Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Discipline of Difficulty

I am feeling, after reading so many of your blogs that I am a shallow thinker - some of your insights and studies of the Word make me feel like a real slacker.

So many difficult things have been shared in cyberspace these past few weeks, and we've prayed and seen great things happen. We've also seen things that are still very difficult that are happening and don't seem to be "resolved."

I am always amazed at how God has writers put things in devotional books or other literature that is to be read on a certain day. He knows just what we're going to need on a certain day in history and that we're going to read it! He is an awesome God.

That said, I'm going to quote from Oswald Chambers verbatim today - even the title.

John 16:33 - "In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."

"An average view of the Christian life is that it means deliverance from trouble. It is deliverance in (italics mine) trouble, which is very difficult. 'He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High . . . there shall no evil befall thee' - no plague can come nigh the place where you are at one with God.

If you are a child of God, there certaily will be troubles to meet, but Jesus says do not be surprised when they come. 'In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world, there is nothing for you to fear.' ... God does not give us overcoming life: He gives us life as we overcome. The strain is the strength. If there is no strain, there is no strength. Are you asking God to give you life and liberty and joy? He cannot, unless you will accept the strain. Immediately you face the strain, you will get the strength. Overcome your own timidity and take the step, and God will give you to eat of the tree of life and you will get nourishment. If you spend yourself out physically, you become exhausted; but spend yourself spiritually, and you get more strength. God never gives strength for tomorrow, or for the next hour, but only for the strain of the minute.

The temptation is to face difficulties from a commonsense standpoint. The saint is hilarious when he is crushed with difficulties because the thing is so ludicrously impossible to anyone but God."



Maggie Ann said...

Hi Dawn, that is a good post...full of truths. ~~I loved your comment to me about Beany Malone...and am VERY impressed that you met her neice, and had supper in Lenora's home. I've a terrrible short term memory at times. Those books are such gems...they capture life and we can identify with so much of Beany's life. didn't she marry Carl the boy next door? I have looked for those online but only found a couple and they were a little pricey, but you make me want to start hunting them again. I've got to say I only have 1 in my bookcase! so there is an online 'Beany's Club'? I would have never dreamed it. Hope you've had a good day. I'm off to make a sheet of bookmarkers just to create something pretty. Besides, if I don't procrastinate, maybe I'll get some ahead for gifts or our upcoming school 'garage' sale. What are some of your favorite authors?

Sherry said...

I really like Oswald Chambers, he has such a great insight.

MugwumpMom said...

Is that My Utmost for His Highest? I read that every day for 2 years..put it aside this year to read Streams in the Desert as my daily devotional read instead, but definitely prefer Utmost. Am going back to it come January.
Great post...and you ain't shallow!!!! No way!

Dawn said...

Yes, My Utmost for His HIghest. I should have included that detail!

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

great insights - I love Oswald Chambers too. I read it as my daly devotional one year in my late teens.

Praying for your Prodigal said...

Dawn--God has used you today--to bless our hearts! Thanks for being such a willing servant! My post today is similar in nature--it's about Perspective. We can see the world through our eyes...or we can change our focus and view the world (and it's troubles) through the eyes of God!

thanks for the blessing!


Brenda said...

You, shallow? No way! I feel the same way, though. So many of the blogs I read are so well written that it puts me to shame. God uses us all in different ways.
I also like My Utmost for His Highest. I don't have the book, but I have the devotional website bookmarked.