Laymanointing

…. they were unschooled, ordinary men …. they had been with Jesus …. the crippled man healed standing with them – Acts 4:13,14

When we don’t know what to do .. let go, and ‘let God be Lord‘, Hold on to God

an unplanned loss,
an unforseen event.
an unexpected illness,
a sudden relapse,
an unexplainable crisis

… when life throws a curve ball …

…. how did  Job, Habakkuk, Paul respond?
what was their attitude?

What happens, … when our carefully well crafted plans of expected returns & outcomes, … risk managed, insured

… are rudely interrupted … by an unexpected storm, … an unannounced tide,
… when things abruptly turn in a direction we least expect

as we search for the right buttons to press,
… grasping quick exit doors, …
seeking for instant answers … stressed
… a sudden loss of control,

Looking everywhere,
… seeking fast relieve … rest

Is walking by faith … about certainties?  guarantees?
3-step, 5-step quick formulas, … carefully crafted magical prayers,
claiming only one satisfactory answer

… control …. being in control, … taking charge

or
is faith … about trust ?

trusting God for His answer, His way, His time

Believing reliance upon the Lord, … submitting to the Lord,
even through the storm rages relentlessly, .. as we manage the sails, navigating through headwinds, rocks, swirls,

when the way is unfamiliar, … uncertain, … unknown,
… still continue walking His way … His path,

trusting the faithful Lord,
… one step at a time, … one day at a time
resting on His character, His heart for us,
trusting His rescue, His way … in His time.

sometimes He stills the storm,    (Matthew 8, disciples & Jesus in a boat)
… sometimes He takes us through the storm    (Acts 27, Paul on a ship)
and … sometimes one is thrown out of the boat     (Jonah 1)

What .. or .. who .. is our faith & steadfast trust?
Our security?


Hold on, ‘cos there’s a Father of love


Paul was in such a situation,

14 Before very long, a wind of hurricane force, called the Northeaster, swept down from the island. 
15 The ship was caught by the storm

19 On the third day, they threw the ship’s tackle overboard with their own hands. 
20 When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days
and the storm continued raging,
we finally gave up all hope of being saved.

21 After they had gone a long time without food, Paul stood up before them and said:

Men,  …
23 Last night an angel of the God to whom
I belong and whom I serve
stood beside me 
24 and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. ….’
Acts 27:14, 15, 19-21, 23, 24 (NIV)


I can’t even walk, without You holdng my hand


Job,
… the Lord’s testimony of him was
a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil. (Job 1:8, 2:3, 1:1)

Yet, Job experienced a period where

Job 30:15, 16 (HCSB)
15 Terrors are turned loose against me;
they chase my dignity away like the wind,
and my prosperity has passed by like a cloud.

16 Now my life is poured out before my eyes,
and days of suffering have seized me.

20 I cry out to You for help, but You do not answer me;
when I stand up, You merely look at me.

In a tsunami of unforseen troubles, loss, … a perfect storm
… when Job’s world was turned upside down,
what was Job’s attitude?

20 Job stood up and tore his robe in grief.

Then
he shaved his head and

fell to the ground to
worship

21 He said,

… “Praise the name of the Lord!”

22 In all of this, Job did not sin by blaming God.
Job 1:20, 21, 22 (NLT)

Like us, Job grieved through the loss of his family members,
then,

Job worshiped the sovereign Lord God.
He worshiped the Lord for who He is,
in spite of the circumstances around him
— a  sacrifice of praise & thanksgiving from the heart.

Job’s heart and priority was in the God place.

2 Samuel 7:22 (NIV)
How great you are, Sovereign Lord!
There is no one like you,
and there is no God but you …

Psalm 118:1 (HCSB)
Give thanks to the Lord, for
He is good;

His faithful love endures forever.

Psalm 73:23-26 (HCSB)
23 Yet I am always with You;
You hold my right hand.
24 You guide me with Your counsel,
and afterward You will take me up in glory.

25 Who do I have in heaven but You?
And I desire nothing on earth but You.

26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart,
my portion forever.

Sovereign Lord,
Yet, I am always with You;

You hold my right hand
God is the strength of my heart,
my portion forever
His faithful love endures forever

Hebrews 13:7 (NIV)
God has said,

“Never will I leave you;
    never will I forsake you.” …

The Lord says:

Psalm 46:10 (AMP, GW, NASB)
“Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations!
I will be exalted in the earth.”

Let go of your concerns!
Then
you will know that I am God.

I rule the nations.
I rule the earth.

“Cease striving
and know that I am God;

I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

God is our sovereign Lord,
.. let’s let go & commit our way to him, … with His help
let’s worship the Lord, … with His help,
even when we don’t understand what’s happening around us, … silencing our concerns, our urgent needs, … in reverent submission, … offering a true sacrifice of praise

He will be exalted

Through Jesus,
therefore, let us continually offer to God
a sacrifice of praise
—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name.
Hebrews 13:15 (NIV)


When God has another plan


This psalm, Psalm 46, begins with

Psalm 46:1-3 (NIV)
God is our refuge and strength,
    an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore

we will not fear

though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
3 though its waters roar and foam

    and the mountains quake with their surging.

the psalmist reminds us:

Rest in the Lord 
and wait patiently for Him;  …
Psalm 37:7 (NASB)

Job acknowledged God’s sovereignty in his life, as he prayed to his redeemer, and kept on honoring the Lord in walking in His way, …. sustained daily by God’s Word.

Job’s walk & life was consistent,
in sync with his lips
in reverent submission and worship to the Lord
who loves him.

Job 19:25,  23:10-14 (NLT)
19:25 “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, ….

23:10 “But he knows where I am going.
    And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold.

11 For I have stayed on God’s paths;
    I have followed his ways and not turned aside.
12 I have not departed from his commands,
    but have treasured his words more than daily food.

13 But once he has made his decision, who can change his mind?
    Whatever he wants to do, he does.
14 So he will do to me whatever he has planned.
    He controls my destiny.

my refuge, strength, everpresent help
I am always with You;

You hold my right hand
he knows where I am going.

The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.  …
Psalm 138:8 (ESV)


I love the Lord;
He heard my cries,

And pitied every groan;
Long as I live,
when troubles rise,
I’ll hasten to His throne.

I love the Lord; He bowed His ear,
And chased my griefs away;
O let my heart no more despair,
While I have breath to pray!
Isaac Watts


Isaiah encourages us:

If you are walking in darkness,
    without a ray of light,

trust in the Lord
    and rely on your God.
Isaiah 50:10 (NLT)

In Habakkuk, the prophet grappled and wrestled with God’s ways.  He questioned God’s plan,
… and in the process,  Habakkuk received a fresh revelation of who God really is.

Habakkuk 2:20 (AMP),  3:2, 3, 6 (NIV)
2:20 “But the Lord is in His holy temple.
Let all the earth hush
and be silent before Him.”

3:2 Lord, I have heard of your fame;
    I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord.

3  … His glory covered the heavens
    and his praise filled the earth.

He stood, and shook the earth;
    he looked, and made the nations tremble.
The ancient mountains crumbled

Habakkuk had heard of what God had done,
now, he personally   saw,   experienced the Lord for who He really is (see Habakkuk 3),
awesome, sovereign, all powerful, in control of everything.
Therefore, … Habakkuk acknowledged in humble submission,

Habakkuk 3:17-19 (NIV)
17 Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails

    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen

    and no cattle in the stalls,

from what outwardly his eyes saw,
to the eyes of faith … onto the sovereign Lord

18 yet

I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful
in God my Savior
.

19 The Sovereign Lord
is
my strength
;

    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.

no matter whatever comes,
The Sovereign Lord is my strength

I will rejoice
in the Lord,

    I will be joyful
in God my Savior.

.. But the righteous will live by his faith
Habakkuk 2:4 (NASB)


“In whichever way God works and however God answers us, we should always remember
the sovereignty of God.  ..

We can’t twist God’s arm to try and get Him to do something we want Him to do. ..

We need to understand that in God’s sovereignty,
He is absolutely righteous.  He is absolutely just. ”
Joy Dawson

Towards the the end of his life, Moses shared his experience of walking with the Lord:

I will proclaim the name of the Lord.
    Oh, praise the greatness of our God!

He is the Rock,
his works are perfect,

and all his ways are just.

A faithful God

who does no wrong,
upright and just is he.
Deuteronomy 32:3, 4 (NIV)


In his second letter to Corinth, Paul shared his challenges,

We are hard-pressed on every side,
yet not crushed; 

we are perplexed,
but not in despair; 

persecuted,
but not forsaken;

struck down,
but not destroyed
2 Corinthians 4:8 (NKJV)

We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters,
about the trouble
we went through in the province of Asia.

We were crushed and overwhelmed
beyond our ability to endure,
and we thought we would never live through it.

In fact, we expected to die.

But as a result,
we stopped relying on ourselves
and learned to rely only on God,

who raises the dead. 

10 And he did rescue us from mortal danger,
and he will rescue us again.
We have placed our confidence in him,
and he will continue to rescue us.
 

11 And you are helping us by praying for us.

Then many people will give thanks
because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety.

2 Corinthians 1:8-10 (NLT)

God who raises the dead,
He did rescue us, … He will rescue us again,
.. he will continue to rescue us

we stopped relying on ourselves
and learned to rely only on God

Although Paul did not mention in detail what he faced in the above-mentioned verses,
… we know that in his life Paul almost was killed in a storm (Acts 27:20), shipwrecked three times, severely whipped, beaten & stoned, faced various perils, experienced times of hunger & thirst (2 Corinthians 11:24-27), and instance of sickness (Galatians 4:13), imprisonment.

At the end of second letter to Corinth, Paul wrote of his prayer experience :

2 Corinthians 12:8-10 (NIV)
Three times I pleaded with the Lord
to take it away from me.
 

But he said to me, 

“My grace
is sufficient for you,
for
my power
is made perfect in weakness
.” 

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses,
so that Christ’s power
may rest on me
.
 

10 That is why, for Christ’s sake,
I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.

For when I am weak,
then I am strong.

God gave Paul and us sufficient grace in our utter weakness to be strong,
we stop relying on ourselves and 

learn to
rely only   on God

The Sovereign Lord is my strength


Hear my cry, O God;
Attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You,

When my heart is overwhelmed;
Lead me to the rock
that is higher than I.

For You have been a shelter for me,
A strong tower from the enemy.
I will abide in Your tabernacle forever;
I will trust in the shelter of Your wings.
Psalm 61:1-4 (NKJV)


when I don’t know what to do, .. I lift my hands
when I don’t know what to say, .. I’ll speak your praise
when I don’t know where to go, .. I’ll run to your throne
when I don’t know what to think, .. I’ll stand on your truth

Lord I surrender to your strong and faithful hand
In everything I will give thanks to you
I’ll just trust your perfect plan

Lord I’ll surrender, though I’ll never understand
All the mysteries around me,
I’ll just trust your perfect plan

As I bow my knee, send your perfect peace, Lord
as I lift my hands, let your healing come
Tommy Walker

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing,
18 in everything give thanks;
for
this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV)


it’s not over, … when God is in it
when God is in it, … there is no limit


He is the Great I am

The great I am
The mountains shake before you
the demons run in fear

At the mention of the name king of majesty
There is no power in hell
Or any who can stand
Before the power and the presence of
the great I am

God almighty, the great I am
— Jared Anderson


Jesus,  something special , supernatural,
about your name
Jesus, something happens,
when I mention your name
Jesus, there is power in your name
— Kurt Carr


Every praise


Further Examples in scripture:

Read the lives of David and Joseph, through their unexpected, unjust challenges … life-threatening situations, … moral temptations, …  and magnificent triumphs, … trusting the Lord, walking in His Word daily, walking under His favor, … they saw God’s hand at work through the good, the tough and the ugly.

David’s honest prayers, sincere cries and exuberant worship & thanksgiving are recorded in the Psalms, as he faced what life threw at him.

I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
    even at night my heart instructs me.
8 I keep my eyes always on the Lord.
    With him at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.

Psalms 16:7, 8 (NIV)

The Bible is about … real people … with real challenges, struggles
… with a REAL GOD who really loves each one dearly and power to help.  🙂

Imperfect situations, circumstances, … imperfect families, people,  boss, boss’ wife 🙂
…. perfect God.

Isaiah 43:1-3 (NIV)
But now, this is what the Lord says—

    he who created you, Jacob,
    he who formed you, Israel:

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have summoned you by name; you are mine.

When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.

For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; …

In Daniel 3, when Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were asked to choose between allegiance to God … or an idol image king Nebuchanezzar had set up,

Daniel 3:16-18 (NIV)
16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him,
“King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter.
 

17 If we are thrown
into the blazing furnace,

the God we serve is able to deliver us from it,
and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand.
 

18 But even if he does not,
we want you to know, Your Majesty,
that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”

Like Job, … Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego submitted their lives to God.

the God we serve is able to deliver us
They acknowledged God had all power,
they trusted & believed God to rescue them;

But even if he does not,
no matter what happens, … in good times and challenging times,
they will worship the Lord God, … whatever the cost.

Their contemporary, Daniel, faced a similar challenge in Daniel 6.

Psalm 73:25, 26 (HCSB)
25 Who do I have in heaven   but You?
And I desire nothing on earth   but You.

26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart,
my portion forever.

They sought the Giver, … more than His blessings and gifts.
Their hearts were in the God place.

28 And we know that
in all things
God works

for the good      (God’s will – ‘the good’)

of those who love him,
who have been called according to his purpose.
 

29 For those God foreknew
he also predestined
to be conformed to the image of his Son …    (God’s will – to be more like Jesus)
Romans 8:28, 29 (NIV)


I look to you


Further scriptures on praise, worship & thanksgiving:

Psalm 8:1, 2 (NIV)
Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
    in the heavens.

Through the praise of children and infants
    you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
    to silence the foe and the avenger.

 

Psalm 50:23 (NLT)
But giving thanks is a sacrifice
that truly honors me.
If you keep to my path,

I will reveal to you
the salvation of God.

 

2 Chronicles 20:21-23 (NIV)
21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying:

“Give thanks to the Lord,
    for his love endures forever.”

22 As they began to sing and praise,
the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated. 23 The Ammonites and Moabites rose up against the men from Mount Seir to destroy and annihilate them. After they finished slaughtering the men from Seir, they helped to destroy one another.

 

Acts 16:24-26 (NIV)
22 The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. 23 After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully.
24 When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell
and fastened their feet in the stocks.

25 About midnight Paul and Silas
were praying and singing hymns to God,
and the other prisoners were listening to them.
 

26 Suddenly
there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken.
At once
all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.


 

You are God alone
through the good times and bad,
You are on the thone
and You are God alone
—  Billy Foote / Cindy Foote


Further reading:
Four key prayers … while waiting (click here)
Good morning … thank God, its Monday!  (click here)

Encouragement | Healing

by 林弟兄, bro Lim
June 12, 2017
laymanointing.wordpress.com

Copyright © 林弟兄 bro Lim, Laymanointing, 2014-2017 – All Rights Reserved
Creative Commons License

 


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This entry was posted on June 12, 2017 by in Daily Rice, Faith & Prayer, Healing, Ministering Spirit & Truth and tagged , .

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