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“Priorities and Contentments”

April 24, 2009

It’s a question that I’ve thought on over the past year or so and involves breaking points. “At what point would we find ourselves willing to compromise our faith in exchange for a more tolerable situation in the arena of atoms?” For the saints, we must ensure that the issue is settled in our hearts and that nothing would cause us to consider the path of compromise. I remember testimonies of families in communist countries whose children were taken by the state because they refused to renounce their faith. Most of us in the western world cannot even fathom such a trial; let alone find ourselves being required to make such a decision. None of us could meet such a challenge in our own strength. This should cause us to examine our relationship with Jesus, search our hearts for any contrary alliances, and determine to maintain our testimony; regardless of the fallout in the temporal realm.

The topic of this post isn’t as extreme as the above paragraph, but does call us to consider the very real possibility that our present situation in life can change dramatically with very little warning.

Lean times may well be right around the corner for this family. I’ve known for years that such a time was approaching but have been unable to discuss it much because everyone in my household is trusting in the chariots of Egypt. As a household, our expenses have gone up on a number of fronts; the latest being a substantial rise in property taxes. This is further complicated by the coming layoff that will last for at least nine weeks. And since the company that I work for is a supplier to General Motors, once that particular institution meets its demise, I will join the ranks of the unemployed.  (Unemployment is high in this area) So Wednesday morning, I took some precautionary measures as to weather the storm that’s quickly approaching. I ordered a boatload of tracts to keep from running out during the drought. The GTS order is in and one more to Lifegate has yet to be placed. A nine week layoff will certainly yield a host of opportunities to disperse them amongst those travelling through the valley of decisions.

I’m not fearful of the future; even if we should lose everything in the physical world. (We really can’t take it with us)  I continuously pray “Lord; please do whatever it takes to bring my household to Jesus” and it may well be that a removal of trappings  is necessary to cause them to consider spiritual matters.  Without a doubt, eternal matters (souls) supercede temporal matters (shelter) A persons name being recorded in the book of life is far more important than having it it appear on a title.  I know that this writing may sound uncaring and lacking in natural affection to some. Yet I have confidence in Jesus and believe the words found in Matthew 6:19-34. (Not to mention Psalm 37:25) My foremost desire, at the end of April of 2009 is the furtherance of the kingdom of God; both at home and in the ambience. As a result, I view a potentially disasterous layoff as a blessing and the potential for dramatic changes to be forced upon this family in the physical realm as an opportunity for them to see what truly matters and what is certain to eventually pass away.

I Timothy 6:5-8 “Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
But godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carrynothing out.
And having food and rainment let us be therewith content.”

I’m finding myself increasingly thinking in ways that are contrary to many in the household of faith. We may often hear bold proclamations of trusting in the Lord, but the actions of many reveal a trusting in the establishments of physical realm. Or the unspoken idea that the Creator of the universe requires the institutions of this world to sustain us and keep his plan going. (This is highlighted by our pastor suggesting that America cannot  be under judgment because most of the worlds evangelism comes from here.) Oftentimes the Lord utilizes the structures of this world to sustain us, such as providing employment or granting favor with those in our ambience. But he can also sustain us in an environment that contains none of the worlds mechanisms for continuance. And as for evangelism, folks are coming to Jesus in places like Saudi Arabia; oftentimes through dreams. (I would recommend reading Brother Andrews book “Secret believers”)

I Peter 1:7-9 “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.”

When things are going smooth and each day resembles the one previous to it, folks become complacent and tend to neglect spiritual considerations. (The rich man in Luke 16:19-31 didn’t have a care in the world and fared sumptuously; right up to his final moment). But turmoil and failings in the arena of atoms cause reflection and bring forth the realization that this world is very temporal. The passage from I Peter talks about the trial of our faith being greater than gold which is certain to pass away. Anything that causes us to be closer to Jesus and to let go of the matrix must be considered a positive thing. This isn’t a popular idea and, without a doubt, the land is filled with teachers who will tell us how to acquire stuff and live our best life now. But when we truly draw in close to the Lord Jesus, all of the temporal things that we once “couldn’t live without” simply fall to the ground.

All of us, to one degree or another, love our station in this world more than we would like to admit. The extent of this will always reveal itself in our conversation; what we decide to talk about when the floor is ours and how we spend our time when nobody else is looking. It will reveal what we love and where we are truly placing our confidence. We must arrive at the understanding in our heart of hearts that the eternal is far more significant than any temporal situation and that Gods word is more real than the complex structures of atoms and molecules around us that are destined to be burned. I have to be running for now as a lot is on the agenda for today, but I pray that we would all seriously examine where our confidence lies. Times of trying; where everything seems to be on the brink of collapse, can reveal areas that we need to grow and cause us to come back to our first love.

