When I removed the last month from the 2014 calendar and saw January 2015 I felt an excitement as if God was saying this will be a year to give thanks.
Even so this year has been quite a challenge for me with my health issues. Not unlike what you have expressed in the "Alzheimer's field". But I am reminded daily that this is the year to give thanks. Your words describe my prayer as I TRUST HIM through this life He has allowed me to live.
"Before I let go of the hem of His garment, I told Him how glad I was He had sent me to glean where He had; how glad I was He kept watch over me there; how glad I am that He changes not, and that His Faithfulness endures forever"
Thank you for sharing....
Well, it's an encouragement to me that you found anything in my 'post' agreeable to your soul! Personally, I was so disappointed with it that an attempt was made (by me) to Delete/Edit it. But my disappointment came late, and the 'window of opportunity' had shut by the time I decided to change/improve(?) the product.
That said, there come those times when it seems necessary (otherwise it would be sin) to publish abroad the Lord's dealings with us in order that He might receive the Praise which is due his Name. That is the target at which I aimed, but my arrow fell far short of it's intended destination ..and that left me feeling uneasy, embarrassed and sad. Were it not for your 'good word' this morning, I would have been glad to forget the miserly effort I'd put forth; and my meandering, uncertain, somewhat vacuous theme.
Since "Each heart knows it's own bitterness, and no one else can share it's joy.".. there is a sense of futility attendant to these attempts at expressions of gratitude, but we make them, nevertheless.
In early April, after my Dad was hospitalized, it became apparent to us that..in order for him to be able to live out the remainder of his days in his own home..more would be required of his children. So we had a family meeting and, sensing our weakness(es) invited the Lord into our situation for we, as a family, have more difficulties than just our Dad's failing health. There are, among his (Dad's) helpers, age-old resentments, pettiness, unforgiveness, and lack of sacrificial love. Yet, we prayed believing that help sought would issue in help brought...And it has! This is the glory of God.
Now, as nobody else's testimony is mine to give, let me just say this: "Thanks be to God for His gifts, indescribable." He has changed and improved my heart by showing me that in order to become a better caregiver, I was in need of 'new wine'..but the old wineskin was brittle, parched and cracked. So...He touched me.. and enabled me to receive His 'new wine'. And, although the wineskin did not burst, the 'new wine' bubbleth over the top ..and cannot be contained. My prayer is that all of my Dad's children will taste the sweetness of the same.
And, unless I am but suffering the results of an over-active imagination, I see my Dad's case improving dramatically, as well. Not that his Alzheimer's is diminished or that his kidneys have regained their youth, but it's in his behavior (which at times sparkles before my eyes) and in the tenderness of his spirit. At our last parting (Thursday past) I knelt beside his chair to say my 'Farewell' and I watched him weep as he blubbered out ..."Thank you for all your help." I replied that the time I was spending at his house was helping me more than it was him ...and I thanked God for this moment ..and for this extended period of time.. in which the crooked is made straight, and where ashes are exchanged for beauty. We embraced as we wept openly on one another's shoulders. We did not hurry, or desire, to stop.
A day earlier I was visiting with my sister. As I came to my next sentence in that conversation, I was brought up short and became unable to speak. And, as I thought about the sentence I was trying to say, the tears began to flow. After quite a while, I said .."We asked the Lord to help us..and He has (and is and will, I might add)." Simple as that, yet so sublime. Yes, a lovely rose on a thorny bush ..a flower like no other! And, yes, a season for ardent Thanks-giving, bounteous Praise and humble Adoration ..and for publishing it abroad.
Enough for now, SWM. May this find your soul prospering, and your heart content. Please pass along my heartfelt 'Best Wishes' to those you love as I pray for them, as well. And thanks, again, for your encouragement.
Let us, therefore, foresake the vanity of the crowd and their false teachings, and turn back to the word delivered to us from the beginning.
Now that is truly part of "restoration". Jim
Only God know how much I can relate to your experience. Below is a copy of what you said and just know that I share your sentiments in the first paragraph and in your family issues in the second. During my illness God has brought all of the pettiness and unforgiveness together in one house, "to help me" and it has been interesting.
