Thursdays With Oswald—God’s Surgery

Oswald ChambersThis is a weekly series with things I’m reading and pondering from Oswald Chambers. You can read the original seed thought here, or type “Thursdays With Oswald” in the search box to read more entries.

God’s Surgery

     It is difficult to realize that it is God who arranges circumstances for the whole mass of human beings; we come to find, however, that in the Providence of God there is, as it were, a surgical knife for each one of us individually, because God wants to get at the things that are wrong and bring us into a right relationship to Himself. … 

     The nature of any dominating lust is that it keeps us from arriving at a knowledge of ourselves. For instance, a covetous man will believe he is very generous. Thank God for the surgery of providence by means of which He deals with these absurdities. … The surgery of the providence of God will break up all ignorance of ourselves. … 

     The Holy Spirit continually urges us to sign away our right to our individual self to Jesus. “Learn of Me,” says Jesus, “for I am meek and lowly in heart.” How few of us do learn of Him! We cling to our individuality like a drowning man to a straw. … Individuality must be transfigured by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and that means a sword going through the natural. … 

     God’s providence seems to pay no attention whatever to our individual ideas because He is after only one thing—“that they may be one, even as We are one.” It may look like a thorough breaking up of the life, but it will end in a manifestation of the Christian self in oneness with God. 

From The Soul Of A Christian

In Psalm 139 David confesses how thoroughly God already knows him, but then he prays, “Search me!” David recognizes that there may be part of his individuality that is keeping God from using him completely.

Jesus taught us to pray, “Your kingdom come; Your will be done.” That means my kingdom has to go, and my will has to be set aside.

Christian, we must continually allow the Holy Spirit to search our heart and then perform the necessary surgery to remove the unhealthy clinging to our own kingdom. This is the only way for us to fully know the manifestation of the Christian self in oneness with God.

Poetry Saturday—The Loom Of Time

FullSizeRender 3Man’s life is laid in the loom of time
To a pattern he does not see,
While the Weaver’s work and the shuttles fly
Till the dawn of eternity.

Some shuttles are filled with silver threads
And some with threads of gold,
While often but the darker hues
Are all that they may hold.

But the Weaver watches with skillful eye
Each shuttle fly to and fro,
And sees the pattern so deftly wrought
As the loom moves sure and slow.

God surely planned the pattern:
Each thread, the dark and fair,
Is chosen by His master skill
And placed in the web with care.

He only knows its beauty,
And guides the shuttles which hold
The threads so unattractive,
As well as the threads of gold.

Not till each loom is silent,
And the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God reveal the pattern
And explain the reason why.

The dark threads were as needful
In the Weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
For the pattern which He planned. —Anonymous

Links & Quotes

link quote

“Don’t dare to be different, dare to be yourself—if that doesn’t make you different then something is wrong.” —Laura Baker

“Real joy is to be found in the presence of God, with Jesus Christ, secure and loved forever and ever (Psalm 16:11). Knowing the presence of God is the unique privilege of all who have made the Kingdom turn. God never changes in His love for us, and Jesus Christ holds us fast forever, regardless of the outward circumstances of our lives. The result of experiencing this is joy.” —T.M. Moore

“We can do nothing unless by a supernatural grace of God. It is God who gives the will. It is God who gives the power.” —John Calvin

“How singularly does God, in political events, prepare men’s minds for the particular phase which His church assumes! … I cannot go into the question now, but every Christian student of history knows that the circumstances of the outward world have ever been arranged by God so as to prepare the way for the advance of His great cause.” —Charles Spurgeon

“There is no such thing as genuine knowledge of God that does not show itself in obedience to His Word and will.” —Sinclair B. Ferguson

Eric Metaxas reminds us why Darwinism cannot explain religion. Check out Saber-tooth Psychology.

New emails continue to show the tragedy that Benghazi is. Hold our leaders accountable!

Tim Elmore explains how leading and following must go hand-in-hand.

[VIDEO] John Maxwell challenges us to enrich other people’s lives—

Links & Quotes

link quote

“Why, do you not believe there may be as much pride in rags as in an alderman’s gown? Is it not just as possible for a man to be proud in a dust cart, as if he rode in her Majesty’s chariot? A man may be just as proud with half a yard of ground as Alexander with all his kingdoms, and may be just as lifted up with a few pence as Croesus with all his treasure. Pray against pride, dear friends, wherever you may be. Pride will grow on a dunghill, as well as in the king’s garden. Pray against pride and vainglory, and God give you grace to keep it under!” —Charles Spurgeon

“How numerous are the tears of unbelief! We manufacture troubles for ourselves by anticipating future ills which may never come…. We get supposing what we should do if such-and-such a thing occurred, which thing God has determined never shall occur. We imagine ourselves in positions where providence never intends to place us, and so we feel a thousand trials in fearing one.” —Charles Spurgeon

“Usually, an adolescent wants ‘freedom’ but not ‘responsibility.’ Real maturity and genuine leadership are only transferred from adult to student, however, when kids receive both of these elements. We’ve not truly helped a young person mature until we’ve passed on ownership.” Reader from Tim Elmore’s post The Single Most Important Ingredient for Maturity.

