As I sit at the computer I can look out of the door at a dull, cloudy day with a light drizzle of rain falling. It reminds me of a number of analogies to our Christian life. They are all obvious and well known but they remain true and may be helpful for all that. How often have we been told that into every life a little rain must fall? Or perhaps the fact that above the clouds the sun is still shining and so in bad times we take strength in the knowledge that God is still present, still loving us and still eager to help if only we will talk to Him about our problems and ask Him to intervene.
The fact that these and other similar analogies are well known and often quoted does not lessen either their truth or their value. At times we all need to sit back and quietly muse on the obvious truths of God’s love for us and His willingness to help in every situation if only we will take the time to discuss it with Him and ask Him to intervene on our behalf. He is there. He loves us enormously. He fully understands our situation. He is able to help. He wants to help. Why not stop now, look through the clouds to our loving Father and bring Him into the situation. It will always help.
~ Alan Hermann
I was recently reading Warren Wiersbe’s commentary on Psalms when I came across this thought on Psalm 19:9,
‘The mark of a true bible student is a burning heart not a big head.’
The truth of this struck me instantly as did a sense of sadness at the many times I have got this wrong in my own experience in studying and sharing Bible truth. It is a timely reminder to me of the other old truth that we stop teaching the day after we stop learning. It also took me back to the words of Sir Isaac Newton when praised for his great learning he said,
‘I am like a small boy walking along a beach and turning over a stone here and there while the vast ocean of truth remains undiscovered before me.’
I am not discouraged by how little I know. I am in fact encouraged to grow in Christian understanding and living and to do my best to help others to grow along with me. Christian growth is a shared happening. We share the little we have discovered with each other and together we grow.
Christian growth is always a team event.
~ Alan Hermann
I am probably exaggerating things a little, but only a little, when I say that there is a love-hate relationship developing between society at large and the church.
Whereas once the church helped society establish and find meaning in a Christian approach to morality we are now in a situation where increasingly society at large rejects Christian morality. Whereas thy church teaches love for our neighbour and endeavours, to the best of its ability, to model this, society is increasingly becoming ‘me’ centred
The church continues to put God at the centre of being but all too often society gives God no place in their life or decision making. As this antipathy to the church and its beliefs and values grows we in the church need to respond with a growing love for all people. The more we are rejected the more we love in response and reach out help in every way that we can. To paraphrase Scripture ‘they will know us by our love.’
When Jesus was attacked He responded with love, costly, sacrificial love. We can do no other. Those who malign us, misuse us, criticise our church and our faith are people for whom Jesus died and whom He loves. Let them encounter that sacrificial, caring love in us.
~ Alan Hermann