God Has The Plan For All Time

gods-time

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“It is too late.”
The old man shook his head.

“It is never too late or too soon. It is when it is supposed to be.”
He smiled. “There is a plan, Dor.” 1

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Human “measures” of time:  Attempts to control, restrain, encapsulate time.

–Hourglass sands sifting downward, a visible motion of forward time.

–Watch hands advancing time in a procession of seconds, minutes, hours.

–A time construct for awakening with alarm and snooze buttons.

–Lights at street intersections indicating times to stop or move ahead.

–Anti-aging creams with Retinol A, attempting reversals of time.

 God’s measure of time:  He has the plan for all time.

–But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. (2 Peter 3:8)

6 Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1: 6-8)

–Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. (James 4:14)

32“But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. (Mark 13:32-33)

TIME

We cannot hold onto it, for it is not tangible.

We cannot measure it, for there is no measure.

We cannot control it, for it is in God’s control.

God has a plan: (Ecclesiastes 3:2-8)

    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
    a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
    a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
    a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven

(Ecclesiastes 3:1)

“It is never too late or too soon. It is when it is supposed to be.” 1

 1Albom, Mitch. The Time Keeper.www.goodreads.com

(Sharon G. Tate blog 08/28/16) teacherforjesus.com  Meditations on God’s Word

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SELFLESSNESS: Christ Living in me

Selflessness mind of Jesus 

           5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:               Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross! (Philippians 2:5-8)

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SELFISHNESS: All about me and what or whom I want living in me

 ME-tooism: the adopting of policies or practices similar or identical to those of a peer or competitor; the practice of imitating other people’s work or ideas.1

 Have we become a society of “ME TOO?”

Pokemon Go: ME TOO. #Hashtag whatever: ME TOO. What you feel is what is real: ME TOO.

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 –Jesus forgives the adulteress for her transgressions, telling her, Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.” 1 Me too? –or do I not forgive and remember others’ sins instead?

–Jesus washes the feet of His disciples. Me too?—or do I feel such an act is beneath me?

–Jesus takes time alone to pray to His Father.  Me too?—or am I too busy…doing?

–Jesus does not submit to Satan’s temptations. Me too?–or am I too weak in the Word to hold true?

–Jesus obeys His Father, saying, Not my will, but thine, be done.”3 Me too? –or is it My will over Thine?

–Jesus suffered as the innocent victim, with no retaliation against His oppressors, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” 4 Me too?—or am I feeling wronged and angry, wanting to lash out?

–Jesus accepted the cross, sacrificing His life for others. Me too?–or is such a sacrifice too great to even consider?

–Jesus arose from the dead to live with His Father in heaven.  Me too???

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We are called to have the “same mindset as Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5)— and not the mindset of friends, peers, celebrities, sports stars, or any other but Him. Jesus is the only One to follow. He is the only One who is real.

That very reality of Thomas touching the nail holes in the hands of our Lord and our Savior puts us in touch with His forgiving, loving, sacrificing mindset and spirit. And we think, “If only that was me too with the mindset and spirit of Christ.”

From Selfishness to Selflessness

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)

(Sharon G. Tate blog 08/21/16) teacherforjesus.com  Meditations on God’s Word

1http://www.thefreedictionary.com

2John 8:11

3Luke 22:41

4Luke 23:34

Why, Lord” –The child asks, approaching the Father.

Confidence in God with child praying

“WHY?”  The question all toddlers seem to ask—repeatedly, again and again, on-going, without ceasing, right up to the moment they finally give in to sleep. And we, the parents, breathe out a sigh of relief, being freed from the seemingly endless “WHYs” for a little while.

But this question from a child, though somewhat annoying in repetition, does indicate curiosity and, likely, wonder. The “Why?” question wants a reason, an explanation, some rationale, a justification. The toddler doesn’t want an in-depth explanatory for his or her question, but does want a response that is more than “Just because.”