Eric Metaxas points out that Planned Parenthood is trying to clean-up the image of its founder Margaret Sanger. But the facts about Ms. Sanger are quite alarming.

Ever feel like you are going through hell? Check out what David Wilkerson says in his post Out Of The Belly Of Hell.

The new HumanitarianismMurray Vassar shows us what the new humanitarianism looks like. Sadly true.

[VIDEO] Bobby Conway has a really good answer to the question what’s the big deal about premarital sex—

Links & Quotes

link quote

“People in the unbelieving world have witnessed a good bit of hypocrisy, shallowness, disingenuousness, dishonesty, and corruption among the members of the Church. Many of them have installed a spam filter on their brains which automatically blocks anyone calling himself a Christian as having anything meaningful or significant to say. The only way to remove that filter is through a credible life of goodness, sincerity, and love. … Our credible lives, by themselves, won’t lead anyone to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. For this, we must be bold to make God’s Good News known, and to make it make sense.” —T.M. Moore

A related post: 5 Big Things We Get Wrong When Talking To Atheists About God.

“God is a mountain spring, not a watering trough. A mountain spring is self-replenishing. It constantly overflows and supplies others. But a watering trough needs to be filled with a pump or bucket brigade. If you want to glorify the worth of a watering trough you work hard to keep it full and useful. But if you want to glorify the worth of a spring you do it by getting down on your hands and knees and drinking to your heart’s satisfaction, until you have the refreshment and strength to go back down in the valley and tell people what you’ve found. My hope as a desperate sinner hangs on this biblical truth: that God is the kind of God Who will be pleased with the one thing I have to offer—my thirst. That is why the sovereign freedom and self-sufficiency of God are so precious to me: they are the foundation of my hope that God is delighted not by the resourcefulness of bucket brigades, but by the bending down of broken sinners to drink at the fountain of grace.” —John Piper

Pornography destroys lives! Here are 5 ways porn devastates lives.

In his battle against pornography and gluttony, Jimmy Needham wrote, “Real freedom came for me when I began, by God’s grace, to see that my cravings were for more than just food or sex. All my appetites were, at root, for an all-satisfying God.” Read more in his post Our Odyssey Against Sexual Temptation.

“If America is to survive, we must elect…individuals who will seek Divine guidance in the affairs of state.” —Billy Graham

“God commands you to choose for rulers, just men who will rule in the fear of God. The preservation of a republican government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty; if the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted.” —Noah Webster

[VIDEO] John Maxwell shares one of my favorite anecdotes to make a good point about efficiency—

Links & Quotes

link quote

Parents, check out what Tim Elmore says about Trends In How Today’s Students Handle Relationships.

“The danger of all dangers would be to lose trust and confidence in the mercy of God… To distrust Him would be a far more terrible thing than any physical evil which all the enemies of God put together could inflict on us, for without God’s permission neither the devils nor their human ministers could hinder us in the slightest degree.” —Francis Xavier

“Chance exists only in the hearts of fools; we believe that everything which happens to us is ordered by the wise and tender will of Him Who is our Father and our Friend; and we see order in the midst of confusion; we see purposes accomplished where others discern fruitless wastes.” —Charles Spurgeon

“We must, if it so happens, give our lives for others: but even while we’re doing it, I think we’re meant to enjoy Our Lord and, in Him, our friends, our food, our sleep, our jokes, and the birds’ song and the frosty sunrise.” —C.S. Lewis

These are indeed: 10 stupid quotes from pro-abortion advocates.

[VIDEO] John Maxwell on the value of being consistent in all we do—

Seth Godin has some wise words on consistency as well in his post Daily.

Poetry Saturday—The Building Of The Ship

The poet creates so many analogies from the building of the perfect ship. The loving Master knew exactly what he was doing. But the poem closes with this analogy to the United States of America…

LongfellowHow beautiful she is! How fair
She lies within those arms, that press
Her form with many a soft caress
Of tenderness and watchful care!
Sail forth into the sea, O ship!
Through wind and wave, right onward steer!
The moistened eye, the trembling lip,
Are not the signs of doubt or fear.
Sail forth into the sea of life,
O gentle, loving, trusting wife,
And safe from all adversity
Upon the bosom of that sea
Thy comings and thy goings be!
For gentleness and love and trust
Prevail o’er angry wave and gust;
And in the wreck of noble lives
Something immortal still survives!

 

Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on thy fate!
We know what Master laid thy keel,
What Workmen wrought thy ribs of steel,
Who made each mast, and sail, and rope,
What anvils rang, what hammers beat,
In what a forge and what a heat
Were shaped the anchors of thy hope!
Fear not each sudden sound and shock,
’T is of the wave and not the rock;
’T is but the flapping of the sail,
And not a rent made by the gale!
In spite of rock and tempest’s roar,
In spite of false lights on the shore,
Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea!
Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee,
Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
Our faith triumphant o’er our fears,
Are all with thee, —are all with thee! —Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

 

%d bloggers like this: