Archive for the 'Spiritual Growth' Category

Published by Cherie Hill on 26 May 2013

Are You a Fork?

Fork in Road

 

For many years I have prayed to be a “fork.” Today, I received that answer to prayer…God has made me a “fork.” Before you think I’m “crazy,” let me explain myself…this whole concept of being a fork comes from a quote by missionary Jim Elliot:

“Father, make of me a crisis man.
Bring those I contact to decision.
Let me not be a milepost on a single road;
make me a fork, that men must turn one way or another
on facing Christ in me.”

You see, through my faith, I believe that my life is in vain…if I am not a “fork.” Jesus said,

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law – man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.”

If indeed Christ is living in me, then I am a fork. In two separate instances today (originally posted in 2010), I got confirmation that those that I come in contact with are either turning to Christ or turning away. The point is…I am continuing to bring the gospel to the world…I am fulfilling God’s call on my life…and although there is sadness when those you love choose to turn away…there is great joy in knowing that you have been the feet to carry the “Good News.” We, brothers and sisters, must not draw back…

“but my righteous one shall live by faith, and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.”
(Hebrews 10:38)

As we stand for Christ and bring the Good News, Jesus further instructs us,

“And if any place will not welcome you or listen to you, shake the dust off your feet when you leave, as a testimony against them.” (Mark 6: 11)

We are to continue to bring the Good News, regardless of the response…we are to stand strong in our faith:

“For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ.
It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes”

(Romans 1:16)

So, if you’re not certain that you’re a “fork,” pray that God will make you one…
ask Him to give your life true meaning and purpose…and you will NEVER be the same!
Don’t settle for being a “milepost!”

 

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Published by Cherie Hill on 22 May 2013

In His Hands

jjheller5

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It’s difficult to get past the first stanza of the lyrics of JJ Heller’s, “Your Hands,” without recognizing the words as your own . . . your own prayer, your own voice calling out to God Almighty:

I have unanswered prayers
I have trouble I wish wasn’t there
And I have asked a thousand ways
That you would take my pain away
You would take my pain away

I am trying to understand
How to walk this weary land
Make straight the paths that crooked lie
Oh Lord, before these feet of mine

When my world is shaking, heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave your hands

More often than not, our circumstances won’t change, pain and suffering may linger, but God’s purposes and glory is never thwarted. But, it’s in the “enduring,” in those times when there is no light at the end of the tunnel, when we’re stuck in an “in between” place, we need to know one thing and one thing only: God is in control. We need to know He loves us and we need to know that even if He doesn’t take our pain away, He’s with us . . . always. When we’ve had enough, when we simply have no strength to stand . . . we should kneel . . . and keep on kneeling until the answer comes. And through those trying times, when we grasp at the goodness of God, we must ask ourselves, “How much do we owe to pain and suffering?” (L.B. Cowman-Streams in the Desert) Through the darkest hours, we can know that God is at work and victory is sure, and faith will ALWAYS require more than we’re able to handle . . . our weakness gives way to God’s grace that develops a faith in us that is more precious than gold:

“Where were faith, without trial to test it;
or patience, with nothing to bear;
or experience, without tribulation to develop it?”
-Frederick Meyer

 

Published by Cherie Hill on 21 May 2013

The Hardest Things

 

What if our pain and suffering is God’s mercy? What if unanswered prayer is God’s best answer for our good and His glory? The questions have haunted my thoughts this past week. What if the daily tribulation that continues without end, the thing we want taken from us, is God’s grace doing a mighty work in us in which we cannot even begin to understand?

I realized something this week, after speaking with a friend regarding having “new eyes” to see what God sees . . . I looked at my Amazon Author page, looking at the miraculous work God has done in and through my writings (I fall to my knees daily, in awe), and it is beautiful. The daily emails I receive, testifying to how the books have changed lives, and even saved them from suicide, bring me to a continual place of humble submission to my Lord and King. But, in that moment, as I reflected, something in my vision transformed. I saw it all with “new eyes.” Put on display in God’s glory, it is all so BEAUTIFUL beyond words, but the truth is, those books on display are my pain and sufferings, my darkest days and sleepless nights. They are my emptiest places, pits of despair. And God has taken it all and redeemed every tear that’s been shed. He’s used it all to not only transform my own life, but countless lives around the world. It’s not easy to accept, we all have our own moment in the Garden of Gethsemane, sometimes daily, pleading with God to provide “another way.” But when silence falls, we know, there is no other path than the one He has laid before us. And as I reflect on my own personal Cross, I fall to my knees in much the same way that I know I will when I see Him face to face . . . breathless, speechless, in utter awe of who He is. I KNOW that my Redeemer lives. All glory to Him.

Today, L.B. Cowman’s Streams in the Desert spoke volumes to what the Spirit has been whispering to me, quite possibly it’s what you need today as well, to just keep taking the next step of faith . . . even through The Hardest Things:

May 17

    Your Crown of Glory

 
They won the victory over him
because of the blood of the lamb
and the word of their testimony.
They didn’t love their life so much
that they refused to give it up.
(Revelation 12:11 GW)

When James and John came to Christ with their mother, asking Him to give them the best place in the kingdom, He did not refuse their request, but told them it would be given to them if they could do His work, drink His cup, and be baptized with His baptism.

Do we want the competition? The greatest things are always hedged about by the hardest things, and we, too, shall find mountains and forests and chariots of iron. Hardship is the price of coronation. Triumphal arches are not woven out of rose blossoms and silken cords, but of hard blows and bloody scars. The very hardships that you are enduring in your life today are given by the Master for the explicit purpose of enabling you to win your crown.

Do not wait for some ideal situation, some romantic difficulty, some far-away emergency; but rise to meet the actual conditions which the Providence of God has placed around you today. Your crown of glory lies embedded in the very heart of these things–those hardships and trials that are pressing you this very hour, week and month of your life. The hardest things are not those that the world knows of. Down in your secret soul unseen and unknown by any but Jesus, there is a little trial that you would not dare to mention that is harder for you to bear than martyrdom.

There, beloved, lies your crown. God help you to overcome, and sometime wear it. –Selected

“It matters not how the battle goes,
The day how long;
Faint not! Fight on!
Tomorrow comes the song.”

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