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Stop Giving God Advice

One of these days I may get through Romans 11 and 12.  I guess for now I am stuck there until God says, “When you learn to stop giving Me advice, you may move on!”

Back into Romans chapter 11 now:

It seems that God’s mercy is for everyone.  Our Father God’s secretive plan is now revealed to Paul.  Clearly, God’s chosen people, the Hebrews, will be reinstated into spiritual fellowship with Himself via a circuitous route.  Since Jesus has been rejected by many of the Jews, God extends His mercy to include the Gentiles.  Oh my!  Such a thing must have been unthinkable back then!

30Once, you Gentiles were rebels against God, but when the people of Israel rebelled against Him, God was merciful to you instead. ~ Romans 11:30

But don’t think proudly that Gentiles are greater than Hebrews; for the mystery Paul talks about in verses 25-26 is that the Israelites will again turn to their Almighty God for salvation in Jesus once the full number of Gentiles comes to Christ.

31Now they (Hebrews) are the rebels, and God’s mercy has come to you (Gentiles) so that they, too, will share in God’s mercy. 32For God has imprisoned everyone in disobedience so He could have mercy on everyone.      ~ Romans 11:31-32

Why was this kept a secret by God throughout the centuries?  The answer could be as simple as God not allowing Satan in on the secret – loose lips and all that.

33Oh, how great are God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How impossible it is for us to understand His decisions and His ways! 34 For who can know the Lord’s thoughts? Who knows enough to give Him advice? 35 And who has given Him so much that He needs to pay it back? ~Romans 11:33-35

Thank you, Lord, for including me in that number of fullness.  I am convinced that it is the most merciful, sacred, and secret number.  Even your prophets were never told.

May that number be so large that Heaven has to be enlarged to hold us.

Father, may it be as Your will dictates.

36For everything comes from Him and exists by His power and is intended for His glory. All glory to Him forever! Amen ~Romans 11:33-36

Don’t Die This Semester!

My college economics professor let it be known on the first day that there would be no excused absences in his class.   He stated that being absent was an automatic course drop and therefore an incomplete grade – a horror in 1969.

Of course there are always the exceptions …

“I have heard every phony excuse there is for missing my class.  Don’t do it!  There are only two legitimate reasons for missing my class per semester:”

  1. “You got married”
  2. “You died”

Naturally, about two weeks later I missed class.  As I approached him timidly about it, he said, “WELL, I SEE YOU AREN’T DEAD, SO BRING ME YOUR MARRIAGE CERTIFICATE.”

I felt like saluting as I said, “YES SIR!” and hurriedly escaped to obey his command (Yes, I was just married).

Strike One!

Over the coming months all went well, even though it soon became painfully obvious that econ was not my forte.  However, one fateful day I missed class again. I was terrified to approach his desk.  Did I mention that I was diligently striving for at least a 3.5 GPA; and this problem was not supposed to be part of the picture?

As I opened my mouth to blurt my excuse he cut me off with, “I SEE YOU ARE NOT DEAD AND YOU ARE ONLY ALLOWED TO GET MARRIED ONCE PER SEMESTER.  YOU ARE NOT EXCUSED!!!”

I instantly teared up and flushed beet red.  I backed up and headed for the open doorway …

“ER … HOWEVER, I HAVE HEARD IT ALL, BUT TELL ME.  IF I’VE NEVER HEARD YOURS, IT MAY EARN YOU AN EXCUSED ABSENCE.”

Did I hear him right?  I could possibly get a reprieve?  I blew my nose and tried to talk, but nothing came out.  I cleared my throat and managed, “My clothes were stolen.”

“WHAT?” he roared.  He was glaring, and then his eyes widened in disbelief.

“TELL ME ABOUT IT RIGHT NOW!”

Jesus, help me!  I was about to collapse from fear or heat stroke on the linoleum floor.  Remember the old kind with square linoleum tiles the janitors used to mop with chlorine bleach-water and then wax and buff with that big machine every night?  Yes, that floor.  I was hot and tired from an hour of gym class; running downhill to go home to change; and running back uphill in temperature of 100+F.

He had kindled hope, so I rallied with the truth.

“I have gym class before econ and when I went back to my locker after showering my clothes were gone – stolen.  I had to run home in my gym shorts; change; and by the time I got back, class was over.  So here I am – dressed but missed class,” I stammered.

“I am so sorry,” I trailed off as I realized I was not that sorry.  Had he heard this before?   Locker thieves were evidently on the loose.  Had this happened to anyone else yet?  I was thirsty.  I searched his face … no reaction.  Nothing.  His face was frozen in a peculiar questioning grimace.  I hung my head.

All of a sudden he belly-laughed.  He roared out, “I CAN’T BELIEVE IT!  THAT’S A FIRST.”

“ABSENCE IS EXCUSED!”Sherron College Photo

Strike two!

I was about to faint from thirst and relief.

“SHERRON!”

“Yes?”

“DON’T DIE THIS SEMESTER!”

Seriously?  So now you know why I couldn’t die that semester.

Over time I realize that our Heavenly Father doesn’t appreciate excuses for not showing up for class either.  He has generously given life, clothing, and our beautiful earth to sustain us.  We can repent from sin; marry Jesus once this semester; and escape the everlasting death part.

“So then each of us shall give account of himself to God.” ~ Romans 14:12 NKJV

Enjoy the holidays and remember:  DON’T DIE THIS SEMESTER!

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God’s Sight

How do we know what is acceptable to God?  Shouldn’t we find out what His Word has to say?

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceful life in all godliness and reverence.

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior. ~ 1 Timothy 2:1-2 NKJV (emphasis added)

The Apostle Paul wrote that he spoke the truth in Christ here, so I have to believe that to pray for all men is acceptable to Jesus, and will reap the reward of a blessed life.

Sometimes this generates the response of

“Easier said than done!”

Friends, I must leave it here.  Thank you for following Importantstuff.Live!

 

 

 

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Evil for Evil

 

Romans 12:17-21 NKJV

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written,

“Vengeance is  Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink;
For in doing so you will heap coals of fire on his head.”


Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Let it be so, Lord!

Clinging to Good

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The season of giving and thankfulness is upon us – My favorite time of the year!

9bCling to what is good. 10Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; ~ Romans 12:9b-10 NKJV

Is that even possible in our society today?

Of course it is.  And no better time than now.  Tis the season to invite friends over for food, drink, and conversation by the fire.  Give cheerfully – not expensively.  Bake cookies.  Be kind.  Mend fences.

Some folks suffer from depression during the holidays and my heart goes out to them.  It isn’t easy to be cheerful when your heart is heavy or the budget does not allow for much gift giving.  Toss the materialism and enjoy giving the most valuable gifts:  Time, love, laughter and hope.  God does not want any to suffer pain or fear.

Be of the same mind to one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. ~ Romans 12:16 NKJV

Continue to pray for God’s strength while clinging to good.  He is faithful and your example will bless others.

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