Wednesday, February 1, 2012, I will be back at Main Street Baptist Church for the 7 PM Bible Study. I will show slides and talk about my trip to India. Please come join us for a special time!
HIS PROVISION OF GRACE
(Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012, Doylestown, PA) Grace. Where would we be without it? We write poems and songs about God’s grace. We ask Him for it, talk about it, and proclaim its greatness to others. We are so taken with grace because it better than anything describes God’s workings toward us. He gives us what we do not deserve (Mercy is not giving us what we do deserve). Grace refers to God’s unmerited favor acting on our behalf. The greater our need to more aware we become of His grace to meet that needs. Sometimes that’s why He lets the pain get so bad, to show us how effective His grace can be. That’s why God gave Paul a “thorn in the flesh” (II Corinthians 12:7-12). Paul’s experience, like ours, is that God’s grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9)!
‘Sufficient’ means adequate in the sense of providing contentment. Paul quotes Jesus as saying that His grace is sufficient for every need Paul has, especially the painful and distracting ‘thorn in the flesh.’ Actually the Greek word order puts the emphasis on God’s sufficiency: “SUFFICIENT FOR YOU is my grace.” A thorn can be a great hindrance, but His grace is more than able to get us through any and every painful experience in life.
His grace is sufficient. It is right on time, never early so we learn patience and trust, never late so we have to face things alone, never more than needed so we need to trust Him every day, even every hour, and never too little even though we often feel we need more than we receive. We have His promise, though that what He gives will be sufficient.
So we must stop asking God to remove painful circumstances and instead thank Him for His promise of providing sufficing grace to make it through. I used to beg God to take away my longing for my wife while in India, but God showed me He won’t do that. Instead I must lean on His grace for it is always just enough and always right on time. Truly His grace IS sufficient
We made it home OK last night. It’s a long trip but it’s very nice being home – although I do miss India. Being on the front edge of where God is working is thrilling, but life and ministry here is important as well. I have lists of plans for this coming year and for next year when I return. I thank God for giving me time and ability to be involved in this very worthy ministry. It’s not anything I ever thought I’d do – I am not a traveler nor do I seek out excitement and new challenges. But God knows what I need. I need you as well – your prayers, encouragement and financial support make this possible. I thank God for all of you, and for Main Street Baptist Church which is so willing to allow me to put so much time into this ministry and shares me so sacrificially.
Please keep praying for the pastors and Christians in India. Pray God would continue to use the words spoken and the books given out for His glory. Pray God would direct and use me as I stay closely involved with the work in India while home. Pray He would direct Pastor Moses and me as we continue to help and train these fine men of God. Thanks so very much!