1. "Since "Each heart knows it's own bitterness, and no one else can share it's joy.".. there is a sense of futility attendant to these attempts at expressions of gratitude, but we make them, nevertheless."
2. "There are, among his (Dad's) helpers, age-old resentments, pettiness, unforgiveness, and lack of sacrificial love. Yet, we prayed believing that help sought would issue in help brought...And it has! This is the glory of God."
I watched him weep as he blubbered out ..."Thank you for all your help."
(My grandmother like mother to me suffered from Alzheimer in her last days/years. I can't imagine how wonderful this was for you)
I hope I haven't been too vague with my post but just know that you have much to share and I appreciate it.
My deepest sympathies, brother Dale.
Alzheimer's is such a devastating illness, a cruel row to hoe for the whole Family.
My own sweet Aunt Doe, her children, and grand children, the whole clan, are coping with this terrible sickness.
God bless her, Doe the angel who cared for us all, when sick or injured,
in between, "meals on wheels"stops,
a five minute mission,
a pillow plump,
kiss and hug,
plate of sandwiches,
a crucial what's up with everyone update,
"gotta go" smooch,
a radiant sunny cheerfulness,
aloft filling the room,
a full thirty minutes after she had gone!
Sweetest lady I have ever met, and right in my own family.
a bright loving heart,
a real life angel Aunt, our very own.
God bless you, Doe.
Mom bless her heart, now gone onto to be with the the Lord, suffered from the same heartless scourge.
Dad, gave her 24/7 care, God rest his soul.
Our family all did what we could for her care, it was very hard.
It does provide an opportunity for family to grow back together, rallying around a shared cause.
May God continue to give comfort and guidance, and draw your family close.
Cherish the lucid intervals, and speak the unspoken words of love, while they can still be received.
May the Lord's love wash over your house and hearts.
"Before I let go of the hem of His garment, I told Him how glad I was He had sent me to glean where He had; how glad I was He kept watch over me there; how glad I am that He changes not, and that His Faithfulness endures forever; and, how glad I am that my Dad, my family and myself are subjects of His kindness, His wisdom and His care."
Blessed my heart,
Thank You Dale.
I cannot properly express my gratitude to the 2 of you for the kindness you've shown me, or for the comfort you've brought me. I am in your debt.
I judge myself, by the quality of my Friendships, to be the richest man in all the world! Thank you, Both. Thank you, Lord!
Carol: That 1 sentence .."I can't imagine how wonderful that was for you." ..speaks volumes. By it, you have shown that you are 'acquainted with my bitterness, and that you have shared in my joy'. This, indeed, is a 'good and perfect gift'.
Foggy: I so enjoy your Posts, and the style with which you write. I have read and re-read your latest several times, and I am sure I am not done with it yet! Another gift of the 'good and perfect' class! Thank you for taking the time to minister to my heart.
May we never forget Christ's "exquisite victory" at the Cross where Jesus loved us, and gave Himself for us. May this be our Theme ...forever and ever.
You and your family are in my prayers. My Grandmother suffered that. I fear that one day my Mom might. It's a terrible thought. I know you are good at gratitude toward others, but I ask you, Brother, to consider for just a moment how you too are a blessing, for him, for the family, and for us here.
Jeremiah's Letter to the Exiles
…10"For thus says the LORD, 'When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place. 11'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. 12'Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.…
RANDY CONWAY--Perverse evil has arrived and dwells in the hearts of men Reprobate wickedness thrives in our world of sin
Dear Brother Steve, if ever there was a day for the message of repentance today is that day. The message is to the church because those who call themselves children of God are in desperate need of repentance and pure hearts. Myself included.
May God Bless you and all those who work with you and whom you work with. You are all part of a voice crying in the wilderness. May God grant hearing to your message.
NOW IS THE DAY OF SALVATION
Perverse evil has arrived and dwells in the hearts of men
Reprobate wickedness thrives in our world of sin
Vile depravity is exercised over and over again
The vicious, immoral and corrupt making a tumultuous din.
Barely can you hear a faint call by a few to repentance
Their voices are ignored because we freely give the evil entrance
Even in the church there is little remorse and there is no penitence
And the absence of light gives to darkness its existence.
