The Lord Is My Strength
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  1. #1
    Meg
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    Default The Lord Is My Strength

    Ravi Zacharias said something in this series that explained something I had never fully understood before. He said that for the Christian, joy comes from within, while the sorrows of circumstances are on the outside. For the unbeliever, the bitterness and sorrow are in the center, and joy is on the outside. That made perfect sense to me, and Mr Zacharias explanation finally made sense of the paradox of suffering in the Christian experience. Here's the link to the whole series; the statement I referenced is in pert 2 or 3, I'm not entirely sure which off the top of my head.

    Has Christianity failed you? 2 on Vimeo

    Scripture states in many ways that the Lord strengthens us. Here are two examples:

    Isaiah 40:31
    but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
    Philippians 4:13
    I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
    We all know that Scripture is true, at least we do on our better days; its on our worst days that the doubts creep in, and maybe we're not so sure... It is on those bad days, those impossibly worst days that we must reach very deep for the promised strength, this is exactly what Stand Firm means. And when we do that, when we insist on searching for our guidance and strength in Scripture, in prayer and in Jesus Christ, we will indeed find how true all this is. When I need Him most, I find Jesus Christ standing in one place, not waiting, just standing, and because He stands in that one place, I am able to find Him. When I do find Him, thats when He strengthens me. If I were the only one who ever said something like that, I guess there would be room for doubt, but in Scripture, Paul says exactly the same thing:

    2 Corinthians 4:8-9
    8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.
    It is because our strength and our joy comes from within, through the indwelling Holy Spirit of Jesus Christ that we have the strength that is not our own to stand in the storm. This is not "natural" because it is not of the flesh which perishes, rather our strength and our faith are of the spirit which shall be Eternal in Christ. For this reason, our joy and our strength, and the Peace which passes all understanding are unnatural and unfamiliar, but in spite of all that, this Peace in Christ is very real, and we can and should embrace it with full confidence in our Lord. That, dear sisters and brothers, is how faith is forged in the furnace of affliction, and why this is the way it is unfolded.

    May each of you rest in Jesus Christ alone... From the inside.

  2. #2
    Meg
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    Default Re: The Lord Is My Strength

    I listened to the Ravi Zacharias videos for the second time last night. If anyone missed the first post, this is it: Has Christianity failed you? 2 on Vimeo

    Among other things, Mr Zacharias said that for the Christian, the central questions of life are answered, even if the peripheral ones are not. That is the key to how we find our strength in Jesus Christ no matter what else is happening, and that is why affliction is a necessary part of our growth in the Lord.

    First of all, I need to explain why this makes sense to me. I spent most of my adult life sure that there is a god, but having no idea who or what the genuine God really is. Most of my closest friends were the same way, we were sure that at times we had been blessed by a god of some sort, but none of us could define Him, so when the going got difficult and confusing, we had no center, no central Truth to help us find our way, so many of us were very unstable, groping blindly for solutions anywhere we could get them. This led to serious drug abuse, temporary relationships with people we might have thought we loved but couldn't seem to stay with, insanity and suicide. Yes, it was that bad. It also led to false spirituality which failed the credibility test for me personally, because the identity of God was totally up-for-grabs. It worked like this; I think I'll try the Celtic gods for a while. Oops, that didn't work, how about the Norse... Hey, my friend over there is into the Sumerian, thats kinda cool. Those folks are into Yoga and Buddhism... It was a "flavor of the week" type thing that could, and did, lead anywhere and everywhere, and because anything was possible, anything could be justified. But at the center of it all was this fact, your woundedness and your bitterness was the definition of your identity. Kind of an "I bleed therefore I am" sort of thing. This is why I rejected new age, this is why I took a chance on Jesus Christ, even though I found organized religion and all the theological and doctrinal differences so confusing (for the record, I was raised strict Catholic).

    It was only when Jesus Christ, in His profound mercy, was kind enough to give me one more chance to see Him for Who and what He truly is, that everything started to make sense. Finally, and only after I had lost confidence in absolutely everything else there is or can be to depend on, Jesus Christ gave me a chance yet again, and this time, I took Him up on it. From the first time I finally started reading the Bible, I found an absolute Center upon which I could depend. I found the Bible was making more sense than many of the preachers did, because the preachers were talking about money and things money can buy, but the Bible was teaching about working from the inside out towards a relationship with God which was and still is healing me, because as I learn to see God for Who He is, He shows me who He thinks I am and why. It doesn't stop there, though, He constantly reminds me that He is doing the same thing in every sister and every brother who serve Him as well, and that their victory in Him is every bit as important as my own. That matters to me, because I was born out of wedlock, given up for adoption, and spent most of my entire life certain that I was a mistake, and that there was so much wrong with me that I was a good argument for abortion. It took the Lord several years to weed that whole mess out of me, but He thought it was worth doing. He's different that way...

