Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Think About Such Things


Philippians 4:8
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is holy, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things.

The news in the media today, whether you get yours from television, newspapers, or the internet, gives rise to daily distress.  We are bombarded by unspeakable evils:  Incompetent, corrupt and dictatorial governments; random and plotted murders; the ongoing slave trade; the abuse of children and the elderly, the heinous persecution and beheading of persons because of their religious beliefs.

And the list goes on.

Seemingly forever and ever and ever . . .

With no end in sight.

You can, I'm sure, add your own personal angst and anguish to this frightening, mind-boggling aggregate of senseless tragedies.  But may I suggest, in our own sorrow and sadness at the state of the world, that we, as Christians, focus on something different.  Not in terms of forgetting the injustices by any means, but to render them ineffective through the power of prayer and through our own positive actions in this world on behalf of our Lord, Christ Jesus.

As Saint Paul says in the scripture above, we are to contemplate the goodness granted to us from God through Jesus.  We are to think about such things with heart, mind, soul, and strength.  We must remember, in the midst of chaos and uncertainty, the truth Jesus speaks:  "I have told you these things, so that you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world." (John 16:33)

No matter what troubles, trials, frights, or fears this world throws at us, we need, more than ever, to rest in Jesus' promise to us.  We need to trust that He has conquered the world, and there is no evil which can separate us from the love of God.  (R0mans 8:35)

With that knowledge in our hearts and minds and souls, let us go forth in hope and faith and strength.  Keeping ourselves focused upon all our Lord has taught us, and praying for those  who suffer at the wicked hand of oppression.

Knowing their stories will not end there.

For our God, our ever-loving and omnipresent Father, is there for them, in this life and in the next.  

~

What pain, what heartaches, are weighing upon your soul today?

Prayer:  Father, we thank You for the precious gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ, who came not only to save us from our sins, but to overcome the sins of the entire world.  In these times of uncertainty and fear, help us to focus upon Your promises, Your unchanging Word, to challenge in Your name, the injustices of this world in which we live and where we have the opportunity to do mighty works in Your name.  In Jesus' name, we pray, amen.


18 comments:

  1. Martha, when we moved to this new city, we didn't bother to connect the television! I can't tell you how much it helps!
    But even more important, as you say, is to focus on the Lord, knowing all things are in His hands!

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    1. What a coincidence, Corinne! We disconnected our television service here at the house recently; we can get pretty much anything we want to see on the computer. I still see the news on the internet, though, and find I need Jesus more than ever to get through the mess, trusting in God's eternal plan.
      Love and blessings!

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  2. The only thing that keeps us going...HIS name.

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  3. It is when the burdens and troubles weigh on us the most when it is the most hard to focus on Jesus and allow Him to take the burdens from us. We don't want to wait for Him to get around to it, so we take matters in our own hands ultimately making things so much worse. I am getting better at trusting him and letting go...it is a discipline that is hard to learn but so worth it in the long run!

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    1. It was a hard discipline for me to learn, too, Kathy, but practice makes, if not perfect, better over time. Worries simply clutter our minds and steal our joy. I'm so glad we can lay our burdens down at the cross!
      Love and blessings!

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  4. Martha, thank you for this meaningful post. So many things weigh on my soul today: the persecution of my Christian brothers and sisters throughout the world (with a deep sense that we in America need to prepare ourselves for the same type of persecution to come our way in the future); those who are lost and hurting in a variety of ways--those who need to be introduced to Jesus; and so many more.

    Keeping focused on Jesus brings peace.

    Love and blessings!

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    1. I share the same sentiments, Kim, and like you, I am trying to focus on the Lord. He is our source of peace and strength in all times and circumstances. With him, we can face any struggle!
      Love and blessings!

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  5. Pains and heartaches have weighed heavily on my heart for awhile now. And yet, yoked with the Lord, they are lighter, easier to bear. Focus - this is the key for me. And oh, how I need to remind myself to look at the promises and hope I have in Him, and not be consumed by the woes of this world.

    Great, encouraging words in this one, Martha. Thank you for sharing.

    GOD BLESS!

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    1. Yes, Sharon, when we hand Him our burdens, our worries, and our sorrows, it makes it our load so much easier to bear. Reminding ourselves to do so, again and again, is key.
      Glad this post encouraged you!
      Love and blessings!

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  6. Hi Martha! It is difficult to read about all the atrocities committed around the world. It makes me feel so helpless sometimes. I think St Paul knew how worried we'd be. Concentrating on making our own worlds a place of peace is sometimes the best thing I can do ..

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    1. Ceil, thank so much for taking the time to visit me today! Glad to have you on board!
      Yes, St. Paul certainly knew about trials and tribulations in his time, but found the answer in Christ. So grateful for his letters which reach through the many years to touch our hearts and inspire us in the here and now.
      Love and blessings!

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  7. Amen. Great reminder. Thinking about and experiencing His goodness leads to action. We get the opportunity to change the world, but it doesn't come from fixating on all the problems or even trying to come up with solutions. He is the Beginning and the End. Thank you, Martha!

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    1. He IS the Beginning and the End, and we do need to focus on His promises, grace and love. Thanks, Jason!
      Love and blessings!

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  8. You are so right about the news of the world distracting us and bringing us down. I know we have to be mindful of the world and to pray but our hearts need to stay focused on all these good things. Thanks for a great reminder.

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    1. Yes, Jean, staying focused on the Lord can go far in helping us not fall into the tailspin the world wishes we would do.
      Love and blessings!

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  9. hi Martha - news sells with controversy and fear. I don't have a television but doesn't mean I can't access the news at my fingertips - on the internet. At least I have more choice on what I want to see and what to close immediately. The news if anything should be a catalyst for more prayers in our lives. Those around us suffering and hurting sure can use them. And prayer is much more constructive than mindless news-watching.

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    1. Yes, indeed, prayer is, Vishnu! We do not have television, either, and I do try to be selective when I read news on the internet because it's too easy for me to go into overload mode. But taking the bad news and using it as a catalyst for more prayers is a good thing. Reminds me that God can turn anything to good when it serves His purposes.
      Love and blessings!

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