Please check out the post on Heaven Awaits featuring video footage of the Stephensville Texas UFO ordeal. These are indeed very unusual times and as the end of the age draws ever closer, we can expect the volume of unexplainable phenomenon to increase. Here’s the link:

SNAKE MOVEMENTS OF UFO

In addition to many thought provoking posts, Mariannes site has a plethura of information in the pages section. If only I had a week or two (or perhaps a year. lol) to devote to reading through such compilations of material. I wish to all, a blessed day in Jesus.

Romans 8:35-39 “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter.
Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
I Peter 1:23-25 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.
For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away.
But the word of the Lord endureth forever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.”
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13 comments

  1. ‘travelling through the valley of decisions’ LOVE that phrase! depicts a certain amount of accountability to Christ, yet having the freedom to choose.

    I am in the valley with you…. cindy


  2. Wow, what a post, staring financial ruin in the face and never flinching. This life is but a small obstacle that we step over once and then are past it forever. Praise God. Keep fighting the good fight.


  3. Hi Timbob,

    We too, in our family are facing some major financial problems right now. My husband’s business, which was once very lucrative has really gone down the tubes in the past 6 months. Even though he has done a lot of marketing to drum up business, we’ve seen very little fruit from the effort. We’ve been praying everyday for the Lord’s direction, and I believe He will take care of us. He never promised to supply our “wants”, but I believe He has promised to give us what we need. (Phil. 4:19)I have often seen God come through on things, which in our way of thinking would be “at the last minute.” Such was the case for us about 15 years ago when my husband was unemployed for 14 months. We were days away from foreclosure on our house, and at that time my husband was able to start work again, and the VA was able to step in and help us with our mortgage. We may be in a situation like that again soon, but no matter what happens, I want to continue serving Him faithfully. We have folks in our church that are struggling financially too and with sickness. I believe the devil is doing everything in his power to discourage God’s people and make them lose their focus. May God help us to walk in trust.

    I have wondered too, as this nation becomes increasingly more hostile toward Christianity, just what we will have to face. It’s very possible that my husband could go to jail sometime if somebody happens to come by that doesn’t like what he is preaching. However, I don’t believe God wants us to be fretful and full of worry about the future. No matter what, the future is bright for God’s people, because our hope is beyond this world.

    1Pe 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
    1Pe 1:4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,

    I will continue to pray for you and your family.

    God’s richest blessings,
    Carol


  4. Hi Cindy. It is indeed a very short time here, and yet the decisions made here have eternal implications. Sadly, there are a number of people in my neck of the woods who are “almost persuaded” to come to Jesus but, just keep holding out. Thanks so much for dropping by.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  5. Hi M Patterson. The Lords peaace is so profoundly saturating that it overcomes the anxieties. I must confess that last night while working, I caught myself wondering about the kids and what they may have to face in the times ahead. Yet the Lord is able to sustain them as well. (Psalm 37:25 is so awesome)

    Thanks for droping by. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  6. Hi carol. Amen to “no matter what happens, I want to continue serving him faithfully.” These are the times when our light shines brighter than ever. When those around us are in disarray and we are at peace, some are certain to wonder what sustains us. divine appointments await.

    When this unsettled picture took a leap forward, my wife didn’t quite know how to react. I tend to talk much about the end times and she doesn’t like to hear about such things. Like so many, she’s clinging to the chariots of Egypt. So when things appear to validate what I’ve been talking about, it almost ovrwhelms her. But if the conclusion of the matter is souls coming to Jesus, it’s worth every twist and turn.

    Thanks for taking time to comment. Blessings always in Jesus name.


  7. Timbob, your story impacted me more than I originally thought… yours combined with some others inspired my last post. I think we all have things to learn from each other, and you have taught me much about authenticity. I want to say thank you for sharing your life so openly here. You are certainly a kind and gentle soul. cindy


  8. Hi Timbob.

    Thanks for that referral to the UFO. I am still wondering about it myself. You are in my prayers that you will be protected somehow, in case of layoff.

    You should be able to get regular unemployment insurance for awhile to help you. They also have “emergency benefits” that just keep getting extended. Once you are in the computer, you just keep filing.


  9. I won’t get into the way things are going in our house, but is has become challenging. Reading these comments and this post reminds me again, as many things have lately, that God is still sovereign and ‘orchestrating’ the affairs of men and nations according to the pleasure of His will and for the sake of His name.

    It is also clear that we have an opportunity to hold each other up in prayer, that how we believers go through things will be such a frand testimony that many will notice and consider Christ.


  10. Last Trumpet is out. 🙂


  11. Hi Cindy. Thanks so much for stopping by. Sorry for being late in getting beck here. It’s a blessing to be in contact with the many saints in this venue.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  12. Hi Marianne. I thought it was important because most christians dont grasp the scope of the last days deceptions. many have a pre-packaged vision of how they believe things will unfold when the reality of it will surely astonish us all.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.


  13. hi Born4Battle. Indeed our Lord is sovereign and sees the end from the beginning. When we begin to understand the awesomeness of our eternal Creator, we understand that the appearances in this world are irrelevant. Jesus Christ is still Lord and every knee shall bow. Thanks for taking time to stop by.

    Blessings in Jesus name.



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