Saturday, December 23, 2023

Orange Moon Saturday, December 23, 2023 "Nearer Than the Norm"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"Nearer Than the Norm"

  "Sometimes, He delivers by the power of His hand, and sometimes, by the presence of His heart.  We can trust Him in both administrations of His love for us."      


      By the power of His hand.  Or by the presence of His heart.

     "This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles" (Psalm 34:6).

    "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1).

    Our Heavenly Father's purposes for us presently require His rescue from our challenges, or His rescue in them.  We rightly rejoice when problems are solved, needs are supplied, pains are comforted, and voids are filled.  Doubtless, our Father also rejoices when His best for us involves the moving of His hand to quickly reveal His provision and protection.  However, some challenges must remain, as with the Apostle Paul's "thorn in the flesh" wherein God fulfills His will for us not by solution, supply, comfort, and filling (II Corinthians 12:7).  We must sometimes know the sufficient grace of His "very present help in trouble," wherein difficulties and pains must linger in order for God's best to be fulfilled in our hearts and lives.  "Thou hast been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble" (Psalm 59:16).

    Our Father takes no pleasure when He must stay His hand from quick deliverance.  "He is gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous… Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear Him" (Psalm 112:4; 103:13).  God loves us enough, however, to administer or allow abiding challenges as the holy means whereby He ever works to fulfill His purpose of conforming us to the spiritual and moral image of the Lord Jesus (Romans 8:28-29).  We will one day know how much our Father's love at times stayed His hand of rescue, administering a grace we could not have known apart from lingering trials and troubles.  It presently does not feel this way.  But it is this way.  "The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble" (Psalm 9:9).

   Scripture never refers to God as "very present" in our blessings.  Certainly we may surmise that He is.  However, the Bible never states this directly.  It does declare our Lord to be nearer than the norm in those things that hurt us.  This we must plant deeply within our hearts as a matter of trusting conviction, first because it is true, and then because we will often need to know God's presence by faith when He seems far away.  "I am with you always" He promises (Matthew 28:20).  By His fullness of compassion for us, our Lord is "very" with us in trouble.  Yes, sometimes He delivers by the power of His hand, and sometimes by the presence of His heart.  We can trust Him in both administrations of His love for us, and He will not fail to be all we need when trials dissolve, or when they linger to make possible glories presently known only in trouble.  

"When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee. When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee."

(Isaiah 43:2)

Weekly Memory Verse

     Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others." 

(Philippians 2:4)






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