Chink in My Armor

chink-in-the-armorIt’s a dreadful thing when Satan finds the chink in our armor. A chink is a place where the armor comes together.  It’s a weak spot for no other reason than necessity. It’s not that the armor is poorly made. Chinks need to be there. We also use that word when referring to a log cabin.  The chinking is the mixture that goes between the logs. If there are any weak spots in the chinking of a log home, the chilling winter wind will whistle its way into the cabin or a varmint may creep in as well.

What is your weak spot? Your “chink?” Where is that place where Satan hurls his fiery darts, trying to destroy you? For me, it’s my children. Our two sons, their wives, and five of our seven grandchildren live over 12 hours away.  I never understood the joy of grandparenting until I became a grandmother.  I love those little ones and just want to spend time with them… but I can’t.  They are too far away.

And what does Satan do? He needles me, tempting me with all sorts of wrong thoughts and foolish reasoning. How slippery the trial he puts before us, decorated to make it look inviting! It reminds me of the Beast in “Beauty and the Beast” sitting before the fire licking his wounds. Belle wants to clean the deep scratches but instead, the Beast withdraws and cares for his hurts in his own way. That particular scene is pivotal in their relationship, and as the beast holds out his arm for Belle to clean, she thanks him for saving her life. The cleansing hurts but her tender touch and kind remarks start to heal the Beast internally as well as externally.

So, once again I return to my “normal”—facetime and phone calls. The “decorated path” that Satan puts before me borders on bitterness. I want to “lick my wounds” and have a pity party! But instead, I surrender my desires for the Lord’s will and trust Him to do what is best! That’s not easy but it provides peace in my soul and healing where the fiery darts have wounded. Going my own way—demanding my own way—will never bring lasting peace.  It may relieve the present pain, like the Beast licking his wounds, but I’m looking for eternal rest, not temporary relief!

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3: 5,6

Only Trust Him

Come, every soul by sin oppressed,
there’s mercy with the Lord,
and He will surely give you rest
by trusting in His word.

Refrain:
Only trust Him, only trust Him,
only trust Him now;
He will save you, He will save you.
He will save you now.

For Jesus shed His precious blood
rich blessings to bestow;
plunge now into the crimson flood
that washes white as snow.

 Yes, Jesus is the truth, the way,
that leads you into rest;
believe in Him without delay,
and you are fully blest.

Come, then, and join this holy band,
and on to glory go,
to dwell in that celestial land
where joys immortal flow.

Only trust Him, only trust Him,
only trust Him now;
He will save you, He will save you.
He will save you now.

~ John Stockton

 

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Bear Choices

Choices – we make them every day. Years ago (like 15!),  I remember telling my senior high Sunday school class during prayer time that I wanted them to pray for our family because we had an important decision to make.  I can’t remember what the decision was but I do remember one of the young men asking, “What, you’re changing peanut butter brands?”

It is Monday morning and for you non-ministry readers, that is the preacher’s Saturday.  Tom and I had already planned to have a date today instead of doing the usual “off-day type” errand runs.  At 7:05, the phone rang with a serious difficulty.  At 7:30, phone rang again.  I had decided to do my aerobics but the TV wouldn’t work.  In the fifteen minutes that we were together, two “conflicts” occurred.  So, we regrouped and made some tactical choices because we know from experience, that Satan loves to ruin our off days! I decided to walk instead of doing the aerobics.

I love to walk our dead-end dirt road and usually take Pepper, our fierce little cocker spaniel with me; but after last nights torrential downpour, I go it alone.  As I’m walking, I’m thinking about the bear that one of the men saw last night on the property – a big bear, he said.  Should I turn around? I’m picturing the bear I saw last night on facebook.  (Thanks, Joan for the photo!) Yes, I turn around; but then I decide God can protect me.  As I continue to walk, I’m thinking though all the worst scenarios.  Dying by a bear attack wouldn’t be pleasant!  So I stop and talk to God, and  as I look down both ends of the road, I realize that this is exactly what we do when we make choices.  This choice is driven by two thoughts: fear and common sense.  I fear the bear and it’s foolish to tempt God.

The other alternate route is down Route 184.  Now we are in the epicenter of the gas drilling.  There are trucks coming in every direction, SO… I decide to jump the little stream and walk through the neighboring business’ front yard.  There’s a small incline and as I jump I feel something pop in my foot.  As I’m hobbling home, I’m thinking again, “Great, Tom and I just decided to walk the PA Grand Canyon today!!!  I should have opted for the bear!”

Have you ever made a choice – prayed about a choice, and then everything seemed to go wrong?  We all have.  Did I make the wrong choice?  I don’t believe so.  Well, maybe the choice to jump the stream was a wrong choice!

“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Pro 3:5,6)

coupled with Romans 8:28

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose,”

are the two guideposts in helping us to make and accept wise decisions.  It was a small decision, but I did pray there in the middle of the dirt road and sought God’s guidance.  I was trusting God and not leaning on my own understanding.  I acknowledged him, and I believe He directed.  Now, after a day at the doctor’s office and the hospital for x-rays instead of the quiet walk in the woods (which was also to include Bible reading and prayer), I lean on Romans 8:28.  Was it the day I would have planned, absolutely not; however, choosing to go through it while continuing to acknowledge my God and keep a smile on my face WAS God’s will for me in this one!