Saturday, April 26, 2014
The truth is I can't see what God is doing. His hands are invisible hands. And His ways are past finding out (Ro 11:33-36). As the Scriptures tell repeatedly, God's providences are regularly hard ones, at least for some of His children. And those God-wrought hardships bring real loss, causing real pain, causing real sadness. And I've had my fill of the ignorant Christian proclaiming his/her backward view on faith's relationship to such things. Faith, dear people, is not the absence of sadness (See Job, for example, or many of David's Psalms; or Lk 22, or 2 Co 1 & 4; or He 11; Etc, etc, etc).
Friday, April 25, 2014
For help answering the above question, I recommend a visit here. Then pray, and read 1 John repeatedly. Then pray. Repeat. And remember, the work of giving assurance is the work of God the Holy Spirit (See Ro 8, for example). So while God's people may be able to serve as guides on our path to assurance, they cannot provide the assurance itself, and shouldn't be expected to.
Sunday, April 20, 2014
Jesus got up from the grave to justify His people, and to ascend to His Father's side, the place from which He mediates the new covenant in His blood. He got up from the grave to send us His Holy Spirit, who baptizes us into the Church, sanctifies us, and seals us for the day of final redemption. He got up from the grave to keep promises made to us, promises of His presence and of His return, and of everlasting life.
All of these wonders, and quite a few more, are tied up with the resurrection of Jesus. And frankly, it is the reason I have any hope at all.
Thursday, April 17, 2014
"Scripture urges and warns us that whatever favors we may have obtained from the Lord we have received them as a trust on condition that they should be applied to the common benefit of the church. The legitimate use of all the Lord's favors is liberally and kindly to share them with others. . . Indeed, a Christian ought to be disposed and prepared to keep in mind that he has to reckon with God every moment of his life." -- Excerpts from John Calvin's "Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life", Chapter 2
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
When Tess was just a few months from the womb, she began to make sounds that greatly resembled those made by baby birds. They were her happy sounds. So I affectionately began calling her my Baby Bird, and have continued to call her that for the past six years. Last week I asked her to write her name for me. Then I took that signature, paired it with a little bird, and had that design forever pressed into my flesh. This is my tat for Tess, because she's my Baby Bird.
"See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands. . ."