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24 April 2009

Be a Risk Taker & Trust the Riskbreaker

You know how it is. You start writing something that then loses its fire. Well, here's a post that began like that a few weeks ago (3-31-09) and then reignited today. I hope it blesses you.

Oh, the title is partially a shout out to my good friend -- Stewart Bertram.

Psalm 20:7-8, "Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God. They are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright."

There are some who have traded their trust in God for that which they've made with their own hands. They trust in chariots and are more confident in human talent, philosophy, and ability than in the provision and strength of the Lord.

They trust in human sufficiency and abort God's will by their doubt and forgetfulness. They trust in their own ideas and manufacture scenarios thinking their finite understanding better than the infinite wisdom of the LORD.

They use the policies of the world to obtain that which can only come by the proven principles of the Word of God. They invent strategies without prayer and forget (or ignore) to call upon God. They’ve forgotten His name, fame, and reputation. What He's done and what He wants takes a backseat to what these purveyors of self foist onto the good and trusting flock of God.

Lack of trust is evident by their preoccupation with what they can form, cultivate, or influence. Afraid to show faith in something outside of themselves they resist what they don't understand and grasp onto that which is temporal, known, and comfortable.

Isaiah 31:1, “Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!"

Some have forgotten the freedom and liberty that comes with trust in God and have traded that assurance for the illusion of control. They’ve trusted in horses. They trust in what they think they can direct. Their attempt at control and manipulation is a mirage. The only control they have is the choice to trust in God, or to trust in their own frail human ways.

I was with Pastor Edwin S. Harper for a few days this week. He asked me this question (once asked of him), "How do you spell faith?" My first thought was the predictable one, "F-A-I-T-H," but he said, "Faith is spelled R-I-S-K."

RISK! You get nowhere in life without taking a risk. The four bearers of the Ark of the Covenant took a risk by stepping out into the Jordan, but their risk was rewarded with the miraculous parting of the waters, and, as I heard Buddy Buie say recently, "When they stepped into the Jordan their feet kicked up the dust in the dry riverbed." God doesn't just answer prayer, He goes the extra mile in displaying His majesty as He works on your behalf.

It is easy to sometimes be paralyzed by the need to know for sure what a decision will bring to pass before we do something, but this is not faith. Faith is taking God at His Word and risking everything of comfort for uncertainty.

The wonderful thing about taking a risk on God is that it's not really a risk. We need to quit forgetting about His reputation, fame, and reputation. Recall the power resident in His name, the name of Jesus.

Next time you are thinking of taking a risk remember the true Riskbreaker and personalize these words: "Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee" (Deut. 31:6).

23 April 2009

Bishop Norman Wagner - Praise God

I'm really feeling this song tonight. In fact, all day long I've had this feeling of praise and thankfulness in my soul.

Remember, even in the midst of a wicked and perverse generation, where the heathen and ungodly are presented as paragons of virtue calling good evil and evil good, God is still present and in control. He is worthy to be praised!