TEMPTATION & TESTING (3)(Lenten10)
I can sincerely say, that I am involving myself in this Lenten journey, and not just writing on topics and matters that can assist others in their reflection and preparation for Easter. I wish I had known 50 years ago what Lent was all about, so I could slow down and “smell the roses”: and reflect on my walk with God. Well I cannot change the past, but I am seeking by the grace of God to change the present and whatever future I have ahead of me.
My last two blogs have been primarily about temptation, interestingly numerous translations have used the word TESTING and if we are convinced that GOD IS SOVEREIGN, and I am seeking to walk in the light, John 1:7 AMP. N.T. But if we [really] are living and walking in the Light, as He [Himself] is in the Light, we have [true, unbroken] fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses (removes) us from all sin and guilt [keeps us cleansed from sin in all its forms and manifestations.
Or as the NLT says : But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.
The enemy cannot touch us, so what to us seems to be a temptation GOD IS PERMITTING US TO BE TESTED. Let us never forget GOD IS IN CONTROL, and nothing can touch us unless it is with God’s permission.
I have said the above, and praying this Lenten period will be an awesome time of blessing and revelation BUT we must ever be prepared for periods of testing, and I am reminded of the words of Habakkuk today 3:17-18 AMP . O.T.Though the fig tree does not blossom and there is no fruit on the vines, [though] the product of the olive fails and the fields yield no food, though the flock is cut off from the fold and there are no cattle in the stalls, Yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will exult in the (victorious) God of my Salvation.
The MESSAGE says Though the cherry trees don’t blossom
and the strawberries don’t ripen,
Though the apples are worm-eaten
and the wheat fields stunted,
Though the sheep pens are sheepless
and the cattle barns empty,
I’m singing joyful praise to God.
I’m turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God.
Here Habakkuk is echoing the words of Paul IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS.
Let us pass these words through the Cross and apply New Covenant truths to these verses.
Even when there is a period, where there seems to be no flow of the Holy Spirit (WINE from the grapes). even when you are not conscious of the anointing of the Spirit OIL and when life turns sour (green strawberries) (worm eaten apples). When you are hungry but can’t seem to be satisfied, when there is no fruit from your ministry whether through your witnessing or shepherding, and GOD SEEMS FAR AWAY. What must we do?
YET WILL I REJOICE IN THE LORD
I WILL SING JOYFUL PRAISE TO GOD.
I WILL TURN CARTWHELLS OF JOY TO MY SAVIOUR GOD
It maybe that this whole Lenten period will be wonderfully filled with blessing and growth and revelation, but if God permits you to go through a time of testing
SHOUT THE PRAISES OF GOD
The testing is for our eternal good Romans 8:28
AMP. N.T We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.
NLT nd we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them
MESSAGE That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.
PASSION So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfill his designed purpose.
Often the testing comes when we least expect it, and we start to QUESTION WHY? Be encouraged God loves us with an EVERLASTING UNCHANGING LOVE, and He wants us to respond to the testing, because He knows the end result is we will become more like JESUS. amen