A Word in Season – Matthew Henry

Quote for Today

“Cast not away your confidence because God defers his performances. That which does not come in your time, will be hastened in his time, which is always the more convenient season. God will work when he pleases, how he pleases, and by what means he pleases. He is not bound to keep our time, but he will perform his work, honour our faith, and reward them that diligently seek him”
– Matthew Henry

Trusting God in the Now

Trusting God NOW

“What I am doing you do not understand now”
JOHN 13:7

Can we trust that this is so in the now of our life? Is there a situation, a perplexity, a painful circumstance that seems to linger without any “proof” that there is an end in sight? Can we with the faith and trust of a child look to the unseen hand of God and believe that even in this HE IS AT WORK? His ways are higher, deeper and motivated by a love and desire to bring us to a greater relationship with HIM. He will not waste or squander the short and precious time that we have here. It is our part to behold HIS work and believe in the hidden hand of HIS wisdom to work for us “the exceeding, and eternal weight of glory”while we by faith walk in the circumstances before us.

“What I am doing you do not understand NOW”

This is the statement of a wise and gracious Father who is working, at this moment, to bring to pass HIS PURPOSES in our life. Though we may not yet see we believe that HE who knows us best loves us most! The clay must be firmly and painfully pressed and molded, the gold heated and tried in the furnace. The lukewarm heart must be subjected to circumstances to revive its warmth and passion for Him, the prodigal son “must come to himself”, and the fruitful branch must be pruned. All these things ARE FOR OUR BENEFIT AND LEARNING.

“What I AM DOING you do not understand now”

Can we see above the storm clouds that this is HIS HAND? Could Joseph possibly grasp that his “brothers” selling him into the hands of rough and heathen men was God’s “DOING”? From God’s perspective HE was sending a man into Egypt, (Psalm 105:17) to one day be the means of deliverance to these same brothers. From the misery and drudgery of slavery and prison rose a wise and tested PRINCE; one whom the fires, darkness and testing did not destroy but were actually servants of the MOST HIGH GOD.

“For You, O God, hast proved us: you have tried us, as silver is tried.You brought us into the net; You laid affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but you have brought us out into a wealthy place”
PSALM 66:10 – 12

A wealthy Christian life is one that is going through the processes of HIS LIFE. These are not ones who cry and despair of their poverty; they have discovered and have tasted of the wealthy place. Their waters fail not in drought; their resources are hidden and true. They are like trees that “bear fruit”in every season for their roots are drinking of the River of Life (Revelation 22:2). Let us not succumb to the present circumstances but let us in FAITH and TRUST believe in the ONE that says

“WHAT I AM DOING YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND NOW,
BUT YOU WILL KNOW AFTER…”

JOHN 13:7

Σ

“We cannot always trace God’s hand,
but we can always trust God’s heart”
Charles Spurgeon

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – Treasures of Darkness –

Thought for Today

Light my candle

The Treasures of Darkness

“For thou wilt light my candle:
the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.”
Psalm 18:28

Darkness comes to all who walk in the light. “And the evening and the morning were the first day”. The days of God are all “evening and morning” until we reach the last Day in which there will be no darkness for eternity. Note that the Days of God begin with the evening; the darkness is only to bring us to a greater light. The ways of God are always progressive.

“But the path of the just is as the shining light,
that shineth more and more unto the perfect day”
Proverbs 4:18

The dark seasons of life are given to us for our good and our development. Adversity and resistance are designed to make us strong, unmovable and steadfast in spirit. There are hidden treasures and supplies within the dark places of our lives; resources to be found in the living Christ as we overcome. In adversity we are instructed to grow in the grace and beauty of our Lord. Let us not despise His ways but wait patiently and expectantly for those treasures that He will give!

“And I will give thee the treasures of darkness,
and hidden riches of secret places,
that thou mayest know that I, the Lord…”
Isaiah 45:3

Just as Samson found honey within the carcass of the lion that had attacked him His people find the table of His provision in the presence of their enemies. Caleb declared that the giants of the promised land would be bread for them; so are the trials and situations in which we find ourselves. It is here that the fruit of His Spirit grows and ripens to maturity.

The fruits of the Spirit are all interconnected. The patience (endurance) of the Spirit is the fruit of a living Hope; the Joy of the Spirit comes from the power of a Faith to believe in the midst of trials; the Peace of God comes from the power of a love which sends away all fear. These are the treasures of darkness which are found by those who walk and live in Him. Let us be assured that the darkness cannot overcome those who cling to the light of His Life within.

“But he knoweth the way that I take:
when he hath tried me,
I shall come forth as gold”
Job 23:10

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

A Thankful Heart at Year’s End 2016

A THANKFUL HEART AT YEAR’S END
2016

“You crown the year with Your goodness,
And Your paths drip with abundance”
PSALM 65:11 NKJV

Standing on the brink of another year end we stand amazed at the goodness, glory and faithfulness of God. Surely HIS WAYS are good and HIS MERCY does endure forever. HE has crowned the year with His goodness and His paths do drip with the abundance of HIS beauty. His paths signify His way and as we walk in HIS way we find the flow of HIS abundance. In HIS way are HIS Blessings found and HIS person known. The way of the Lord makes men strong in their God; it brings forth life and blessing and in HIS way the secret of the Lord is made known.

