Have you ever noticed how God arranges to have a sermon written just for you? Happens to me quite often. I figure the other 1500 or so people in the sanctuary at this morning’s 9:00 a.m. service were just fortunate observers. God was speaking straight to me, giving me the encouragement and instruction that I needed. A reminder to persevere and keep my eyes on Him as I go through the trials of life. The sermon title was “Discipline of a Loving Father.” (Although the title doesn’t show yet, the audio is available on-line here, dated 7/31/05. I recommend listening to it, even though it was written just for me.<g>)
Hebrews 12:1(b)-2 And let us run with endurance the race that God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from start to finish.
And there was one very specific song we sang with words that went “Those that wait upon the Lord will renew their strength. They will run and not grow weary, walk and not faint.” I needed that reminder too. It really lifted me up.
Pastor Tri talked about how steel for samurai swords is made: extreme heat, cold, heat, cold, hammering, tempering. And at the end of all this refining comes this incredible, usable, sharp instrument/weapon. Well, life’s trials sure do seem like extreme heat, cold, hammering and tempering sometimes. Don’t they? Man, I sure hope I come out the other side as God’s incredible, usable, sharp instrument/weapon.
Tomorrow, I’ve got to get serious about writing again. Everything has seemed a blur for the past three to four weeks, between ICRS, the brainstorming retreat, and hospitals. Now August is here. Must make hay while the sun shines.