Jesus Wept. (John 11:35)

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Testimony Patricia King

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Why does God allow suffering?

The bible says that the Messiah, Jesus Christ, would be ..“despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.” (Isaiah 53:3) The world has its psychology programs that define what are called the "5 stages of grief". These stages have their use, but it clear that God wants us to come to Him when we are hurting. "Cast all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. (1Peter 5:7) Although it is hard to understand, human beings hurt because we live in a fallen world where everything falls short of perfection. In psychological theory it has been said that "depression is anger turned inward." Some of us have lost a loved one or are dealing with grief. We may feel all alone with nowhere to turn. That is when we need to cry out to God. For our healing, we need to weep. Ecclesiates 7:3 "3Sorrow is better than laughter; for by the sadness of the face the heart is made good." The word of God has been true for a long time but science is only now catching up with the fact that crying is good for us and aids in our healing. "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.."Matthew 5:4. How is it that God would comfort us? The build up of negative emotions can have a devastatingly negative effect on our body. When these build up as emotional pressure, we must not supress our desire to cry. Crying is the physical means by which we can have a "pouring out" of these emotions and can pave way for God to fill us with His Peace. It says in John 14: 1 "Let not your hearts be troubled, believe in God and also in me." Futher down it also states, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid." (John 14:27) Psalm 147:3 "3He heals the broken in heart, and binds up their wounds." If you have gone through a loss consider that fact that God is a restorer. The word "peace" in the Hebrew language is translated as "nothing broken, nothing missing." While suffering is difficult, none of us knows what it must have felt like to experience facing death on a cross. Jesus experienced many of the same emotions as we have and He wept at times. He was moved with compassion and Healed and restored everyone who came to Him.

Here is a prayer that you can pray to recieve him:

“Father, I know that I have broken your laws and my sins have separated me from you. I am truly sorry, and now I want to turn away from my past sinful life toward you. Please forgive me, and help me avoid sinning again. I renounce anything evil and bind myself to the truth. I believe that your Son, Jesus Christ died for my sins, was resurrected from the dead, and is alive. I invite you, Jesus, to become the Lord of my life, to rule and reign in my heart from this day forward. Please send your Holy Spirit to guide me and help me obey Your word for the rest of my life. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.”

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LIVOTIONALS: (a devotional about life)

If your Son ask for a fish would you give him a stone?

Jesus asked this as a question in the New Testament. But what was He trying to communicate? He was trying to share How much more His Father would be there for us and for our needs. While it might not seem like He is there, while it might seem to you that He not there at all, He really is. He understands our grief, and our pains, and our sorrows and our frustrations. And He is able to deliever!

As an example of this, I know of someone who's son worked at a Fastfood restaurant as a first job. He has developed a great rapport with his co-workers there. He has done very well there, but he got an itch to work at another job. He decided to put in his two week notice after he got hired at another job for about $2.00 more per hour. Sounds like a good deal does it not? Well to most it did, but when he began to work there he started realizing the difference in food mentality including their relative sanitation and the way they treated each other.

Yet, he was now caught between a rock and a hard place. He had originally quit the first job and then asked the boss if he could be reinstated. The boss agreed at the first job, but he still had the second job. The jobs immediatly began to conflict with there schedules and he was beggining to feel the trap of the situation. His Father soon recognized what he was going through and asked which job did he really want to work. It turned out to be the lower paying job. Sometimes the best things are not always the best things.

His Father then called the second job and asked if He could quit without putting in a two week notice, seeing as how he just started, without penalty. He was freed immediately. He as a father was concerned about his son's well being and what he was going through. He allowed his son to go through the situation, but at a point He decided to help his son out and bring him out of the situation. He did it out of his Fatherly love for his son. So just as the parable goes, how much more, will your Heavenly Father give good things to you?

We need to entrust ourselves over really entrust ourselves, to a loving Father who is also our Creator. What a great feeling it was for the son to get freed from his situation. Why don't we not take ourselves a little time and crawl into the lap of our loving Father in heaven. Sure He is God, and He is Lord, but He does love us greatly. Let's put our situation into His loving hands, and let him carry our burdens, ok? Go ahead. He's waiting right there for you. We come to the Father through His Son Jesus. Go ahead Make His day.

Handling discouragement, depression or apparent failure
by Grantly Morris


Dark Blessings
The curtains are often drawn in God’s waiting room. It’s exciting to gaze ahead, but faith grows best in the dark. Life in the sunshine is so exhilarating that we seldom notice our faith beginning to droop. It’s when things are dim, that spiritual life mushrooms.

