not.

  15. SFDBWV says:

    First off I would like to thank Mart for his kindness and consideration in bringing my post forward into this new subject, Thanks Mart.

    I find it somewhat interesting that a lot of what goes into a comment is simply something we all need to “say”, and perhaps get off our chest as much as anything.

    Maybe in that spirit of what you give is what you get.

    Touching first to Florida’s weather. With plenty of warning and near hype everyone’s attention has been on what may happen, more so than what did happen.

    I admit I tried to watch some of the Weather Channel’s coverage last evening only to watch Jim Cantore standing in the street for over an hour in the rain waiting for the eye of the then defunct storm to pass by.

    All throughout this TV event it occurred to me as people who live in the affected areas were either ordered to evict or urged to, TV crews were allowed to stay right there, even some on the beach.

    Even more incredible the very selfsame TV reporters stood there telling people if they stayed, their lives were in danger and yet they themselves had no intention of leaving.

    There is no question that hurricanes are a very destructive force. People who live in not only Florida, but all of the Gulf States and southern US costal states should be very aware of them and have been for generations.

    Living there hurricanes should be a part of life.

    No “act of God” it is only the weather. Weather being that atmospheric condition that is part of why there is life here. The act of God being that He created every single thing that exists.

    The term “Act of God” is one invented by insurance companies as a way out of paying for damages.

    I am of course reminded of the story of Elijah being told by God to come to the mouth of the cave and witness, storms, fire and the like pass by and God was not in any of it…Only in the still small voice in his heart was where God was.

    Do I think that the devil/deceiver/serpent/Satan is trying to show God in a bad light in order to influence us negatively? More on that subject whenever it is I will be back to the keyboard.

    Just for the record. I have 2 sister in laws three nieces and all of their families living in the Tampa area. Their safety I place in the hands of God as there are a lot worse things in this world than a hurricane.

    36 degrees and fog.


  16. poohpity says:

    I bet the people in those hurricanes would really appreciate hearing that the loss of their homes, possessions, pets and people that things could be worse. To them right now I bet nothing could be worse as they grieve their losses from the Caribbean to Texas. As I watch the devastation for thousands of miles and affecting thousands of people, I mourn with and for them; now that is a act of God, compassion.

  17. Beloved says:

    Praying for you and your family steve.

  18. foreverblessed says:

    In my country, many many times the lands were flouded by the sea. Land had been lost!
    And it was always seen as: God giveth, God taketh.

    But then it was decided that dikes and dunes were to be fortified, to keep most storms out.
    That was a collective decision: taxes are raised a d a an is formed, since 1953, the storm that took 2000 lives, the Waterplan became huge. Billions of guilders went into it, but it also gave a lot of jobs. (That was the time before the euro.)

    Whenever there is a flooding the world, it is always closely monitored in our country.
    We have a collective programme.
    But commentaries here write: in the US they do not want collective programs, they want freedom for the individual.
    So they decide: floods happen, we will rebuild afterwards.

    For me it is hard to believe, when I watch the seaside in Florida, that there are no dikes, no dunes. The sea water has nothing of a barrier.

    But on the other hand, in our country the huge waterfront programme was only started after the loss of 2000 lives.
    You could say, these lives were a sacrifice for the initiation of the collective action.
    Had it not happened in 1953, we would not have had the “Waterplan”.

  19. foreverblessed says:

    Taxes were raised and a “waterplan” is formed. Dikes were made higher, dunes were made stronger and higher with extra sand.

  20. Beloved says:

    Forever blessed you reminded me of a story from childhood of the little boy who put his finger in a dike to keep it from breaking, I don’t recall more of it but its hard to imagine the loss of 2000 lives! I’m sure there would be some changes made in the US if that happened, although rugged individualism which is a high priority may not let anything change that would serve a greater good, as you point out.

    Now today a sad commentary as video of looters stealing from closed stores in Florida are appearing so compassion and caring get lost in outrage and anger. Life goes on as usual.

    Thank you Jesus for showing us the way out of our lostness!

  21. poohpity says:

    The Netherlands is slightly two times larger than the size of New Jersey and Florida is seven times the size of New Jersey and Texas is 35 times the size of New Jersey. So the cost difference of Dikes and Dunes would be significantly higher. The EU was formed to replicate what the United States has but without our Constitution which gives each state autonomy which prohibits the Federal government dictating what the States must do which is just the opposite of what the EU does. What the people are taxed in countries that form the EU is about 2 and almost 3 times higher than what we pay here.

    Considering population the Netherlands has approximately 17 million people while the USA has approximately 315 million so to compare in anyway would be pointless. The population of Texas is about 28 million and Florida is 21 million. Here there is action from the Federal government to help from the taxes we all pay and it is part of the budget but each individual can also send money, give of their time and come alongside to help as we do for many other countries as well. That is what makes us the USA. Yes freedom is part of it because we do not have Kings or Queens or dictators to tell us what to do and we get the privilege of choosing those leaders they are just not there from generation to generation that is what makes us a Democratic Republic.

  22. SFDBWV says:

    Thank you Beloved for your concern and prayers for Sandy, Neal, Renata, Brandi, Shirley and their families.

    I love you Foreverblessed, I just love that practical approach to flooding from the sea or wherever it is that it continues to happen.

    We don’t do well in such matters here in the good ole USA.

    FEMA has a program called “Hazzard Mitigation” whereby if flooding continues to occur in certain areas they force the residents to sell their properties to the government and then the government simply removes any housing from that area not allowing anyone to ever live there again and so remove the problem of floods causing damage to people or property.

    Of course they don’t offer such a program in places like New Orleans or any other large populated cities since the concept only works in sparsely populated areas.

    During the “Great Depression” there was a huge buy out and collection of hydro-electric dams built along the Tennessee Valley, creating the TVA or Tennessee Valley Authority. Again the idea was to replace people from being flooded out every spring to creating the production of electricity.

    Also during that same time a huge program of building dikes along the Mississippi River was completed to protect farmland. While it has worked to some degree in the past couple decades the dikes proved not to be enough.

    Just my opinion, but I don’t think anyone will ever see sea walls built in Florida. People come to Florida to enjoy the ocean, they aren’t going to want to see a seawall, they are “paying” to see the ocean view.

    Though I agree, if it is a problem that persists, find a way to fix it at any cost.

    I watched a TV program the other day about “Scandinavian” cooking and they mentioned something about deep fried “gravy” in the Netherlands. I have forgotten what it was called, but it looked and sounded good.

    Hope all have a very enjoyable and very blessed day.


  23. poohpity says:

    Today we remember those over 3,000 lost during the 9/11/2001 acts of those who are against our American way of life on bringing down the twin towers in New York. They believed their god was telling them to do so. To destroy rather than to build.

  24. SFDBWV says:

    Beloved, several years ago I had reason to meet with a contractor working for the US Army Corps of Engineers who lived in Ghana Africa. He was a wonderfully friendly and intelligent man. I liked him and though as of this writing I can’t recall his name it is only because it is a very African name and even if I remembered how to spell it I am certain I couldn’t pronounce it.

    Anyway in talking with him he told me where he lived you could tell the haves and the have nots apart by the size of the walls around their property.

    The higher the wall the more “stuff” they had to protect from the have nots.

    Such an attitude of looting during any catastrophic situation has been around as long as people have. It used to be that looters were shot on the spot. However, sadly sometimes the police also take advantage of the opportunity as well.

    I am always reminded during such events that even though we try to create it, we are not in heaven yet. As well as being reminded that before the Flood of Noah that God said that mankind had gotten totally evil; and then Jesus said that in those days before His return “it would be as it were in the days of Noah.”

    Looking forward to the “rapture” and more so to His return.

    If these temperatures continue it looks as if it might be an early winter.


  25. Beloved says:

    Steve I just finished listening to a teaching by Alistair Begg on RefNet radio online reminding us that we may not be home yet but that these things that happen are but moments in Gods economy, who is the sovereign King of kings and Lord of lords!

  26. foreverblessed says:

    Deep fried gravy: I think they are talking about: kroketten.
    It is a thick stew of meat, beef, and then tried in hot oil.
    It is really good. There are now several places in New York where you can eat them.

    A nation can decide to do things together, to built a wall against the water. And then maintain it.
    They say that in the Netherlands there is a culture of negotiating, because for ages the different towns had to work together to keep the water out. No king had to say that, neither dictators, just people working together against a common enemy: water flooding.
    If along the river one town did not do a good job, the next town would also be affected. So there were set up functional organs that would supercede the towns.
    So that all along the river the dikes were well maintained.

    Building a “wall” against water, especially in area’s of heavy industry, or in high populated area’s, is just not a bad idea.
    A much better idea than the Mexican Wall, in mho.
    Since New Orleans the city has done a lot. I know that a lot of water engineers went over there to help.

    It is just a matter of making the decision together, and start working together.
    Individuality doesn’t help when fighting floods.

    Anyway, that is just what I think.

    A nephew went to New York, and he said the metro system is really very very old. He was just amazed!
    That the major of New York wanted to raise taxes to fix the infra structure. But the people refused.
    So nothing is done.

    Who will pay for the infra structure?
    The people that decide to give in total freedom?

    I am just amazed at the anti-taxes sentiment.
    If a country is well run, you just get a good deal.
    The richer people pay relatively more than the less rich, the real poor get financial assistance.

    Anyway, never mind, just some thinking from overseas.

  27. foreverblessed says:

    Fried in hot oil of course, not tried.
    Although the kroket is being ” tried” in oil, as being tested, like we are as Christians, anyone who is a child of God will be disciplined, not by a dictator, but by a loving Father who wants to purify us of our old nature.

    Steve, thanks for being so open about your country! That is really brave.
    I don’t want to brag about how we do things here, as is we are any better. No, not like that.
    but sometimes I just don’t understand.
    Collectivity, cooperation, negotiation….

  28. poohpity says:

    IMHO is for people to spend their own money and not trust the government with it because most often their pockets get lined with it, fraud, abuse and it is misused which is what our current administration is trying to change. The mentality of taking from the rich to give to the poor is a socialist type of government, not that people should not be taxed but when they are it would be nice to be able say they used it well.

    The wall was voted on 2006 called the Secure Fence Act to stop illegal immigration. Many people die trying to get across the border illegally from coyotes, drug dealers and gangs. I live in a border state AZ so I know first hand what happens, it is horrible to people and like most who do not break the law it can be done legally which not many die from legally entering our country. I imagine that every country has it’s border rules because a country without rules chaos usually comes. Asia has 19 countries with borders and Europe has 14 to protect their citizens from terrorism, drugs, weapon smuggling and illegal immigration.

    But of course forever you know a lot about our country other than what the news reports because before you offer your opinion I know you do some research besides listening to the propaganda bias of the media and don’t believe everything or everyone you hear because you are a very smart woman who uses her brain and are not easily deceived as most are because they fail to look up things for themselves.

    There will always be those who use the catastrophes to enrich themselves by looting and stealing. Those are usually the one’s who think it is owed to them because others are richer or the have’s and they have not, so they take. Those who feel they are entitled to the hard labors of others.

