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The Accident of Heredity


 

“It’s the saddest thing to see people in the service of God depending on that which the Grace of God never gave them; but depending on what they have by the accident of heredity.”

His Utmost for His Highest 12/30

Reading these words yesterday summarized a teaching God has been giving me for quite some time.

Personal experience and years of getting to know God tell me these genetics can only be changed by long………conversations with the Almighty.

Most often our goals do not meet His purposes due to ignoring His word and guidance. The results are the world we live in; lost nomads in their own seas of deserts.

The Bible is full of “wanderers” who paved examples for us; only it helps to read their stories to learn the outcomes.

Not reading God’s word is a self-fault wilderness; a deserter’s reward for the loss of the Creators design.

With every one of His Biblical characters over time and agony, God chipped away at their natural features. What we are born with must be renewed to follow Christ. That “born again” clause comes into play if you choose to become His servant.c s lewis

So it doesn’t matter what you inherit because the Grace of God will form in our nature only Jesus Christ.

If we truly think about it, God is saving us from ourselves; those negative lapses into earthly derision. He strips us of bitterness, anger and resentment by allowing us to become another “Job.”

God stamps us with His presence which is an automatic rejection and order for worldly persecution. He allows our indignation and egotistical “selfies” to knock us off our golden trimmed pedestals. We end up by our inherited personality caged or imprisoned which adds to the humility of falling flat on our “airbrushed” faces. So much for that trip to the salon.

We are our ancestor’s descendants complete with their good and bad traits. As we love them through our lives, it was never intended by God that we keep their hand-me-downs.

Just because something is what it is doesn’t mean it needs to stay that way.

 Psalm 87:7 As they make music they will sing, “All my fountains are in you.”

 

 

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Changing God’s Purposes Result in Division: The Dilemma of Christian Colleges


 What Does the Bible Say About Division?erskine

Mark 3: 24-26 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but is coming to an end.

Erskine President Paul Kooistra recently wrote a letter implementing major cuts from the College and its Theological Seminary. Beginning July 2015, reductions in salaries, early retirements and sabbaticals to completely eliminating the Modern Language department are grim reminders of the fight from Montreat College in the last few years. My husband graduated from Montreat with an MBA.

Erskine in on the same track as Montreat College has been unless agreements can be made according to God’s will.

Recent graduates from Erskine informed me of the campus negativity and atmospheric sadness. In fact, some have told me before they graduated they couldn’t wait to leave.
In all honesty their view of the future of Erskine appeared dim.

Again I will reiterate the “repeat performance” I am witnessing here from Montreat College.

Many of my own classmates have disagreed with my position and that is fine; I am not the least bit offended. However, going into a sanctuary of God’s ordination and attempting to change his laws will only result in division, fighting and possible closure.

If you are a graduate of Erskine and do not understand the fight it is presently enduring, then you need to understand the enemy is on the prowl and Erskine is on his chopping block unless the people of God agree to stop the divisions. 

Fellow alumni, I plead with you to pray earnestly about this dilemma. Erskine runs deep in my veins from decades of family members all the way back to my Grandfather Craig who either attended, graduated or aided in building the campus. Our roots are in the soil of the land it has occupied for generations. Many of you come from families dedicated to the Erskine traditions and institutional customs that gave careers that might not have happened otherwise.

Do we continue to fight over money, personal agendas and power?

Do we feud over who gets what while employees are laid off, salaries are cut and students are left holding a bag of bad memories?

My husband is one of those employees who was cut after 13 years of dedicated hard work at Montreat College due to the same fight occurring right now at Erskine. Like many others in his position, we lost everything including our daughter’s ability to get a reduced college education because of his job. Searching for months for him to get another job we ended up moving to another state leaving family and friends we had had for years and changing our lives completely.montreat

This was a result of the feud brought on by people who wanted to change what wasn’t supposed to be changed.  I am talking about real people with real jobs and real lives.

This is the future of Erskine employees; some of which have dedicated much of their lives to serving God on the ground of His College. Then there will be those who wonder if they are next? Will they be on the “chopping block” of a career they deemed anointed by God? And the students? New Students; will they apply? Will they have the desire for a less than questionable college experience?

A very wise friend of mine who had been a Professor at Montreat college for decades told me over 20 years ago he had been telling the leadership there that if they didn’t start adhering to God’s word, the college would see an early demise. A Professor of Computer Technology and Economics, his wisdom was ignored. Unfortunately, his prophetic warnings began after he left voluntarily.

I speak from the heart here as one who was directly affected by the tearing down of a Godly institution ignited by selfish greed and personal demands. It is no fun my friends and a test of faith to go through what we endured. I thank God by his grace we are in the position we are in right now. He preserved us and blessed us because of the injustice imposed upon my husband.

Fellow Erskine friends.  This fight is just beginning.  It breaks my heart knowing others are now experiencing what we did.

But it isn’t the loss of job or health insurance or a college education that is most important here. God is the great provider. Philippians 4:19.

What is at stake is far more important.

