Words Of Truth - February 16, 2011

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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

"The Blessing of Burdens"

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;”
II Corinthains 4:17

     A man found a cocoon of the emperor moth and took it home to watch it emerge. One day a small opening appeared, and for several hours the moth struggled but couldn't seem to force its body past a certain point.
Deciding something was wrong, the man took scissors and snipped the remaining bit of the cocoon. The moth emerged easily, its body large and swollen, the wings small and shriveled.
     He expected that in a few hours the wings would spread out in their natural beauty, but they did not. Instead of developing into a creature free to fly, the moth spent its life dragging around a swollen body and shriveled wings.
     The constricting cocoon and the struggle necessary to pass through the tiny opening are God's way of forcing fluid from the body into the wings. The "merciful" snip was, in reality, cruel. Sometimes the struggle is exactly what we need.
     When I hear people say they hope their children don't have to experience the hardships they went through--I don't agree. Those hardships made us what we are. You can be disadvantaged in many ways, and one way may be not having had to struggle. However, the struggles of life will, if we respond correctly, draw us closer to Christ. Hardships, if responded to correctly, humble us. God always responds to humility with grace. Grace sustains us through the hardship. The hardship then molds us. So in looking back, the hardship was necessary.
     I’m often asked, “Preacher, why do the righteous suffer?” I respond, “Why not? They are the only ones who can take it.” God has a way of taking the struggle of the righteous and making it for His good. The same struggle that makes one man bitter can make another man better, depending on how he responds to it. If we humble ourselves and yield to God’s grace, we will be made soft and pliable by the struggle. We need to submit to God in the trials and He will turn them into blessings. 
     Look at Calvary for a moment. Do you see that the bad thief had to suffer the cross? So did the penitent thief. So did the Saviour. The bad, the penitent, and even the Son of God had to suffer. However, the bad thief was made worse by it. The penitent thief turned to Christ by it. The Son of God gave salvation to all by it. So it makes no difference who you are you will suffer in this life, but for God’s people it “worketh for us.” Our suffering is to our advantage! It is only for “a moment” compared to eternity. The glory we will receive in Heaven far outweighs the burden we carry here!
     We ought to thank God for the burdens!

Study verses:  Hebrews 2:9; James 5:10,11; Jude 1:7; Ps 55:22; Matt 8:31; Luke 22:15; Luke 23:39-43; Acts 9:16; Rom 8:17; I Peter 1:6,7

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Previous devotions

"Living In Death" - February 9, 2011
"A Loving Church" - February 2, 2011
"Unnecessary Burdens" - January 26, 2011
"A Greater Love" - January 19, 2011
"Investing In Time" - January 12, 2011
"Making It Right" - January 7, 2011
"Forever Faithful" - December 29, 2010
"Pondering the Christmas Miracle" - December 22, 2010
"The First Christmas Carol" - December 15, 2010
"An Unspeakable Gift" - December 8, 2010
"The Big News" - December 1, 2010
"Thank You" - November 24, 2010
"Walking In Truth" - November 17, 2010
"Useless Pillars" - November 10, 2010
"Unfounded Fears" - October 27, 2010
"God Is Able" - October 20, 2010
"The Blessings of the Lord" - October 13, 2010
"Treasure" - October 6, 2010
"Spirit vs. Flesh" - September 29, 2010
"The Rock Higher Than I" - September 23, 2010
"Lo, I Am With You Alway" - September 3, 2010


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