Monday, June 20, 2011
"CAST DOWN, but UNCONQUERED"
Good Evening to All!
It is so good to be back home with my precious Internet service. LOL! I have been having blogger's withdrawal. We did stay at a couple of places that "supposedly" had Internet service, but the first place we didn't end up staying at because of misrepresentation. They claimed to be lake-front, and we had to drive way up a hill to get to the campsites. The only view of the lake was WAY off through some trees. Needless to say, hubby was not happy so we left. The other place had Internet, but we couldn't get it because all of the trees between our spot and the signal origin. Anyway, we're home now for a while.
Tonight's text is from 2 Corinthians 4:7-11, 16-18.
(7) But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; (9) Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed (10) Always bearing about in the body the the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also might be made manifest in our body. (11) For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.
(16) For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. (17) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (18) While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
I enjoyed the way the Contemporary English Version or "CEV" states the above same verses below.
We are like clay jars in which this treasure is stored. The real power comes from God and not from us. We often suffer, but we are never crushed. Even when we don't know what to do, we never give up. In times of trouble, God is with us, and when we are knocked down, we get up again. We face death every day because of Jesus. Our bodies show what his death was like, so that his life can also be seen in us . . . . .
We never give up. Our bodies are gradually dying, but we ourselves are being made stronger each day. These little troubles are getting us ready for an eternal glory that will make all our troubles seem like nothing. Things that are seen don't last forever, but things that are not seen are eternal.
Have you ever awoke as tired or more so than when you went to bed? I know I have. I have done it many times. Sometimes I would be so worked up and stressed out that it would take me forever to get to sleep because my mind would be racing. Other times, I would fall asleep pretty easily, but because I was so stressed out, I wouldn't rest well even though I thought I was sleeping.
I like the analogy which the CEV uses about clay jars. I have always thought of the use of "clay jars" or pottery in the Bible is about God molding us, but this term also speaks of our fragility. We are weak, but this is all the more reason we need to depend on the strength of God to get us through our trials and troubles. If we will visualize ourselves as clay jars filled with the strength of God, we can handle anything this world want to throw at us. Every time we get knocked down by the world, we can get back up because we do have the power of God within us. He has promised to be there with us through it all. We need to remember that we are NEVER alone. All we have to do is go to God and ask Him for His help.
In the above passage, Paul reminded his readers--and us--to persevere in our faith. Don't waiver. Our struggles and frail bodies are temporary. Lean on others who will encourage you and pray with you. We should remember that EVERYTHING in this world is temporary. We should keep our spiritual eyes on the prize and be ready. We may not have tomorrow to "get right with God". No one knows when He is coming back for us.
I have found that one of the biggest mistakes we make as humans is that we put limitations on God. We tend to focus on the size of our problems and forget how BIG GOD is. He is bigger than any problem which we will face, therefore He can handle any problem that arises. We just need to trust Him and put ALL of our faith in Him. When we put limitations on Him, it is like we are telling Him that we don't trust that He can take care of our problem. To me, that is plain silly. When I think about Him creating the universe in six days, and everything within it, what a dumb idea to worry about whether He can remedy my problems. Even if He chooses to allow me to go through the problem or situation, I know He has a good reason for it. I may have something to learn from it or He has something else in mind for me down the road.
I have also learned when I start to get down-hearted and depressed because of problems or situations that arise, I "change gears" in my head and think about how wonderful it will be in heaven. No more sorrows, no fears, no sickness or pain, no bills. I will be able to concentrate on doing what I love most....Praising God! This life is but a minute in time compared to the eternity I am going to be allowed to spend with God, so I refuse to waste my time worrying about things that aren't going to matter at all in my future life. I am going to PRAY and let God handle my worries and my battles, just like He tells me to do in His Word, and concentrate on getting and keeping my heart right for His RETURN.
Good Night to All and May God Bless!