Author: Rita Moritz - Blog Post for June 08, 2017
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A Way in the Wilderness Blog Post.

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God will make a way even where there seems to be no way.
"I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert."
Isaiah 43:19


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June 08, 2017:    

Standing in the storm: Is it an exercise of the spirit or an exercise of the will?
#tostand, #measureofaman, #RitaMoritz,
John 6:67Will ye also go away?

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” Martin Luther King Jr.

In the beginning, great multitudes followed Jesus, willingly going from one place to another. And why not? He spoke eloquently to them, He healed their sick and lame, and He spoke with authority. However, it wasn’t any of those things that attracted the people to Him. What caused them to follow Jesus from Tiberias to Capernaum was that He fed them. (
John 6:26) It was easy, and it was comfortable.

Then Jesus began to tell them “the rest of the story.” Following Him wasn’t going to be an easy road of free food and comfort. Following Him was going to mean sacrifice and hardship and a heart determined to live for Him and trust Him regardless of what happened in their life. It was going to mean looking to Him and seeing He was more than the son of Mary and Joseph. He was going to be everything, or He was going to be nothing.

Faced with that truth, “many of his disciples went back and walked with him no more.” (
John 6:66) Like some of our own “fair weather friends,” they walked away when it stopped being convenient or comfortable. Then Jesus looked at His twelve disciples and asked, “Will you also go away?” (John 6:67)

No one ever said our road was going to be easy. In fact, the Scriptures say exactly the opposite. The book of Job tells us “man’s days are short and full of trouble.” (
Job 14:1) And Job spoke with authority since he had lost everything…his wealth, his children, and his health. His wife finally told him he should just “curse God and die” and asked him why he retained his integrity. Job answered her by asking whether they should expect only good things to happen. (Job 2:9-10)

The question isn’t whether heartbreaking things are going to happen. They are. The question is how will I react when they do? How will you? Will we go away as many of Christ’s disciples did, or will we stay the course? Will we blame God and say how unfair our circumstances are, or will we retain our integrity? Those questions have taken on a whole new meaning since my son Buddy died on December 22, 2016.

At some point, I can guarantee you too will be faced with those very choices, and it takes determination to do what’s right when your world is falling apart. However, we need more than determination when the worst things happen. We need the love and support of family and friends, we need prayer, and we need the power of God to do for us and in us what we can’t do in our own power.

Drawing that line, making that promise, standing steadfast isn’t easy. But it’s the only way, when trouble comes, we will still be standing in our integrity. Combining God’s power with an exercise of our will in refusing to quit will make it possible to “withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” (
Ephesians 6:13)

Challenge for Today: What might happen if we, just for today, determined in our hearts and asked God’s strength to keep on keeping on?

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