'Stand...When You Do Not Understand'
by Travis Wiginton
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Friend, you do not have to understand all of God's Ways with you!
God does not expect you to understand them all.
You do not expect your children to understand you, only believe!
Someday, you will see the Glory of God in the things which you do not understand.
Someone has observed:
"In Christ we have:
A love that can never be fathomed....
A life that can never die....
A peace that can never be understood...
A rest that can never be disturbed....
A joy that can never be diminished...
A hope that can never be disappointed...
A glory that can never be clouded....
A light that can never be darkened....
And a Spiritual Resource that can never be exhausted."
Here are some Scriptures to guide and help us when we do not understand.
1) II Corinthians 5: 9-10:
This Scripture speaks of the frailty of the body...
but confidence in God and the Spiritual.
There is SO much that we can buy for this old flesh...
but what God offers us is free...though it cost Him dearly, His Only Son!
2) Psalms 4: 3-4:
"You know that the Lord has set you apart for Himself.
The Lord will hear you when you call on Him.
Stand in awe and sin not.
Commune with your heart upon your bed and be still."
3) Romans 5:1-2:
"Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
By Whom also, we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand and rejoice in hope of the glory of God."
4) I Corinthians 16:13:
"Be on your guard, stand firm in the faith; be people of courage; be strong.
Do everything in love."
5) Philippians 1:27:
"Stand firm in one spirit with one mind, striving for the faith of the Gospel."
6) Ephesians 6: 11-13:
"Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil."
7) Revelations 20: 12:
"Stand for God HERE....before you stand before God THERE."
Joseph is one of God's greatest examples of one who did not understand 'why',
but continued to trust in the 'Who'.
sold into slavery by his brothers....
spent time in prison in Egypt...
said 'No' to the temptation of Potiphar's wife.
He did not deserve prison, but by God's Grace he overcame it and disappointments.
Eventually he was freed from prison and God helped him to overcome any bitterness.
He even said to his brothers:
"You thought evil for me, but God has brought good out of bad."
When Joseph was elevated to a position in the government, he was able to bring his entire family from Canaan to Egypt, to escape the famine.
In 1963, we were on medical furlough from mission work in Korea and during that time, I served as the BSU Dir. @ OU (my alma mater).
On Nov. 2, 1965 we finally got our little girl, when Kristin LaMoyne joined our 3 sons.
Shortly afterwards, the Foreign Mission Board felt that it would be best if we did not return to Korea due to medical problems.
Though I enjoyed being on the staff of First Baptist Church, Norman and loved ministering to the students, my heart yearned to return to pastoring.
It was during that time of 'not understanding' and seeking the Lord's Leadership,
that Dr. Stanton Nash called us. He was on staff @ Golden Gate Seminary near San Francisco. He said that he had been filling in some Sundays at Foothill Baptist in
Los Altos, California.
He told us that if he was going to return to the pastorate, Foothill would be the church he would love to pastor.
He asked if we might be interested and if so, would we pray about going to Foothill Baptist as pastor.
We felt that God was in Stanton's call, so we flew out there and spent a weekend with that church family. The church voted for us to come as their pastor and family.
We thoroughly enjoyed our time with the people there, but being from small towns ourselves, we felt a bit of hesitation in moving our young family out there.
Here is the poem that helped us during that time of decision and also speaks to the theme of today's article.
I said, "Let me walk in the fields."
He said, "No, walk in the town."
I said, "There are no flowers there"
He said, "No flowers, but a crown".
I said, "But the skies are black..
There is nothing but noise and din."
And He wept as He sent me back...
"There is more', He said...'there is sin".
I said, "but the air is thick,
And fog is veiling the sun".
He answered, "Yet souls are sick,
And souls in the darkness undone".
I said, "I shall miss the light
And friends will miss me, they say".
He answered, "Choose tonight
If I am to miss you....or they?"
I pleaded for time to be given.
He said, "Is it hard to decide?
It will not seem hard in Heaven
To have followed the steps of your Guide".
I cast one look at the fields,
Then set my face to the town.
He said, "My child, do you yield?
Will you leave the flowers for the crown?"
Then into His Hand went mine,
And into my heart came He.
And I walked in a light Divine
The path I had feared to see.
Earlier this month Dr. Stanton Nash, went 'Home to Glory' at 92 yrs. of age.
Many years after his first call to us concerning Foothill Church, he called us again,
asking us to pray about someday serving in Hawaii.
At that time, he was the Ex. Dir. for the Hawaii Convention.
Not long after that call, Kona Baptist Church on the Big Island of Hawaii called us to come as pastor. Needless to say, Dr. Stanton Nash holds a special place in our hearts.
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Dear Travis, I see where one member said that I gave you credit for the poem that you included. I was not giving you credit as the name of the author was right under the poem. I said thank you for sharing such a wonderful poem with us. I believe that you always write from you heart and not your head. I am SO sorry that I was misunderstood. Love to you both, sharon
Seems we have a misunderstanding here and one that I would like to address. I received a PM stating that my criticism of this article was unsolicited. How odd, considering the writer requested a critique. Also, I was not critiquing the people described in this story; I don't know anything about them except for what was shared here. In the future, if folks don't want to have their work(s) looked at critically, then it would be better to state they they do NOT want the article critiqued, which prevents such instances. Finally, I would like to say that "criticism" is not always a bad thing, nor is it always negative. I've had some of my favorite writings thrown into the furnace of other writers' perspective and though it initially seemed hurtful, it has done things for me as a writer that likely would not have been sufficient otherwise. I certainly meant to offend no one, but was speaking of the writers' progress, not the writer themselves. Please, accept my apologies, perhaps I need to write succintly when critiquing. I'm sorry.
I see potential as a good writer here. I feel as if you were too mechanical in your telling this story. It's like you tried to write rather than to "tell." Read this again, but read it as if you are not the writer and see if you can see what I mean. Then, rewrite it. Notice too, that the poem you shared was not your work, but that of my favorite author; George MacDonald and that one other member gave you the credit for it; mention his name in a footnote with available reference material so that another author is acknowledged as contributing to your work. (It's just good manners). If you choose to, rewrite this, but next time? Put your heart into it and get your head out of the way!
Thank you for that BEAUTIFUL and ENCOURAGING poem Travis. I know that both you and La Moyne stand tall in the eyes of God. My prayers are with you both. God bless, love your friend, Sharon
This was great. Amen. God bless you.