Unsatisfied By Average

The Musings of a Stubborn Believer

Category: inspiration (page 3 of 7)

Words of the King’s Daughters

I awaken this morning on a Tennissee farm with a little question on my mind.

Perhaps you have picked up by now that I am passionate about the Gospel…

But I wonder if you know why.

It is really quite simple.

I love life.
I love life…

When a man loves, hard work isn’t heroism.
It’s joy.

Duty is joy.

Today I read a trilogy that made my Gospel-loving soul stand tall.

Written by three of the King’s daughters, who as far as I know, don’t know each other at all.

Not just the what of war, but also the why

I’d tell you the secret, but their words are better than mine.

Go read the words. Eat the words. Live the words…

“The love of Christ constraineth us…”

Emily.    Esther.    Moriah.

To Fight or Not to Fight, That is The Question

Consider this Science of Temptation, part 2.
I was born to be a warrior.
So were you.
Trouble is, most warriors today are in confusion over titles and job descriptions.
If grace and faith are really sufficient, what need have we of war?
–   –   –
–   –   –

I pace the floor of my basement office, from french door to bookshelf and back. 
It’s cold in here. But my mind works best that way.

My finger runs past scores of titles on the shelf–
Past my Greek New Testament, Waggoner’s commentary on Isaiah, 11 journals…
Testimonies to Ministers, Conflict of the Ages, and great Christian classics.
Leather bound, paper bound, hard bound…

I find the one I’m looking for. 

And I pace again, my whole posture insisting on an answer. 

Temptation’s power is utterly insufficient for the man or woman who takes God at His Word, and denies the tempter’s underlying lie:
“I’ve got something better.”  *

End of conversation.

But if the power of temptation is truly thus neutralized, is there no need of war?

Ahh, but nothing could be farther from the truth.

The promises are completely (and exclusively) sufficient to vanquish the enemy. The money is in your pocket already. (Do yourself a favor and depend on it, because no other currency of your own earning will pay the debt, either.)

But we are soldiers. We wrestle.
Oh, but why??

“Conversion. . .does not put new flesh upon the old spirit; but a new Spirit within the old flesh. . . Deliverance and victory are not gained by having the human nature taken away; but by receiving the divine nature to subdue and have dominion over the human.”  **

Paul was surely talking of a wrestling match when he said “I keep under my body…” [better english word order would be, “I keep my body under me“]

Yet he speaks not of wrestling with the tempter… Christ Himself would not do that. ***
The tempter is to be dismissed by the Word.

But to wrestle the flesh is the work of the will.  

To receive the power of the engrafted Word, we must align ourselves (read: obedience) with that Word. 
And there is nothing easy about that.
But if being a soldier were easy, there would be no honor associated with the title.

This room is still cold. 
A mild allergy to gas flame means I awaken more alert with the heat off. 
The flesh hates 50 degrees in the morning. Every morning
But I have only three choices. Stay in bed and lose Gospel battles, turn up the heat, wake up groggy, and lose Gospel steam…

Or get up anyway.

I’ll take the third. 
* * * * *

The book slides back into it’s place on the shelf. 

We must fight. White knuckled and sore armed. Discipline. Sacrifice. Self-control. 

That is our battle.

There is no substitute for obedience.

Fight, soldier. Fight.

–  –  –
–  –  –

*  “The tempter can never compel us to do evil. He cannot control minds unless they are yielded to his control. The will must consent, faith must let go its hold upon Christ, before Satan can exercise his power upon us.” DA 125.2

** A. T. Jones, Review and Herald, April 18, 1899

*** “Though Jesus recognized Satan from the beginning, He was not provoked to enter into controversy with him. . .He would not parley with temptation. . . Jesus met Satan with the words of Scripture. ‘It is written,’ He said. In every temptation the weapon of His warfare was the word of God. . .So long as Christ held to this position, the tempter could gain no advantage.” DA 120

Distinguished is…

In God’s economy, distinct is distinguished.  
Same word.
“But know that the Lord hath set apart6395 him that is godly for Himself…” Psalm 4:3
6395 palah paw-law’  –  a primitive root; 
to distinguish (literally or figuratively): 
put a difference, show marvelous
–Strongs, emphasis added

Christian vs. Criminal

There is only a subtle difference between the Christian and the criminal.
Subtle, but significant.