  29. saled says:

    I am just blown away by the Wm.Paul Young quotes that pooh shared on Sept. 10 from the book “Lies We Believe About God.” I had not heard of this book, but I know that Young’s book The Shack freed me from trying to be God. I thought that I could control what happened to my loved ones if only I tried hard enough. The story of Mack, whose daughter is kidnapped while he is distracted by a son who is struggling in the water, brought home the truth to me that I can never try hard enough to save my family. And that truth freed me from so much.

    So I am really interested in Young’s idea that “God is in control” is a lie. And in the idea that power resides in submission. Think about the cross. Is there a greater example of submission? And Jesus told us to take up our cross. And our crosses are all different. What is it that he wants me to submit to?

    Thank you Steve for the reminder of the story of Elijah and
    the fact that God is not in the storm or the fire, but is found in the still small voice inside.

    The thoughts on the hurricanes remind me of the book “The Big Wave” by Pearl S. Buck. The big wave was a tsunami, not storm surge, but the devastation was similar to what a hurricane could do, especially in the Florida Keys. An entire shore dwelling community was swept away, except for the few who made it to higher ground. But within a few years, others came and rebuilt where those homes had been swept away. I read a quote from someone who had evacuated from the Keys who said that they would return and rebuild, like they always do. If insurance companies want to call these acts of God and not insure against them, maybe it is time to build less expensive homes in flood prone areas and just plan to rebuild.

    Again, I am blown away by the idea that maybe God is not in control, he is in submission.And is this what Mart is hinting at in the opening few paragraphs of this topic? It seems to me that this idea could also be very freeing.

  30. marma says:

    We have lived in Florida for over 50 years. What we have found is that no hurricane experience is the same. That is a truth about life, I think. I am thankful that we and all we know made it through okay.

    I have been reading through the book of Job for the last couple of months. A lot of insights there.

    Sitting in a closet, under tornado warning as well as hurricane winds, is a test of faith to be sure. There were times of “I believe; Lord help my unbelief” and opportunities to trust even when you didn’t know the outcome.

    Social media and text helped us stay in contact with many friends. We could pray for each other though apart in real time. So cool!

    That was different, too.

  31. Beloved says:

    Marma so glad to hear you are OK and the testimony of your faith in the storm is wonderful, thank you!

  32. Beloved says:

    Regarding The Shack, I read it several times when it first came out but could not square many of the concepts with scripture. I saw the movie just lately, its very lovely but i once again had to think about its progressive, Christian universalist bent and not a!low its popularity to change what the word of God tells me about God, the Trinity, and Gods relationship with mankind. I happen to be reformed evangelical so if this doesn’t bother you then so be it. I find that sticking with the fundamental doctrines of the faith are best. It is though as I said a lovely story.

  33. foreverblessed says:

    Thank youu so much for giving a report! And for telling how it is, being in a hurricane!
    I never have been, and yesterday the winds here were harder, and dark clouds, so I was in mind with the people in Florida, but the storm has already gone over Georgia and South Carolina, and has taken lives there too!!

    Last Sunday I was part of the music group in our church, and then we prepare the songs in advance, from Monday to Sunday I am then bussy with practicing the songs, and that is so lovely! The words stick to you, you wake up in the morning and the song is in your head.
    We were singing “It is well” from Bethel:

    Verse 1
    Grander earth has quaked before
    Moved by the sound of His voice
    Seas that are shaken and stirred
    Can be calmed and broken for my regard

    And through it all, through it all
    My eyes are on You
    And through it all, through it all
    It is well
    And through it all, through it all
    My eyes are on You
    It is well with me

    Verse 2
    Far be it from me to not believe
    Even when my eyes can’t see
    And this mountain that’s in front of me
    Will be thrown into the midst of the sea1

    Through it all, through it all
    My eyes are on You
    Through it all, through it all
    It is well
    Through it all, through it all
    My eyes are on You
    And it is well
    It is well

    Bridge x3
    So let go my soul and trust in Him
    The waves and wind still know His name

    (repeat last line during third run)

  34. foreverblessed says:

    So let go my soul and trust in Him,
    the waves and wind still know His name

    These lines were in my head all the way from the beginning of the storm to now.

    The situation in St Maarten is very bad. Our king, Willem Alexander went over there, with a minister, and they saw the devastation, but the king said, the people were not devastated, they started to clear up the debris, and were full of hope for the future.
    And lots of airplanes coming in from Curacua to bring food and water. It is good they are still connected to a more wealthy country, as in the case of the french part of the island, where the french help out.

  35. foreverblessed says:

    That book about God not being in control, I do not completely get it.
    For me it is so reassuring that God is in control! For me thinking He would not be, would be frigtening. There is nothing happening that God would not allow! I believe that is control!
    You could say that “in control” in the fallen meaning that humanity has, (and the evil spirit world), yes, in that sense, God is not in control.

    Was just thinking about Jesus, saying,
    Do you not think that I could order an army of angels to deliver Me?

    Which to me is saying: Godis in control!!
    But that He relents, is such a great character trait!
    God has the total power, but He does not use it, yet.

    That is why I think we have to be trained, and disciplined. We so need it to kill our old human nature, our old impuses, because other wise, we as christians would use the power of God, in an impulsive way, we would say: “This has to stop now”, and we would intervene. Where as God uses restraint, and waits.

    1 Peter 3:9b
    God is patient, so as to save as many as possible.

    I pray Marma, that in your neighbourhood, many a good thing will come out, that many souls will be touched by the Light of God. (what a christian wording, but I do not know how to put it otherwise)

  36. foreverblessed says:

    And by the way, the Utmost of Oswald Chambers of today is very good:
    The spiritual confusion.
    Where we don’t see what God is doing, and He seems far away, what then…

  37. SFDBWV says:

    “What that reassurance did do was give us reason to believe that it is the Accuser who wants us to think the worst about our God-with resulting envy and contempt for one another.”

    I cannot imagine thinking the worst of God in stating “He is not in control”.

    Why then do any of you pray?

    Satan could do nothing without permission from God in every story of him in Scripture.

    Do not be deceived God is in control as Jesus said “His eye is on the sparrow”.

    None of us can speak for God unless anointed by Him to.

    What God allows He allows.

    What is ask of God in the Lord’s Prayer? What do you see in the 23rd Psalm?

    Start again from Genesis 1:1 through Revelation 22:21 and see who is in control.


  38. SFDBWV says:

    As long as we try and figure out everything about God from the broken and limited mind of man, all we are ever going to get is man’s perspective.

    Something that to man makes sense.

    There is no reverence in that, no awe of an omnipotent, omnipresent Creator.

    In fact we make Him more like us if we think we can figure Him out.

    No need to worship God unless we also worship ourselves along with Him.

    All of the Greek and Roman ideology about their gods made them more human like. And caused them to think that if they pleased their god’s ego’s they could gain favor, and if displeased be cursed for it.

    When Jesus did the miracles He did it was to show His authority and that He indeed is God.

    Jesus healed the sick, raised the dead, calmed the sea, forgives our sins and gives us an eternity in paradise…He is in control.

    My thoughts derailed this morning by someone else’s thoughts.

    I pray for them as I pray for us all this morning not to be deceived.


  39. jeff1 says:

    Our human error would get in the way of God’s purpose if God was not in control. God knows our weaknesses though there are times we behave as if we don’t have any.

    Jesus had to submit to God in going to the ‘Cross’ and any Jesus followers I have seen in my lifetime were not control freaks but were obedient to God’s will.

    Why does God tell us to focus on Christ because He knows when we don’t we will loose our way and I am speaking from experience here and if it were not for having a dad who was obedient I would not have understood because discipline is not easy and why many believers don’t get past belief.

    God works in those He knows He can and when we suffer and remain committed to God like Job did then that shows knowledge and faithfulness i.e. Job knew God well enough to trust Him while his friends showed ignorance of God.

    The lesson is that trusting God in the good times is no faith at all it is in adversary I get to know God because that is were He is.

    He is with us in our suffering because in a fallen world suffering is our companion and heaven our reward.

    We have only to look at the whole life of the characters in the bible to see that following Christ was anything but an easy life and why God doesn’t force us, I either submit, or I don’t and when I don’t I should not blame God because it just shows my ignorance of Him.

    Wandering is my weakness but it was not my dad’s and why I know the difference. I do not know God the way He knows me and why He works differently in each of us because each of us has different weaknesses and so He has to destroy the barriers that separate us from being ‘one with Him’.

    It is God who is faithful, we talk of being faithful to God when all the time it is He who is faithful to us.

    It hurts like hell because I have wandered so far from God has been my experience.

  40. SFDBWV says:

    God builds character through trials and tribulations, just like the master metallurgist who turns up the heat in order to draw away the dross.

    Viv don’t be so hard on yourself we all failed God in some way or another and we will until that hour come when we are forever with Him.

    I need to get along with my morning and simmer down a bit.


  41. saled says:

    Maybe God is much different than we have ever thought. I do not limit him to the scriptures. Words themselves are limiting. And when the word became flesh, his ultimate power was displayed through submission.

  42. jeff1 says:

    Dear Steve, I am not being hard on myself but truthful about my life and I am headstrong like my mum, yet I know in my heart that it was my dad who knew God.

    It was my mum who knew human nature because she had suffered at the hands of those who were ignorant like herself of God.

    If I have learned anything in my life it is that ignorance of God even from those who say they know Him is widespread.

    God knows His creation better than His creation knows Him and why submission to His ways is not just about Him but about bringing His creation back to Him.

    My mother used to have a saying that the devil looks after his own and the truth is that so too does God because not all is as it seems i.e. I cannot always judge a person by their deeds but God can.

    Just as I am – without one plea,
    But that Thy blood was shed for me,
    And that Thou bidst me come to Thee.
    -O lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – and waiting not
    To rid my soul of one dark blot,
    To thee, whose blood can cleanse each spot,
    -O Lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – though toss’d about
    With many a conflict, many a doubt,
    Fightings and fears within, without,
    -O Lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – poor, wretched, blind;
    Sight, riches, healing of the mind,
    Yea, all I need, in Thee to find,
    -O Lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – Thou wilt receive,
    Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve;
    Because Thy promise I believe,
    -O Lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – Thy love unknown
    Has broken every barrier down;
    Now to be Thine, Yea, Thine alone,
    -O Lamb of God, I come!

    Just as I am – of that free love
    The breadth, length, depth, and height to prove,
    Here for a season, then above,
    -O Lamb of God, I come.

  43. poohpity says:

    God showed Job how ignorant he was of Him by the questions God gave to Job to answer which I do not know if any person still has that knowledge to answer. Job’s reaction was to put his hand over his mouth and admit he already has said way to much.

    I only gave a couple of paragraphs of the chapter about control but if one thinks hard about that how can anyone be controlled into loving someone. Think about the households that have a controlling person and everyone goes along with them like our last topic was talking about out of fear of reprisal. No one in that household could be thoroughly honest while with God we can be totally honest. It seems God’s thing since the beginning was to have a relationship with those He created and for them to have a relationship with Him and each other which it seems to be the importance of most the guidelines in the bible about conduct. God did force Israel to obey everything He told them nor does He force us too either. Control seems to force our own will on others which does not offer any choices and we have choices.

