Tuesday, August 25, 2015

God is Still on His Throne

In the midst of all of the evil in our world, I find it helpful to remember that God is still on His throne.

My heart has been heavy over the past few months with how rapidly our culture and nation seems to be declining.  With the redefining of marriage and approval of gay marriage, the continued legality of abortion and the recent revelation of the selling of body parts, the discovery of so many respected people involved in affairs and sexual immorality, continued world-wide terrorism and persecution of Christians all so prevalent in the media, it's hard to not get discouraged.

It's not our place to judge - it's God's.  It's not our place to worry - we are to cast our anxieties on God.  It IS our job to pray - Pray that God's will be done. Pray for grace to continue. Pray for salvation of the wicked and/or for their justice. Pray for our leaders to act with wisdom. Pray that God's light would shine in this dark world.

It's also our job to remember that God is still on His throne.  None of this has caught Him by surprise.  He is working all things together for His glory and our good (Romans 8:28).

Read the following passages and be comforted as I have been that God's got this.  He will work all things out in the end, His justice will reign forever!
  • Deuteronomy 4:39 - "Know therefore today, and take it to your heart, that the LORD, He is God in heaven above and on the earth below; there is no other. 
  • 1 Samuel 2:10 - "Those who contend with the LORD will be shattered; Against them He will thunder in the heavens, The LORD will judge the ends of the earth; And He will give strength to His king, And will exalt the horn of His anointed." 
  • Psalms 29:10 - "The LORD sat as King at the flood; Yes, the LORD sits as King forever." 
  • Psalms 135:6 - "Whatever the LORD pleases, He does, In heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deeps." 
  • Isaiah 43:13 - "Even from eternity I am He, And there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it?" 
  • Isaiah 46:10 - "Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, 'My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure';" 
  • Romans 1: 18-32 - "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,7 in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. 24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen. 26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. 28 And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. 29 They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Though they know God's righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them."
  • Ephesians 3:20 - "Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,"

Monday, August 24, 2015

The Ability to Worship

When you have a child with a disability, it is so important, as his mother, that you reflect on his abilities instead of letting his disabilities cloud your view of the child God perfectly formed in your womb.

If you forget to notice the abilities, there aren't many people in the community who will help you to see them.  We live in an insensitive world where most people are quick to ask rude and uncaring questions or make inappropriate and ignorant statements.

When things are really tough, it gets harder to see the abilities because you feel as if you are drowning in your child's disabilities when they are screaming in your face.

Because of his Autism, Josh may not understand another person's perspective, he might get sensory overload from a few minutes in the community, and his motor skills may be a bit awkward, but he has a candid honesty about him and the ability to put himself out there not caring what other people will think.  He also has perfect pitch and loves music.  He loves God and has a personal relationship with him, and although at times when his Autism or Bi-polar overwhelms him making him doubt God's goodness, he always sees the truth that God really does care and gives him the grace to keep on keeping on.

These abilities give Josh one of the most important abilities - the ability to WORSHIP!  After all, God created us to worship!  The depth of some of Josh's prayers to God, his frank honesty about his struggles and doubts, and his pleas for God's help often catch me off guard and surprise me and challenge me in my own prayer life.

I also love the way that Josh loves to sing praises to God.  He takes making a joyful noise unto the Lord to heart and sings with all of his might - sometimes to our embarrassment (shame on us!) over the flat or sharp notes he sings as he tries to get his voice to sing the harmony note he hears in his head.  He sings with passion, fervor, and gusto to the glory of God.  I think we all could learn a thing or two from his example.

This Sunday, Josh had the opportunity to sing for special music at church.  It was a chance for him to let his ability shine and use it for God's glory.  The song he sang is taken from Proverbs 3:5-6, a passage we often turn to during the struggles with his disabilities.  It's a passage that everyone needs to remember, because if we don't trust God, life will be pretty miserable!  

I am thankful for the way that God can use a child with many disabilities to speak His truths to the hearts of His people and use Josh's abilities for His honor and glory!  In my opinion, there is no greater ability than the ability to worship!