We love our sin and revel in our promiscuity
The message from the pulpits is filled with ambiguity
And we hide our sin with religious gestures and obtuse ingenuity
Do we not realize the wages of our sin are saved to an eternal annuity?
Judgment is come upon us and men will wail and cry.
Judgment is come upon us and Truth will expose the lies.
Judgment is come upon us you cannot escape it even if you try.
Judgment is come upon us and many men will die.
As foretold, judgement will be the day of the Lord’s Vengeance
We were warned there will be a year of recompences.
To revel in our sin a little longer we engage in a dangerous hesitation
Now is the accepted time; behold now is the day of salvation.
We walk in the counsel of the ungodly and stand in the way of sinners
We sit in the seat of the scornful and make kindling of Calvary’s splinters.
God will not be mocked; He has waited for our repentance and will not accept our religious tokens.
And soon we will hear, “Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord God; this is the day whereof I have spoken.”
By randy Conway
Nov 17, 2015
Pray all here are well… a personal favorite of mine.
What a God we have and serve. The door is still open.
Asking for prayer for my son...thank you...
Nana wrote: Asking for prayer for my son...thank you...
The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all;Psalm 34:19
and so we begin:
May my prayer come before you; turn your ear to my cry. Psalm 88:2
HE tends to listen more when we pray for others
Cheers & Blessings,
Brother Gary from Vancouver Wa. sent me this article from an unknown brother "Chip". It is a good start on understanding the mess that we have accepted as Christians. I still like "restoration" to the message first given to the early Church. Reformation still sounds like fingernails on the blackboard for those who truly seek. Jim
Revival, or Reformation?
By Chip Brogden Articles, Ekklesia, Church & Body Life
There have always been some who not only recognize the glaring deficiencies of what the church is, but are grieved and troubled by what they see, to the point that they cannot remain content to let things continue on, but are compelled to do something about it.
Of these blessed few who choose to stand up and speak out against the religious system, the response seems to fall along one of three approaches. As we will see, only one approach is harmonious with the prophetic example set forth in the history of the people of God, and it is the one approach that seems to be the last resort instead of the first recourse. But let us consider them in the proper order.
First, there are those who call for what amounts to Reformation. These are the Martin Luthers who standup to the religious leadership and rightly confront their unscriptural practices. The well-meaning intention is to fix what is wrong with the church by identifying all of its problems and coming up with Scriptural solutions. But this represents a zealous naivety on the part of all would-be reformers. First, it assumes that once the leaders recognize their unscriptural practices, they will repent and change their ways. History has proven that this never happens. Second, it assumes that the church system is something God wants to reform, when the truth is that the church system was made by man and was never authorized by God in the first place. Reforming it has the same effect as patching an old garment with new cloth, or pouring new wine into old wineskins, which results in ruining both the old and the
These attempts at reformation, if they are not quashed altogether, typically result in the establishment of something very similar to compete with what was already there. When the Catholic church rejected Luther, he founded another religious system based upon his understanding of Scriptural truth. To be sure it was an improvement over the Catholic system; but it was still a religious system nevertheless. From the Protestant Reformation many thousands of denominations have sprung, each more or less based upon their own interpretation of Scripture and upon the founding principles of the Roman Catholic church embedded in their history. The end result is that we are even further away from the simplicity of Christ with each attempt to repair what God never called us to build in the first place.
Second, there are those who espouse Revival as the cure to everything that ails Churchianity. The church is sleeping, and needs to be roused from sleep (so the thinking goes). The revivals of generations past, and the preachers who seemed to be instrumental in stirring up these revivals, are idealized and venerated as great heroes of the faith; the kind of people we need to be (or find) in order to experience the same kind of revival and awakening that they experienced. The Revivalist is similar to the Reformer in that both types of people hope to repair what is wrong with the church, hoping to spark a movement or a move of God that will shake the church out of complacency and restore something of the power that the early Christians had. But the Revivalist lays emphasis more on the spiritual experience than Scriptural integrity. This naturally creates a certain hankering after signs, wonders, miracles, and visible manifestations of the “power” of God as evidences and proofs that God is moving or doing something to revive and restore to what used to be.