    I do not think it was God’s will for Job to suffer nor do I think it is His will for us to suffer either or what He has given us to know about heaven is not true because there, there will be no more suffering, sorrow, tears, death, etc.(Rev 21:3-4) A peaceful co-existence with God which is what it seems to have been the intent all along like God walked in the garden with Adam and Eve before they took matters into their own hands. If He was a controlling God, there would have not been choice about eating from that most dangerous tree, He would have controlled their every move like a puppet master not following Him because one wants to out of love and honor of who God is.

    Sometimes when we hear something new to what we have been indoctrinated to believe it takes sometime to chew on it for awhile to digest what is being said to expand our minds. Controlling and allowing are two very different things.

  44. poohpity says:

    People have described God by using words like; Omnipotent(unlimited power), Omniscience (all knowing) and omnipresent(everywhere at the same time). Controlling would be involved in managing or using power authoritatively, dictatorially or tyrannically. Now people do that to each other but does that mean God does it as well? I do not remember once in my journey with Him has He ever forced anything on me in anyway. Has He shown me that His ways are better for me than anything I could have ever dreamed up but did not control me into doing them, it is a choice.

  45. poohpity says:

    God can use things like hurricanes or other natural disasters or self made disasters to grow in our relationship with Him and others, bringing good from the bad.

  46. Beloved says:

    As per Job.

  47. Beloved says:

    I have to say in light of marts topic universalism makes sense. I wholeheartedly disagree. There’s only One God and you and I aren’t Him.

  48. jeff1 says:

    Controlling and allowing are two very different things and I have to have the proper relationship with God before I can understand this.

    God does not control but He is in control.

    I can go my way but I will suffer for it and that is not because God wants me to suffer but my lack of submission will distance me from God and I will make bad choices that God would not have let me make.

    Walking closely with God does not just happen and I learned that from my dad who knew how to submit to God.

    I told you my dad understood God from the on start which means he had the right relationship from the beginning and that showed throughout his life.

    The reason I have difficulty in my relationships is because I do not have the right relationship with God because I cannot put the cart before the horse.

    God doesn’t tell us things to make life difficult but to draw us to Himself because until I have the right relationship with Him my other relationships will suffer.

    The difficulty for me is that when I miss God’s intent then confusion is my companion and my dad was not confused because as he submitted to God he was aligned with God’s will while I am left wondering what it is that God intended.

    As I have said if it hurts like hell its because I have distanced myself from God and not Him from me because whatever I know or don’t know God does not forsake me.

    Precious Lord, take my hand
    Lead me on, let me stand
    I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m alone
    Through the storm, through the night
    Lead me on to the light
    Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home

    When my way grows drear precious Lord linger near
    When my light is almost gone
    Hear my cry, hear my call
    Hold my hand lest I fall
    Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home

    When the darkness appears and the night draws near
    And the day is past and gone
    At the river I stand
    Guide my feet, hold my hand
    Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home.

    Precious Lord, take my hand
    lead me on, let me stand
    I’m tired, I’m weak, I’m alone
    Through the storm, through the night
    Lead me on to the light
    Take my hand precious Lord, lead me home.
    (Lead me Home)

  49. poohpity says:

    Did Jesus die for the sins of the world? John 3:16-17 If one considers that this applies to all the peoples of the world past, present and future is that what universalism is? Beloved I do not understand how you are applying universalism to this topic nor do I even understand what that means or how it takes away from God being God for everyone? Some may not believe in Him but that does not stop God from being there for everyone and just waiting and longing for people to turn to Him.

  50. SFDBWV says:

    Genesis 1:14 KJV “And God said let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years.”

    Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 KJV “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:”

    Ecclesiastes 3:11 KJV “He hath made everything beautiful in His time: also He hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.”

    Ecclesiastes 12:12 KJV “And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end, and much study is a weariness of the flesh.”

    Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 KJV “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.” For God shall bring every work into judgement, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.”


  51. Beloved says:

    Christian Universalism is a school of Christian theology focused around the doctrine of universal reconciliation- the view that all human beings will ultimately be restored to a right relationship with God.
    Christian Universalism – Wikipedia

  52. Beloved says:

    I agree that God can be found outside scripture as He is creator I believe, but He has also breathed scripture so we can know more about Him and His purposes for His greatest creation, mankind. He warned about following the worlds’ ways many times, that death and destruction would always follow. Jesus the Christ will never be found in any other myth, tale, or book but in and through the holy scriptures, the Bible. We must beware of any prophecy that does not line up with the WOG.

  53. Beloved says:

    Steve yes Solomon asked for and received wisdom from God. We do well to heed that wisdom. Thank you for the reminder

  54. Beloved says:

    Jeff1 I a!so agree as with poohpity that God is in control of the final outcome but does not control us. If we are his true children (born from above), God does control our lives as we submit as all good children do.

  55. Beloved says:

    Why submit? because Father always knows best! (Pun intended if you are old enough to remember a TV show from the 60’s)

  56. Beloved says:

    As for the blog I see this and previous posts as more left leaning/progressive but that’s coming from my own struggles within to discern truth from lie. Its a journey!

  57. phpatato says:

    Beloved….you and I are in agreement on what the world, including a strong movement within the Christian community is pushing on universalism. I personally have red flags raised because it promotes One world religion, one world government. That “your god and my god are the same god so let us walk together in peace and harmony” mindset. Acceptance and tolerance are simple bait words to encourage us to let down our guards and fall into line. The Bible of course warns of false prophets, false ideology and a watering down of Scripture toward the end of time – of which I believe if we aren’t actually in it, we are most certainly on the threshold of. We need discernment and we need to dissect everything religious leaders say and compare it to our only lifeline…God’s Holy Bible. We are no longer living in a time when we can simply accept what a “Christian” leader says because of his name. We must keep our wicks trimmed and be watchful and on guard. We are now living in a time that many will be deceived. God help us stay true to Him and not to follow rabbits trails led by wolves. The path is narrow. It isn’t wide enough to include all gods. It is only wide enough for the great I AM.

    Blessings to you and all today.


  58. marma says:

    Believe bed: thanks for your kind and honest words. I can tell you those hymns and psalms with words about storms take on a personal meaning during such times.

    Jeff1: Thanks for stating the difference between God being in control vs controlling. If I may add that at times I see both. As when Jesus said “peace be still” and knowing that God, in His mercy and grace steps in in various ways.


    PS Please continue in prayer for all the hurting people from disaster and persecution throughout the world. This I know, God makes good use of such times, and there is plenty of scripture to back up praying for those in need. Thanks!

  59. marma says:

    Beloved not believe bed. Sigh.

  60. jeff1 says:

    God knows us personally and collectively and He will reveal to me/us as is necessary for His purpose or if He does not then He has good reasons not to as I walk by faith and not by sight and His Grace is sufficient in whatever circumstances this world brings.

  61. Beloved says:

    Good news!

    New International Version
    God’s Final Word: His Son

    1Hebrews 1:1In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. 3The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. 4So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.

  62. Beloved says:

    Thinking of you bubbles with prayers for peace in your personal storm.

  63. SFDBWV says:

    Reading from several different sources the weather service has been explaining why it was that Hurricane Irma, though very destructive, was not as horrific as first predicted.

    The point is that it could have been worse.

    If people are to think or say such storms are an act of God, wouldn’t it then make sense to thank God that it wasn’t worse?

    I find it disturbing that the Catholic study Bible I have considers the “unforgivable sin” as attributing to Satan the works of God.

    In the OT we read where God flooded the entire earth killing all that were not on the Ark.

    The science of that event explains the very weather we have on planet earth to this very day.

    He placed the rainbow in the sky as a sign He would never flood the entire earth again.

    The science of that statement, explains that it had never rained on earth until the flood of Noah.

    Personally I find the statement from Mart that the “Deceiver” had perhaps been deceived very telling; as who would deceive Satan except God Himself, unless you believe Satan deceived himself through arrogance.

    55 and fog.


  64. poohpity says:

    It would seem the deceiver or accuser or satan would like us to think the worse about God in order to steer us away from Him. To make us think that God does not have our best interest in mind or that God is not good and loving. Also to make us think we do not need God in our lives. Yes pride or arrogance can be a part of that as often it is. Pride that thinks more of ourselves than we really are or less of ourselves than we really are but to concentrate and idolize more on the things of this world than on God.

    If God would have left mankind live that only had evil in their hearts from experiencing the flood I shiver to think what our world would be like. Now there are many with only evil in their hearts but there are also many with good hearts and the well being of others in mind unlike back then when only one family had that. So I can imagine how awful this world would be now if God would have let that grow and spread out. To me God had the good of mankind in mind when in His grace brought the flood.

    There are many stories in the bible that seem hard to digest from my way of thinking but often my thinking is not based on truth and justice and not being able to see into the future of what the results may have been if another way had been chosen. I believe that God’s ways are right, just and good although at times I may not understand but when I trust in God I really do not have to understand I just have to trust and believe, that is called faith.

  65. cbrown says:

    Good morning all!I live in north Florida near the ocean so my wife and I evacuated inland to my oldest sons house.It was a great time of fellowship by candlelight.I got behind on reading your post though and was grateful for this topic because I see “religious” people jumping on these recent events to grab the podium and assign God’s judgement to their enemies.As has been discussed by you in Mathew 5:43 You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may [d]be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Romans5:8 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”


  66. marma says:

    Steve–maybe off topic but I was thinking about what you said about hurricanes being a fact of life for those of us living with n Florida. True: when we moved here in 1964–Naples, to be exact–the selling point for our house was that it had survived hurricane Donna. Back then, as long as you had a sturdy concrete block house, you covered your windows and mapped the coordinates. Prepped with hurricane supplies, you managed until the electric came back.

    We still are in Florida, but closer to the center of the state. Many houses built in recent years are made of various materials. Today, for the first time that I can remember, I saw a commercial advertising building a house solely of concrete block. Wonder of wonders; what once was a given is now being touted again.

    An interesting turnabout and analogy, eh?

  67. marma says:

    The temperatures are climbing again. Please remember south Florida especially in prayer. Very hard on elderly. Thanks.

  68. foreverblessed says:

    O yes, Marma, ( the auto correct makes it Karma, ha ha) I just read it in the news, because of the heat elderly people have died. No electricity, no airco…

    Thanks Cbrown, for your update, and thank you for your Bible verses, they were talking loud and clear to me!

  69. foreverblessed says:

    I liked what Jeff said:
    God does not control, but He is in control!

    The devotion I read, God calling, Jesus says, in my own words:
    It might seem that men is the beggar, begging God for help,
    but, actually, I (Jesus) am the beggar, walking the streets and knocking on doors, asking, no begging if I may come in.

