Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Ever heard the expression – Life happens?  It is amazing how it happens to us on such a regular basis.  Since I like to have things go in an orderly fashion, when something happens that throws it off, it really messes with me.

As I have worked on the things around the house, I would make a cut and then find out it was wrong.  I would move from the house to the garage and find that my tape measurer was still in the house.  I would examine the board I was about to cut several times before I cut just to make sure I didn’t mess anything up.  I wanted it done as close to right as I could get it.

            Summer months really mess with me.  People are gone on vacation or just slipped away for the weekend.  They aren’t in the service and things are just different than I desired them to be.  When this happens I begin to question in my mind what is going on.  Why aren’t things moving forward the way they need to move?

            But these times make me stop and think.  Where is it written that things are going to go the way I think they should?  I mean, think about it.  If things went the way I think they should our world would be in a real mess!

            I will have to admit that my desire to see things move forward has become somewhat distorted.  I believe that at times I even lost sight of what is truly important.  I would preach only to find myself confronted with issues that had no place in my life, let alone my heart.  Pulling out seemed to be an option for me.

            Then as quickly as that thought entered my mind, God’s word spoke to my heart and pulling out was no longer an option.  In Jeremiah 20:9 we find that Jeremiah had been struggling with preaching to a people who refused to listen.  He said, “But if I say, ‘I will not remember Him or speak anymore in His name,’ then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire shut up in my bones; and I am weary of holding it in, and I cannot endure it.”

            You see Jeremiah’s call was to preach repentance to the people and help lead them back to the God of Israel.  Things weren’t going as he thought they should.  Even at the end of his ministry he surely felt that way.  He spent 40 years preaching to the people without there being a sign of repentance on the part of the people.  Talk about a bummer!!

            While Jeremiah was called to preach a message of repentance to the people of Jerusalem, God has called me to preach His word where I am.  He has called me to preach salvation to people who are lost, to call the church to be on mission in a world that is hurting, and disciple those who have come into the kingdom.  In this calling is the vision to see our world changed in their relationship to Christ.

            If the church is not reaching the lost, lifting up the down-trodden, teaching God’s truths, then we have missed our calling.  We must remember that God has planned the work and the mechanics are in place to accomplish the work.  We must pray that God’s word will be ‘like a burning fire shut up in our bones’.

            By the way, it might not always go as you thought it should, but that’s fine.  Just remember that things didn’t go as Job, Daniel, Isaiah, Peter, James, John and Paul felt like they should.  I would say that there are those today that will say things don’t go like they think it should all the time.

            It is more important that things move in accordance with God’s will than for things to be the way we ‘thought they ought to be.’  So just let the word of God continue to be ‘a fire in your bones’, preach and teach God’s word as it is revealed to you, and then things will be the way God wants them to be.  After all, isn’t that the best way?

JESUS, JESUS, JESUS, there IS something about that name!

Christ only, always,

Bro. Paul