Before God, we are, often, toddlers, still learning to grow up in His Word. And most of us have asked God the “Why?” question more than once. We have wanted a reason for a tragedy, an explanation for a seemingly senseless act of violence, some rationale for a diagnosis of a terminal disease, or a justification for what we have regarded as unfair treatment by others. “Why, God?” we have asked, again and again.

David, Gideon, and the prophet Habakkuk asked the “Why?” question before God:

–“Why, Lord, do you stand far off?  Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? “(Psalm 10:1)

–“O God, why have you rejected us forever? Why does your anger smolder against the sheep of your pasture?  . . . Why do you hold back your hand, your right hand?” (Psalm 74:1, 11)

— “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us?” (Judges 6:13)

–“Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?” (Habakkuk 1:3)

Can we/should we question God?

 20 But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” (Romans 9:20 with reference to Isaiah 29:16; 45:9)

As “toddlers” before our God, we are very small, looking upward to this Awesome Presence, our Father. He listens to our questions, our concerns, even our “WHYs” if we approach Him in a manner of honor, submission, and respect. His reason, explanation, rationale, or justification is His own, from knowledge and understanding we don’t possess. What we should bring before Him is the faith of a child, looking up to the Father with complete trust that His arms are secure. We must trust that the “Why?” is for His reason—whether one of protection, testing, future plans, impact on others, or even our own salvation.

 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” (Matthew 18: 2-5)

Let us be like the little child, approaching our Father’s open arms to ask our “WHY?” questions with acceptance that He has already answered them.

With his feathers He will cover you,
under his wings you will find safety.
His truth is your shield and armor.
(Psalm 91:4)

(Sharon G. Tate blog 08/14/16) teacherforjesus.com Meditations on God’s Word

God’s Mercy and Grace to Sinners—You and Me

 

Grace amazing

21-23 It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge. 24 I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?

25 The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different. (Romans 7:21-25 The Message)

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Is there not a sort of blood shed when the conscience is wounded? 1

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The Apostle Paul clearly states the Christian’s dilemma: We love God and His Word, yet we sin against God and His Word. When we do sin, our conscience should be “wounded” and we may have “a sort of blood shed” inside of us, knowing that we have betrayed our beliefs and, in the process, also hurt our Lord and Savior by our actions and thoughts.  But it is not the shedding of a single drop of our “blood” that can save us. The only saving grace for our weakness in sinning is Jesus Christ, who took our sins upon Himself and shed His own blood that we might live.  He taught us how to overcome sin through His life on earth, and He saved us through His sacrifice on the cross.

21-25This is the kind of life you’ve been invited into, the kind of life Christ lived. He suffered everything that came his way so you would know that it could be done, and also know how to do it, step-by-step.  He never did one thing wrong, Not once said anything amiss.

They called Him every name in the book and He said nothing back. He suffered in silence, content to let God set things right. He used his servant body to carry our sins to the Cross so we could be rid of sin, free to live the right way. His wounds became your healing. You were lost sheep with no idea who you were or where you were going. Now you’re named and kept for good by the Shepherd of your souls. (1 Peter 2:24-25 The Message)

Jesus is our Shepherd, a refuge from outside dangers. But we have to draw near to Him in order to receive this protection. When we stray outside His fold, we confront temptations to sin. It is through God’s grace and mercy that we can return again and again to His opening arms, in spite of our sins, for they are covered by the blood of Christ. Yet, we must feel the wound in our conscience to approach Him. We have sinned before the Lord. This conscience, embedded within us by God in creation, should bring us to our knees in penitence. It is, then, that the Lord can draw us back to Him—though He waits for us to come long before this repentance occurs.  This wound, festering inside us from sins we commit, must hurt and bleed, so that we need to ask forgiveness and seek healing through the salve of His mercy and grace.

 God’s Mercy and Grace for You and Me, Sinners.

Thank you, Lord.

1Thoreau, Henry David. Civil Disobedience – Part 2 of 3.  http://thoreau.eserver.org/civil2

(Sharon G. Tate blog 08/07/16) teacherforjesus.com  Meditations on God’s Word