Posts Tagged ‘I will restore’

Restore that person gently

January 24, 2017

Galatians 6--1-2

The Verse of the Day for January 24, 2017 directs our attention to Galatians 6:1, to which we also add verse 2 to complete the thought:

Galatians 6:1-2 (NIV):

[Doing Good to All] Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

These verses express that when we see a brother or sister fall under a heavy burden of sin, we can spiritually come along side of that person and offer assistance in bearing that burden. We are to “restore that person gently.” This reference brings to mind a Quote of the Day blog entry posted last year:

“God is in the restoration business. He delights in transforming lives through the healing touch of the Lord Jesus Christ, who redeemers and restores and makes whole every wounded soul who calls out for help.”

Not only is God concerned about restoration, but we should also make restoration our business. As we endeavor to restore our brothers and sisters, we recognize that restoration is a process that should be engaged with a “spirit of gentleness, not with a sense of superiority or self-righteousness,” so states the Amplified Bible.

The verb “restore” in the Greek New Testament refers to a dislocated limb. In light of that, restoring the limb to its proper position must be done gently. We must keep this in mind as we endeavor to “restore” one another. During this time of restoration and recovery, we make our brothers and sisters aware of God’s desire that they be restored, as expressed in these lyrics:

Rest in me and recover.

Your strength and courage I will renew.

As you trust me you will uncover

The power of Christ at work within you.

I am all that you need.

 

Rest in me and you will discover

I am the Lord, and I do not faint.

Be assured I never get weary.

Rest in me and be comforted to know

I am all that you need.

 

Rest in me and mount up as eagles.

You shall walk and shall not faint.

You shall run and not be weary.

Rest in me and know that I shall not fail.

I am all that you need.

 

I am all that you need in the time of famine.

I am the one that shall feed and satisfy your soul.

I am all that you need in the time of trouble.

I will hasten to be by your side. Now, don’t you see?

I am all that you need.

The Verse of the Day and its reference to the previous Quote of the Day also bring to mind this powerful song restoration by Kevin Levar, “I Will Restore” the perfect way to cap off today’s entry:

 

To the rescue. . . one more time

December 10, 2016

psalm-35-17

Recently while waiting in the barber shop on a Saturday morning, I “happened” to view a television episode of Sea Rescue which highlighted a most unusual rescue attempt. A dolphin had become stuck in the mud of the inlet of the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The Sea World San Diego rescue team along with the Imperial Beach lifeguards, were able to lift the stranded dolphin out of the thick muddy surroundings and transport it to the open waters of the ocean. Most ironically, the name of the vessel used was “The Second Chance.” The initial rescue was short-lived, however, for the adult male dolphin returned to the area and become even more deeply mired in the mud which threatened to suffocate sea animal as high tide approached. Once again, the rescue team lifted the sea animal out of the muck, carrying it to deeper ocean waters. This time the dolphin swam freely into the ocean and did not return.

The television episode reminded me that so many times as we go through life, we become entangled in circumstances that restrict our efforts to succeed and serve only to impede our progress. Like the Psalmist we may find ourselves in desperate situations whereby we cry out to God:

Psalm 35:17 (NASB)

Lord, how long will You look on?
Rescue my soul from their ravages,
My only life from the lions.

Like Daniel in the den of lions, we sometimes find ourselves in desperate, seemingly impossible situations from which we cannot extract ourselves on our own. When we think of such situations like that of Daniel, we must remember the King’s response when God delivered Daniel:

Daniel 6:27

He [the God of Daniel] delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.

Colossians 1:13 in the New American Standard Bible also speaks of our having been delivered or rescued by God, our Father:

For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son

During times of intense pressure and overwhelming circumstances, we sometimes forget just how faithful God has been in responding to our call. At times we may wonder how can God get us out of current, difficult circumstances that entrench us, but we do not need to be concerned with knowing:

Just How God Will Deliver Us

But we had the sentence of death in ourselves,

that we should not trust in ourselves,                     

but in God which raises the dead:

Who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver:

in whom we trust that he will still deliver us;

1 Corinthians 1:8-9

Just how God will deliver us we do not know,

But of His unfailing love and power we are sure:

He can send a raven and command a widow

To sustain Elijah and all who will endure.

Though He may not be early, God is never late.

We rest in knowing that our Father is faithful,

As we trust Him, learning to labor and to wait.

For each promise fulfilled we are ever grateful

And express our gratitude in word and in deed.

