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Spitfire
Member



Joined: 2004/8/3
Posts: 633


 Re: Suffering / Sanctification

Much of my suffering over the years has been caused by being double-minded. My coming to Christ has been messy. It's been more like a belly buster than a swan dive. Some days I'm still fish tailing into the ditches and falling down flailing like a madwoman, coming up, eyes glazed over, feeling around like some kind of paralytic. :-D But...by golly I'm still here. That's all I can say. Sometimes my husband is feeling especially mean and he says, "you haven't changed a bit." Oh, how that hurts cause I know it isn't true. God knows my heart. I try with everything in me to be honest with God and myself. Folks don't like that. They back away. That hurts.

I think the worst suffering I've ever experienced has come since I've been striving to truly sell out for Christ, total abandonment. This path is so scary. So lonely. I'm looking around and noone is with me. I get confused. I'm wondering, "Am I on the wrong road? Where is everybody?" When I do run into old friends, they look at me suspiciously like I'm some kind of traitor. You know, I'm not playing the game anymore, so they aren't real happy about that. I guess you call that rejection. :-(

My New Year's resolution was to embrace suffering for I have come to realize that it is the way to know God. Love, Dian.
P.S. It's ok to cry.

 2005/5/23 21:55Profile
Spitfire
Member



Joined: 2004/8/3
Posts: 633


 Re: thoughts on suffering

I awoke this morning thinking about suffering, actually my own. It has been intense of late. Yesterday, I kicked against the pricks. My daughter reminded me that the only way to deal with my pain was to die. "It seems so unfair!", I cried. "Why can't people see the truth?" "Why must they run roughshod over the top of others.?"
I suppose I was thinking that perhaps those who are killing me would realize the error of their ways.

This morning I began to think on these things. My whole life I have avoided suffering. Who wants to suffer? Right? But, as I said in my previous post, my New Year's resolution was to embrace suffering for I have come to understand that it is the path to life. But, this morning I realized that, even though I believe suffering is necessary, I've been hoping mine would be easy. After all, I look around Christiandom and I see many who seem to have gotten off scott free.

Jesus said, "No man takes my life, I lay it down." He wasn't angry with the mob who cried, "crucify him!" He presented his life on God's altar.

When John the Baptist was in prison, he sent a message to Jesus asking, "Are you the One or should we look for another?" The message which Jesus sent back was profound. He said, "Blessed is he who is not offended in me." I believe it meant, your life is going to be required of you, don't be offended.

In Gethsemane Jesus cried out, "Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me. Nevertheless, not my will but thine be done." For so long, I have hoped that I could avoid the suffering and death, the laying down of my life. I've looked for some other way to skirt the cemetary. Now I realize that, if this cup of suffering passes me by, I cannot be transfigured. I must run to the Cross! I must set my face like a flint to go. I must see my tormentors as instruments of God's purpose. I must lay my life down willingly.

As I meditated this morning, I had a vision of a freezer door standing wide open. I sat there and thought what it could mean. If a freezer door were standing open, there would be no hope of anything inside it being preserved. We must not seek to preserve our lives. We must fling open the doors and invite ruin. Oh, to be ruined for God!

The only way to salvage meat that has thawed out is to cook it. Oh, to enter the fires of God and be consumed! It will be a sweet smelling savour to God.

I hope this hasn't sounded morbid. We have this promise: If you lose your life, you will find it. Also, Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things (which you are concerned about) shall be added unto you. Love, Dian.

 2005/5/24 6:19Profile









 Re:

Quote:
As I meditated this morning, I had a vision of a freezer door standing wide open. I sat there and thought what it could mean. If a freezer door were standing open, there would be no hope of anything inside it being preserved. We must not seek to preserve our lives. We must fling open the doors and invite ruin. Oh, to be ruined for God!

The only way to salvage meat that has thawed out is to cook it. Oh, to enter the fires of God and be consumed! It will be a sweet smelling savour to God.



Revelation like this is precious! I love the way God speaks in a language uniquely understood by the individual. I'm not sure I [i]could[/i] have seen a freezer door standing open, but the Lord knew you were available to understand. That's beautiful.

Thank you for all which has been shared in this thread. I really don't have any idea whether I know anything about 'suffering' for the Lord, because I was in so much pain for so long, which He desired to heal, that I was oblivious to that possible interpretation. I believe some Christians hold on to a certain level of pain believing it counts as 'suffering', whereas imho, it [i]prevents[/i] them from laying down their lives - but I could be wrong.

When I think of 'suffering', I think of proper persecution for being a Christian. I don't know whether I've been through that. I'm not sure I know anything about 'dying to self', either, but God has recently been bringing my ignorance to my attention. And I'm considering the implications at the same time as being aware it is a cheek on my part, to imagine however fleetingly, that I have a choice, if I am to please Him.

 2005/5/24 15:26
rocklife
Member



Joined: 2004/4/1
Posts: 323
usa

 Re: Suffering / Sanctification

Holiday, there is a wonderful and encouraging free newsletter from the Voice of the Martyrs website, a site dedicated to informing American christians of the suffering body of Christ around the world. There is more persecution in this last century than there has been before, which is almost unimaginable, but India, China, North Korea, Indonesia, parts of Africa, Middle East, persecutes Christians very openly (Communism is militant atheism- so religious persecution comes from the government).

This newsletter is very encouraging, it is prayer letter for our brothers in jail, beaten, etc. They offer a testimony of the founder, in the Action Packs or the special edition newsletter, called "Tortured for Christ" by Richard Wurmbrand (a summary is found under his name on sermonindex.net too, http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/mydownloads/viewcat.php?cid=50, go to Tortured for Christ).

I too, suffer for my faith in ways- sometimes for obedience to Jesus Christ I have been threatened to be kicked out of the house, very seriously, but evangelizing to the man who threatened to kill me twice has been the biggest challenge, God answers prayer to keep me safe for now (I am happy to die for Christ, but want my son to be old enough to take care of himself before I go).

I just wanted to share how we can share in others' sufferings too, with so much of the body of Christ suffering around the world, even today.

I encourage everyone to get the monthly newsletter, it is eye-opening, and a privilege to pray for God's hurting body of Christ.

www.persecution.com you can sign up there. The action packs and special edition also offer more information, even free things.


_________________
Jina

 2005/5/25 11:18Profile





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