Attorneys, doctors, counselors, physical therapists, dentists, fellow ministers, nurses, teachers, disciple-makers, parents . . . hear ye, hear ye! Fragile and fearful are the feelings of most who seek our help. Like tiny feathers, easily blown away in haste, they need to sense we are there to help because we care about them... not just because it's our job. Truth and tact make great bedfellows.
We all know children need unconditional love right when they are most unlovable. Unconditional love loves enough to extend discipline and counsel, but it never lashes out in rage. We are God's children, and His love is unconditional.
Ah! the bridge of grace will bear your weight, brother. Thousands of big sinners have gone across that bridge, yea, tens of thousands have gone over it. I can hear their trampings now as they traverse the great arches of the bridge of salvation. They come by their thousands, by their myriads; e'er since the day when Christ first entered into His glory, they come, and yet never a stone has sprung in that mighty bridge. Some have been the chief of sinners, and some have come at the very last of their days, but the arch has never yielded beneath their weight. I will go with them trusting to the same support; it will bear me over as it has borne them.
Discerning the difference between someone who promotes the commodity of fear for self-gain or someone who is speaking a warning of Heaven is an important distinction to make. The latter helps us know how to live our lives and relate to the unfolding dynamics taking place within a culture in peril. These concerning revelations are an opportunity to pray, prepare, and engage as led by the Spirit.
Our Father may ask us to do something that seems illogical—perhaps to accept more responsibility when we were hoping to reduce our workload, to leave a position that He provided just recently, or to take on an assignment for which we feel ill-equipped. His plan might feel unrealistic in view of our age, stage of life, or health concerns. We must press forward in obedience, regardless of how impractical the request may appear.
We must not get the impression that the Christian life is one continuous conflict, one unbroken irritating struggle against the world, the flesh and the devil. A thousand times no. A heart that learns to die with Christ soon knows the blessed experience of rising with Him, and all the world’s persecutions cannot still the high note of holy joy that springs up in the soul that has become the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit.
The Kingdom of God is His kingship, His rule, His authority. When this is once realized, we can go through the New Testament and find passage after passage where this meaning is evident, where the Kingdom is not a realm or a people but God’s reign. Jesus said that we must “receive the kingdom of God” as little children (Mark 10:15). What is received? The Church? Heaven? What is received is God’s rule. In order to enter the future realm of the Kingdom, one must submit himself in perfect trust to God’s rule here and now. We must also “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness” (Matt. 6: 33). What is the object of our quest? The Church? Heaven? No, we are to seek God’s righteousness—His sway, His rule, His reign in our lives.