Satan Schemes, God Redeems
by Joni Eareckson Tada
God always exploits Satan's evil intentions and uses them in his own service--just one more example of God's ability to work "out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will" (Ephesians 1:11)
Satan plans to hinder the work of an effective missionary by arranging for him to trip in the jungle and break a leg; God allows the accident so that the missionary's godly response to pain and discomfort will bring glory to [God]. Satan brews a hurricane to kill thousands in a small village in Bangladesh; God uses the storm to display his awesome power, to show people the awful consequences that sin has brought to the world, to drive some to search for him, . . . and to remind us that he is free to do as he pleases. We will never figure him out.
Satan schemed that a seventeen-year-old girl named Joni would break her neck, hoping to ruin her life; God sent the broken neck in answer to her prayer for a closer walk with him.
As a friend once said "God sends things, but Satan ofen brings them. Praise God that when Satan causes calamity, we can answer him the with words that Joseph answered his brothers with when they sold him into slavery, 'You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good.'"
Taken from Women's Devotional Bible 2
Hear me, O God, as I voice my complaint; protect my life from the threat of the enemy. Hide me from the conspiracy of the wicked, from that noisy crowd of evildoers. They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim their words like deadly arrows. They shoot from ambush at the innocent man; they shoot at him suddenly, without fear. They encourage each other in evil plans, they talk about hiding their snares; they say, "Who will see them?" They plot injustice and say, "We have devised a perfect plan!" Surely the mind and heart of man are cunning. But God will shoot them with arrows; suddenly they will be struck down. He will turn their own tongues against them and bring them to ruin; all who see them will shake their heads in scorn. All mankind will fear; they will proclaim the works of God and ponder what he has done. Let the righteous rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him; let all the upright in heart praise him! ~ Psalm 64
Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. ~ Romans 5:3-5
Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit t the Father of our spirits and live! Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. ~ Hebrews 12:7-11
Two days ago, my uncle was in a very serious automobile accident in Texas. I have seen pictures of the pickup truck he was driving and the school bus he collided with. We are very blessed that my uncle is still with us. God must have some amazing things planned for my uncle.
I just had a conversation with our pastor on Sunday about discipline. Our pastor is leading a study on the book "The Myth of a Christian Nation: How the Quest for Political Power is Destroying the Church" by Gregory A. Boyd. I really don't have much interest in politics, but as I was reading the chapter for Sunday's discussion on the difference between "Power Over" (worldly kingdom) and "Power Under" (Godly kingdom), I kept trying to apply the principles to my parenting.
Parenting is tough. I want to teach my children to make good choices and to become respected young ladies. When I discipline my children for making poor choices, they say that I am being mean. Hopefully, when they get a little older, they will see the discipline they endured as my way of guiding them to make choices they can be proud of and that God will approve.
Whn you experience struggles in your life, remember that God is working through these difficult times to display his power and his love for you. May God richly bless you today. Thanks for stopping by my blog.