Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Why go?

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

Why would James write something like that? Was he smoking something? How was Paul able to be content in a filthy prison, or happily endure beatings?

I get upset with God if my checking balance gets too low. Don't smirk, you do it, too. Are we really that pathetic, or are we just missing something?

...he [Paul] is a chosen instrument of Mine, to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; for I will show him how much he must suffer for My name’s sake

Paul and James didn't endure their trials becasue they were strong men. Paul called himself the greatest of sinners. The scriptures never promise us a life free from trials. They do offer us hope.

Paul and James endured trials with joy because they were where God created them to be. God chose Paul as his instrument to bear his name before the gentiles. Paul did that. If Paul had stayed at home, he'd be complaining and moaning like the rest of us.

Kim and I are going to Lebanon because God has chosen us to be his intruments to bear his name before the people there. That's the only place where we'll have God's strength to have joy in our trials. I can't stand the thought of dying without accomplishing the greatest purpose for which I was created.

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