Friday, November 21, 2014

Finding Purpose in Failure

Now the man called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all the living.
Genesis 3:20

In the moment of her great defeat, Eve received her name.

That really struck me today. Why on earth, and in that moment, would Adam have thought to give her a name? A quick look back in my reading revealed that this was not in fact the first name she was given. She had been called Woman, and had been purposed as a helper.

But in that role she had utterly failed. And here they were, cast out and away, heartbroken and divided. With the dawn of their failure and a new way of living lives separated from God's presence, more than ever, these people needed hope. And in this divinely inspired and ordained moment, Eve became a picture of that hope. Mother, bearer of life.

She would bring life into the world with pain and hardship, but it would give way to something greater. A joyful reunion of mother and child after a traumatic separation. She would become a living picture, a prophecy that one day, joy, new life and deliverance from the curse would come. Her descendant would be the Conqueror. His birth would usher in freedom and restoration from that terrible separation and defeat.

You and I, the bride of Christ, experience moments of weakness. We are called...we fail. We are driven by our passion, our desire for possessions, and or yearning for position, just as Eve was. And we give in sometimes. And yet, just as the first Adam, the last Adam, Jesus, from whose side we have been given life, chose to "call" and "purpose" us, even in our frailty.

Be a container of the hope. Be a giver of life. Be a reminder and a picture of the life that is to come through Christ. Remember, that just as in Eve's life, even after our greatest defeat, we can still receive our greatest calling.

Thankful for that truth today.

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.
1 Peter 3:15

Blessings to you today...


Monday, November 10, 2014

Who's Your Architect?

"For you died when Christ died, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your real life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory."
Colossians 3:3-4

Discovered over the weekend that the word for know, that big boat you're envisioning right now, crammed with elephants and giraffs and Noah's actually the word for "box." In fact, many linguists think that this was a derivative for an Egyptian word that meant "coffin." Yikes! So while we think of God commissioning the building of a boat, the real story is that God commanded Noah to build a box that looked like a coffin. Maybe Noah's peers laughed at him He built. "So...what you're saying is getting in that giant coffin is going to save your family from a flood we haven't seen? Riiiiight." I might have raised an eyebrow myself...after all, it didn't make any sense that this is the way life would be the time, it didn't even seem like a necessity! It was at best ironic, and at worst, insane.

Surrender and obedience can, often, to the world, look crazy and irrational. They can feel like a form of death as we release our vision of our lives, our control, and what makes sense to us. That's what Jesus meant when he said "whoever will save his life must lose it." But more than that, the ark is a picture of Christ's death on our behalf, and our resulting deliverance, eternal security. The door in the side through which they entered symbolizes our doorway through the death and injury of Jesus, the atoning blood and the purifying water flowing from His side...

Though it may not make sense, and relinquishing control may be hard for you (as it is for me!), remember that the place that seemed rational, the plan that didn't include God in the days of Noah, resulted in separation, destruction and death. But there came a time when out of that ark, that "coffin," erupted a new beginning, a people of God, a life and a future and victory on solid ground.

Enter in to that place, as crazy as it sounds...forget about all the things you are building and simply enter in to place and plan commissioned just for you by God. Look up at the window while you rest safely and securely and thank Him in prayer for the light, the warmth and His hand at work in providing that security. And as the waters of confusion and destruction rage all around you, smile, knowing that God's plan and provision and grace always... always ...rise above...always prevail...always lead to life...

"But where sin increased, grace increased all the more."
Romans 5:20

"I am the door, if anyone enters through me he will be saved."
John 10:9

Thanks be unto our wonderful Father for His wonderfulword, and His steadfast love...and blessings to you today, sweet friends!
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