2019 has seen a ‘bumpy’ one for us all, as the Queen said in her Christmas broadcast, with much to trouble us, but more importantly, so much more for which to be thankful.
Dear ones have been lost to us with many partings being sudden and unexpected. Ill-health has also been the experience of many, within and without our small circle, so we lift up our hearts in praise to our God who has sustained us, and more, given us cause for rejoicing through the fiery trials.
1 PETER 4
12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you;
13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
All these troubles are to be expected, yet we rarely do. This is probably a good thing, otherwise we would spend our days looking in the wrong direction, focussing on the problem instead of the solution - at the creation, not The Creator. I freely admit that I write these words for my own benefit as for anyone else. The pressures of life in this digital speed-dialled age may not be different to those experienced across the centuries, merely that they assail us at a faster pace.
25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea.
26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.
27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”
In our fear of the events in the natural world, it is a glorious truth that we have the gift through the Holy Spirit of seeing Jesus walking on the sea. He has overcome the turmoil and as soon as He is reborn anew in the moment of crisis, we have unhindered access to His overcoming. It is a New Testament fulfilment if words found in Genesis 1:
2b And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
This is the time of the fourth watch - all is darkest just before the dawn - it is the last of the night, when the agents of our tribulation are still working and our need to see The Lord and His light becomes the more intense.
I believe that this is The Lord’s purpose in our lives. Simply, that we see Him walking on the waters. We think of this as our walk; God says this is the end He desires for us - the certainty that all is well because we see Jesus.
At Christmas, celebrating Jesus’ birth, maybe we are reminded of seeing the reality of Jesus for the first time - newborn in us. Now we see Him matured and walking atop the sea of humanity - Lord of All.
The keyword as always is ‘now’. ‘Now’ is all we ever really have, so whatever our state of being is in this instant, may we see Jesus and hear Him say “Be of good cheer”.
With love and every blessing,
George and Gill
for Cornerstone Christian Fellowship
MEDITATE ON THESE THINGS…
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
GEORGE and GILL STEWART