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October 18, 2017

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HAD IT NOT BEEN FOR THE LORD

"If the LORD had not been on our side." Psalm 124:1

Where would we be today, had it not been for the Lord? We can all recall many occasions that would have been disastrous and even fatal, had it not been for the Lord. How soon we forget...and we go on living our lives as if His grace and mercy were just a matter of course. No, it isn't a matter of course. God has spared us for a reason, and it should be imperative on our part to take a keen look at "where we are" in our relationship with the Lord. The Holy Spirit seeks to draw us into an intimate, personal walk with the Lord, so we might know the reality of our faith in a practical everyday companionship.

To turn "head faith" into a "personal possession" is always a fight, not just sometimes. It is the "trial of our faith" that reveals the reality of our devotion to Christ. That's one reason God brings us into these trying experiences, that He may awaken us to the great need in our lives. God wants our utmost trust and dependence on Him. It's one thing to talk about the power of God and His faithfulness, but yet another to experience His presence "in" the trial He permits us to go through. Trusting Him "in" the difficulty drives us to bear our hearts before Him, trusting Him without reservation. Paul said, "I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content" (Philippians 4:1). It was through the beatings, shipwreck, privations, imprisonment, scorn, rejections, stoning, and numerous other encounters that drove him to "abandon" himself to Christ. BUT, it was IN these encounters He grew mighty in faith that would not waver under all circumstances! It was the "means" that made his walk with the Lord a constant companionship. He did not forget God's hand on him in those occasions. They were inscribed upon his heart and the reason he was forever a debtor to the love, grace, and mercy of God. Such occasions in our lives are to draw us near to the heart of God. A dear lady gave me a poem just before I went overseas in WW II that is so meaningful.

"But child I have a reason for all that I allow,
I ask thee to trust Me, though all seems dark just now.
How often thou hast asked Me to purge away thy dross!
But this refining process involves for thee...a cross.
There is no other pathway if thou wouldst really be,
Conformed unto the image of Him who died for thee.
Thou canst not be like Jesus till self is crucified,
And as a daily process the cross must be applied.
Then shrink not from the training I needs must give to thee;
I know just how to make thee what I would have thee be.

How often God uses the most devastating experiences in our lives to be the "most blessed." When darkness seems to obliterate all hope...He is separating the dross from our lives...refining and cleansing us. He takes the broken pieces of our lives and makes something beautiful out of them. But He can only do this when we are submissive to His leading.

"Remember all the way He has lead thee." It was the Lord that interceded...protected...delivered...upheld...and brought you through! Make Him the LORD of your life, and live in praise and thanksgiving for all He has done...and in awe of ALL HE IS!

© 2007 by Ed Powell. Used by permission.


This page was reprinted by permission from: http://litmin.org/dare.php?date=2017-10-18


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