Again, the clear witness of Scripture and the prophetic record of God’s dealings with His people rises up to contradict the Revivalist in his enthusiastic naivety. Yes, it is true that revivals and spiritual awakenings have occurred and will continue to occur. One of the greatest revivals of the 20th Century was the charismatic movement, which formed the background of my own spiritual awakening. Even so, however much individual people may have benefitted from these revivals and spiritual movements, none of these things have resulted in any fundamental change to Churchianity itself. The religious system continues on, and the deception and abuse it dispenses in the name of God gets worse with every generation.
God will not continue to pour out His Spirit or send any kind of revival to people who still remain in a religious system that God has judged and called us to come out of. Any real pouring out of God’s Spirit must result in a people being called out; God is not the author of something that requires people to go back to Babylon in order to benefit from it themselves, or to bring Life to it. On the contrary, the very idea of “revival” is frequently used by Churchianity in a desperate attempt to breathe new life into something that is clearly dead. It is dead because it is under the judgment of God. He has not called us to bring it back to life again; on the contrary, His judgment says, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their dead” (Mt.8:22).
While God has certainly been patient with His people and has even blessed efforts to reform or revive, it has always been with an understanding that He was calling those who had been reformed and revived to come out and be obedient to Him. The prophetic declaration is to “come out of [Babylon], My people, lest you take part in her sins, lest you share in her plagues” (Rev. 18:4).
God’s ultimate intention is neither Reformation nor Revival, but Repudiation! Repudiation is a strong word. It means, “to reject the authority or validity of; to disown or cast off.” But this is precisely what followers of Jesus have had to do from the very beginning. To the elders and high priests of Judaism, the apostles stated simply, “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). Later, when the Christian Church took on the same religious spirit as the Jewish Sanhedrin, other men and women followed in the same tradition of the apostles and repudiated the authority of the religious establishment in order to maintain the Testimony of Jesus. They were neither Reformers nor Revivalists; they simply repudiated the religious system altogether.
There is a wonderful reformation happening right now – not within the religious system, but within the hearts and minds of people who are repudiating that system. There is a tremendous revival taking place right now, and it is a revival along spiritual lines, among those who have heeded the call to “come out of Babylon” and have been raised to new Life. God is revealing Christ to people, and people are learning how to enter into Him and how to live in Him, and how to walk in Him. They are leaving the complexities of Religion for the simplicity of Relationship. This is a quiet reformation, a quiet revival, a grass-roots movement that is governed by the Holy Spirit.
I want to thank everyone for praying for my son, God is faithful and the tests came out good.
Nana wrote: I want to thank everyone for praying for my son, God is faithful and the tests came out good.
Since you 'hold your cards close to your vest', it was difficult to pray specifically. But my own son, who is in dire need of a touch from the Great Physician's hand, has been heavy on my heart for years now, and much in my 'groanings' before the Lord. So, as I presented his name and person before the Throne of Grace, I included mention of 'Nana's son', as well. It seemed quite inadequate to me at the time, but then my mind settled on the Glory of God, and I was glad ..and it was enough.
That you have found relief under the 'shadow of His wing' is a joy to my soul.
Thank you for the prayer for my son. We have had you in our prayers and will add your son too. God knows who we are praying for even if not mentioned by name because he knows our heart and thoughts. He is our creator and knows us in-side-out, he knows our every cell, our every hair, and our every need even before we ourselves do. Exactly as you said, God is the great physician, Amen.
... words with which to praise Thee..and to publish Thy excellencies abroad."
My testimony, as of this day, is that I have never seen the waters so deep and so troubled as they seem to be at present. Yet, in the same breath, I must say that I have never been so certain that they will not come up to my nose, or go over my head.
As my Dad slips away, we enjoy moments of pure bliss. Oh, the happiness that shone on his face the other day after I helped him with an ingrown hair on his neck. Oh, the peace and the joy I felt yesterday as he sat at his desk and I stood behind him, rubbing his neck and shoulders..and praying. For 35 minutes, he was 'putty in my hands' ..and I almost thought I might hear him purr. And I was thankful for Flyinkel who had told me about the importance of Touch once reason is lost. In all my days (and I am 66 yrs old) I have never experienced this nearness to my Dad, nor have I loved him this much. And it is sad to relate that, only now, can I say with any assurance that a whole-hearted effort was made by me to "Honor thy father". But, I tell you the truth.
