Tuesday, April 28, 2009

He Can Move the Mountains

Right now in my life, I'm going through some personal challenges that are of such great magnitude that they will take a long time, probably my whole lifetime, to completely overcome. As glad as I am to be aware of them and working on them, and as much hope as I have that with God's help they will eventually be overcome, I still sometimes get discouraged at how far I have to go and how slow progress is. Sometimes the discouragement is so crippling that I want to just lay down and give up, not knowing if I really have the perseverance to make it through.

God used a song we sang at church on Sunday, though, to really speak to me on this subject. It's a song I know well, but this week God used it to speak to me in a fresh way. (I love it when He does that!) The chorus goes like this:
Savior, He can move the mountains.
My God is mighty to save,
He is mighty to save!
Forever Author of salvation,
He rose and conquered the grave!
Jesus conquered the grave!
He used this to speak three things to me.

First of all, God is so powerful, He can move mountains! If moving a mountain is nothing to Him, then my challenges are so small and insignificant - of COURSE His power is strong enough to overcome them too! By my own power, I will get discouraged and ultimately defeated. But His power is enough for ANYTHING I could encounter - much more than anything I currently face.

Secondly, if God is so powerful, that means He COULD take care of my challenges in an instant with one blink of His all-seeing eye. But the fact that He doesn't means that He has a purpose in allowing me to go through it. We all know the analogy of the butterfly struggling to emerge from the cocoon - I won't go into that here, but I do think it's very applicable. I want to take it even further, though. Thinking about His purposes in my suffering and the fact that He's powerful enough that He COULD take care of them in an instant if He wanted to caused me to also think about the fact that He wants us to live on this earth at all. I mean, if He wanted to, He could just rapture each believer straight to His side the moment we're saved. But He doesn't do that. He wants us to live on this earth to face struggles and for our faith to be refined as we are conformed more into His image and prepared for the glorious day when we will see Him face to face. If anything, maybe my struggles and challenges are designed to make me less attached to this earth and more longing for that day when I go to my true eternal home.

And third, applying these thoughts to my salvation itself, my God is mighty to save. He achieved the work of my salvation once and for all in the work of the cross. And yet instead of rapturing me instantly to His side upon my acceptance of that, He chose for me to remain upon this earth for Him to pursue the lifelong work of sanctification in me. Now THAT is a daunting task if ever I saw one. Working to make ME holy and conformed to His image? Sheesh, I'll take my light and momentary afflictions over the task He has to complete in me. Yet He never gives up, never tires, never turns His back. He just patiently and persistently works, teaches, touches, refines, and molds my soul into the one that He will ultimately bring to His side.

What's so amazing is that He already knows that His work WILL be completed in me, He promises so in His Word.
Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 1:6
Thank You, Lord.

1 comment:

Jackie said...

Thank you Joni! I needed to be reminded that there is a purpose in this current suffering. And, I have heard that song numerous sundays in a row(at different churches) and on the radio and know He's trying to speak to me! And though He's not moving my mountain yet, I know He's up to something right now. Thank you- I am glad He uses songs like this one and others to get through our thick heads His message!