We sense there never was a more perilous time

But keep walking by faith wherever Christ may lead,

For grand mountain vistas await the ones who climb.

The hand of God brought us thus far along the way,

And we shall finish our course is all we have to say.

In the recent past, I have posted a blog entry around October 31 in which I relate a Halloween prank which had disastrous consequences for a young man who went to live with a relative in the rural South where there was no indoor plumbing, and everyone used an outdoor toilet known as an “outhouse.”  Unbeknownst to my young friend, the custom on Halloween night was to move the “outhouse” from its original position so that when a person stepped inside, he would fall into the pit. That’s exactly what happened, and my friend immediately cried out, “Daddy, Daddy, come and get me!” His father came running with a flashlight and reached down and grabbed his son by the collar and snatched him out of the horrible pit.

That incident never fails to remind me of a spiritual parallel whereby I, like the young boy in horrific circumstances, find myself in a horrible mess, generally of my own making, as I call out to my Heavenly Father in desperation to come “to the rescue.” I identify with the young man and expressed my thoughts in some of the lines of “my testimony in poetry”:

With lovin arms you reach way down

And snatched me from Satan’s outhouse,

Sought me and flat-out rescued me,

Fixed me up in my Father’s house.

Why Don’t Somebody Help Me Praise the Lord?

Last year I recall a teaching that focused on “Moving from Rescue to Restoration,” which appeared to be a perfect sequel to my annual Halloween reflections in pointing out the three stages of a process that all believers encounter that begins with “Rescue” followed by “Recovery” and ends with “Restoration.” This ongoing process takes time, however. As we look to God and His Word, we are strengthened and encouraged in moving toward our ultimate destination. That teaching also brought to mind the song “I Will Restore” by Kevin LeVar, the perfect way to cap off our discussion of God’s faithfulness not only to rescue but to restore as well.

God’s restoration business

November 3, 2016

Rather than expounding upon the Verse of the Day, once again we examine the Quote of the Day for November 3, 2016 where we find this comforting reminder:

“God is in the restoration business. He delights in transforming lives through the healing touch of the Lord Jesus Christ, who redeemers and restores and makes whole every wounded soul who calls out for help.”

So often as believers we will find ourselves in what seems to be a horrible mess, generally one of our own making, and we cry out to our Heavenly Father to come to our rescue once more. In thinking about such recurring incidents, I recall a teaching that discussed “Moving from Rescue to Restoration” in an effort to encourage and strengthen believers as we undergo that process. The Quote of the Day also brings to mind God ultimate desire to rescue and restore.

The accompanying scripture reveals God’s plans and purpose for His people, as the New Living Testament renders Jeremiah 29:11-14 in this way:

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. 12 In those days when you pray, I will listen. 13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. 14 I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes. I will gather you out of the nations where I sent you and will bring you home again to your own land.”

Although the words of Jeremiah were specifically addressed to Israel concerning their release from Babylonian captivity after seventy years, we recognize the truth expressed in Romans 15:4:

Whatsoever things were written aforetime, were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures, might have hope.

The prophetic word from Jeremiah can certainly have personal application, in that the plans that God has for each of His children are no less grand than those He has for the Children of Israel whom God will rescue from captivity and restore their fortunes.

When I think of the word “restoration,” I recall special retreat center where ministers could visit and be refreshed and restored in a healing atmosphere of love and compassion. While visiting this location nestled in the rolling hills of Virginia 10 years ago, I was inspired to write the following expression of what transpired during my visit:

Restoration Rivers

He makes me to lie down in green pastures;

  He leads me beside the still waters.

 He restores my soul;

Psalm 23

 

By the still waters, God sat me down, and I wept,

Not in sorrow, but my soul overflowed with joy

When I recalled that He never slumbered nor slept

And what He designed for good nothing can destroy.

I released burdens, and without hesitation

Abba, Father assured me that He sees and cares.

As I wept by the rivers of restoration,

His heart of compassion was touched by fervent prayers.

In the hammock of love, the Spirit cradled me

And caressed my weary mind with a gentle breeze,

As I reflected on this phase of my journey,

While resting under a canopy of oak trees.

Our great Shepherd is faithful and still delivers;

Follow his leading to Restoration Rivers.

The Quote of the Day and its accompanying verses also bring to mind this powerful song restoration by Kevin Levar, “I Will Restore” the perfect way to cap off this blog entry: