Photo by Rebekah L. Holt, eQuest Photography
Marching Towards the Mark
"The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord." 1 Corinthians 15:56-58
Everyday, we are challenged to respond with Christ like behavior to experiences that come through the Hand of God. Perhaps our "trial" is the everyday "oatmeal of life"—a monotony of moving from Point A to Point B. Perhaps, our "trial" is a Christian vs. Christian disagreement that divides relationships that once held great promise and exciting warmth. Regardless of our definition of "trial", we find that it is the unexpected, upsetting, challenging experiences we encounter that singe our Christian works, stretch ourfaith and expose our weaknesses.
As humans, we like to handle the cut and dry "dos and don'ts" of Christianity with large mallets andbreak off the big, foreboding chunks of the black, rank sins. And yet, we literally cringe, whine, and cry when arriving as pilgrims to the slow, intricate, meticulous, chiseling work of our Christian character. Such fine tune shaping of our hearts, minds, and characters by our Heavenly Father can be a painful process for us.
How can we humbly obtain victory over every imaginable human response to every imaginable human failing without being indifferent, insincere, or haughtily justified in our own conceits or our own "viewpoint" when God alone can weigh the content of our hearts? Indeed, how do we overcome a sinful response in what God wills for us to do or experience?
These are tough questions to consider and certainly, they strike home to many of the obstacles we are experiencing here and now. While the devil may strive to keep us wallowing in our weaknesses, the King of Kings offers us hope and victory if we but abide and live in Him and His word.
Photo by Mary Holt
Is There a Blessing in Being Alone?
By Rebekah L. Holt
Written in 2005
"So come out from among [unbelievers], and separate (sever) yourselves from them, says the Lord, and touch not [any] unclean thing; then I will receive you kindly and treat you with favor, and I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty." 2 Corinthians 6:17 & 18 AMP
Is there a blessing in being alone? In our Christian walk, we often find ourselves struggling with this issue of loneliness, in a spiritual and often, a physical sense. We are a peculiar people that basically stick out as the world's sore thumb. Ignored, scorned and rejected. Why? Well—we home school... home church... believe in courtship...rely on God to plan our life...we want to be homemakers...we want a wife to stay at home... we let God plan our family size and timing (The World and sometimes, Christians think, "You're CRAZY!"). Thus, we find ourselves, by ourselves even in "Christian" circles, sometimes feebly and questioningly standing our ground. It takes a true commitment and a constant renewal of our minds in Christ to see beyond our present circumstances to perceive the blessings of solitude.
Looking at God's Word, we can see that God used solitude as a number one element of reaching the devote men and women of the Bible in a special, personal way.
Waiting on the Lord
Written in 2005
It is morning! Popping out of bed, I grabbed the binoculars, opened the blinds to look out on our front pasture. In disgust and disappointment, I turned away saying, "Are those two mares ever going to foal? I'm sick of waiting."
Spring every year brings for me an excitement with great expectations of the first foal's arrival at our family's pony farm. As the manager, I have the responsibility to care for our herd. Though I enjoy watching, checking, and waiting on our little mares, after a while, the splendor of a foal is soon swallowed up by getting tired of waiting. It was not until this year, that I really have had a "spiritual" lesson for this part of my life.
After a week of disappointments of one particular mare fooling my predictions of an early March foal, I began to feel rather silly that I continued to watch and check the mare twice a day. "Surely, you know she's not going to have that foal today or tomorrow," I would tell myself. However, it occurred to me that I must not stop checking the mare. "One day, she's going to be ready and I'll know that I know, but until then, I must continue watching, waiting and checking so I can tell the difference of ready and not ready." It struck me that this is how we are to live our life in serving our Heavenly Father. I had never really considered that a vast part of our Christian walk is spent waiting on the Lord.
In looking up wait in my Bible concordance, I was amazed to find that waiting on the Lord was just a part of the writer's lives. They had to wait too! These particular scriptures stood out to me:
Job 14:14 "...All the days of my warfare and service I will wait, till my change and release shall come."
Micah 7:7 "But as for me, I will look to the Lord and confident in Him I will keep watch; I will wait with hope and expectancy for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me."
Habakkuk 2:3 "For the vision is yet for an appointed time and it hastens to the end [fulfillment]; it will not deceive or disappoint. Though it tarry, wait [earnestly] for it; it will be behindhand on this appointed day."
(Emphasis added. Amplified)
Today we see Christians all around us giving up, panicked and ceasing to really follow Christ. Looking from a distance, we can say, "Oh, if they only waited, the Lord was bringing such and such about." However, when it is our lives, are we willing to wait, what seems forever, for God to advance us from a hard and tiring place? When things are slow or on "pause" can we clearly see that the slow, trying times are part of God's plan for our lives? Just like that mare, my waiting will eventually be rewarded. I will obtain a prize in a beautiful foal (I hope beautiful anyway!). That foal will arrive; it is just not ready to come yet. The Lord will not always have us waiting for a particular something forever, but He may always have us waiting for something in our life. Waiting is just a stepping stone to advance us forward in our Christian walk.
So I encourage you to not give up! Do not grow weary. We cannot see God's infinite and perfect plan, but we can stay in Him, be guided and wait patiently for His blueprint of our life to be fulfilled. But until then, I am going to go check on that mare!
The Rest of the Story...
After 3 weeks of faithful waiting on those two past due mares, Rebekah was blessed with TWO foals born on the same day and on her birthday! Rebekah was so busy watching "Gracie" all throughout the wee hours of morning, she missed "Sister." Sister presented "Hosanna," a beautiful black overo filly that morning. What a birthday surprise! That evening, "Gracie" foaled "Bonita," a dainty little cremello filly. What is extremely incredible is that both fillies were the EXACT colors Rebekah had desired as well...the Lord blessed in a very meaningful and personal way! And to add the cream, another mare, "Lilly" foaled a gorgeous sorrel colt, "Champ" the next day!
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- Is It Enough to Serve?
- Skillful Weaving - A Testimony
- Truth-Straight From the Horse's Mouth
- A Christian's Concoction for Conquering Complaints
- The Bible Stands
- A Christian's Twelve Practical Principles to the Path of Contentment
- Jesus Christ: The Way To Life
- A Woman's Right
- Putting on the Whole Armor of God