31 Days: Quotes (Day 2)

posted in: 31days, Books | 1

Rest in Him

Multi-tasking, calendars (whether electronic or the old fashioned way), waiting in lines, instant gratification…all of these things point to the business in our lives. This can also apply in a sense to our spiritual lives as well. One of my pastors used to say most religions are spelled DO while Christianity (life in Christ) is spelled DONE. What do you spend your time doing in order to earn God’s approval?

Today’s quote comes from an Elyse Fitzpatrick book I’ve been reading Comforts from Romans. Such hard truth to rest in as we persevere and live with joy this Christian life.

“Will you rest in the righteousness of God bestowed on you simply because you believe, or will you determine to try harder so that you can approve of yourself and earn God’s favor?”

“Return O my soul to your rest, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.”
Psalm 116.7


W&BT #1: Name Above All Names (week 6)

posted in: Books, Women & Books Together | 0

This was another impactful chapter from Begg and Ferguson’s book Name Above All Names.  I have learned that what I am experiencing in life helps determine how I will read a book – this one is no diferent.  Here are some highlights from the “Suffering Servant” chapter:

1.  Isaiah 53: “He carried our sorows” – Sin plays a harsh role in this world.  Our sorrows are born from the sin in this world.  But, we don’t need to carry them all by ourselves.  We have communities: friends, blog readers (y’all), pastors, family members (some), but most of all we have a willing Jesus who already has born all of our sorrows and will continue to do so until He returns – (then we won’t have any because we’ll be perfect) – as He intercedes for us next to the throne of the Father.  This is such a reassuring thought!

2.  “How is it possible for the purpose of God to be at the heart of all this?  How can Isaiah say – however reverently – that God is in control of it all, that it “was the will of the Lord to crush Him” (pg 140).  This is an important doctrinal lesson to know and believe. If you can’t believe this fact – that God the Father was in charge of the darkest moment of history – then why would you believe that God is in charge of the darkest moments of your life?

3.  “Our Lord’s outward posture here is expressive of the passion within” (pg 144).  Though this quote is not talking about musical worship – I think the same principle applies.  If we are passionate about God within – won’t we come to worship and participate in worship in an outward manner?  That may mean different things like singing with a smile on our faces – singing loudly and expressively.  It may mean getting on our knees or lifting our hands as far they can go and not caring about who sees (and also not being distracted by those who choose to worship in this manner).  It may mean lifting our hands in prayer giving up our private worship to the God who sees.  It will look different for different people – but we are all worshipers.

4.  “All three persons would always be involved in everything God was doing.  The Father would plan salvation, the Son would come to procure it, and the Spirit would be sent to apply it” (pg 144).  Another important doctrine is the one of the Trinity.  We can’t forget one of the persons of the Trinity in the work of salvation.  I’ve learned a lot of this from Dr. Bruce Ware, a professor at SBTS, a gentle, humble, and brilliant father, husband, professor, and author.  Our prayer life will change when we learn and love this doctrine.  Our prayers of thanksgiving will change when we know and live this doctrine.  Our corporate will worship will change when we see the magnificence of all the persons of the Trinity.

5.  “My soul is overwhelmed” (pg 146).  Jesus was a vulnerable Savior.  He didn’t hide His true feelings.  He was real with the disciples at the hardest moment of His life (up to this point).  He wasn’t pithy or unreal with His disciples.  He said He was overwhelmed.  He ultimately knows that it is the will of His Father to crush Him – but He doesn’t hide His emotions (real, true, honest, not sinful) from those around Him.  This is part of what makes Him the perfect Suffering Servant.

6.  “It is this theology of the cross that we find here.  God grant that in seeing Christ as the Suffering Servant we will be done once and for all with the superficial triumphalism that sadly emanates from too many Christian organizations and churches” (pg 155).  How are you real and vulnerable with those in your church?  How do you show compassion and true life with those in your church?  Does everyone think you have it all together?  I hope not.  Because we are all sinners and have damaged lives but who are greatly redeemed by a compassioned Savior.  Let us not diminish the work of Christ on the cross by having others think we have it all together.

Join me next week as we finish up the book!  It’s been a great one for me!

One Sobering Thought in Praying for Our Son

posted in: mothering, parenting, writing | 0

I’m in the middle of a prayer-writing project in Ephesians.  Will hopfeully get it off to my editor by the time I find out if the next baby we have will be a boy or a girl.  Exciting times.

But, also, this has proved to be a very sobering time for me.  Much of Ephesians is about the dichotomy between life and death, between darkness and light, the difference between believers and unbelievers, adopted son and daughters or forever separated.

As I’ve been praying these for E – I know he is a believer so they are easier to pray with assurance that these verses of new life apply to him.  As I pray for little e, I do not have that same assurance.

Mister and I can pray for our little e.  We can train him up.  We can desire that he be saved.  But, that is all we can do.  The saving comes to God.  I don’t know for sure that God called and adopted our little boy before the foundations of the world.  All I can do is wait and see – and live with the knowledge that all God does is good and for His own glory and live my life in such a way that it would point our son to Christ.

The proverbs are sayings of wisdom not necessarily to be taken as divine promises.  And how many people do you know have sons and daughters they have raised in The Lord but they reject Christ.  And how many spouses pray for their entire lives for their husbands or wives to come to know Christ, but they never do.

God is our eternal Father and sent Jesus to save some.  There will be some in hell.  I can pray with all my might  that our little boy will be one of the elect, chosen in Christ – but God is the knower of all things.

I will pray and live to that end.

Seeing Ourselves in the Face of Kermit Gosnell

posted in: ethics, World Events | 2

Yesterday, my husband, son, and I had the pleasure of seeing our next child on a television screen (an ultrasound machine).  Waving arms, moving head, kicking feet, beating heart.  These things told us this little baby was alive and well.  But, we also know that this little baby is a gift of God and life is precious.  There is no way that we would ever intentionally hurt this baby.

The reports of Gosnell, the abortion doctor in Pennsylvania, doesn’t seem to have the same regard for the human life.  I’ll spare you on the details, but they are gruesome and horrendous.  If you haven’t read any of the reports, trust me on that one.  I’ve read half an article and my husband stopped me this morning, “why are you reading this” – tears flowed as I started talking about it, wondering how anyone could do this to helpless babies or women.

But, I’m not here to point fingers at Gosnell.  He has done wrong.  He will either trust the Gospel on this earth or face the judgment and wrath of God in the next life.  That is for certain.  The wrath of God goes out to those who aren’t under the salvation of Jesus Christ.

However, we are in the same boat.  So many times we can cry over the sin of Gosnell or point fingers or call him a sinner, but how often do we look at ourselves and say the same thing.  The sin that we have committed and will commit is also under the need of the blood of Christ.  Just this week let me tell you the sins that I’ve committed: anger, pride, contempt, argumentativeness, the “silent treatment”, impatience, idolatry, gluttony, and probably many more.  Why aren’t I weeping over my sing –  more often then not I justify it?  Do I really think that those sins are also in need of repentance and the gospel?

So before we go pointing fingers at the hideous, inhumane actions of Gosnell, let us also remember the truth of Romans when Paul says:

“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)

And let us also remember our Hope:

“And are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 3:24)