Lately I've had difficulty sleeping at night.
I guess I get to thinking too much about some health issues....
that are concerning both La Moyne and me.
Also in recent days, some of our dear friends in Hawaii (as well as here)
have 'Graduated to Heaven', so my thoughts turn to times spent with them.
I started reading the Psalms and came across the following:
"I lay down and slept...I awoke for the Lord sustains me."
"Meditate in your heart upon your bed and be still and trust in Him."
"God surrounds us with favor as a shield."
"The Lord hears the voice of weeping and He hears our pleas and receives our prayers."
Our devotional book 'Streams in the Desert' also helped.
'The answer to fear is faith'...."What time I am afraid, I will trust in you" (Ps. 56:3-4)
God also led me to a paper that I wrote many years ago, entitled...
'The ALL-ness of God and Our Faith'.
In that paper, I listed 2 pages of Promises from God, using the word 'ALL'.
1) Matt. 28: 18-20 promises us:
ALL Power....is given to ALL People....
who do God's Program....and will receive God's Promises.
2) Romans 8:28, 34-39:
Jesus is our Access to ALL things that work together for good.
3) Colossians 1:13-20 and 3:11: "Christ is ALL in ALL"
He is The Heart of Christianity
The Hub of the Christian life
The Head of the Church
The Hope of the Cosmos (Universe)
Billy and Ruth Graham have certainly been great testimonies for God ALL of their lives, but especially now as they are in their late 80's.
Billy fights (by faith) Parkinson's Disease and other difficulties...
and Ruth is now bedfast and in much pain.
I'm reminded of a poem that Ruth wrote many years ago that must be very appropriate now.
"I lay my whys before your cross in worship kneeling,
my mind too numb for thought, my heart beyond all feeling:
And worshipping, realize that I in knowing you don't need a why".
(from her book, 'Sitting By My Laughing Fire')
4) Matthew 19:25-26:
"The Disciples asked Jesus, 'Who then can be saved?'
Jesus replied, "With men this is impossible, but with God ALL things are possible."
Many times during my 50+ years of Pastoral Ministry I have said...
"If God can save you (the greatest miracle) then He can provide lesser miracles."
Years ago I was asked to return to Norman to do the Memorial Service for our friend, Julian Stanciu.
His family (along with other families) had escaped Romania and at one time, we had around 20 people from Romania attending Bethel Baptist Church here in Norman.
They were ALL 'walking miracles'.
Two of Julian's favorite Scriptures were Mark 9:23 and 10:27 that emphasize....
'With God, ALL things are possible to those who believe'.
We rec'd a report just yesterday from our friend Stu Tully about how the Spirit of God is moving in Romania. Stu included a picture of 19 people who had just been baptized there. Truly, Julian's prayer for his homeland is being answered!
5) The ALL of Totality (John 19:28-29)
From the Cross, Jesus provided for His Mother and realizing the total Will of God had been done said, "It is finished".
Of course this was made possible in Gethsemane when He said,
"Father, not MY will, but THINE be done." This we ALL must say!
Romans 11:36 tells us how we can live the total experience of the Christian life:
"For of Him and through Him and to Him are ALL things, to Whom be glory forever amen!"
6) The ALL-ness of Christ-like love which:
'Bears ALL things, believes ALL things, hopes for ALL things and endures ALL things.'
(I Cor. 13:7)
7) The ALL-ness of God's Sufficiencies (II Cor. 9:8)
"God is able to make ALL grace abound toward you, that you always having ALL sufficiency in ALL things may abound to ALL good work." (Also, II Cor. 12:7-10)
8) The ALL-ness of Rejoicing (Phil. 4:4 and I Thess. 5:16-19)
ALL speak of 'rejoicing'. If Paul said it (and believed it), surely we can/should also.
Paul gives us many Scriptures to indicate how vividly he believed.
While being taken as a prisoner to Rome, the boat was caught in a storm, Paul said:
"Sirs, be of good cheer for I believe God that it will turn out just like He said."
9) 'Let ALL things be done decently and in order' (I Cor. 14:40)
Sometimes we may feel that there are too many committees and meetings in our churches, but this Scripture speaks of this.
For 8 years, I represented Oklahoma Baptists at our Home Mission Board meetings in Atlanta, Georgia.
For 2 years, I was privileged to serve as Chairman of that 85 member Board.
There were times when I felt that maybe less organization might be better.....but NOT!
We were able to carry out this Scripture in a democratic way which benefited our Home Missionaries as well as our churches.
When we were appointed as Missionaries to Korea, we became the recipients of the benefits of a well-organized Foreign Mission Board....now called the International Mission Board. (We were appointed on La Moyne's birthday, June 9, 1960)
Our churches are to be democracies and so must our Boards and Agencies...in order to carry out things decently and in order.
For further study:
Philippians 2:14 and 3:8
Philippians 4:13 "I can do ALL things through Christ Who strengthens me"
(My favorite coffee cup has this Scripture written inside the cup...
and at my age, I need to be reminded of this verse EVERY day!)
"My God shall supply ALL my needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus".
The following is necessary in order to appropriate ALL the fulness of God's Promises:
What God claims, I yield.
What I yield, He accepts.
What He accepts, He fills.
What He fills, He uses.
What He uses, He blesses.
That's His Promise to you and me, but it sure helps to study the Scriptures.
Jesus is our best example...from the age of 12. (Luke 2:46-52)
God's Love is the Anchor that holds through uncertain times,
the Shield that surrounds you always,
the Stronghold that keeps you in His caring embrace.
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