    Spurgeon would pray to God:
    God, please call so and so, use methods as You did with apostle Paul, striking him with light from heaven, but touch so and so’s heart.
    Acts 9:1-19, Acts 22:4-16, Acts 26:12-20

  70. foreverblessed says:

    And of course I will pray, for the people in Florida, the elderly, but also for the ones who have been looting.

    Please pray also for the damaged islands in the Caribbean!
    It takes a while for ships, with supplies, to reach the islands.
    Pray that in all of that God may touch hearts! And people will hear the knock of Jesus at their doors, and they will open their hearts to Him.

    God is in control of circumstances, and we can pray to God!
    Yes, we can pray, and God listens to His children, He waits for our prayers!

  71. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Marma. My apologies if I may have sounded a bit callous about living in Florida and living with the possibility of dealing with hurricanes. My intent was centered on the subject of blaming God for such disasters.

    You are right especially showing your own wisdom in buying a house that stood a better chance of standing against a storm. Just as our Lord said in one of His parables about a man who builds his house upon sand verses the one who builds upon a solid firm foundation. When the storms come (and they will) one survives the other don’t.

    My sister lives in Oklahoma, Oklahoma is as famous for tornados as is Kansas.

    Very little can withstand the destructive force of tornados, yet there in a place dubbed “tornado alley” people still buy and live in trailers and in trailer parks.

    I am sure that if any of them had the money they would rather not, but there, as Shakespeare said, is the rub.

    Foreverblessed mentioned people in her country coming together for the protection of all and seen the individuality of the Americas as sometimes in conflict with that.

    I agree. If city and county officials insist on construction ordinances meeting guidelines to protect against hurricanes, tornados, and floods, they are met with fierce opposition.

    It always comes down to money.

    But after the storms that come, come then attention is once again focused on how we can avert such disasters from reoccurring.

    Last evening on the Weather Channel one of the weathermen actually hinted at hurricane Irma as being a result of “global warming”.

    How do you plan or prepare against that?

    You were wise to buy a house that stood a better chance against Irma, just as you show wisdom in choosing to follow our Lord.

    We can’t do much about the weather, but we can prepare for it.

    Too bad more people don’t think ahead instead of immediate self-gratification.

    Both in where they live and how.

    Praying for all affected from the storm and a speedy recovery.


  72. poohpity says:

    Chris, either I forgot or did not know that you also lived in FL. Glad to hear you are OK and left when asked to. I pray when you return all is well.

    I think it was wonderful of God to let us know before hand that we would go through struggles and storms never promising a life free of those things so we could be prepared when they come.(John 16:33 NLT)

    The concept of Global Warming to the extent that politicians preach it, is also an endeavor for greed and making money off of the backs of those who are vulnerable. Although we have not been good stewards of what was entrusted to us by God because of selfish motivations and just plain carelessness. So much is “Acts of Humans” that they like to blame on God but as always it is easier to blame and make excuses for our own behavior than to take responsibility.(Genesis 1:26) But obviously we are unable to control the weather or people and as the earth fades or dies I am sure all kinds of natural things change with it as well, they have for thousands of years.

    Rather than look for reasons why it would seem best to think about what do we do from here. Problem solve rather than blame, look for solutions and move forward, reach out and help someone or come alongside to mourn with them and show them we care.

  73. jeff1 says:

    I believe God thinks ahead for us knowing our limitations as He does. I must keep my focus on my reward being heaven and not on the world or the difficulties in it.

    Its God who understands the world because He has been around longer than it so just as I trust God in my personal difficulties I must learn to trust Him in world difficulties.

    Who ever said man was going to solve his own problems while God solves them through men whom He trusts to do so.

    God to my way of thinking is a collective God in the world but a personal God in live and death.

    When I read or see in films what happened Jesus and His followers in His time on earth I realise that certainly in the countries we live in the world is more civilised.

    When I compare my life to theirs then mine is a Teddy Bear’s picnic in comparison. God knows the differences in His children i.e. He chooses both His warriors and His peace makers well. I can remember a friend of mine who had six children she said she loved them all the same but differently because they had different
    personalities and so we need to start seeing God as an inclusive one and not an exclusive because that is what He is.

    When I hear believers of different religions saying that the other is going to hell then that tells me that too many see Him as exclusive and they do not understand God at all.

    In this modern world God is still misunderstood because knowledge of Him is known through religions and no matter what the religion they are only part right as no religion as the whole truth as is God’s intention I believe.

    I can remember my mother saying that there would be one church that would rule the world before the end and she seemed to believe it would be the Roman Catholic church but only God knows the truth and so I need to remain faithful to this truth forsaking all other.

    Praying that the world shall know peace as God intended because when it comes to knowing God is way a head of us.

  74. poohpity says:

    The one thing that really causes me to shake my head in disbelief are the one’s who were asked to evacuate but thought they could do things their way so did not listen but are screaming and cursing because getting supplies to them has been very difficult which was the reason they were told to evacuate in the first place. Go figure! Again it is always someone else who is to blame.

  75. SFDBWV says:

    Great caution must be made in not getting confused about whether we were made in the image of God or that God is made in our image, or worse imagination.

    Here is a perfect example;
    Isaiah 45:5 KJV “I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me:

    Isaiah 45:6 KJV “That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else.

    Isaiah 45:7 KJV “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.”

    Watch how what is said is twisted to say what people want it to say.

    Once again I remind you of what is said in God’s Word;
    Ecclesiastes 3:11 KJV “He hath made everything beautiful in His time: also He hath set the *world* in their heart, so that *no* man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end”.

    Honor/fear God in realizing He is bigger than we are going to ever be able to understand. Then appreciate the fact that He sacrificed Himself so that we can be forgiven of our sins, have supernatural peace and look beyond our circumstances to that time when there are no more tears, with hope, trust, and belief.


  76. jeff1 says:

    Thinking Pooh, when have I not blamed others through blindness on my part. If it were not for my dad I would have continued to do so but as he pointed out to me I have to choose to be on God’s side as God does not do sides and in the context my dad was talking God was not on my side because I was a Protestant anymore than He was on their side because they were Roman Catholic.

    My dad was telling me that I was putting my beliefs before God’s will and blaming God or others when I was not getting the result I wanted.

    In ignorance it is very easy to point the finger and blame others but my dad knew that if I wanted to blame anyone then I should look in the mirror because it was my point of view that was wrong and not God or others.

    Why was my dad so well informed when I was not because he was allowing himself to be lead by the Spirit while I was allowing myself to be lead by the flesh.

    If I am prone to wander then I am prone to wander but shall I put it this way who would you trust if you were God my dad or me.

    If I don’t trust in my own understanding it is because I have good reason not to and so to has God.

    Obedience matters to God to get His will done on earth and He will use those who submit because it aligns them to His will while lack of submission does not.

    God does not force me to submit because He is not a controlling God but He knows my lack of submission will subsequently lead me to wandering and confusion away from Him rather than leading me to Him.

    Ignorance causes people to blame each other but a person lead by the Spirit doesn’t play the blame game because there is no ignorance when a person is being lead by the Spirit of God but there is when they are not.

    Ignorance is something I bring on myself through lack of submission because God enlightens me as I submit aligning me with His will or not as the case may be.

  77. poohpity says:

    Steve, you said, “Watch how what is said is twisted to say what people want it to say.” isn’t that exactly what you are doing by plucking out a specific verse in a specific version that leads people to believe what you believe about God. Who would want to worship a God that is the source of evil and darkness? Or One that out of the darkness brought light;

    The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

    3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. OR

    That God created all beings and some chose to rebel against Him and did evil (Genesis 3:1) and then lead others to do evil(Gen 3:4-5) In Ezekiel 28;

    You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, sardius, topaz, and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire,emerald, and carbuncle; and crafted in gold were your settings and your engravings. On the day that you were created they were prepared.
    14 You were an anointed guardian cherub. I placed you; you were on the holy mountain of God; in the midst of the stones of fire you walked.
    15 You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, till unrighteousness was found in you.
    16 In the abundance of your trade you were filled with violence in your midst, and you sinned; so I cast you as a profane thing from the mountain of God, and I destroyed you,O guardian cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
    17 Your heart was proud because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor.

  78. poohpity says:

    But if we believe that God is all powerful and from history we have seen that He creates calamity and disasters look at the flood, to the people of Egypt and several other times that are hard to take in from the hand of God. There are things I have a hard time relating to or understanding that God does but because I believe in His character of doing what is right and just, I trust He had His reasons, I may not be aware of some of what they are or what that means because my thinking is limited, I still trust.

  79. poohpity says:

    Also some of those disasters, evils or calamities may be His grace and a blessing in disguise.

  80. poohpity says:

    I wonder if on this side of heaven we are able to determine what is an “Act of God” or what comes from the enemy??

  81. poohpity says:

    It was Satan that caused disasters like a tornado or high winds that destroyed what Job had.

  82. poohpity says:

    Thanks Steve for giving me something to think about today.

  83. SFDBWV says:

    John 1:1 KJV “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

    John 1:2 KJV “The same was in the beginning with God.”

    John 1:3 KJV “All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made.”

    “*All* things were made by Him; and without Him was *not anything* made that was made.”


  84. poohpity says:

    Steve, what is the point you are trying to make? Of course everything that was created God created it and we used it to create from the original substance. Are you inferring that all evil or disasters come from God and not any from the evil one or from us due to our fallen nature??

  85. Beloved says:

    This comes to mind thinking about the deep deep love of God and how we may misunderstand His love. His ways are truly higher than our ways or thinking. Bless God for saving a wretch like me.

  86. Beloved says:

    Oops forgot to paste before I hit submit. I’m talking about Exodus 4:10-12New American Standard Bible (NASB)

    10 Then Moses said to the Lord, “Please, Lord, I have never been [a]eloquent, neither [b]recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am [c]slow of speech and [d]slow of tongue.” 11 The Lord said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes him mute or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now then go, and I, even I, will be with your mouth, and teach you what you are to say.”

  87. Beloved says:

    Matthew 11:4-6New American Standard Bible (NASB)

    4 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and report to John what you hear and see: 5 the blind receive sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the [a]gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed is he [b]who does not [c]take offense at Me.

    So God makes the disability and heals them if I am understanding correctly? Beyond my thinking. Bless God.

  88. Beloved says:

    Can’t wait to get to see Him face to face and really KNOW His love completely!

  89. jeff1 says:

    Why do we say God is faithful because He is. My dad knew God and I learned from Him because I was listening to those around me who believed as I did God was on there side i.e. those Roman Catholics are not behaving Godly so God is not on their side.

    God doesn’t do religion, colour, nationality as my dad knew because what He does do is obedience as it leads me to His way and His will.

    I do not claim to be a follower of Christ but a believer in Christ because I am not like my dad whose will was aligned with God’s truth and it was easy to see it in his choices in life because he made good ones.

    Lack of submission is what leads to waywardness and confusion in my life but the greatest fear which I find has burdened me for way too long is that God will forsake me. God is the one who is faithful to the end which means He never turns me away in defeat but accepts me as I am and I know this because I had an earthly dad who did exactly the same and my dad was submitted to God and in being so knew God’s ways.

