Monthly Archives: June 2008

The Agony of Heartbreak and the Goodness of God? (Part 2)

During this time of heartbreak, I have had several people give me different kinds of advice and share things with me that, at first, caused me concern. I noticed my response towards people was to feel angry because they were trying to help me through something they didn’t know about (or so I thought).

The only problem is that we tend to have a ‘me only’ outlook when we are going through heartbreak.  It can become a matter of selfishness and pride in some ways.  Selfishness can take over when we get to a point where we have a pity-party for ourselves because this has happened to us for whatever reason.  We begin to feel that we are the ONLY people that it has ever happened to and therefore we begin to have an attitude of ‘woe is me.’  Pride takes over when our friends and loved ones try to help us through.  Many times they may not know what to say or how to say it.  They might just blurt out something that they don’t necessarily mean and struggle to know how to say what is in their hearts.

If those who are going through grief are not careful their pride can take over and they can begin to feel they are better than the ones giving them the advice.   The pride can also take another turn  in not being willing to accept advice during heartbreak.

Many times what people say may be a pat answer but if we are willing to think things through with the Lord’s help and with humility in our hearts, it just might be that what was said was EXACTLY what we were needing at that particular time.

For instance, I’ve had 4 different people give me advice during this difficult time in my life.  My first reaction was to get upset at them and tune out what they were saying.  After much conviction from the Holy Spirit over my pride, I spent a lot of time going back over the advice they had given me and I can truly say that most of it was VERY good advice.  Most of what was said may have sounded like a pat answer but it’s the only response that we can conclude with.

The final conclusion, “You must leave it in the Lord’s hands instead of trying to take things into your own hands and work things out yourself.  God’s timing is always perfect and will not only take care of the other person (however HE intends to do it) but will help you through in such a way that it will bring honour and glory to HIM!”

The Word of God says that whatever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report think on these things.  (Philippians 4:8) The only Person I can think of that truly matches this description is the LORD JESUS CHRIST!  He alone is worthy to be praised.

In the end, the agony of heartbreak is used to show not only us but also the world around us the goodness of God.  It is also used to show that HE alone is sufficient for our needs, desires, wants, hurts, and heartbreaks!  Let us look to the future of what God will do in us and through us in every circumstance within our lives.

Submitting to the will of God and waiting for heart healing in His timing,

Desert Pastor’s wife

PS – Just a little note to say that this can apply to grief over the death of someone close to you.  I know because I have someone very close to me who lost a loved one.  Her testimony is amazing because of the humility in her life and being willing to listen to the Word of God and all biblical advice given her during her grief.  The Lord has used the grief in her life to help her to grow spiritually and to change her.  No, she’s not a pastor’s wife; however, if one person is willing to be used by God in every circumstance they will see their life change radically!

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Suffering For the Truth

After yesterday’s post on heartbreak and the goodness of God, I believe the Lord reminded me through my daily Bible reading as well as the devotional by Charles Spurgeon.  We will suffer persecution for doing what is right and the Bible comments on the fact that we should rejoice in the midst of such sufferings.  We don’t rejoice that we are going through it but we rejoice in the fact that we are counted worthy to suffer for the sake of the Lord.  (Acts 6)

Morning and Evening

“Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego answered and said…’Be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods.'”  Daniel 3:16,18

The narrative of the manly courage and marvellous deliverance of the three holy children, or rather champions, is well calculated to excite in the minds of believers firmness and steadfastness in upholding the truth in the teeth of tyranny and in the very jaws of death.  Let young Christians especially learn from their example, both in matters of faith in religion, and matters of uprightness in business, never to sacrifice their consciences.  Lose all rather than lose your integrity, and when all else is gone, still hold fast a clear conscience as the rarest jewel which can adorn the bosom of a mortal.

Be not guided by the will-o’-the-wisp policy, but by the pole-star of divine authority.  Follow the right at all hazards.  When you see no present advantage, walk by faith and not by sight.  Do God the honour to trust Him when it comes to matters of loss for the sake of principle.  See whether He will be your debtor!  See if He doth not even in this life prove His word that ‘Godliness, with contentment, is great gain’, and that they who ‘seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, shall have all these things added unto them’.  Should it happen that, in the providence of God, you are a loser by conscience, you shall find that if the Lord pays you not back in the silver of prosperity, He will discharge His promise in the gold of spiritual joy.

Remember that a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of that which he possesseth.  To wear a guileless spirit, to have a heart void of offence, to have the favour and smile of God, is greater riches than the mines of Ophir could yield, or the traffic of Tyre could win.  ‘Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and inward contention therewith.’  An ounce of heart’s-ease is worth a ton of gold.

by Charles Spurgeon

I couldn’t agree with him more!