I would also tell you about my brother, Ted, who, after the flesh, is my baby brother but who, in the Spirit, is my Elder Brother. He has been like a rock to me ..and a great help, especially lately. As I sensed the Lord has been saying to me, "Take up thy bed and walk", we made a pre-planned trip to the ER on the 13th to have a problem I have long ignored looked at by a professional. We learned a little, but the Dr. arranged an appointment for us on the 16th with a Dermatologist, in order to have a biopsy performed. Ted went with me to that app't. also ..to hold my hand and laugh at my corny jokes. I expect to have a Dianosis by the end of next week; perhaps sooner, tho', as this Dr. applied a 'Stat' to my case. Anyway ...I think I can safely say that we expect SCC, but we will wait on the 'official' declaration before we make any of our own. Ted says I was 'brave and polite' at the Dr's. office! Ted says he has always considered me to be 'his Barnabas', although, with tears, I can barely wrap my head around that.
The Lord has blessed me with a fresh outlook on all my family members, and I now think differently upon each of them. Yes, we have our Mary and our Martha; we also have our Doubting Thomas; and I also have (at this point in time) my Joseph, as I have had the privilege to weep openly on Ted's shoulder. I could not ask for better siblings for love does, indeed, cover a multitude of sins. The thief who was crucified alongside my Saviour is a simile for my Dad, who has not breathed his last breath yet ..and I trust the Spirit is ministering to his heart in a deep place, and in a silent way. And my son, like the Gadarene, a fearful sight to all ordinary men ...yet not beyond the stretched-out arm of God, whose mercies exhaust me in the counting of them, and whose goodness this vessel cannot contain!
Oh, that all men would desire to know my Jesus, my Redeemer, my Lord. He is the Fairest among 10,000. His yoke is easy...His burden is light. He is altogether lovely!
Strengthen me, O My God, for the trials that lie ahead. Speak wisdom into my life. And, lest I should forget to say it, I bless your Name for the friends You have made for me here @ ToF.
I bid you all, as Rutherford would say, to help me to praise. He is Worthy, thrice-over! Amen.
Thanks for the call out Dale, the soul grows by leaps and bounds when you give without the expectation of anything in return. It is not just your father you are nurturing.
Nana, so happy to hear the tests are well, I had exactly the same experience as Dale, funny.
Good will to all.
Paul's Third Visit to Jerusalem
About A.D. 50.
When they arrived at Jerusalem, they found the same thing, not only in the minds of a few restless brethren, but in the very bosom of the church. The source of the trouble was there, not among unbelieving Jews, but among those who professed the name of Jesus. "But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed saying, That it was needful to circumcise them [the Gentiles], and to command them to keep the law of Moses." This plain statement brought the whole question fairly before the assembly, and their important deliberations commenced. Chapter 15 contains the account of what took place and how the question was settled The apostles, elders, and the whole body of the church at Jerusalem were not only present with one accord, but took part in the discussion. The apostles neither assumed nor exercised exclusive power in the matter. It is usually called "The first Council of the Church;" but it may also be called the last council of the church which could say, "It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us."
Many, according to modern notions of "essentials, and non-essentials," will no doubt say, that the mere ceremony of circumcising or not circumcising a child was rather unimportant. But not so, according to the mind of God. It was a vital question. It affected the very foundations of Christianity, the deep principles of grace, and the whole question of man's relations with God. Paul's Epistle to the Galatians is a commentary on the history of this question.
There was no rite or ceremony that the converted Jew was so unwilling to give up as circumcision. It was the sign and seal of his own relationship with Jehovah, and of the hereditary blessings of the covenant to his children. It has been the opinion of some in all ages, that "infant baptism" was introduced by the church to meet this strong Jewish prejudice But had it been so intended by the Lord, the council at Jerusalem was the very place to announce it. It would have fully met the difficulty,and settled the question before them, and restored peace and unity between the two parent churches. But none of the apostles or others allude to it.