    My earthly dad gently rebuked and encouraged me and I know God well because of him. If I fail to be lead by the Spirit then God is not in control of my life and I am talking of someone who knows what that is like but that doesn’t stop God from loving, encouraging and carrying me if that’s what it takes because it is who God is and not who I am, more it’s the pity.

  90. SFDBWV says:

    In Revelation 4:6-11 we get a view of the throne of God.

    The four beasts described there “rest not” and forever give glory and honor to the “Lord God Almighty”.

    My Living Bible paraphrases by saying that these “cherubs” circle the throne and see the endless facets of God.

    Endless facets of God.

    Mart’s subject asks whether or not God is to “blame” for disasters; as in saying it was an act of God. The suggestion of “blame” coming from the devil.

    The nature of God is given in Scripture from Genesis through Revelation and shown in part to us in all of nature including the cosmos.

    We are given just enough information to realize we don’t know much at all, but enough to realize our need for Him as well as the fact that we should hold Him in the upmost highest degree of awe and wonder.

    Only He is worthy of worship.

    Yet in His love for us, His created, He shows He is willing to do whatever it is to not lose us, to bring us back to Him from our wayward journeys apart from Him.

    He is willing to do whatever it takes. Whatever!

    I talked with one of my nieces in Tampa last evening. She informed me everyone was ok and not as adversely affected by the hurricane as others. By everyone I mean all of my nieces, sister in laws and their families.

    I thank God for that.

    47 degrees under a crescent moon and stars slightly obscured with light fog.


  91. poohpity says:

    I guess God “could” use whatever He wanted to bring people to Himself but instead chose to come in human flesh, going through the same things we go through and worse, to prove His love(Prov 10:12; 1 Peter 4:8). He took our punishment for our crimes upon His back so that we can have a key to open the door to His Kingdom.(Matt 16:19) So they way to God has been provided through Jesus Christ so now does God need to create disasters so that we will come to Him or has it already been done??

    Just as Satan twisted what God has said to make us think that God does not have our best interest in mind and to confuse us into believing the worst about God so that we will turn away from Him by blaming, accusing, lying and deceiving. Sounds more like the human way when we do not hold someone dear or like them we will say all sorts of things to turn others away from them but after all Satan is the ruler of this world and his schemes are all to familiar to our everyday way of life.

  92. poohpity says:

    God caused Moses’ hand to become leprous and Miriam his sister to have leprosy, He caused prophets not to speak like Ezekiel and Zacharias before John the Baptist was born but there were reasons not to cause people to come to Him but because they did not believe in the power He had. But if we pull out scripture to prove how scary, angry God can be and not look at what we all deserve but yet was spared then we can miss the love, grace, forgiveness and mercy that God has shown through the ages that is interwoven throughout history. We never fully get what we really deserve.

  93. jeff1 says:

    Just thinking, I have never heard a Godly person say we never fully get what we really deserve because when lead by the Spirit they love, encourage and show forgiveness to others as they are aligned with God’s way and not their own.

  94. Beloved says:

    Acts of God

    “The Lord has established Zion,
    and in her his afflicted people will find refuge.” Isaiah 14:32

  95. poohpity says:

    Well Viv, I know what I deserve because I know what I have done in my life but yet I was shown grace/mercy and not given what I deserve. No person deserves what Jesus did, it was because of His great love, compassion because of who He is.

    Viv what do you consider the definition of grace to be???

  96. poohpity says:

    Viv, what is your definition of a godly person? What would you suggest to give someone who hates even without knowing someone, who shows prejudices because of skin color, differing beliefs, opposing view points, who is unforgiving or puts on a false front in plain view but behind the scenes is someone completely different is that not a lie, one who rips people apart with words, one who worships people or objects what do they deserve??? They deserve to be treated just how they treat others but instead God showed them His forgiveness, mercy and grace in hopes that they will treat others as God has treated them.

  97. jeff1 says:

    A Godly person to me has accepted God’s grace and has submitted to live to the will of God through the Holy Spirit. My dad was a Godly man who did not allow his personal feelings get in the way of his walk with God.

    In his life he did not allow his religion, politics or beliefs take precedence over his keeping of the will of God and it was reflected in his life of choices that aligned with keeping God’s commands.

    It is an extremely disciplined life and I failed myself to live as my dad did because I believed God should be on our side (Protestant) because it was the IRA republicans (Roman Catholics) who were bombing and killing if you did not support their cause.

    My dad was patient and understanding and ensured that I understood that God did not do sides and that I had to choose to be on His side and submit to His will.

    In a country were violence and killing was a daily event my dad was not someone that was being listened to at that time i.e. it was not a popular stance to take but my dad remained faithful to God while many failed to, myself included.

    When I hated I had good reason to as many of my neighbours and friends were murdered but my dad knew it was wrong to hate and it was his example to me that eventually lead me away from my anger and hatred.

    If men like my dad had not been short on the ground my country would have a different history and a younger generation would not be struggling to survive the aftermath of a bloody war.

    Do you really believe that someone who hates is listening to God because I can tell you from experience that I was not nor was my enemies and it has taken me my lifetime to see that my dad was right and now I have to live with the guilt of realizing that my waywardness will have consequences for my children which means I now hate myself more than my enemies.

    I am a messed up person because of my ungodly choices and that is why I am very good at recognising a Godly person and obedience to the Holy Spirit is what defines a Godly person.

  98. street says:

    mart i have not been able to post for awhile. today i received a notice of security certificate not being updated. i use firefox browser by mozilla. is there a problem? i have not seen joycemb on here lately either. still wondering and thinking. street

  99. street says:

    Acts of God
    after it is all said and done, God is creating creators who not only glorify Him but also love. thinking love glorifies God.

  100. SFDBWV says:

    Sticking to Mart’s thoughts, it came to me that if we are to believe the Story of Job to be literal then we see some incredible events unfolding.

    As previously stated we got a glimpse of the throne of God in Revelation. Picture then Satan the accuser walking up to God and having the conversation that unfolds in Job.

    Satan is actually accusing, both God and Job. Accusing Job for living a holy life and God for providing for it.

    Most all of us are then very acquainted with the rest of the story. God removes His protection from around Job and Satan is credited with causing all of the evil that then comes upon Job.

    While Job struggles with suffering heartache and physical pain, it is then Job’s friends who accuse Job of committing some sin and God then for punishing Him for it. They are wrong on both counts.

    God later instructs Job to intercede in prayer for his friends lest a worse curse befall them…For being wrong about God.

    Is God saying because they spoke incorrectly about Him and Job that they now are in danger of being punished for it?

    Is it then a sin to speak incorrectly about God?

    Such a thought causes one to stick to what the Bible alone has to say concerning God.

    For if we begin to question God negatively, who then is the accuser?

    49 degrees and once again morning fog. The leaves are beginning to change.


  101. SFDBWV says:

    An afterthought. Accusing Job incorrectly, Job’s friend’s then were guilty of bearing false witness against Job…Hmmm.


  102. poohpity says:

    To me godly is one who looks to God and if that person does realize they do not get what they deserve because of His grace then they will stand a better chance of being very grateful for what Christ has done for them. If that person feels they deserve then odds being they are pretty satisfied with their own righteousness and do not need God.

    Accusing incorrectly seems to be SOP for most people now-a-days.

  103. poohpity says:

    So Viv, that would make you godly. That does mean we compare ourselves with others which results in thinking more highly or lowly of ourselves but as God says we are, His children.

  104. poohpity says:

    ooops, That does not mean we compare

  105. Beloved says:

    I Timothy 6:6
    But godliness with contentment is great gain.
    Paul also said he had to learn to be content.

    These reminded me of Jobs statement about how God had given him what everything he had. Was Job deceived, really, or was he being honest with Satan about his relationship with God, that God was God in his life? Who would not suffer and grieve after such losses? But Job never accused God after so many losses. Contentment is a very big word to think about. Am I content not only in my bank book, pocket book but in my relationships, social status, church group? These are things I’ve been thinking about.

    I’ve chosen my new name, Beloved, because it reminds me how precious I am to God in Christ Jesus.

  106. jeff1 says:

    Pooh, you will know a person being lead by the Holy Spirit because he/she will not think himself/herself more lowly or higher but equal. It is when I fail to follow by the Spirit that I think of myself differently. It is my weakness and therefore my struggle not another’s but with God’s help I can overcome it because as His child that is what He desires for me to overcome my weaknesses.

  107. poohpity says:

    To me just to admit we have weaknesses then we can rely on God’s strength. 2 Cor 12:9

  108. marma says:

    Steve – my pastor, who is a forth generation Floridian said that hurricane a remind us we live in a swamp. Lol! Easy to forget that when we go from air conditioned homes to car to work.

    The analogy there is to the comforts of this world that serve to distract us from the real issues of life.

    Another hurricane now threatens the islands. My heart goes out to them. It makes me think of Job who had trial upon trial and I wonder if he was incredulous as they kept on coming. We would like to be able to put a limit on them, wouldn’t we?

    We often can’t and this takes us–takes me–to my knees in prayer for grace and mercy for those who suffer. That seems to be a good place to be.

  109. foreverblessed says:

    So true, Marma: the real issues of life!
    Yesterday somebody asked me what the real issues of life were to me!

    We could have a fantastic life here on earth, with airco and a good job, but… would have nothing gained for the Kingdom of God.

    God wants our hearts, that we submit ourselves to Him, and that He could cahnge our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh, and then He wants to communicate with us, talk with us, like a husband and wife who talk things over, and then make a plan of action, f.i. where to go on holiday. ( I am just having free range thinking)

    But I also believe that God wants us to get to know Him first, that we do not submit to a Power we do not know.

    And I also believe, but it has been mentioned here before, that God shows Himself to us, in the Person of Jesus Christ. In Jesus we can get to have a better vision of Who God is.
    So studying the Gospels is a very good thing to do, not only studying, but also meditating on the different points that are made.

    When I was young, my old church would have emphasis on the Old Testament, all the commandments and all the prophecies, and yet, Moses wrote:

    “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him.”
    Deut 18:15

    So we can study the 10 commandments, and yet, forget the Higher things God is doing, He is making a way for the wayward, and suffering Himself, in His Son, for making us whole, and clean and pure, and righteous.

    And then to pick up what is the real issue of life:

    What value is it, when we would have conquered a city, and yet have not conquered our own old fallen nature, with the power that is through the Life of Jesus Christ?

  110. jeff1 says:

    Pooh’s post 5.37pm 17 Sept

    To me just to admit we have weaknesses then we can rely on God’s strength. 2 Cor 12:9

    I believe Pooh that admitting to weakness is not enough if I am being lead by the Spirit because unless I overcome my weakness then God will not trust me beyond it.

    To grow I must overcome because as I overcome one weakness then God reveals to me yet another and it is that process that brings me closer to God.

    God does not just want to use me for His purpose but He wants me to understand that in using me for His purpose He draws me closer to Himself.

