Thursday, April 23, 2009

It Is Well With My Soul

When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Refrain:
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life,
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But Lord, 'tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul.

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

Horatio Spafford

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Sifting of Faith

Luke 22:31,32: 31
"Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you (all) like wheat; 32but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers."


Whether it be Peter, Job (Job 1:12, 2:6), the Apostles (John 17:6-19), or all disciples of Christ (John 17:20-26; Phil 1:29), Satan has asked to sift us like wheat. As on Good Friday, this should be a sobering thought. Satan has a lot of power in this world. Jesus calls him the "prince" or "ruler of this world" (John 16:11), and Paul calls him the "god of this age" (2 Corinthians 4:4) and the "ruler of the authority of the air" (Ephesians 2:2). He blinds the minds of unbelievers (2 Corinthians 4:4) and holds them in his snare until God releases them through the gospel (2 Timothy 2:25,26). He can take life, as with Job's children; ruin health, as with Job's body; torment with demons (Luke 11:18); provoke evil deeds (Luke 22:3); and cause natural disasters (Job 1:19).

I tend to see the world in black and white - God is good therefore His work is good; Satan is evil therefore his work is evil. Now there may be some argument as to the source of evil or "bad things" that happen in one's life. It is true that God allows trial and temptation into our lives (either by His hand or through His hand); however, it is also true that God Himself has not created evil nor does God tempt as stated in James 1:13. In the Greek, there are different words to describe trials:

Trials: 1) [peirasmos] meant to fail, usually from Satan
2) [dokimion] reveals value, test from God
(we don't get to know which type of trial happens when)

And again in referencing Job chapters 1 and 2, when God allows trial and temptation it is Satan that does the work [drops the mic].


The sweet part of this, as also with Good Friday, is that Christ is Victor!

“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son” (Col. 1:13).

“Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is
in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

“But you, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my
head” (Psalm 3:3).

SIDE NOTE: What is more, unlike other faiths, we have a risen Lord that is ALIVE!
Abraham and Moses - dead, Buddah - dead, Muhamid - dead,
Jesus - alive; which gives us living hope!


Our faith will be tested, although; as long as you cleave to Christ, faith will not fail. Yes, as followers of Christ we are to expect to be "sifted like wheat".
To me this means sin is demonic and (in the words of John Piper), "[t]he fact that Satan has such power in the world should give a kind of seriousness to our lives which unbelievers don't have."

This is what i am asking all of us to ponder. How serious do take sin, how serious do you take your life's purpose and (most importantly) how seriously do you take your faith?

“Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).


For a great sermon on this topic check out:
"The Sifting of Simon Peter" by John Piper

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Easter

The Easter Bunny comes around only once a year, "But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
Romans 5:8.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Your Daughter

Praise God when this flesh and heart shall fail,
for then i will be in Thy presence,
i will dance painless and free,
all tears wiped away by Thy mighty hand.
i long to dwell in the shelter of Your wings,
my room will be radiant for sure,
yet at Your feet is where i prefer.
to be held in Your arms,
to soak in Your presence,
to swim in Your love,
to drown in Your voice,
to be Your daughter,
separated by nothing,
for all eternity.


© Jennifer Lynn - 2009

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Worth Again



i am on the edge again,

He is asking me to jump again,
i trust i will land in His hands again,
but what will pierce me on the way down?

i don't know where to start again,
squeezing rubbish out my heart again,
i know this is going to hurt again,
but nothing like it was before.

Satan is back again,
telling me lies again,
wanting my life again,
how arrogant to think my God would let me go.

“Though my mother and father forsake me,
the LORD will receive me."

yes, He rose again,

picks me up again,
makes me clean again,
He takes me by the hand and leads me on.




© Jennifer Lynn - 2010

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Doubting Thomas

1 Peter 1:8-9:

8and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,

9obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.


Only a few people had the privilege of meeting Jesus while He was on earth (John 20:29).

Can you imagine meeting Jesus face to face and not recognizing Him as God Eternal? Yet, this is exactly what happened throughout His entire earthly ministry and especially during the week preceding His death.

After Easter and His Resurrection, Jesus appears to Thomas and "Blessed are they who have not seen and yet have believed" (John 20:29)

As we approach the Easter season, I am haunted by the realization I would have done the same. To think otherwise is to think oneself better than one of the Apostles.

Praise God that He loved us before we Loved Him. (Romans 5:8)