Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Holidays Can Be Very Hard For Many People

Yup, this can be a difficult season of the year for a whole lot of people. Some people have loved ones they've tried to reach out to.. who repeatedly resisted all this and have simply drifted far away due to wrong-close-friend-choices, selfishness or pride. For others, their battles and painful struggles are with failing health, basic lack, neglect, broken families, and other severe trials that only seem to be hugely amplified during the Christmas season.  I hate that!!! Sweet TV show after show, movie after movie, and Christmas song after song played on the radio ..can make the opposite kind of non-painful circumstances seem like the norm that is happening for all but you who are literally in a bad way.

Surely He (Christ) has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. —Isaiah 53:4

Whenever darkness grips your soul and you are tempted to despair,
Remember Christ's unfailing love, and trust His faithful, tender care.

 Jesus Christ is the only way to an oasis of deeply comforting saving grace in a dry barren-lonely desert of grief!

To me it seems like it would be much easier for some people to express thankfulness during Thanksgiving than it would be for others to do this, and we all just need to be sensitive to this. Is that you? What has your life been like? Do you need some prayer due to a recent ..or not so recent.. job-loss or some very hurtful unexpected reversals relationally or in some other area? I am so sorry if that is you.. and wish so badly that I had some words that could somehow help or comfort you.

During this time of year, church ministers often read Isaiah's prophecies of the coming Christ (that we're no longer supposed to talk about in America anymore for PC tolerance's sake..) the sinless One who would be born of a virgin (See Isa. 7:14) and was actually called "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace" (9:6). But listen, maybe it would be a good thing for us to also include the words of Isaiah 53 (or the whole book for that matter..) in our reading along ..which describes Jesus as, "a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows… And by His stripes we are healed" (vv.3-5). Why? Because those words minister to the hurting who wonder who can even relate to them, but they also speak of God's solution.

Man, I am so thankful that the psalmist who penned Psalm 147:3 also reminds us that "[The Lord] heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds." He can do this for you and make you a new person! About an hour ago today my wife Liney learned that her aunt Joann, who had an extremely hard life, just passed away. She suffered some broken relationships in her lifetime like many women have ..against her will.. and now will be missed.

She wasn't even that old, but Joann was hit real hard while driving up in the northwest back in July, then got a hip replacement, stayed in the hospital all this time ..and just went home to heaven. Yes, fortunately she had experienced the second birth, becoming a Christian later on in life and was totally ready to go home. Of many it's said that they went home to heaven, but because of the cross Joann really did cuz she had made her reservations in advance.

Now, no more trouble or sorrow or tears or worries or tribulation for Joann! Sadly not all are ready today, but all could ..in a moment become ready! Will you?

Please pray as the Spirit leads you for Liney, her twin sister Laurie, her younger brother Neil, and Carrol Wilson Liney's other aunt who has been very kind to us over the years. Thank you and keep thanking God.

We can even be ready to give an answer to curious relatives we thought were closed ..but might surprise you at the table in front of that steaming turkey. Maybe you have a few moments free to read more at Fish4Souls.org

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