    God works when I allow Him to break down the barriers that segregate me from Him and He does that by overcoming my weaknesses.

    I am not saying that God may not use me in my weakness but I do not believe that God wants me to remain in weakness so that He can use me because He desires what is best for me and what is best for me is to grow closer to Him and He cannot draw me closer until I let go of the weaknesses that distances me from Him.

    One of my weaknesses is getting me out of my comfort zone i.e. I take refuge in Christ rather than trusting God,but I need to trust God, because deep down I know that is missing, doubt, has been my companion for too long and it is that doubt that holds me captive to allowing God to have His way. In my heart I know what separates me from the joy of knowing God and it is that I doubt His love for me.

    BIND US TOGETHER, Lord, Bind us together
    With chords that cannot be broken,
    Bind us together, Lord,
    Bind us together,
    Bind us together with love.

    There is only one God,
    There is only one King;
    There is only one Body,
    That is why we sing:

    BIND US TOGETHER, Lord, Bind us together
    With chords that cannot be broken.
    Bind us together, Lord,
    Bind us together,
    Bind us together with love.

    Made for the glory of God,
    Purchased by His precious Son;
    Born with the right to be clean,
    For Jesus the victory has won.

    BIND US TOGETHER, Lord, Bind us together
    With chords that cannot be broken,
    Bind us together, Lord,
    Bind us together,
    Bind us together, with love.

    You are the family of God,
    You are the promise divine;
    You are God’s chosen desire,
    You are the glorious new wine.

    BIND US TOGETHER, Lord, Bind us together
    With chords that cannot be broken,
    Bind us together, Lord,
    Bind us together,
    Bind us together, with love.

  111. marma says:

    Forever blessed: Absolutely! Our tendency is to focus on the temporary We find it hard to reckon our sufferings as a light affliction, and to see it in light of what God is doing in our hearts for eternity.

    It is good to stop and ponder these things and listen for that still small voice.


  112. Beloved says:

    The Bible tells us we are to take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ”, and yesterday I had to keep reminding myself in order to get through a rather stressful situation. But it worked! “Lead us not into temptation..” comes to mind also. Then this morning I read from My Utmost that Jesus was tempted in EVERY way we are, yet without sin! This tells me what a wonderful companion Jesus is along the difficulties in life, one who is not only our sin bearer but one who understands our struggles with sin with compassion! Thank you Lord Jesus!

  113. poohpity says:

    It is God who changes us, if we were able to do so then I would guess we would and be successful but my weaknesses are what caused me to be dependent on the Lord.

    The evil one uses suffering to cause us to think the worse of God, that seems to be what his intentions were with Job and with many others. While those who trust in the Lord find that through suffering our character is developed, we are more apt to depend on God more and we can share in empathy the suffering of others(2 Cor 1:4 NLT) to be encouragers through troubled times to share the hope we have found in Christ Jesus. (Romans 5:3-4 NIV)

  114. jeff1 says:

    I think Pooh, it is about being honest with God and I cannot say I find I am a better character for suffering because I am not. The more suffering in my own life and others the more I don’t feel God’s love because I have been living with hatred of one kind or another all my life and I am getting too old for it. I can remember my grandmother feeling she had outgrown this world and was ready to die and now I understand where she was coming from as this world just gets more alien to me and though I trust God to transport me to the next I did not think that life would be as exhausting as I find little to be joyful about in the sufferings of this world.

    I don’t understand why people think worse of God because of suffering but then I have lived in a country where the evil of men often overshadowed the good of men and know how hatred is a powerful weapon against humanity.

    On Sunday I watched as the Rector at a family service for the children used Shaun the sheep a cuddly toy he had got to explain to the children how we all stray and I guess it is because we are as much part of the problem as the solution that this world never changes very much.

  115. foreverblessed says:

    My Utmost of today, September 18, is interesting in regard to temptation:
    Jesus’ temptation, and our temptation before we are reborn!

    And the tactics of the adversary on tempting us, not to make us sin,primarily, but to disconnect us from God.

    The book of Job remains very very peculiar, as in this case God asks Satan: have you seen Job.
    Itis God Himself who draws the attention towards Job.
    And…. I do not believe that it was God’s primary intention to make Job perfect through suffering, but God had another object: showing the evil world what a true child of God looks like!
    A real child of God does not love God because of the blessings, but a true child of God loves God for Who He is!

    No matter what, be will love his God.
    And that was what Job was going to show to Satan!

    And the great thing about this is that God was absolute positive that Job would indeed show that!

    While we know it was on the edge, Job felt so forsaken by God, that he started to tell God that He was not fair towards Job:
    I have obeyed all your commands, and what good has it done to me, You have not blessed me, You have allowed these calamities to happen to me: You are not being fair to me, God!

    Job did not see that he was tempted way beyond anything that had to do with him being not good enough, but just because he was a real child of God!

    And so it is with us, if we are real children of God we will be tested, the evil world will go after us.

    They will not go after those who are his anyway.

    But…. in this they themselves will get some surprise!

    And that’s how great God is, and how forget His goodness!

  116. narrowpathseeker says:

    Greetings brothers and sisters in Christ. I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t fall back to sleep so I came on line. For some reason I got on something other than IE and found that I had the link to BTA here (I had deleted quick access to limit temptation to come subject myself to the dark spirit that thrives here.) I left this blog several months ago to avoid the wolf in sheep’s clothing and her deliberate antagonizing of anyone that comes here. It was a good decision and I have spent more time in prayer, study, and peace. On several occasions I would read something in a devotional or the study bible and think of this person and shake it off as quickly as I could. This past week almost everyday brought a little something of this person to mind and I saw first hand what a negative impact this person has had on me and others here. I started jotting down things and had a very strong feeling that I should stop into BTA and share but I didn’t want to be subjected to the evil that is allowed to lurk here. Well, unfortunately it is still here…. I will not be staying to be robbed of my peace…I will just write this off line, post it at some point, sign out quickly and pray that I’ve done the right thing.
    First of all I am sure you ALL realize the importance of prayer and staying in touch with the Lord throughout the day. In these days of horrific hardships, tragedies, and evil ways of evil men and women the importance of prayer is magnified greatly. On far more than a few instances, I have been frustrated as to why God didn’t help in some situation that I knew many Christians were praying about. God is all powerful, loving, merciful and everything good and wonderful. He is our Father…….THUS….. shouldn’t there be much power in OUR prayers? When I was reminded of this in the Life Application Study Bible and put it together with other things that reminded me of the wolf among you, I felt strongly obliged to share, but procrastinated. Well…this may be why I am awake…so here it is.
    Commentary on Mark 11: 22, 23 The kind of prayer that moves mountains is prayer for the fruitfulness of God’s Kingdom. God will answer your prayers, but not merely as the result of your positive mental attitude. Other conditions must be met. 1) You must be a believer 2) YOU MUST NOT HOLD A GRUDGE AGAINST ANOTHER PERSON 3) You must not pray for selfish reasons 4) Your request must be for the good of God’s Kingdom.
    THEN, there was 1st Corinthians 5:11-13 .. 11; But now I am writing you that you are not to associate with anyone who calls himself a brother (sister) but is sexually immoral, or greedy; an idolator or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat. 12; What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? 13; God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you”
    PLEASE consider the importance of having power in our prayers in these horrific days and don’t allow yourselves to be robbed. Shouldn’t Christian fellowship be loving, caring, and uplifting?….if a person knows scripture well and yet uses the same tactics as satan against Christians day after day and year after year , what are this person’s motives? Lord have mercy on us all.

  117. poohpity says:

    Viv, the bible does not say suffering makes us a better character but that suffering produces perseverance and perseverance produces character and character produces hope.

    Character meaning the qualities of a person like courage and integrity.

  118. poohpity says:

    Many accusers are allowing Satan to use them for his evil purposes because more often than not it is based on emotional responses that come from ignorance, hate and bitterness which promotes slander which is what Job’s so called friends did. It is best to walk away from such people and not respond to such cold, hard hearts because Job’s friends had no idea what was happening rather than being a comfort, they accused. My failure as was Job’s is often to respond in defense rather than walk away.

    Welcome back narrow! Your gentle words of kindness and wisdom were missed.

  119. foreverblessed says:

    I forgot tot personally say something to beloved, Joyce, and narrowpathseeker.
    Joyce: welcome back! I have thought it was you, but you seemed so different, as if you had found a lot of peace!
    May God give you more and more peace!

    And narrow: It is good to hear from you, I often have thought about you. But now I know, I shall pray more for you: God, bless narrow, give her more of Your Peace!

    May God bless you, and may your eyes be fixed on Jesus.

    I think I know your struggle, I have doet of the same, but I am trying to learn to let go, and let God…

  120. foreverblessed says:

    Oh, the spelling check,
    Sort of the same..

    And the goodness of God is forever

    not forget.

    Psalm 136:1,2 etc

  121. Beloved says:

    Yes thank you forever I am at peace, a mighty act of God in my life. I needed to step back and think about how I’d been relating on here per Gods guidance and it has been good for me. I was just studying these scripture s before I read your post which are so affirming and confirming at the same time. Hebrews 10:23-25New American Standard Bible (NASB)

    23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; 24 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

  122. jeff1 says:

    I am not trying to be disagreeable Pooh but to explain that I have been persevering with hatred and violence since I was 15 and I am now 63 and there are still many in my country who hate and support violence to achieve their aims.

    Perseverance has not given me hope because there is no change here in peoples attitudes or beliefs. Our politicians cannot even agree to govern the country 20 years into a peace agreement and without leadership people feel abandoned.

    In my personal life my faith is everything and though I have family who do not share my faith they are caring and supportive of me.

    I had a dad who was more courageous and honest then I will ever be. It seems to me that some are born with qualities that others spend a lifetime working at.

    I am tired of life but I get contentment from my faith, family and friends. I trust God but I do not claim to understand Him and at my age now I don’t believe I ever will.

    The older I get the more content I am to accept I will never know God the way my father did and that is because some things are meant to be and some are not and mine is not to reason why.

  123. jeff1 says:

    Thinking how living with hatred both others and my own isn’t good and though I couldn’t stop others hating me I should as a believer with God’s help been able to stop myself hating others.

    Paul got it right what is done in love is what matters because unfruitfulness comes from hate and keeps us stagnate.

    Some people like my dad have the capacity to love throughout hate without it affecting their choices in life and I believe they have in born qualities that come natural to them while someone like myself finds it is a struggle and a constant battle throughout my life.

    I think it is coming to terms with my weaknesses that causes me to hate others and myself because what do I hate about my enemies but their weakness and yet I possess the same weakness.

    What I loved about my dad was his ability to see way beyond what anyone else could see and the reason he could was that he walked by Spirit and not by sight.

    There are people born to lead and people born to follow and God knew before they were in their mother’s womb who’s who.

    Spirit of God, unseen as the wind,
    gentle as is the dove;
    teach us the truth and help us believe,
    show us the Saviour’s love!

    You spoke to us long, long ago,
    gave us the written word;
    we read it still, needing its truth
    through it God’s voice is heard.


