The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"The Grace of His Heart"
While walking our beagle Ellie yesterday, a sprig of briar became embedded in one of her paws. She began to limp, which concerned us that she might have hurt her leg or hip. A quick inspection, however, revealed the briars. I removed them, and after a few steps, Ellie realized she was fine. We continued our walk, grateful for being able to quickly alleviate our pup's discomfort.
How nice it would be if every pain could be so quickly remedied. One day for born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, this will be the case.
"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away" (Revelation 21:4).
We look forward to that day when our Heavenly Father removes all briars of heart and body. Presently, however, another administration of His wisdom and way often accompanies our challenges.
"And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from Me. And He said unto Me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness" (II Corinthians 12:7-9).
Sometimes God delivers us from our trials. Sometimes He delivers us in our trials. The former way of "from" blesses us with relief, leading to grateful thanksgiving. "This poor man cried and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles" (Psalm 34:6). The latter way of "in" leads to grace, that is, to our Heavenly Father humbles us to realize how needy we really are, and how faithful He really is. Indeed, if God allows us to look back on our earthly lives when we are with Him in Heaven, we will doubtless rejoice for those times when He saved us from our troubles. I suspect, however, we will rejoice all the more for those times when thorns remained, and God revealed the grace of His heart rather than the power of His hand. "Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness: He is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous" (Psalm 112:4).
We do well to join the Apostle Paul in praying for ourselves and others that God will remove thorns and wipe away tears. However, if He allows them to remain, we also do well to expect the grace that comes with the thorns and the tears. When God stays His hand of deliverance, He opens His heart of tender mercies. For those who will trust Him when His wisdom determines that challenges remain, illuminations of grace, compassion, and righteousness glimmer from the light rising in the darkness. Yes, when God does not show His hand, He shows His heart.
"The light shineth in darkness."
Weekly Memory Verse
Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all.
Weekly Memory Verse
Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is."
(I John 3:2).