No Compromise

No Compromise

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St Paul Writing His Epistles

Valentin de Boulogne

(c. 1618 – 1620)

 

I had a kitchen disaster last night; the kind that makes me wonder why, after a challenging day, I would see fit to take on a recipe I’ve never tried before. By eight o’clock the kitchen was still a mess, dinner was in the garbage and I was more than a bit frazzled when the phone rang.

 

It was a call from a dear friend in law enforcement. We have many of these late night calls that remind me what it was like growing up with a father who was a homicide detective. They see humanity at it’s worst and there comes a time when they must find a way to not lose heart, they must find a way to see beyond the disgraceful condition of a world gone astray from it’s moorings, for they after all, are the ones cleaning up the mess.

 

Believe me when I tell you after one of our conversations, you’d think we live in a war zone; but my neighborhood and state is no different than yours. Well, some might say, that’s pathetic and so negative, why draw attention to it? Because if our country continues on it’s course it’s not going to get any better..The results are being processed every day in the courts of our cities. We have compromised truth to such a degree and shunned the reality that God exists that the grave consequences of not following Him may one day end in losing our soul as a nation. 

 

So, what is a Christian to do? How can we avoid being driven to despair in the face of such turmoil and worldly anxiety? Should we wring our hands and cry, “Where are you God? ” Should we raise our fists to Heaven and accuse God of forsaking us? Is He forsaking us?

 

For it is God who said. “Let light shine out of darkness,”

who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Christ.

—2 Corinthians 4:6

 

Though a Christian is only an earthen vessel, he must be head and shoulders above the anxieties of the world, in order to show that power belongs to God and not to us-

 

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us.

 

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.

 

For while we live we are always being given up to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you.

2 Corinthians 4: 7-12

 

 

Although we find ourselves living in times of constant distress, the apostle Paul teaches us that God’s grace alone, can keep us from despair; our sufferings, if submitted to the Lord’s mercies, will conform us to Christ. Death might be at work, but obedience and trust will result in life and boundless blessings.

 

For the apostle Paul, his ‘no compromise’ life in Asia resulted in a great deal of suffering which he shared with the Corinthians so they wouldn’t be ignorant. He experienced so much affliction, was so unbearably crushed, that he almost despaired of life itself.

(2 Cor 1:8-11)

 

Why did God allow him to experience that?

 

  • to make him rely– not on himself–but, on God who raises the dead
  • so his hope would always be set on God to deliver him….again and again
  • to call them to pray for him  (1: 8-11)
I don’t know what the future holds for us…I don’t even know if the recipe I’ve picked out for tonight will result in another round of kitchen chaos….but I know this: at this point in our history regardless of the cost, we’d best heed the no compromise example of St Paul and recognize that God alone is able to bring light to the darkness we’re in.

Pray like our lives depend on that truth. 

Pray for the ones cleaning up the mess.

 

+PAX

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Nancy
    May 30, 2013

    “God alone is able to bring light to the darkness we’re in. Pray like our lives depend on that truth.”

    Because they do.

    Thank you for such a good post.

    • Caroline
      May 30, 2013

      Nancy, Lately, the Lord just seems to be driving this truth home to me.
      I’m encouraged by the recent messages of Pope Francis– especially the one where He says if we annoy people, bless the Lord..
      Better than being lukewarm for Christ. : )
      Blessings always and +

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