Monday, June 25, 2012

Is There another way?

Women of Faith:

Have you ever been given advice or told something which you didn’t particularly want to hear, or had a difficult time believing? Have you ever asked: “Is there another way?”
Or have you simply gone your own way and ignored the advice you were given – thinking “I know better?”Did you fail to believe the advice, or fail to trust that another person was going to fulfill their side of the bargain?

When Zechariah exhibited a lack of trust and disbelief in what he was told he was struck “speechless” (an angel appeared and told him his wife Sarah was going to have a baby in her old age). In Sunday’s gospel (Lk 1: 57-66) his speech returned after the birth of John the Baptist, Sarah’s nine months of pregnancy; and when he finally trusted in God’s word: that “his name will be John.”
We are warned many times in the bible to repent, trust and follow God: “Although prophets were sent to them to convert them to the LORD, the people would not listen to their warnings.” Chronicles 2:24 17-25

And though the LORD warned Israel and Judah by every prophet and seer, "Give up your evil ways and keep my commandments and statutes, in accordance with the entire law which I enjoined on your fathers and which I sent you by my servants the prophets," they did not listen, but were as stiff-necked as their fathers, who had not believed in the LORD, their God. They rejected his statutes, the covenant which he had made with their fathers, and the warnings which he had given them, till, in his great anger against Israel, the LORD put them away out of his sight. Only the tribe of Judah was left. 2 Kgs 17:13-18
Will we lose our own soul, or in our humanness the blessing of someone we love, because we fail to trust, because we have become stiff-necked and rejected the warnings and advice that God gives us through those he sends to us as His messengers?

Will we lose our speech, our ability to communicate, or some other important aspect of our life because God takes away a blessing we have chosen to ignore? (Have we cried “wolf” too many times –and now our plea, and prayer, for help is ignored?)
Will we have to be like Zechariah and lose the blessings we have been given before we come to appreciate all that we have? (Our health, our spouse, our children, our family, or any of our earthly possessions which we take for granted.)

It is a difficult lesson to learn, because in our human nature we are continually looking for an easier way out of whatever situation we have gotten ourselves into. And in our lack of faith we choose to ignore many of our blessings, and the Godly advice we are being given, because sometimes our own attitude seems to change a blessing into a “tough cross to bear” and not until the blessing is lost do we realize it’s importance or it’s true worth.
"If they violate My statutes and keep not My commands I will punish their crime with a rod and their guilt with stripes. Yet in My mercy I will not take away from them, nor will I betray My faithfulness." Ps 89: 31-34

God is patient, but eventually we all must stand and answer for what we have or have not done. He will grant us mercy, but we must repent and convert to gain that mercy.

Look into your hearts and ask, "What am I doing (or not doing) now that I will have to face later? What must I do
or change now in my life to make sure that I have given my trust completely to God?
“Am I following his commandments—ENTIRELY—not just the parts that seem to apply, are convenient to apply, or that I want to have applied to my life?

And probably most importantly,” what wise counsel am I receiving and ignoring because I want a different and easier way?” (Do you have a difficult job, a difficult boss, a difficult spouse, parent or child? And what advice are you ignoring because “there must be another way?”)
Heavenly Father, You have given me everything I need to inherit Your kingdom. Please be patient with me as I struggle to trust and to believe that EVERYTHING in my life must be as you ask. Help me to TRUST entirely, SERVE entirely, and LOVE ALL who cross my path – not just those I want to love, not just those I want to serve, but to seek the FULL truth. Thank you for those persons in my life who gently, yet persistently, continue to remind me of all You have blessed me with. Amen.

There is only one “right” way—God’s way. It may not be the easiest way—but God never said it would be easy. There is no “other way” to heaven.
Blessings on your journey,


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