January 8, 2013
Produce Truck at the Pennsylvania Farm Show
The sign on the truck door says,
“Hopkins Fancy Always Busy Farm”
Listen to this message on your audio player.
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There’s an anchor for my soul
I can say “It is well”
I have a friend on my heart who recently faced a very hard blow, a loss that seemed unimaginable prior to the reality. But he’s seen God’s grace at work in his life. Last week we visited for a few minutes in his office and He shared how he is dealing with the inevitable grief and the “whys” as he overcomes.
In a memorial service we attended last Saturday the pastor shared a thought that held my attention. In reflecting on the lady who had passed away he said, “The richest lives are those who experience great highs and deep lows.”
Now most of us would prefer just the great highs but in our hearts we realize the deep lows are also a part of God’s plan. These deep lows are sometimes a result of our own sin, disobedience and bad choices. Other times they are a result of something completely out of our hands. We don’t understand, we can’t begin to comprehend. It may make no sense at the time and not even later in some situations. We will understand it better by and by.
David got himself into his own sin-filled mess recorded in 2 Samuel 11 and 12. It is one of the most famous sins in the Bible and a lesson all through. But today let’s look together at the aftermath.
The prophet Nathan courageously confronted him and David finally confessed his sin to God and received assurance from the prophet that God would forgive him, “The LORD has taken away your sin. You are not going to die” (2 Samuel 12:13).
But there was a price (sin always has a price tag, but often tucked out of sight). The prophet proclaimed that the child born to David and Bathsheba would die and the child was struck with an illness. O, how David pleaded with God for a different outcome. He fasted, laying on the ground night after night. Finally he received the report that his child with Bathsheba had indeed died. His servants had been very reluctant to even tell him for fear that he might do something desperate.
But what David did, summarized in the daily text is very instructive: “Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed, put on lotions and changed his clothes, he went into the house of the LORD and worshipped. Then he went to his own house, and at his request they served him food, and he ate” (2 Samuel 12:20). This is a powerful illustration of “going on”.
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes
Many of you know what I mean by the expression “going on”. You’ve faced a hard blow of one sort or another. Some people deal with such circumstances by withdrawing from activities and the view of others. When possible they go into “hiding” until the storm is past.
There’s a time to plead and earnestly petition God for the outcome we hope for and so often our prayers are answered accordingly. But there are times when they are not, and in spite of the deep, painful, lingering questions that may follow us to our grave, we must, like David, get up, learn what God has to teach us, seek His forgiveness if needed, and move on.
We do well to focus on God’s eternal purpose as we go on. Our eternal God spoke through David, “The LORD will fulfill His purpose for me; Your love, O LORD, endures forever.” By God’s grace many can testify that they are indeed “going on”. May you and I be two of them today!
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles’ wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise, I will rise
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we know that life is full of ups and downs for everyone, even the most diligent spiritual warrior. Help us to work through these jolts of the unexpected and unwelcome interruptions that bring sadness, disappointment or a change of perfect plans. It’s how You work Your purpose in our lives as we overcome and work through major obstacles that affect us. We seek to remain steadfast, moving forward in our Christian walk as we experience the inevitable heartaches of life. At times we bring about our own grief and troubles because of our ungodly actions. We thank You for Your forgiveness in these matters. You enable us to get up, take off the sackcloth, and brush off the burnt ashes from doing things our own way. And You give us fresh resolve to trust and obey You through Christ Jesus our Lord in whose name we pray. Amen.
In reading today’s podcast this part of the verse especially jumped out at me: “He went into the house of the LORD and worshipped.”
We will share several more Farm Show photos tomorrow.
The Pennsylvania Farm Show runs through this Saturday. Ten dollars to park the car and then it’s free admission to the show. Several hours+ of wholesome family entertainment, Don’t miss the Food Court and a steaming bowl of creamy portabella mushroom soup! And, yes, we recommend the milk shakes to help support our milk farmers (even as it pleases our taste buds)!
Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
“I Feel Like Going On” Video Amen!
“Who Shall Separate Us” Video Wayne Tate
“If My God is For Me” Romans 8:28-38 Video David Delgado
“Blessings” Video Laura Story
Are our daily encouragement messages a blessing to you? We ask you to consider making a donation to Daily Encouragement Net so that we can continue to prepare and provide this daily resource which is accessed by believers and seekers all over the world. Daily Encouragement Net relies solely on the generosity and financial support of its readers and podcast listeners. See here for more information on supporting this ministry. Gifts are tax deductible.