“The way of the LORD is strength to the upright”
PROVERBS 10:29

As we look back over the events of the past year we are instructed to give thanks and honor unto Him who has brought us through times of good and times of testing. We can only declare that HE does all things well. In HIS wisdom HE has guided our feet in the “paths of righteousness” and he has disciplined us for HIS good pleasure. His forgiveness holds us in our weakness and His mercy sustains us. His grace is given to make us strong for the journey ahead. There is no one like HIM.

“Come and see the works of God;
He is awesome in His doing toward the sons of men”
PSALM 66:5

Brian Troxel

TREES OF RIGHTEOUSNESS Part One

TREES OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

PART ONE

“Blessed* is the man
that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly,
nor standeth in the way of sinners,
nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful…
And he shall be like a tree
planted by the rivers of water,
that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;
his leaf also shall not wither;
and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper”
PSALM 1:1,3

The Hebrew word written here as “counsel” is better translated advice, way, strategies or schemes. This psalm describes and prescribes to us the way in which we ought to walk in order to become as a “tree planted by the waters”. Within God’s hidden wisdom there is a path and a way for each of us to walk that will lead us to HIS desired END. Today we see much of the “wisdom” of this world interjected into the things of God. We cannot operate with the strategies and ways of the world and expect to lay hold of the wonder of HIS Life and purposes. Such is the folly of religion.

This Psalm has a blessing pronounced upon those who shun the wisdom and the “prudent counsels of this world” to walk in HIS ways. This blessing contains within it the ability to be fruitful and established in HIM and HIS righteousness. While men seek prominence, recognition and authority derived from a position rather than a relationship with God, there is evidence of a withered and empty inheritance.

We have rich examples in the word. Consider how Daniel and his friends refused the enticements of the king and chose to eat the simple fare of God’s provisions. Their faces shone with the health and vitality of walking in God’s counsel rather than the “worldly wisdom” of their day.

Then said Daniel to Melzar,
whom the prince of the eunuchs had set over
Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah,
Prove thy servants,
I beseech thee, ten days;
and let them give us pulse to eat,
and water to drink.
Then let our countenances
be looked upon before thee,
and the countenance of the children
that eat of the portion of the king’s meat:
and as thou seest, deal with thy servants.
So he consented to them in this matter,
and proved them ten days.
And at the end of ten days
their countenances appeared
fairer and fatter in flesh
than all the children which did eat
the portion of the king’s meat
DANIEL 1:11-15

The way and wisdom of God which seems foolish to the natural man is the way of LIFE and BLESSING. It is a way that frees us from the wisdom of this world, introduces us to the paths of humility and grace, and causes us to drink from the streams of mercy and righteousness. Such a path is hidden from the wise and prudent, from those who seek self-promotion, pride and control; for it is the WAY of the Son which leads to LIFE and the true liberty of the Spirit of God.

Truly, blessed are they who walk not in the ways and the “wisdom” of this world for they shall…

“…be like a tree planted by the rivers of water,
that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;
his leaf also shall not wither;
and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper”
PSALM 1:3

Ω

“The way of every man
is the declaration of
the end of everyman”

Ψ

“The kind of Christianity
that relies upon the influence
of its own human and earthly power
makes God sick,
for the Church of Jesus Christ
is a heavenly institution”
A.W. Tozer

* NOTE: The Hebrew Word translated “Blessed” here is plural denoting the manifold blessings of God are showered upon those who DO NOT walk in the way and wisdom of the ungodly, who DO NOT stand in the way (habits, manner of life) of sinners and who DO NOT sit (to dwell, abide or be set) in the seat of the scorner (boastful). Notice the three-fold progression of the posture of those who forfeit the Blessings of God (walking, standing and sitting)

The Hebrew Word translated “walketh” means to move and conduct ourselves…

The Hebrew Word translated “counsel” means advice, strategies and ways.

Brian Troxel

COMFORT

COMFORT

“O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted,
behold, I will lay thy stones with fair colours,
and lay thy foundations with sapphires.
And I will make thy windows of agates,
and thy gates of carbuncles,
and all thy borders of pleasant stones”
ISAIAH 54:11-12

In affliction, tempest and sorrow the God of all comfort comes softly like the dew settling upon the grass after the long dark season of night. His silent ways bring whispers of hope within the human heart and His strong arms hold and carry us in the distress of our circumstances. He walks with us through the valleys. He gently embraces the wounded heart and in the secret of His ways we see the fair colours of His handiwork. We see the precious stones of His making become the foundation of our lives; not only strong and stable but filled with the beauty of His own being. There is no such thing as wasted tears for those that know their God. All sorrows and trials become part of the building of His story in our lives. His comfort becomes the very currency that we can share with others for it has become ours through the experiences of a life with Him.

His promises of comfort in our trials are the foundation of our hope in Him. The history of His faithfulness builds within us a strong hope to face the path that lies before us. The ONE who faced Calvary, and prayed with such intensity that great drops of blood fell as He communed with His Father, is the same ONE who is now able keep you in your dark hour. Let His faithfulness assuage your broken heart and His Grace lift you up as on eagles’ wings. Let the world know that we are not without the rich resources of our Risen Christ.

His mercies are new every morning and though weeping may endure for the night joy will come in the morning.

Ω

“Troubled soul, the “much tribulation” will soon be over,
and as you enter the “kingdom of God” you shall then see,
no longer “through a glass darkly”
but in the unshadowed sunlight of the Divine presence,
that “all things” did “work together”
for your personal and eternal good.”
Arthur Pink

BT