Baptism at Singles Retreat - 147 Baptized!!!

*******************Baptism at Singles Retreat 147 Baptized!!! ***********************

* Sharing times in the Word and looking for growth. Let's Commune Together!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Learning to not understand

Scripture Read: Romans 9:6-13 But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; 7 nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s descendants, but: “through Isaac your descendants will be named.” 8 That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants. 9 For this is the word of promise: “At this time I will come, and Sarah shall have a son.” 10 And not only this, but there was Rebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac; 11 for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls, 12 it was said to her, “The older will serve the younger.” 13 Just as it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

Application: Father – These kinds of passages are so difficult to understand, yet we need to ask ourselves - is part of the struggle that we feel due to the fact that we do not like the conclusion this kind of scripture leads us to? We asked in the verses before how could Paul be willing to go to hell for his brethren, while in this passage it appears that You choose and there is no free will. Nothing said about foreknowledge – only Your choice. Many of us look at Paul’s love and wonder if we are even saved – we don’t possess a love like that. Then we look at Your sovereign choice and wonder if we just don’t get any of it. We must realize that we will never have all of it together because Salvation is of You – the Infinite One – and we are so finite. The sad part to me is that we take Rom 9:1-13 and spend most of our time arguing over a topic that we will never fully comprehend, yet we miss some very important truth that can help us in our walk with You right now Father. If Paul can have the selfless love produced in him, so can we. Also, in the end – even though we do not understand how it all works – all of this is a combination of Your Sovereignty and our Free Will. You designed it that way. So we should celebrate that and give our attention to our part – we will be good stewards of the free will You have entrusted to us and make choices that we will not regret – we will leave the Sovereignty part to You!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Love that seems impossible

Scripture Read: Romans 9:1-5 I am telling the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience testifies with me in the Holy Spirit, 2 that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh, 4 who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, 5 whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen

Application: Every time I come here I still have a difficult time understanding how Paul possessed this kind of love. It makes me ask myself - Am I really so far from Your heart Oh God? To be separated from You and suffering forever is something I cannot comprehend. No thought is more terrible to me. I want Your love in me for others, yet I do not think I can honestly say I would give up my eternity with You for others. This is another area of the sacrifice of Christ that we cannot understand. He received Your wrath for sin - but He is with You now - how does this work? This is all beyond me Lord - what I do know is Paul is expressing the kind of selfless love that can only flow from You. But if I am honest I would not want to be separated from You forever for others - especially knowing they all had the choice. Do I lack Your love? This is a thought that we all need to consider. Can we possess this kind of sacrificial love? We can say we would do this, but knowing that is an impossibility - it is easy to say. Paul made this statement under the influence of the Holy Spirit! That’s incredible. Father show us the balance – we want to be honest – so to claim we would go to hell for others is produced in a love that can only come from You. Spirit of God, fill us with a sincere love for those lacking a relationship with You.