    So, in conclusion, the Lord strengthens and corrects us from the inside. He is our beacon, our fortress, our justification, our truth, our identity. We are free in Him, because we are free from the lies and misconceptions that try to claim that we are nothing but the sum of our mistakes and failures. According to Jesus Christ, we were created with something worthwhile to offer the world around us, but understand this:

    ONLY Jesus Christ can see us well enough to know what we really are.

    ONLY Jesus Christ will tell us the truth about what is right with us.

    ONLY the Holy Bible can teach us how to respond to and unite with Jesus Christ.

    The ONLY way to the Father, to the real God everybody talks so much these days is

    THROUGH HIS SON JESUS CHRIST

    Amen

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    Default Re: The Lord Is My Strength

    amen

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    JC1949 is offline Citizen

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    Thumbs up Re: The Lord Is My Strength

    Quote Originally Posted by Meg View Post
    I listened to the Ravi Zacharias videos for the second time last night. If anyone missed the first post, this is it: Has Christianity failed you? 2 on Vimeo

    Among other things, Mr Zacharias said that for the Christian, the central questions of life are answered, even if the peripheral ones are not. That is the key to how we find our strength in Jesus Christ no matter what else is happening, and that is why affliction is a necessary part of our growth in the Lord.

    First of all, I need to explain why this makes sense to me. I spent most of my adult life sure that there is a god, but having no idea who or what the genuine God really is. Most of my closest friends were the same way, we were sure that at times we had been blessed by a god of some sort, but none of us could define Him, so when the going got difficult and confusing, we had no center, no central Truth to help us find our way, so many of us were very unstable, groping blindly for solutions anywhere we could get them. This led to serious drug abuse, temporary relationships with people we might have thought we loved but couldn't seem to stay with, insanity and suicide. Yes, it was that bad. It also led to false spirituality which failed the credibility test for me personally, because the identity of God was totally up-for-grabs. It worked like this; I think I'll try the Celtic gods for a while. Oops, that didn't work, how about the Norse... Hey, my friend over there is into the Sumerian, thats kinda cool. Those folks are into Yoga and Buddhism... It was a "flavor of the week" type thing that could, and did, lead anywhere and everywhere, and because anything was possible, anything could be justified. But at the center of it all was this fact, your woundedness and your bitterness was the definition of your identity. Kind of an "I bleed therefore I am" sort of thing. This is why I rejected new age, this is why I took a chance on Jesus Christ, even though I found organized religion and all the theological and doctrinal differences so confusing (for the record, I was raised strict Catholic).

    It was only when Jesus Christ, in His profound mercy, was kind enough to give me one more chance to see Him for Who and what He truly is, that everything started to make sense. Finally, and only after I had lost confidence in absolutely everything else there is or can be to depend on, Jesus Christ gave me a chance yet again, and this time, I took Him up on it. From the first time I finally started reading the Bible, I found an absolute Center upon which I could depend. I found the Bible was making more sense than many of the preachers did, because the preachers were talking about money and things money can buy, but the Bible was teaching about working from the inside out towards a relationship with God which was and still is healing me, because as I learn to see God for Who He is, He shows me who He thinks I am and why. It doesn't stop there, though, He constantly reminds me that He is doing the same thing in every sister and every brother who serve Him as well, and that their victory in Him is every bit as important as my own. That matters to me, because I was born out of wedlock, given up for adoption, and spent most of my entire life certain that I was a mistake, and that there was so much wrong with me that I was a good argument for abortion. It took the Lord several years to weed that whole mess out of me, but He thought it was worth doing. He's different that way...

    So, in conclusion, the Lord strengthens and corrects us from the inside. He is our beacon, our fortress, our justification, our truth, our identity. We are free in Him, because we are free from the lies and misconceptions that try to claim that we are nothing but the sum of our mistakes and failures. According to Jesus Christ, we were created with something worthwhile to offer the world around us, but understand this:

    ONLY Jesus Christ can see us well enough to know what we really are.

    ONLY Jesus Christ will tell us the truth about what is right with us.

    ONLY the Holy Bible can teach us how to respond to and unite with Jesus Christ.

    The ONLY way to the Father, to the real God everybody talks so much these days is

    THROUGH HIS SON JESUS CHRIST

    Amen
    YES MEG ,YES ONLY JESUS!!!!


    Praise The Lord Sister!!!!










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