Monday, March 17, 2008

Lessons I am Learning

I have been thinking this morning about the many lessons that I have learned (and am still learning) over the past few months. I have tried to share many of these, but there are others that never seemed to develop into blog entries. Some of these are simply quotes from authors that have captured my interest and caused me to think about my own life and character.

On loving God and others . . . Love is a by-product of knowing God. The more I know God, the more I will love Him. The more I love Him, the more I will desire to be like Him. The more I become like Him, the more I will love others.

On character . . . I cannot succeed in what I do and fail in who I am. John Ortberg

On pain . . . Pain is part of the growing process. My wife has been commenting about how nice it has been to see me walking around without pain, and how difficult it will be to see me back on crutches and in pain again for several months while I heal from surgery. But my body must go through this pain in order to get back to being healthy and whole again. Pain ultimately makes us stronger.

On humility . . . I cannot begin to appreciate God’s greatness until I admit how weak and helpless I am.

On comprehending God’s glory and greatness . . . sometimes, He is just too wonderful for me to understand. Sometimes I just need to accept that some things about God are beyond my comprehension. I really don’t need to understand everything He does to worship Him with my whole heart and mind.

On compassion . . . There is always someone that has a greater need than I. And I need to look for opportunities to listen, to encourage, and to pray with and for others.

On laughter . . . There is a time to be serious, but there is also a time to have fun and to laugh – with others and at myself.

On hope . . . My hope is not without a basis. My hope is in Jesus Christ. My hope is secure.

I was reading and meditating on Psalm 61, one of my favorite Psalms. The first two verses are especially encouraging to me . . .

Hear my cry, O God: attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth I will cry to You. When my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. Psalm 61:1-2

God is my comfort. He knows everything about me, because He created me. He knows my circumstances and the needs I have. He knows my heart, my mind, my deepest desires. He has not promised to keep me from trouble He has promised to always be with me. God is my anchor. In times of trouble, I am safe and secure. God is my refuge. I find safety in Him.

And here are a few thoughts on the next Beatitude . . .

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9

We are to love peace and hate conflict. Hating conflict is not the same as avoiding conflict. Being in the midst of conflict is inevitable for those who seek to promote peace. We promote peace by promoting reconciliation with God through Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20). We can only do this if we are first at peace with God. And if we promote peace among others, God promises that He will claim us as His own.

1 comment:

Gilbert Covenant Marriage Seminars said...

Pardon me for missing the point, but since I’ve just attended a few covenant marriage seminars, I’m inclined to think more positively. My answer is neither yes nor no, but whichever is the most peaceful method.