For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back? Isaiah 14:27.
Each actor in history stands in his lot and place; for God’s great work after His own plan will be carried out by men who have prepared themselves to fill positions for good or evil. In opposition to righteousness, men become instruments of unrighteousness. But they are not forced to take this course of action. They need not become instruments of unrighteousness, any more than Cain needed to….
Men of all characters, righteous and unrighteous, will stand in their several positions in God’s plan. With the characters they have formed, they will act their part in the fulfillment of history. In a crisis, just at the right moment, they will stand in the places they have prepared themselves to fill. Believers and unbelievers will fall into line as witnesses to confirm truth that they themselves do not comprehend. All will cooperate in accomplishing the purposes of God, just as did Annas, Caiaphas, Pilate, and Herod. In putting Christ to death, the priests thought they were carrying out their own purposes, but unconsciously and unintentionally they were fulfilling the purpose of God.
God looks into the tiny seed that He Himself has formed, and sees wrapped within it the beautiful flower, the shrub, or the lofty, wide-spreading tree. So does He see the possibilities in every human being. We are here for a purpose. God has given us His plan for our life, and He desires us to reach the highest standard of development….
He desires the youth to cultivate every power of their being, and to bring every faculty into active exercise…. Let them look to Christ as the pattern after which they are to be fashioned. The holy ambition that He revealed in His life they are to cherish—an ambition to make the world better for their having lived in it. This is the work to which they are called.
You want now to … so relate yourself to society and to life that you may answer the purpose of God in your creation.
Conflict and Courage p. 371
—–I am currently undergoing Hospice. I am seeing two nurses three times a week. I don’t have much time left. Please pray for my sister and her family. Thank you. Larry O
—–Prayers appreciated for our niece, Julie. She is in the hospital with very bad pneumonia. Her health is rapidly declining. Her lungs are filling up with infected fluid. They are now putting in a chest tube. Kathy
—–My wife and I are going to court tomorrow morning to get back custody of her kids. The ex has some trumped up charges of child abuse which are unfounded and false. My prayer is that God will step in and let truth prevail. Edmond
Until I was five, my Auntie Joyce still lived with may grandparents. Since my grandparents had adopted me when I was a baby, I lived there too. She loved children and considered them all special, but I was extra special to her. Every week when she got paid, she would go to the store and buy me something. For the first five years of my life, she showered me with expensive gifts because she loved me so much.
When I was just a toddler, I often set these gifts aside and played with the box. Even after I got older, her gifts were enjoyed but not appreciated. I was too young to realize all the expense and planning that went into some of her gifts. Gilmore’s Department Store was a very expensive store in Kalamazoo where we lived. Auntie Joyce thought that nothing was too good for me, so she got my presents there.
One time, when I was still a baby, she saw a portable dollhouse with very expensive and had realistic furnishings. Each week she would buy one piece of furniture, so that by the time I was old enough to enjoy playing with it, I would have the complete set. How I loved that dollhouse! Yet, in all the years I played with it, I can never remember really thanking Auntie Joyce for it or for any of the other lovely things she bought me. Oh, I said “thankyou,” because I had been taught to be polite, but really I took her gifts for granted.
How many times we do the same to our Heavenly Father. We are told, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” James 1:17 “He maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matt 5:45 Jesus assures us, “Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.” luke 12:6,7 David exclaimed, “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?” “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect, and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them. How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!” Ps 56:8, 139:16,17 What comfort and joy His tender watchcare should give us! Yet, how often do we enjoy His blessings with scarcely a thought of thankfulness to Him.
Worse still in our ingratitude, are the times we are content to “play with the box” when the Gift is right beside us awaiting our acceptance. Think of it! The Great King of the Universe loves us so much that He sent Jesus, His only begotten Son, to suffer and die for us. Yet, how often we take this Greatest Gift for granted. <2 Cor 9:15> Are we really thankful for the unspeakable sacrifice He made for us? Do we feel thankfulness and love for His goodness welling up within our hearts? “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thes 5:18 “O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy, And gathered them out of the lands, from the east, and from the west, from the north, and from the south. They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way, they found no city to dwell in. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. Then they cried unto the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them out of their distresses. And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation. Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness. Such as sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron, Because they rebelled against the words of God, and contemned the counsel of the most High: Therefore he brought down their heart with labour, they fell down, and there was none to help. Then they cried unto the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them out of their distresses. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and brake their bands in sunder. Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! For he hath broken the gates of brass, and cut the bars of iron in sunder. Fools because of their transgression, and because of their iniquities, are afflicted. Their soul abhorreth all manner of meat, and they draw near unto the gates of death. Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble, and he saveth them out of their distresses. He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing. Ps 107:1-22
May our eyes be opened to His abundant blessings He showers upon us each day. May we continually praise Him from a heart filled with love and gratitude. May we, someday soon, meet Him in the clouds of the air and face to face thank Him for His redeeming love.