Friday, October 3, 2008

More Thoughts From the Tea Table

Oh, it's a lovely fall afternoon in North Carolina. The sunshine is just pourin' in and it's breezy and crisp; cool and refreshing. I'm eating an apple while I write this (the perfect fall fruit). It's Monday...we just came out of the Lord's day! It's the perfect afternoon to talk about contentment...because hey, it's not hard to be content right now!

I loved Lily's comment on the post she did a couple days ago and I wanted to bring some "more thoughts from the tea table" on that:

Here's the thing: the unbelief IS still there. And to me it's overwhelming that even though our hearts are not perfect the Lord gives us the ability (all by His grace) to be content. Even though our hearts are doubting the Lord is abundantly merciful. He continually sanctifies us and makes us more and more "perfect and complete; lacking in nothing." He will produce in us this rare jewel.

I know you guys knew this had to tie into a sermon somewhere, right? Of course it did. HEllo! Who's writin' this post anyway? :) On Sunday morning our sermon was from Luke 8:22-25 where Christ is sleeping in the boat and a storm comes and the disciples cry out. It was Christ's idea to go across the sea. (read the passage) It's totally His idea. Do you think that He didn't know that there was gonna be a storm? No way! The Lord of heaven and earth was completely aware. But this is the point: He doesn't take us around the storms, He takes us right through them...all the way to the other side! But He promises us that He will be there with us all the way. He "will never leave us nor forsake us." He says in John 14, "Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give. In the world you will have tribulation but take courage, I have overcome the world." He perfects us through the storms...all the way!

And so, the Lord is gracious to not just hand us rare jewels but to work them in us. "Count it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have it's perfect result that you may be perfect and complete; lacking in nothing." So we can be content in the trials because we know that the Lord is purging our hearts of unbelief; causin' us to be more and more like His Son; and we know that the Lord's with us -- that all His ways are good -- that He does all things for the good of His godly ones.

Now there's a reason to be a contented and joyful people -- because Heaven's King has looked upon our lowly, wretched state and said, "I love them! They will be mine and I will never leave them. I have already been through all these trials for their sakes and I am able to 'sympathize with their weaknesses' and 'come to the aid of those who are being tempted.'" What a gracious Father. So, we can lay all our burdens at His feet and know that He will do all things well!

And I didn't even talk about expectations. sigh* That can be a different post though...since this is more than an epistle :) I hope you're all havin' a great day!

For the King and the Kingdom,


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