Thursday, July 10, 2014

When disaster strikes, conclusion

All this week we have focused on John 11. What lessons have we learned?
We've learned that our prayer life must be a priority; we must personally know Jesus, the One to Whom we pray; it's perfectly OK to show our emotions; and sometimes we just have to wait, or ride it out.

The final lesson for us is that God changes lives through crisis. Sometimes it is the life of the one going through the crisis that is changed. Other times it is the lives of those around a suffering person. Most of the time it is both.

Just think -- how many lives were changed in the story of Lazarus? Well, Lazarus definitely was never the same again! Think of the stories that he could tell.
Mary and Martha, his sisters were changed, too. They had a new, deeper faith and love for Jesus, and probably had a brand new appreciation for life, don't you think?
And then the Jews that saw the whole thing. Some of them had changed hearts, and a new faith.

It is sad that it often takes a disaster, but we can thank God that through a crisis He can turn the lost into saved children of God. He can melt hardened hearts. He can make the bitter heart into a loving one. He can take orphans and turn them into children of the King.

Those of us who are Christians and have gone through a disaster in our life, we know what this is all about. We can say today, "I'm not the same person that I was before that crisis cam into my life." God has shaped us and molded us into who we are today, and sometimes does it through crisis.

If we are Christians and have not had any "great disasters" . . . well, I don't want to be the bearer of bad tidings, but at some point we will probably face a time of crisis and testing. We must keep these lessons close to our hearts so that we will be prepared (as much as we can be) in a time of crisis.

One last scripture reference today:

                           Jesus said “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes
                           in me will live even though he dies. And whoever lives and believes
                           in me will never die. Do you believe this?”  (John 11:25-26)

Do we?
Are we living our lives reflecting our hope in the risen Lord?

If Jesus is not the Lord of your life, he can be. The Bible says we must:
Believe in Jesus as the Son of God.
Repent of our sins and confess Jesus as Lord.
Be immersed into Christ for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Arise and live for him each and every day, whether in the midst of crisis and disaster, or in the peaceful vale.


Belinda said...

I'm reminded of the time I spent caring for my mother while she battled cancer. In the end days, I fretted and fussed about how in the world we would take care of her when she got so bad that she needed constant care. None of her children could afford to pay for nursing care or the nursing home for that matter. And we'd promised to keep her out of the nursing home if at all possible. It seemed like disaster was imminent.

How could we doubt God had a plan? Up until a week before she passed, she was able to live alone. And that week was undoubtedly her last. We never had to worry about what to do or where to take her. God took care of it all and we worried for nothing.

And hat time caring for her, prepared my heart for the time when my husband had to take a more active role in his parent's care. Now I don't blink an eye if he has to run to their home at a moment's notice. I understand. I understand his burden and know as his help meet that I must do what I can to comfort and support him.

God had a plan. I'm blessed to have been shown that plan. Sometimes we never know what it is and we just have to accept it. But we know He. Is. In. Control.

Ramblingon said...

That applies completely to me and my son. He has been through two deadly diseases and their surgeries and I was there with him every day of the long long recovery and infections brought about in the hospital. He and I lived together here at my home more than he lived at his place. But now, he is well.

I have acknowledged before the Lord each day how grateful I am to Him. I ask for mercy for myself and my son but I acknowledge NOW that I cannot direct what form that mercy will be. I also have learned that HIS will be done, not MY will. I have that down pat.

I am sure in the knowledge that the Holy Spirit strengthens my boy and me to go through these hard challenges. We depend on Him. He knows it and so we are upheld and made stronger enough to endure. My son said "I know where I am going" and I feel the same when He comes to meet us.