Sunday, September 14, 2008

Sunday Devotional

Mark of Divine Approval

Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. (James 1:12)

Yes, he is blessed while he is enduring the trial. No eye can see this till he has been anointed with heavenly eye salve. But he must endure it and neither rebel against God nor turn aside from his integrity. He is blessed who has gone through the fire and has not been consumed as a counterfeit.

When the test is over, then comes the hallmark of divine approval—"the crown of life." As if the Lord said, "Let him live; he has been weighed in the balances, and he is not found wanting." Life is the reward: not mere being, but holy, happy, true existence, the realization of the divine purpose concerning us. Already a higher form of spiritual life and enjoyment crowns those who have safely passed through fiercest trials of faith and love.

The Lord hath promised the crown of life to those who love Him. Only lovers of the Lord will hold out in the hour of trial; the rest will either sink or sulk, or slink back to the world. Come, my heart, dost thou love thy Lord? Truly? Deeply? Wholly? Then that love will be tried; but many waters will not quench it, neither will the Roods drown it, Lord, let Thy love nourish mine to the end.

C. H. Spurgeon

Isn't this so true? I have been through the fire (and probably will again!) and while it's not pleasant while there, after I come through it, I know I am refined and, hopefully, better equipped to do the work the Lord has called me to do. I always pray that I will be closer to the Lord during the hard times and rely on Him. More importantly, I pray that I will continue to walk with the Lord in the easy times.

The week in review:

More fall decorations were put up, although, not all my fall decorating is complete. Hopefully, I will finish it up this week. It's been so much cooler here and our family is so enjoying the crispness of the mornings and the cooler days with the windows open to allow cooling breezes into the house. It's so nice to have the house aired out. We've also had some gentle rains in the evenings on a couple of days and that made the air even more sweet smelling.

We had our first week of school and while everything didn't go smoothly (does it ever?), it was a good week and we accomplished a lot and will be able to tweak our schedule even more.

My youngest son decided (with our encouragement) to give up playing football for the local high school. This has been a difficult thing for my husband and I as we knew he enjoyed playing, however, we could also see what was happening to him. He was going to practice every day and coming home so sore (and at times, injured) only to stand on the sidelines during the games. We have been greatly concerned that he would get injured permanently. In the position he was playing he was using his hands to tackle, and since he is a mandolin and fiddle player, this was of great concern to us. Of course, we always worried about neck or back injuries, too. Our son in the smallest boy on the team and seemed to take quite a beating. We finally decided it was creating a problem for our family and talked to him and asked him to give it up. He did. I know this was a very difficult decision, but he knew it was right. I was even more convinced it was the right thing when he admitted to me the next day that he has had pain in both hands and in the fingers on one hand. He hadn't told us because he knew what our reaction would be.

God has given this child (actually, both my children) a gift of music and he touches people so much with his music. I know that God intends him to use this gift and to put it in jeopardy was not worth it.

I got a call on Thursday that my doctor approved a new MRI and was able to go in on Friday to get it done. I took my pain pills before going and my younger son drove me to the appointment. I also took a Christian CD by Fernando Ortega with me to listen to. I'm so glad I had taken the pain pills as I was in so much pain by the time the MRI was over, I don't know what it would have been like had I not taken them. The tech that did my MRI just loved the CD I brought in and told me he was going to go and buy it.

While I was waiting for them in the waiting room, a lady came into the waiting room to wait for her test. She started talking to me because I could tell she was frightened. I reassured her that the test she was having done wasn't painful and we talked about the pain she was having. I finally asked her first name and told her I would pray for her. I would have prayed right then and there for her, but they called me back. I am so glad I was brave enough (for once!) to share my faith! I've been praying for her and she's been on my mind. I know the Lord is working in her life and I pray that she is comforted. I can see how important it is to always be ready to share our faith and prayers with others!

I'm starting my new Ladies Bible study this week. I was so happy as my leader called me and she's an old friend from homeschooling. She has been done homeschooling for probably 4-5 years, but she was one of the leaders of our homeschooling group when I joined. I also used to sell her Stampin' Up stamps when I was a demonstrator. I also know the co-leader of our Bible study group and she is still homeschooling her children. It will be so nice to see some familiar faces while also meeting new people. I am looking forward to this study!

The county fair starts this week. They are taking projects today and tomorrow and I'm trying decide if I want to take my crochet projects I've been making this year. I always enjoy doing that, but not sure I can do all that with my back pain this year. My children will be going on Friday to ride the rides all day. We let them do this every year. They have a special discount pass that is unlimited and lets them ride all day. They always look forward to this. I used to have to go with them for the entire day when they were younger, but must say, I'm so glad they are old enough to go on their own now!

I hope you have a very blessed week!

God bless you ~ Julie


  1. I hope you are having a wonderful week and getting some nice fall weather!

  2. How nice to finally see your blog! First, I will pray for your back pain. May the Lord touch your back and bring healing through whatever means available. I'm sorry the MRI was so uncomfortable.

    I really appreciated the C.S. Lewis message - trials, yes I've had them and even as I was experiencing them, I knew it was for a purpose. Still doesn't make them any easier!

    That was very mature on your son's part to listen to you and stop the football. You must be proud as well as relieved. One less thing to worry about, for sure. How wonderful that he plays music. My oldest plays piano and euphonium and we are hoping he will make it a life-long pursuit.

    We bought the cutest little pumpkin to decorate our piano. I'm afraid that's it until we get Halloween pumpkins - I'm not much of a seasonal decorator but I admire others' creativity. I hope you enjoy your Bible study and I may you have a terrific week!



Please leave me a message! I love hearing what you have to say and look forward to your comments.