You’ll find them both in the heart of darkness, fists closed around iron bars, rattling and shaking bolts and hinges until the halls ring with desperation. You’ll hear them throw all their weight against doors again and again, until their shoulders swell with bruises. Sweat and tears will mingle, and run down their faces, and dampen their clothes… All in in the desperate quest for freedom.

But there is one subtle difference.

They’re on opposite sides of the door.

Because a free man cannot rest while his friends are in captivity.

You Are What You Love

Blessed beyond understanding is the man or woman, boy or girl who resolutely refuses to walk the way of the world, whose ears are closed to the suggestions of fools, and who won’t sit down as long as there is a stand to be taken anywhere…

And not so much because such resistance has saving merit of it’s own,
but because such resistance is prerequisite to finding one’s delight in the Words of God.

One cannot have the mind both to joyfully meditate, and jovially meddle with foolishness at the same time.

No more than one can be both a tree planted by rivers of waters, and chaff driven away on the wings of the wind.

You are what you love.

You are.

“…His leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” 

Psalm 1

Supernatural Secret

“The expression of Christian character is not good doing, but God-likeness. 

If the Spirit of God has transformed you within,

you will exhibit Divine characteristics in your life, not good human characteristics.

God’s life in us expresses itself as God’s life,

not as a human life trying to be godly. 

The secret of a Christian is that the supernatural is made natural in him by the grace of God…”

–My Utmost for His Highest
Photos: ©Joshua Nebblett

Bloom Anyway!

Part of me is not ready for summer to be over.
Not ready to watch the yard change out its summer coat for dusty brown, one blade at a time. Up here we tend to flower beds, fruit trees, and turf 10 months out of the year, so that 2 months can be beautiful– August, and September.

But part of me is ready.
I tip-toed over to Chantée’s rock garden yesterday, as if one false step would chase away the perfect mountain morning. We’re past due for frost, but still rainclouds from a zealous monsoon have kept the heat in every night…
And so in the chill of an almost-October morning at 8,000 feet there were still flowers singing glory amongst the rocks.

Thought I:
Boy, you’d think it was about time for hibernation. Seriously, all this praise will come to a screeching halt in a few days, for frost can’t be all that far away. Be quick and spread seed. The time for blooms is past…

Or is it?

When I tiptoed back away from the garden, little flowers that wordlessly sing hallelujah had taught me another lesson…

Bloom anyway.

Let the frost come! For one last glorious moment color will shine through crystal, and then the flower’s work will be done.
Sing to the finish.

If spring is time for growing, and summer is time for loving, then fall is time for giving.

And that’s the most beautiful thing of all…

Who is My Neighbor?

The simple thought struck me profoundly…

I snap the mic back onto the console and turn out my window to see the man that had led us in to his neighbor’s lot, in the back of a beautiful little subdivision in the middle of nowhere.
I’d seen his bumper stickers. They told of a war we were ashamed to own, and his full grey beard and tattered hat told the rest of the story.
But this was his neighbor who was sick…

He’s been waiting for my look. Out my open window he snaps a salute.

I nod.
“Thank you, sir.”
“Be careful now.”
“Yes sir.”

I touch my own forehead and put the ambulance in drive.
Lights glitter red. He watches us go.

And I find myself glad for a chance to drive the 90 minutes it took to get to the scene
Glad for a chance to serve a community where neighbors lead the ambulance in. (He wasn’t the first.)
Lots of neighbors, lots of places, don’t care.

And I thought of a Samaritan man a long time ago…
And wondered not so much, “Who is my neighbor?”

But rather, “Whose neighbor am I?”

Taste of the Tour

Words fail of conveying sufficient depth and gravity.
Clichés like: “I’ll never be the same” apply, but still don’t tell it like it is…

I throb thankfulness while I grope for expressions worthy, and finally conclude-

Our best statements are understatements.

Because once again, our God has outdone Himself, blessing when we went to bless.
How I needed the quiet. How I needed to see the rocks that cried red. How I needed the battle to refocus. How I needed to be broken and healed, raised up out of weakness, charged to fight…
Reminded that I am nothing.
Reminded that “All things work together for good…”

All things.

Thank You Jesus.
Thank you, beautiful friends from all over the continent…

We love you…

Taste of the Tour from Sean Nebblett on Vimeo.

Just for Today

“Grace for tomorrow you do not need. 
You should feel that you have only to do with today. 
Overcome for today; deny self for today; watch and pray for today; obtain victories in God for today.” 

{3T p. 333.1}
Just today…

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