Before leaving this important and suggestive part of our apostle's history, it may be well just to notice certain facts which he brings out in Galatians 2, but which are not mentioned in the Acts. It was on this occasion that Paul went up by revelation, and took Titus with him. In the Acts we have the outward history of Paul yielding to the motives, desires, and objects of men; in the Epistle we have something deeper — that which governed the apostle's heart. But God knows how to combine these outward circumstances and the inward guidance of the Spirit. Christian liberty or legal bondage was the question at issue: whether the law of Moses — in particular the rite of circumcision — ought to be imposed upon the Gentile converts. Paul, led of God, goes up to Jerusalem, and takes Titus with him. In the face of the twelve apostles, and of the whole church, he brings in Titus who was a Greek, and who had not been circumcised. This was a bold step — to introduce a Gentile, and uncircumcised, into the very centre of a bigoted Judaism! But the apostle went up by revelation. He had positive communications from God on the subject. It was the divine way of deciding the question, once and for ever, between himself and the Judaizing Christians. This step was needful, as he says, "Because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage: to whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour, that the truth of the gospel might continue with you."
The apostle, then, having attained his main object, and having communicated his gospel to them at Jerusalem, leaves, with Barnabas, and returns to the Gentile Christians at Antioch. The two delegates, Judas and Silas, bearing the decrees of the council, accompany them. When the multitude of the disciples came together and heard the epistle read, they rejoiced and were comforted.
Thus closed the first apostolic council, and the first apostolic controversy. And, from what we learn of these matters in the Acts, we might conclude that the division between the Jewish and Gentile Christians had been completely healed by the decision of the assembly; but we know from the Epistles, that the opposition of the Judaizing party, against the liberty of Gentile Christians, never even slumbered. It soon broke out afresh, and Paul had constantly to meet it and to contend against it.
Miller's Church History, page 82.
You are correct, my Friend: We cannot out-give God.
I am so glad you found my remark. I had flirted with the idea of giving you a 'heads-up' on another thread where you post more often, but I decided against it. I figured that if you were meant to see it, the Lord would lead you to it. Apparently, He did...and it caused me to rejoice!
My brother, Ted, met with a great disappointment yesterday. I had just finished an e-mail to him, in an attempt to offer some consolation, when I logged-on to TFMR. And, joy of joys, there was your 'post' which, mysteriously, was a huge consolation to me! How sweet is it to have Nana back ...and you, as well ...and the three of us all landing on the same page, on the same day..singing the same song?!
I shall always treasure our friendship, Fly. I remember how and when it was born. You unwittingly helped me over a huge obstacle by 'letting me flop around like a fish out of water' until the resolution of our conflict came (again mysteriously), which issued in some great fun and, more importantly, this wonderful fellowship which we now share. It was the Lord's doing .. and it is marvelous in my eyes.
So, without a blush and without fear of embarrassment, may I tell you that I love you? I cherish your support, your advice, your encouragement and, mostly, your self. My gratitude ... Your lap. And, Thanks!
@ Bartertown: Your kind words have not gone unnoticed by me. Several weeks ago, I was in the Archives @ Foggy's "Socks & Underwear" thread, and I found the day I first posted on TFMR (on Main Street), and your post welcoming me aboard. I won't repeat what I said above to Flyinkel, but you may read it as if it were your own. May the Lord's richest blessings be upon your house, your daughter's head.. and yourself.
@ Foggy: Each time I read your 'Hard Ground, Soft Hearts' I see something new and fresh that ministers to my situation and to my soul, and I bless God that our paths have crossed ..and that you are my brother in Christ; a brother 'born for adversity'. Yes, O yes ...What a rich man I am!
@ SWM: My Dear Sister under Our Common Head ... May this find you and yours content, gaining in Grace ..and casting mountains into the sea. "We are cast down, but we are not forsaken." Cleave to Christ harder than ever before, and 'treasure Him up in your heart'. He will not fail you and, soon enough, He shall gather you up into His bosom ...where suffering and tears will be vanquished for all Eternity.. where Joy, and Light, and Peace and Love only..forever..are. Be of good cheer, Carol, and faint not. That you know these things better than I do is a great comfort to me, and the cause of my confident rejoicing in the wisdom, goodness and faithfulness of our Everlasting Father. Amen.
My love, in Christ, to All!