The foundation Erskine was built upon is the Cross of Christ. That foundation has been rocked by those who desire to move away from the saving Grace of God. And God can’t come to the rescue unless his followers pray and ask him to intervene. That being said, he will expect the church and college to repent and return to His word and fellowship.

Prayer works. And Erskine needs it desperately.

Romans 16:17 I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.


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The Christmas I will never forget…


It’s been a while since I blogged.

2014 has been a year marked by loss, illness and unexpected shockers for me personally.

Yet on the flip side has been the evidence of God in every circumstance and pain.

The valley has been deep and long but I have truly felt the presence of God walking with me step by step.
It gives recognition to his provisions one day at a time.leeches

Christmas was a first for me as I spent the morning in the emergency room. I barely got through opening gifts when I almost passed out. I surprised myself by asking Mark to take me to the hospital but I had nowhere else to go.

It was early enough the waiting room was for the most part empty so fortunately they took me back immediately.

When the doctor arrived who was obviously not interested in working on Christmas, asked me my symptoms. I will spare you of the details but suffice it to say they were quite unpleasant. After a quick exam he looked at me and said, “If all checks out you have Viral Gastroenteritis.”
He left the room and I never saw him again.

He ordered blood work, chest and stomach X-rays along with a constant check of my vitals.

The nurse filled 3 vials of blood. I wondered if I had any left after that.

After the x-rays, the nurse returned to hook me up to an IV.

She informed me that, “yes” I did have what the doctor diagnosed.

We discussed eating the BRAT diet only for a few days to allow my stomach to rest. So much for Christmas breads and cookies now. 3 prescriptions and I could be on my way. It was my choice to finish the IV to give my immune system a much needed boost which I thought was a little strange.

I asked the nurse, “Do I need the entire drip?”drip

Nurse, “You can if you want but your electrolytes checked out very well.”

So the sugarless Gatorade and Power aid drinks had done their job.

After the drip finished we left. 3-4 hours in the emergency room on Christmas morning was more than enough.

Once home, the bed called and a good nap was in order.

Rather curious as to my lab report which the hospital gave me, I began a search of what these medical terms meant.

According to the report, all the blood work came out normal and or better. The only questionable level was the one producing a stress result. Mine was a little higher than it should be which is why the nurse asked me about my life before we left.

“Are you stressed out?”

Me, “ugh, yes. This year has been one of the most difficult I have ever lived.”

After giving her a few details she understood especially after I told her of recent developments with other people in my life who are going through major life changing concerns.

After absorbing all the lab work results, I sat back in awe of God.

It wasn’t the Viral Gastroenteritis that I was experiencing, but how God has kept me healthy in other areas that are of great importance.

The results revealed that after years of antibiotics for sinus and other infections, Probiotics have worked to keep me from getting what is called Clostridium. The doctor was concerned that may have been a factor, but turns out it wasn’t even close.

The lab results also revealed my kidneys, liver and pancreas are functioning very well. God has truly blessed me with almost perfect blood pressure. 

While the enemy had been filling my mind with his evil diagnosis’s  for who knows how long, God came up with a victory I didn’t see coming. To be honest I was overwhelmed with His healing power running through my ill body.

Years of strange sicknesses and chronic infections finally revealed they had been attacks. It simply doesn’t make sense for lab tests and blood work to show up perfectly normal over and over while illness has ravaged me for almost 18 years. I sensed these results were a major blow to the devil and his sinister plans for me.  As he tried to ruin my Christmas, God turned it for good. 

God’s truth often works where we aren’t looking. And sometimes he allows us to go through something unpleasant to find out how he is preserving us behind the scenes. 

Many times it isn’t what we think we face and endure as much as it is what God is protecting us from.

For me, that list must be very long.

God is just plain awesome.  

2 Thessalonians 3:3 But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one.


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“Then”


 

I never knew the word “then” was so powerful until recently.

God revealed to me how often we put the “cart before the horse” or well, you know what that means. We jump; panic or get ahead of God. And that doesn’t work. At least not with him. Believe me I am a master in the art of “running” past God only to find out the finish line sent me right back to where I started.

HHHHHmmmmmmm who does that sound like? 40 years in the wilderness meant for 11 days?

Joshua 1:8cart
Psalm 91:1-8
Isaiah 58:8-9 and 14
Jeremiah 29: 12-13
Malachi 3: 4-5 and 18
Matthew 10: 13
Luke 6: 10
John 20: 21

What do all those verses have in common?

The word “Then.”

Joshua 1: 8 “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.”

Either during the verse or the few verses preceding these are references to the word “then” like “if” or “do.” In other words these are instructions by God; directions or commands for us to follow in order to receive his promises.

Psalms 91 begins with words of encouragement by guiding us into fellowship with God as the Most High; the Almighty, our refuge and fortress. As the writer continues he emphasizes “if we will make the Most High our dwelling then……….”

God is trying to get it into our thick heads we have to do what he wants first to be blessed and rewarded. Throughout the Bible are verses containing his will for us in order for the latter to take place. Why?

God knows what is best for us?

God wants our obedience?

God wants to make us wait? Wait?  And wait some more?

It’s amazing what we find out or learn on the way to falling under the Shadow of the Almighty.