A call to preachers, from a feeble minded sinner. I'm a mom, a wife, a woman who sins daily and who's heart needs cleansing constantly. I am thankful for preachers (my father is one *he's pretty awesome, oh and my husband is too).... so, this not meant to offend. After all, I'm surrounded by preachers;) I merely desire to fully understand the tough parts of scripture in order to see God's supremacy in my daughter's disability. So, here's where preachers come in...
First, I beg you...stop taking the glory away from God and putting it on yourself. We are dying, literally dying to hear about God in the fullness of his glory. Please don't strip him down to a quintessential "homie" you casually speak of during your sermon. Stop replacing His righteous anger with witty videos about loving humanity. Sure, He loves humanity and cares deeply about your friendship but, he is LORD... he loved us so much, he gave us breath... but he is also disgusted by us.
If you don't teach people about the God of wrath AND the God of love (with equal measure) what happens when life gets tough, who can we cling to when we are drowning in the hardships of life?
Wait, I thought God loved me? How could a loving God bring death upon a young child, or cause my mother's early death? How could he make my child disabled, even though I prayed every day during my pregnancy for a healthy baby? The "how could He's" could go on and on... but the truth... the one the Bible teaches... talks about a loving God who despises our sin but loves us in spite of ourselves. He is to be feared as he wipes entire nations out at will... he is to be revered as he causes the wind to blow a seed that is set delicately in the soil to be nurtured, and grow, and become the fruit from which we feed or families. He masterfully designs our children in our wombs... in his timing, with his plans in mind. How can we question such a lovingly powerful God. He captures every tear we shed in a bottle and ponders at our deepest emotions. He never fails, never gives up, and always forgives. He sent his son to be crucified by the hands of "man"... by us... and we teach people that he's our "homie"??
Instead of using the cross, we use props and bells and whistles to try to explain Christ. He doesn't need them, I assure you:)
Open your door, walk outside and be awed by the majesty of the earth we inhabit. Oh by the way, that mountain over there... he can move it! Having a child with autism causes me daily to be drawn to the foot of the cross in utter heart break. If I couldn't crawl on hands and knees to be filled up by His glory, and His patience, and His joy... I'm pretty sure life would overwhelm me unto death.
Yes, Jesus... the ultimate pastor, used parables to help the weak minded people understand heavenly concepts. If getting a point across means using stories or painting a vivid picture for the audience (using, heaven forbid... a prop), then so be it... but bring it back around to God. Give him the glory. Stop counting the people that you inspire to "come forth" and start discipling the souls that God has saved for Himself.
Before moving on, consider my Bella. Her mind functions at the level of an 18 month old. But friends, she breathes... she lives... she experiences joy and frustration. She teaches me to lean on Christ. She is God's creation... therefore, she is perfect.
Is this a rant? Good. When I look into my Bella's eyes and I think of her future, it is so unclear to me. Will we raise her only to achieve a developmental age of18 months? Will she continue to pound her head on the floors and walls in frustration, or leave bite marks on her hands? Will she be able to use the bathroom by herself or get dressed without my assistance? Will we ever have a conversation where I can tell her how much I love her? Will she ever experience love the way I have? Will she ever truly KNOW Christ?
Only God knows the answers to these questions, and I'm ok with that. I am thankful for the truth of the Bible where it tells us life is hard, and it only gets harder. “Count it all joy, my brethren, when you meet various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” — James 1:2-3 I am thankful that God knows our hearts deepest aches and binds us up with His strength for each new day with endurance. Today I woke up and asked God to give me joy when Bella tantrums. I may need to pray this prayer for her entire life. I lack so much patience and joy but...that's when God steps in. The God of mercy. He brings me low so that I can see him clearly.
Every breath you take is a gift. Your children are gifts, even those "less perfect". If you can't conceive children, God knows. If you've lost a child, so has He. If your parent died before their time, God knew in advance how many days they would be on this earth. If you are "too much of a sinner" to be a "Christian" then open the Bible and read about how God used the worst of the worst for his purposes. If you know my past, you know I am underserving;)
No one is too lost, nothing is too hard for God. Just saying. Christ died for you.
Speaking of the Word. Here it is... hard to argue with:)