Tag Archive | John 16:33

The significance of Thanksgiving!

 

   720936f75ec4eef1793ec0a2f3345d33     wyndham 7-17 all 20  retreat friends   th-10

 

 

  Obviously, the significance of Thanksgiving is that it is a time to pause and contemplate all the things we have to be thankful for. 

   Some broad categories for which I am thankful are Faith, Family, Friends, and Country, just like many of you, I imagine. But in this post, I will zero in on a significant aspect within the category of Faith whose impact carried over into Family, Friends, and Country.

   It was about 9 years ago, when God first introduced me to the concept of fiery darts.  That instruction opened my understanding of how I had been victimized by my own thoughts. Negative thoughts or what I eventually began to see as fiery darts. I shudder to think the course my life would have taken, had I not been awakened to the destructive force of fiery dart thinking.

   As my training proceeded, I began learning how I had been deceived by my old nature (my thoughts and attitudes prior to my becoming a Christian), and the world’s concept of truth (a truth void of God’s Truth). I discovered that the world’s concepts of truth held more sway over my thinking than God’s concept of Truth.

   That deception was advanced by my lack of spending time with God in His word. Notice, I didn’t mention that I did not spend time with God in prayer! Because I spent a lot of time praying. But you know what that amounted to? I spent a lot more time talking to God rather than listening to Him. For we hear God’s voice when we read the Bible. 

   When my talking to God and my listening to God got in balance, then and only then, did I find my way out of the bondage I had placed myself in with fiery dart thinking.

   This balance impacted how I dealt with problems within the context of family  and friend relationships. It encouraged me to take those problems to God. Faithfully He would lead me to a particular scripture or scriptures that would shed light on how I should respond. 

   There hasn’t been an area in my life that this balance hasn’t impacted. For example, instead of despairing over the negativity of our recent political climate, God reminds me of 2 Chronicles 7:14. My prayers for my country are worded according to God’s Word, not my despair.  

   When disaster strikes our nation, I’m reminded of verses such as John 16:33. My prayers are worded with the hope found there, not my fears. 

   Knowing how to counterattack the temptation to think negatively about our problems, presents us with a perspective that will identify solutions. 

   My expressions of thankfulness this holiday will be centered on the gratefulness I feel towards God for opening my understanding to what fiery darts are and how to defeat them. For that knowledge has enhanced the gratefulness I feel towards

my Faith, my Family, my Friends, and my Country. 

Suffering can make us stronger OR it can weaken us. We choose!

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John 16:33, I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.

    When God created our world, everything was perfect and in balance. This was His plan for us. He wanted so much for us to enjoy His gift of creation.

     However, Satan with his evil ways entered the picture and enticed Adam and Eve to sin.  Suffering was an unavoidable consequence of Satan’s intrusion.

So where did that leave us?

     Because of God’s great love for mankind, He came up with a plan to redeem us. He introduced His plan in the Old Testament with the promised Messiah. It was fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus.

     Man’s sin, set in motion Satan’s evil plans to destroy mankind. Satan stays busy manipulating those unaware of his plan with the lies of fiery darts. Fiery darts originating with our flesh. That is man’s will not controlled by the Truths of God’s Word. Fiery darts expounded by the worldview of a society apart from God. Fiery darts introduced into our minds by Satan.

     These sources will attempt to convince us that suffering is to be avoided. When it happens we try to escape it. In doing so we deny ourselves the very thing that will strengthen our ability to live life more victoriously.

Therefore, suffering is meant to equip our faith to endure the trials of life in order to mature us! By desiring that God remove our suffering, we shut ourselves off from the opportunity to learn how to become more like Christ and to be a testimony to others who are suffering. p. 58 FD’s 3rdedition

     Souls nourished by the Truths of Scripture understand that suffering is a fact of life. It cannot be avoided. As we learn through our suffering, we are less likely to be overwhelmed by it. Instead we build a testimony of how to overcome suffering. A testimony that will comfort others with the comfort God gave us. 

He comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 2 Corinthians 1:4

Out of the ashes!

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   The Las Vegas tragedy leaves us feeling that evil has the upper hand. The enemy of all of mankind, Satan, would have us  drowning in despair. He would have us questioning God as to how something so horrible could happen. He would have us becoming angry with God. His aim is to manipulate our thoughts so that we can’t find anything to feel hopeful about. 

  There’s a verse in the Bible, John 16:33, that tells us that in this world we will have tribulation. Well, we certainly know that’s true. Las Vegas only confirms it. We know from personal experience as a nation and as individuals that trials and troubles are a common thing in this fallen world we live in, Yet, our initial reaction when tragedy strikes is to cry out, “Why God? How could you let this happen?”

In times such as these, we must remember :

   God has warned us and tried to prepare us for the consequences of sin. After we messed up His original plan, He didn’t give up on us. He made a way where we could know peace in the midst of turmoil and tragedy. Because He knew that our rejection of Him would bring inevitable and sometimes tragic consequences.

But take heart:

   Jesus not only has overcome the world but He will return and straighten out the mess Satan has made of it. But until then we must not allow the fiery darts of hopelessness, anger, or despair blind us.

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   May we light the candle of faith. Only then will we see good triumphing over evil in Las Vegas. It’s an unspeakable horror, yes! But we can’t let that rule our thinking. Instead we must focus on the truths of God that pour forth in abundance from the beautiful stories rising out of the ashes of Las Vegas. 

   One by one, prayer by prayer, people are seeking God for His strength in overcoming this evil. They are reaching out to each other to assist, protect, or bring healing, With every act of bravery, self-sacrifice, love, compassion, etc. the enemy is being defeated.

 

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Hope or Despair? You get to choose!

He will return!

He will return!

 

     With the alarming rise of Christian persecution, many are looking up–searching the skies?

Why?

Revelation 1:7 Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen. I am the Alpha and the Omega, ” says the Lord God, who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

    The purpose of my blog is not to discuss the 2nd coming of Christ. (The scriptures are pretty clear about that event!) I just want to highlight a few of the fiery darts related to Jesus’s return and expose the schemes behind them. Scriptures highlight one of the most common of these fiery darts:

2 Peter 3:3 First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is the ‘coming’ he promised?

     Ah, the fiery dart of doubt. Just add a little of that into the thinking processes and like yeast it will expand and increase. Leaving those who have succumbed to it, weakened and vulnerable!

     And in the light of the horrors broadcast over the internet and news stations of the persecutions and beheadings of Christians in Iraq and around the world, without the assurances of God’s Word, we become fearful.  Now we are dealing with doubt AND fear. 

     And good Christian knows that trials and troubles when dealt with according to God’s guidance will produce increased faith and trust in Him. Therefore, our ability to resist fiery darts such as doubt and fear will be strengthened and they will not succeed in victimizing us and holding us captive. 

John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

    Therefore, dear reader. Resist the temptation (fiery dart) to not spend time in God’s Word. Things may get a lot worse before Jesus finally returns, so protect your mind and your faith with the Truths from God’s Word. 

 Knowing the words that proceed from the mouth of God, in other words The Bible, then we have those TRUTHS with which to contrast the fiery darts from Satan. During times of weakness our vision is not always clear and we find ourselves vulnerable to fiery darts. It is in such times that we need to be able to call upon the strength available to us. FD, p. 36

IT’S YOUR CHOICE!