    Spirit of God, unseen as the wind,
    gentle as is the dove;
    teach us the truth and help us believe,
    show us the Saviour’s love!

    Without your help we fail our Lord,
    we cannot live His way;
    we need your Power, we need your Strength,
    following Christ each day.


    Spirit of God, unseen as the wind,
    gentle as is the dove;
    teach us the truth and help us believe,
    show us the Saviour’s love!

  124. SFDBWV says:

    10 days out and once again I am very gun shy as whether to write or not.

    Up early I enjoyed a breakfast of a hot cake with sausage, strawberry jam and “Canadian” maple syrup, a gift from Pat. Thanks Pat.

    Also wrote Pearl a message. All this while Matt did his early Tuesday routine and enjoyed his breakfast.

    Here in just a few more minutes I will go out in the cool fog to feed the critters and have my “official” prayer time with God.

    As is always my habit, I ask God to protect my family and keep harm and evil and the dark one far from us before getting a little more specific in my requests.

    Do I always get what I ask for right then and there? No not always, but then sometimes I do.

    I am always reminded about the advice Jesus gave us concerning asking God for things. If we don’t get it just keep asking, don’t quit nor give up until you do. Then remember to thank Him.

    I see another hurricane or two turning in the Atlantic and once again threatening the Islands of the Caribbean. My prayers and sympathies for all in their path.

    In the nature of human beings once the storms have past they will rebuild right there along the beaches again as if there may never be another storm.

    Blessings to all.


  125. poohpity says:

    Steve, I thought you commented 2 days ago on the 17th, today is only the 19th, I am confused about what you meant by the 10 days. What made you gun shy as whether to write or not?

    Peg just got power yesterday afternoon.

    Viv, I did not think you were being disagreeable but I thought attributing to me something I shared from God’s word, it was not me who said that and I thought you may not have understood who actually did. I would like to be as gentle, kind and wise as God’s word is but sadly I miss the mark often.

  126. poohpity says:

    I do believe however that we have a choice about hating and holding grudges. We can let go and often it is something just as simple as getting to hear their side of a story or just getting to know them better. There are many ideologies I dislike but understanding the people who hold them dear, I think brings some form of empathy or it has for me anyway.

  127. foreverblessed says:

    September 10 to September 20.

    Very interesting Pooh, what you say, about hearing others theology. What you write is the theory, I guess,
    And now the practice….

    Everything that we write, the Holy Spirit is going to teach us that we do it ourselves.

  128. jeff1 says:

    The reality of hating is never that simple because I never believed I would have it in me to hate until my friends and neighbours were being murdered because like myself they were British. I was too young to understand and made bad choices that stayed with me the rest of my life.

    My dad allowed himself to be lead by the Spirit by submitting his will to God and wisdom was his companion throughout his life while I would have to say I did not understand God and foolishness was mine.

    I know from what my mum told me about my dad that he had in born wisdom which meant he was always ahead of the rest of us in his thinking.

    I have been blessed in that I learned more about God from my dad than I did in church or religious studies.

    I have found in my own life that it is often another’s faith that carries me through the rough times. I have had others pray for me when I was not in a good place and I have to say that their prayers were answered for me.

    It is in some to be closer to God while myself I have a tendency to wander and so taking refuge in Christ has become the norm for me because I cannot think of a safer place to be.

  129. poohpity says:

    forever, I said nothing about the theology of others. Ideology is not theology. The definition of ideology is: a system of ideas and ideals, especially one that forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy. That causes many arguments and divisions between people which is what happened in Ireland as well as in many other countries. Just like you and I; you believe in socialism and I believe in a democratic republic and capitalism which is private ownership and authority rather than on the government controlling businesses, healthcare, etc. as in socialism.

    Theology is the study of the nature of God and religious belief. So most often what I write is what I have learned from the bible not my personal theory but my attempt at understanding what we are given to understand about God through His written word. Do I get it all right without error, of course not, that is why I lean so heavily on the mercy and grace of God.

    So yes it is the Holy Spirit who teaches us and it is also His work in our lives that changes us. It is helpful to be able to identify the areas within our own lives that need to be confessed but it is not helpful to tell other people what is in their life that we see as needing help, because we are not able to see into their hearts as God does so we do not get the full picture of who they are.

    Listening to people and really hearing what they say they come to know them, then let’s use Joyce for instance then when she came back on as Beloved if you really knew her then you would have heard her voice in her writing and knew that it was her all along. But most people do not take time to get to know someone they would rather accuse and think the worst like this topic was talking about getting to know God and thinking the worse of Him, as Satan would have us believe, to draw people away from Him rather than to Him. That happens also when ideology comes into play rather than theology.

  130. poohpity says:

    forever, do you always practice what you preach? That seems be the only concern one should have who follows the teaching of Jesus Christ not what others do but what we ourselves do, hence Jesus saying, “Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to notice the beam in your own eye? 4How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while there is still a beam in your own eye?…”

  131. poohpity says:

    Those are areas that God works on in our lives to develop our character and that can not happen if we are repeatedly looking at the failures of others because that often prevents us from looking at our own.

    If it is wrong for me to share what I have learned about God and His character of being good, loving and merciful, then I will be wrong but I love the Lord and am grateful for all that He has done for me. If that is wrong then I do not want to be right. I would rather share that than offer what my opinion of others are, that I have no right to do.

  132. foreverblessed says:

    Then why did you judge me saying I listen more to scientists than to God?

    Is it known to you that for over 40 years I have listened to God, I have asked Him questions, and waited, and asked more questions and waited, and God answered me, He Himself did. And I listened to Him first and foremost!
    You never asked anything to me.

    So if you are really serious in listening to people, then, try again!

  133. jeff1 says:

    I don’t think it is healthy to focus on either our own failures or the failures of others if I am to follow Christ. Nor do I think I should speak for God as in todays world people will make up their own mind and believe in God or not.

    When I speak well of God others tell me that is my experience and not theirs so God is much better at changing peoples thoughts and minds than I am.

    God requires obedience to His Spirit because He knows that it is then that I will have the right relationship with Him and it is not until I have the right relationship with Him that I will have it with others because until I submit my will to His will others are not seeing Godliness as is God’s but Godliness as is mine.

    When I am in the right relationship with God failure will not be a word I am familiar with.

    Knowledge of God can overshadow knowing God and yet it is relationship that is imperative to God’s kingdom and its advancement.

  134. poohpity says:

    forever, that is not what I said at all. What I did say was that the bible says everything was created in six days and I believe what it says but your argument was that science said something far different, so I asked which one do you listen to science or God’s word and you said science. Of course just like anything else people can twist what someone else says because of their own perspective to fit their point of view which is exactly what you did. I did not judge, I listened to your reply and repeated it. You said that you trusted science more than the bible, not me. Go back to the many times we had this conversation in the past and reread what you said.

  135. poohpity says:

    After you reread it take responsibility that you do not believe that God was able to create everything in six actual days. That again is what you said, so I was not judging but just repeated what you said you believe.

  136. foreverblessed says:

    Pooh, you said: you listen more to scientists than to God.
    That was your judgment, your own conclusion.
    I only said that I also listen scientists, but I never said I listen more to them than to God.

    Neither did I say that God was not able to create the earth in 6 days, because I believe very much that He could.
    But, I said, the evidence that is laid down in the history in the earth crust, has many many more things then just that it was do e in 6 24 hour days, 6000 years ago.
    So I started to o talk to God, as it is God Himself who is the Almighty, the One from whom originates everything.
    The One who wrote the Bible and the One who wrote the History of the earth. That history is written by Him

    So I started to ask questions to God, long ago. How come that what is written in Genesis does not show in the earth crust? And many many more communication between Him and me.

    And you were not there.

    The only thing you can say is this: “when I would say the same things as you do, I would feel that I had listened more to scientists than to God.”
    Then you keep it to yourself. You make a statement, but you do not judge.
    And that is how it ought to be.

    You could also say: I do not understand it.
    That would be fair to say.
    No judgment there either

    But you cannot say that about me. As you were not there, you have not heard about our conversation, you have not heard what God has answered me.

    Anx I do believe that God is very well capable of creating all at once, anything He wants to create.
    I do believe that God is all powerful, and that He is in control. But that He does not control, Be is waiting for us to willingly open our hearts to Him, out of our free will!

    So there is my faith statement.
    I believe that it was the Word, Jesus who spoke, and it was there.
    Hebrews 1:1-2

  137. jeff1 says:

    The heart is deceitful above all else and didn’t I find out how true that is. Ignorance is not pretty and while my dad was submitted to God’s will he was seeing and doing what was right while I blissful in my ignorance believed in my head that my dad did not know what he was talking about because my choice was the popular one and I was in with the crowd. Talk about when one sheep goes astray the rest follow!

    The one thing my dad never did was criticize the rest of us but remained steadfast in submitting to God’s will and when it came to knowing what was right he was on a much higher playing field than the rest of us.

    As I submit to God’s Spirit He reveals to me truths that have been hidden from me through my ignorance but when I don’t submit then I am blissfully unaware of my ignorance because as Forever says God is not trying to control me but lead me into pastures that are His and away from the snares and pitfalls of this world.

    Whether I am submitted to God or not makes no difference to God because He can use me with or without my free will and also He is well able to bring His Kingdom to earth with or without me.

    God’s desire for me to submit to Him comes from Him wanting me to come His way home because when I do that I save myself from much of the pain and suffering of what is fallen man’s in a fallen world.

  138. jeff1 says:

    A submitted heart is seeing the world from God’s point of view and not their own because they are aligned with God’s will and not their own and failure does not enter their thoughts as God is transforming their heart and mind to His ways and He has opened their hearts and minds so that they understand as they submit and it is a process which leads them away from what is human to what is divine and it is a two way process of as I submit, God reveals, and so if I am not progressing then it is my lack of submission and not God’s lack of revealing because God is working when I allow Him to.

    It is not that He does not want to reveal to me but that I am blocking His revelation by my lack of submission.

    God has control of my free will but it is I who give Him access or not and it is my lack of submission that causes me to wander and when I do I find myself back in my fallen state i.e. seeing from a fallen world rather than from God’s perspective on the world.

    What have I learned from people who are submitted to God that they are not critical of this world or those in it because God being an eternal God He is giving them a glimpse of the world to come when His way shall control the world and pain and suffering shall be no more and so the things of this world become a blur to them as they are awakened to God’s purpose for them on earth which is to be partakers in His Kingdom where love for each other is what empowers rather than the love of things of this world which ensnares them.

  139. SFDBWV says:

    The news this morning certainly reflect on our subject seeing that Mexico has had its second earthquake with a death toll over 300 from both events. And with another hurricane bearing down on Puerto Rico.

    Every time such things happen I am reminded of Matthew 24 and whereas the events in Matthew 24 are relevant to natural disasters as well as wars it speaks more of the events during the great tribulation prior to Christ’s return.

    Still such events gets the attention of everyone and causes most to ask “what the h— is going on?”