God’s saints accomplish great things while staggering around in dazed bewilderment. ‘By faith,’ says Scripture, ‘Abraham, ... went out, not knowing whither he went.’ (Hebrews 11:8 – emphasis mine) ‘I go bound in the Spirit to Jerusalem,’ said Paul, ‘not knowing the things that shall befall me there.’ (Acts 20:22 – emphasis mine) The disciples were frequently stunned or mystified by Christ’s words and behaviour. The psalmists were forever asking, ‘Why?’ (Eg. Psalm 10:1; 22:1; 42:9; 43:2; 44:23; 74:1; 88:14) And in the midst of his suffering, Job didn’t have a clue what was going on.
Dark mysteries bring great blessings. At the close of the year that saw the death of his newborn son and then the death of his wife and then assaults on his own health, Hudson Taylor wrote, ‘This was the most sorrowful and most blessed year of my life.’ When it’s sunny we want to run off and play. It’s when it’s darkest that we hold Father’s hand the tightest.

In the gloom, qualities like faith, grit, and dedication, are stretched to limits we have never before reached. Yet life seems so oppressive we are oblivious to our triumphs.

In pristine conditions eyes of faith can see forever. When storms close in, it is a mammoth task for those same eyes to even slightly pierce the swirling murk. It is the conditions, not you, that have deteriorated. Contrary to every feeling, you are not regressing.

Though offered with the best intentions, much sentimental waffle is sometimes uttered about returning to one’s ‘first love’, as if the starry-eyed euphoria of new Christians is greater than the mature depths of your average older Christian. Poppycock! Most spiritual honeymooners are radiant primarily because they think they have entered a blissful world of near-perfect Christians, instant answers to selfish prayers and a life forever free from pain, heartache and trials. Theirs is most likely mere puppy love, relative to the ardour moving you to tough it out.

Never confuse devotion with emotion. By way of illustration, consider the dangers inherent in the most intimate human relationship. Though in a romance, love and physical desire can be intertwined, heartache and tragedy looms for anyone who fails to recognise them as separate entities. What if a person’s marriage plans are swayed by an inability to distinguish between love and sexual appetite? What if in marriage a loss of sexual function is viewed as a decline in love? Such a misconception could threaten the whole relationship. Similarly, in the spiritual realm a failure to distinguish between feelings and love for God has serious implications.

Though I’m all for emotional exuberance, the Bible measures love, not in tingles per second, but in putting one’s life on the line. (1 John 3:16-18) It’s pain endured in the valley, not gooey feelings in the afterglow of mountaintop ecstasy, that validates love. By all means, passionately seek the face of God, but don’t assume that emotional deadness – a normal phase of anyone’s spiritual life – implies spiritual deadness. We march by faith, not by warm fuzzies.

An athlete, in the midst of a record-breaking run, has never in his life been so fit and strong. Yet his pain-racked body may have never felt so weak. Likewise, in the midst of a spiritual trial, it is not uncommon to be stronger and yet feel weaker than ever before. And to fellow Christians you might seem hopeless. An ultra-marathon champion staggering up the final hill looks pathetic. A child could do better. Anyone not understanding what this man has gone through would shrink from him in disgust. Only someone with all the facts would be awed by his stamina as he stumbles on.

Consider Scott and his team, who struggled to the South Pole only to discover their honour of being the first to reach the Pole was lost forever. Amundsen had beaten them by about a month. To add to the futility, they endured further blizzards, illness, frostbite and starvation only to perish; the last three dying just a few miles from safety. Yet today their miserable defeat ending with death in frozen isolation, witnessed by not a living soul, is hailed as one on the greatest ever epics of human exploration and endurance.

Every fibre of my being is convinced that their glory is just a shadow of what you can achieve. Though you suffer in isolation and apparent futility, the depths of your trial known to no one on earth, your name could be blazed in heaven’s lights, honoured forever by heaven’s throngs for your epic struggle with despair, illness, bereavement, or whatever. The day is coming when what is endured in secret will be shouted from the housetops. Look at Job: bewildered, maligned, misunderstood; battling not some heroic foe but essentially common things – a financial reversal, bereavement, illness; – not cheered on by screaming fans, just booed by some one-time friends. If even on this crazy planet Job is honoured today, I can’t imagine the acclaim awaiting you when all is revealed. Your battle with life’s miseries can be as daring as David’s encounter with Goliath. Don’t worry that others don’t understand this at present. One day they will. And that day will never end.
Life seems hopeless. Every day it feels you’ve slumped another notch. To maintain even a glimmer of faith in such darkness is a spectacular victory. It may take everything you’ve got just to hold on. But do it. You are pumping spiritual iron.

If your blossom is dying, it’s so that the fruit can grow. Remember the cripple at the temple gate: he hoped for alms and got legs. (Acts 3:1-3) Creator God loves surprises. And he loves you.
Earth sees us flattened on the wrestling ring canvas in faith’s fight. Heaven sees us forming on the canvas of the Great Artist.
Half-completed works of art look ugly. All that matters, however, is the finished masterpiece. Forget appearances. Yield to the Artist. The result will be breath-taking.

Continued. . .