The Agony of Heartbreak and the Goodness of God?

So many times we get caught up in everyday life then suddenly something happens in such a way that our hearts begin to break.  The past couple of weeks have been such for me due to losing someone very special to our family.  Let me hasten to assure you that it was not through death but due to selfishness and the lack of desire for the truth.   This was never intended so but truth cannot be changed even for friendship.

The Broken Heart

I guess the question needs asking how does the agony of heartbreak and the goodness of God go together? So many times we feel that God hates us if we go through any kind of trouble and yet that is so far from the truth.  God loves His children dearly and it is only a loving parent that will discipline their child when he/she goes astray.

Take a little one for example.  If you keep a close eye on him or her they will try to push the boundaries and see if you are willing to stick with the rules and boundaries.  They know you will say no and yet still look at you and touch whatever it is you don’t want them to touch.  It is important to keep saying firmly, “NO!” regardless of the cries, anger or tantrums.  In the same way, many times the Lord tells us no and we don’t listen to Him.  We still want our way so the Lord has to discipline us to remind us that we must obey HIM.

When the agony of heartbreak comes and we feel overwhelmed many times and here are some of the things we do:

  1. Blame God for what happened to us.
  2. Grow angry because we are not allowed to continue on with whatever it is we feel makes us happy.
  3. Grow bitter and show hatred toward God.
  4. Feel that God has it out for us and so we begin to get really hard and hateful towards others that love and serve God.

Hebrews 12 tells us that chastisement is there for our good and to bring forth the peaceable fruit of righteousness; however, if we are angry and bitter then there will be no fruit of righteousness this time.  Once we get over the bitterness and anger the Lord must once again break our hearts (sometimes this must be done many times over) until the peaceable fruit of righteousness begins to show.

This is the goodness of God toward us because He is working in our hearts and conforming us to the image of Christ.  How good and gracious God is in the midst of heartbreak!  What love He shows us by not tiring of our tantrums and telling us to get lost.

Thank you, Lord, for Your goodness towards me through the chastisement and discipline within my life.  Help me to ever look to You in ALL situations.

I will finish off my thoughts another day but let us be willing to be broken and be ready to suffer for Christ since He paid the ultimate sacrifice for us on the cross!  Amen!

Do You Desire Christ?

What is your desire today? God’s will or your own?

Whatever It Takes

There’s a voice calling me
From an old rugged tree
And He whispers, “Draw closer to Me;
Leave this world far behind,
There are new heights to climb,
And a new place in Me you will find.”

For whatever it takes to draw closer to you, Lord,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
For whatever it takes to be more like You,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.

Take the dearest things to me,
If that’s how it must be,
To draw me closer to Thee;
Let the disappointments come,
Lonely days without the sun,
If through sorrow more like You I’ll become.

Take my houses, my lands,
Change my dreams, change my plans
For I’m placing my whole life in Your hands;
And if You call me today…
To a place far away
Lord, I’ll go, and Your will obey.

I’ll trade sunshine for rain
Comfort for pain –
That’s what I’ll be willing to do –
For whatever it takes for my will to break,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.

by Lanny Wolfe

When I was growing up I used to sing this song but never really thought about the words. Eventually, I forgot about it since I really wasn’t a Christian and didn’t really care. While we were in England, the hard times used to come (quite often) and the Lord brought this song back to my memory time and again. I searched high and low for quite awhile and was really excited when I found it (making sure I memorized it just in case).

So many times we want our way and desire to do everything we can to have an easy time of it but, if we are TRUE BELIEVERS IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, we have never been promised an easy time. We have been promised various trials, tribulations, and persecutions galore! We struggle against our flesh because our flesh wants things done MY WAY. We struggle with the world because there is so much out there that I DESIRE more then serving the Lord. We struggle with Satan and his minions because the temptations he puts in our way are so desirable that we’d rather GIVE IN to the temptations then to say no to ourselves.

As I sing this song and contemplate the words, I desire to give up all to follow the Lord. I want to give up the dearest things to me so that I would be more like the Lord Jesus Christ and willing to follow His will above all else. Yet when the hard times begin to roll, I start to whinge and complain to the Lord about how difficult it is. I beg Him to let up on the hard times just give me the easy times (like when I felt His presence and knew He was working everything out just the way I wanted it done). My struggle begins (once again) and I wonder why people who say they’re Christians but refuse to follow the Lord tend to begin the ‘persecution’ of those who are striving to follow the Lord and HIS COMMANDS (“IF ye love Me, keep my commandments,” Jesus told His disciples and that includes us! John 14:15).