    Certainly some will say it comes from God, some will say it is just the natural way of things, and others might say it is the result of global warming and believe that we can somehow control even the weather on earth.

    The fact remains that there are people hurting and in need of assistance. I actually feel helpless to help those so far away, but feel that my prayers are the best help I can offer.

    Perhaps from these “acts of God” some will turn to God for the first time in their lives for answers and find comfort amid tears.

    48 and fog.


  140. jeff1 says:

    Why is it that it is where I find God in the brokenness of people and their lives. I get tired of being broken yet God never tires of broken people.

    Exhaustion is my companion but thankfully God doesn’t do exhaustion as He is the source of life that goes on forever.

    Somewhere, my love there will be songs to sing
    Although the snow covers the hope of Spring
    Somewhere a hill blossoms in green and gold
    And there are dreams all that your heart can hold

    Someday we’ll meet again my love
    Someday whenever the Spring breaks through

    You’ll come to me out of the long ago
    Warm as the wind, soft as the kiss of snow
    ? my own, think of me now and then
    God speed my love till you are mine again

    You’ll come to me out of the long ago
    Warm as the wind, soft as the kiss of snow
    Till then my sweet think of me now and then
    God speed my love ’til you are mine again

  141. Beloved says:

    Jeff1 you mentioned sheep earlier. In Bible study this morning we watched a CD about Jesus the Good Shepherd that was taught in Israel by Ray Vanderlaan from Michigan,USA. He showed a flock and explained all the various components of taking care of one which was so interesting! And why Jesus used it as an example of how He takes care of us.(because it was the culture He was speaking to at the time) Of interest was the fact that there are always a few goats among the flock, and the goats are the ones that lead the sheep astray if they take their eyes off of the leader and under-leaders (children usually) who’s job it is to guide them. We are so like sheep! We must keep our eyes on Jesus and those who minister to us in His name. Jesus said, My sheep know My voice.

    Best to not pay attention to those trying to lead us astray, right? Praying for your exhaustion and hoping you can accept your disability as God has accepted you.

  142. SFDBWV says:

    Earlier this morning there was some problem with the Our Daily Bread site and as a result I went on to other things. Thinking that perhaps after 12 days out the subject may change.

    Read yesterday on Christianity Direct Today the same subject of “Acts of God” being addressed. Funny their perspective is that the weather is just part of living on earth.

    Also read this morning on the “net” that some fellow has predicted the beginning of the 7 year period known of as the “tribulation” will begin September 23.

    That only caught my eye as I read a year ago from a different source that the rapture would occur on that same day.

    What I do know is that there is great suffering in Mexico this morning and in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. That there will be much worse suffering when that 7 year period comes and that for many there has been suffering in the world since the beginning of time.

    We Christians look forward to that time when it will all end, and not through death but through the triumph of good over evil, through Jesus of Nazareth the Christ, that hour of His return.

    I for one pray that it is today.


  143. poohpity says:

    Yes but we know that no one knows the time the end will come not even Jesus and if they think they do it may not be someone to listen to.(Matt 24:35-36 NLT) Also many will claim to know the Lord but Jesus will say depart from me I never knew you (Matt 7:22-23) but it will be the Lord who tells them when the wheat is separated from the weeds who is who, left to us we may make a wrong decision about who is actually wheat and who is actually weeds.(Matt 13:29-30) God knows.

  144. jeff1 says:

    Beloved post Sept 20 11.29 am

    I mentioned Sheep, Beloved, because I am like one straying from where God wants me to go.

    I have spent my life either lost or taking refuge and wondering why I am always the one that looses my way.

    Thank you for your prayers and it has taken me along time to come to terms with my weaknesses. It is God not only accepting me in my weaknesses but that He may use it for good is what keeps me hopeful and faithful.

    I believe that God will reveal Himself to many who do not have faith before the end, in His own time, as the end will not be the end of the world but the end of Satan’s reign in having power in the world.

    I don’t believe that God burns people in hell for eternity although I was indoctrinated to believe it but I do believe that He saves me from eternal death that would have been my destiny if ‘Jesus’ had not been ‘crucified, died and risen’ as a substitute for me.

    There is coming a day,
    When no heart aches shall come,
    No more clouds in the sky,
    No more tears to dim the eye,
    All is peace for evermore,
    On that happy golden shore,
    What a day, glorious day that will be.

    What a day that will be,
    when my Jesus I shall see,
    And I look upon His face,
    The One who saved by His grace;
    When He takes me by the hand,
    And leads me through the Promised Land,
    What a day, glorious day that will be.

    There’ll be no sorrow there,
    No more burdens to bear,
    No more sickness, no pain,
    No more parting over there;
    And forever I will be,
    With the One who died for me,
    What a day, glorious day that will be.

    What a day that will be,
    When my Jesus I shall see,
    And I look upon His face,
    The One who saved me by His grace;
    When He takes me by the hand,
    And leads me through the Promised Land,
    What a day, glorious day that will be.

  145. poohpity says:

    I think this song fits in well with our topic;

    “Hills and Valleys”

    I’ve walked among the shadows
    You wiped my tears away
    And I’ve felt the pain of heartbreak
    And I’ve seen the brighter days
    And I’ve prayed prayers to heaven from my lowest place
    And I have held the blessings
    God, you give and take away

    No matter what I have, Your grace is enough
    No matter where I am, I’m standing in Your love

    On the mountains, I will bow my life
    To the one who set me there
    In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there
    When I’m standing on the mountain aft, didn’t get there on my own
    When I’m walking through the valley end, no I am not alone!

    (Chorus)You’re God of the hills and valleys!
    Hills and Valleys!
    God of the hills and valleys
    And I am not alone!

    I’ve watched my dreams get broken
    In you I hope again!
    No matter what I know
    Know I’m safe inside Your hand

    On the mountains, I will bow my life
    To the one who set me there
    In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there
    When I’m standing on the mountain aft, didn’t get there on my own
    When I’m walking through the valley end, no I am not alone!

    You’re God of the hills and valleys!
    Hills and Valleys!
    God of the hills and valleys
    And I am not alone!

    Father, you give and take away
    Every joy and every pain
    Through it all you will remain
    Over it all!

    Father, you give and take away
    Every joy and every pain
    Through it all you will remain
    Over it all!

    On the mountains, I will bow my life
    To the one who set me there (to the one who set me there)
    In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there
    When I’m standing on the mountain aft, didn’t get there on my own
    When I’m walking through the valley end, no I am not alone!

    You’re God of the hills and valleys!
    Hills and Valleys!
    God of the hills and valleys
    And I am not alone!
    You’re God of the hills and valleys!
    Hills and Valleys!
    God of the hills and valleys
    And I am not alone!

    And I will choose to say “Blessed be Your name, yeah, yeah”

    And I am not alone

  146. SFDBWV says:

    I have always read that we should not try and date the hour of Christ’s return. Thinking Biblically the reasoning being Jesus said of that time only the Father knew.

    Yet if you consider the events foretold in Daniel and Revelation one could easily predict when once the events began and more importantly recognized for what they are.

    In fact in Revelation 3:3 KJV Jesus say’s in part to the church in Sardis “If therefore thou shalt *not* watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt *not* know what hour I will come upon thee.”

    Oh well for me the important concept is that if we lived as if each day were the last day how differently we would live.

    Speaking once again about natural disasters being an act of God, the terrible events in Revelation are almost certainly as a result of earthquakes, tidal waves, hurricanes, tornados, flooding and events that the world has never seen since its beginning.

    All as a result of the seals being opened in heaven by our Lord.

    Of course if you believe in the “rapture” then we are safe within the Ark when the “Great and Terrible day of the Lord” begins.

    49 degrees and clear this morning. The leaves are reaching their perfect blend of fall colors.


  147. poohpity says:

    You are so right Steve, we are to be ready at the blink of an eye for either the rapture or the Lord’s return hence the many times Jesus told parables about for instance whether our lamps are filled with; not letting the sun go down on anger, hatred, bitterness, thoughts of malice, holding grudges, not to repay evil with evil, questioning God’s goodness and love, all those things show that our lamps are filled with worldly thinking rather than the oil of the Spirit of God; forgiveness, mercy, kindness, gentleness, grace, good deeds, long suffering, patience, gratitude and joy which keeps them filled to bring light.

  148. poohpity says:

    This reminded me of a prayer from Julie Ackerman Link; Lord Almighty, King of glory, I am ashamed to admit how often I call in Your name to ask You to make life easier for me in the natural world rather than to make me stronger in the spiritual world. Keep me from thinking that Your name is a magic word I can use to invoke divine power for my own comfort and convenience; teach me instead that it is a holy word meant to unleash the power of truth and love against the forces of evil. How is it Lord, that demons know Your name is “Holy One” but I still call You health, wealth and success? How is it that evil spirits obey you, but I still try to get You to obey me? Change my desire for earthly power and control into a longing for spiritual victory over selfishness and pride. May the glory of Your presence be recognized in me.

  149. jeff1 says:

    The Good News is that God knows our weaknesses and it does not stop His love from rebuking, correcting and doing what it takes to bring us back to Him. Its all His goodness, power and timing as He teaches and reveals as I submit to His will and allow Him to be King of my heart.

  150. SFDBWV says:

    Up at 3 this morning a cool clear 48, but most likely will drop another degree or two before dawn. Supposed to make it upwards to 80 degrees today…Indian Summer.

    Listening to “The Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald” this morning, one line stuck as I listened; “Does anyone know where the love of God goes when the minutes turn to hours?”

    Matthew is already arguing with me because I told him about someone thinking today would be the rapture or the beginning of the Tribulation. Even though I told him that today will be today all day long, still he is disappointed that he is still here and now blames me for giving him false hope.

    “Does anyone know where the love of God goes when the minutes turn to hours?”


  151. street says:

    Is it the hand of our Father that uses the forces of nature to grab, rip, and pound us into submission? Does he smile when we give him credit for what some call Acts of God?

    Seems to me that Job’s initial confession may have helped him misread what was happening.

    finally bring Job to his knees—without full understanding. But the reassurance of Gods’ presence in the violent forces of nature doesn’t amount to an explanation of what had happened to Job, or us.

    thinking of joeseph’s trials as a young man. betrayed by his brothers, sold into slavery, falsely accused and thrown into prison to die. then something marvelous happen! deliverance! then the story takes another turn! restoration and salvation for the family from starvation. these two stories are similar. seems to me the story gets better at the cross.

    misreading others is a daily occurrence. when someone does something we don’t understand do we head straight to envy and contempt for the other? do we spend enough time with God to bring it up with him before we bring it up with said party? people do try to do things to look good or be good. even though we fail constantly at it. selling your bother into slavery is a bit better than outright killing him. we have many opportunities, take them captive in Christ Jesus.

    On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 6 And we will be ready to punish every act of disobedience, once your obedience is complete.

    complete obedience…. learning to love.

  152. Beloved says:

    Street makes me think how I often take a “knee-jerk” reaction to others before first taking it to God. Guilty. The patience of God is amazing, which tells me just how valuable I must be to Him. Thanks.

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