The reminder then comes back from 2 Timothy that we are soldiers in the middle of a battle. What do soldiers do? They endure hardness for a specific purpose. What is our purpose? Our purpose is to willingly submit to God’s will! Nay, even more then that! We must take God’s will as our very own and delight in His loving ministrations AND CHASTISEMENTS! Just as we delight in our children yet there are many times that we must discipline them so they will be happy and well-adjusted, so in the same way God works with us! Whatever it takes to break our hard hearts and stubborn wills so the Lord will use it to make us a worthy vessel to show forth HIS glory, HIS honour, AND HIS grace (not ours!)

One day, I want to enter heaven and hear from my precious Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, “Well done, and welcome home, good and faithful servant! Enter into the joy of your Lord!” I know I have to pay a price for serving the Lord. Now my questions to you are, “Will you pay the price now and endure hardness as a good soldier? Or will you pay the price later and have an easy time of it right now? Which will you choose? As for us and our house, we WILL serve the Lord even in the midst of the difficulties and hard times!”

For whatever it takes to be more like YOU, LORD, that’s what I’ll be willing to do in EVERY AREA of life! Change me, mould me and make me into the image of the Lord Jesus Christ. May I lose all desire for my will but give me YOUR desires and YOUR will! AMEN and AMEN!

Learning to Trust

Isn’t it amazing how difficult things can be at times? When one thing happens then it seems like a whole bunch of things happen at times, quite similar to the saying, “When it rains, it pours.” What is worse, when it happens is that we (as human beings) tend to shake our fist in God’s face and blame Him for all the calamities that come our way. Although God allows these things to happen, a lot of times He has to simply to get our attention. We are like little children and our attention wanders from our Saviour’s face quite easily.

One second we will vow to worship and serve the Lord forever then the next second we are selfish monsters, following our own path. Many times the Lord has to discipline so that we will look to Him (once again) and desire to serve Him. To become bitter towards the Lord in the midst of chastisement is to mock the fact that the Lord Jesus Christ loved us enough to die for our sins. Hebrews 12:6 says, “For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.” It later goes on to say that chastening is not pleasant at the time but yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness! Just as we must discipline our children so the Lord must discipline us (a lot) in our Christian walk!

I pray we are desiring to glorify God in every area of life throughout each day!

Delight Yourself in the Lord

I have noticed many discussions on Psalm 37:4, “Delight thyself also in the Lord and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” The ones that talk the loudest about it are normally the ones that are serving only themselves and really do not delight themselves in the Lord. They are so far away from the Lord and live only to please themselves and yet when they receive things they say it’s because they are delighting in the Lord. This causes a shaking of the head and rolling of the eyes because we know that delighting in the Lord means we are truly living FOR the Lord with delight in the things that the Lord delights in. I read this devotional by Charles Spurgeon this morning and am in total agreement. Let us truly delight ourselves in the Lord according to HIS will. This would mean that we submit to Him in every area of life with our only desire to please HIM! Read on!

Psalm 37:4

“Delight thyself also in the Lord…”

The teaching of these words must seem very surprising to those who are strangers to vital godliness, but to the sincere believer it is only the inculcation (definition Here) of a recognised truth. The life of the believer is here described as a delight in God, and we are thus certified of the great fact that true religion overflows with happiness and joy. Ungodly persons and mere professors never look upon religion as a joyful thing; to them it is service, duty, or necessity, but never pleasure or delight. If they attend to religion at all, it is either that they may gain thereby, or else because they dare not do otherwise. The thought of delight in religion is so strange to most men, that no two words in their language stand further apart than ‘holiness’ and ‘delight’.

But believers who know Christ, understand that delight and faith are so blessedly united, that the gates of hell cannot prevail to separate them. They who love God with all their hearts find that His ways are ways of pleasantness, and all His paths are peace. Such joys, such brimful delights, such overflowing blessednesses, do the saints discover in their Lord, that so far from serving Him from custom, they would follow Him though all the world cast out His name as evil. We fear not God because of any compulsion; our faith is no fetter, our profession is no bondage, we are not dragged to holiness, nor driven to duty. No, our piety is our pleasure, our hope is our happiness, our duty is our delight.

Delight and true religion are as allied as root and flower; as indivisible as truth and certainty; they are, in fact, two precious jewels glittering side by side in a setting of gold.

‘Tis when we taste Thy love,
Our joys divinely grow,
Unspeakable like those above,
And heaven begins below.

by Charles Spurgeon