Monday, October 13, 2008
God heals the wounded. He changes hearts. When you’re not expecting Him he rescues you. For fifteen years I lived with a cynical heart. I loved God and had been hurt by people whom I had loved in Church. I was verbally and viscously attacked. Others sat on their hands and did nothing from fear of the ones attacking. There had been a vote on a new pastor. I made a mistake. I tried to sooth the situation by saying that I believed that whatever happened, whichever way the vote went would be God’s will. The side that lost did not agree. Two weeks later after a Sunday night service the attack came.My response to the attack was wrong. My wife and I tried going to other churches but trust was gone. I would see people at the church that reminded me of the people who attacked me. All the smiles seemed fake and insincere. I became cynical. I stopped consistently attending and participating in a Church. Ultimately I am to blame for my condition. How many thousands upon thousands of people all across the country have had a similar experience? How many Christians have been wounded by those they most loved? How many have responded wrongly? I hated the way I was. I wanted the heart I used to have. This made me angrier at the Church. Is this the way you have felt? Is this the way you feel now? I have very good news. The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3: 17. Fifteen years later I told God that he could never change my heart back the way it was. That’s right; I told the Sovereign Lord of Creation that he could not heal me; my heart was too hard and cynical. Two weeks later the Holy Spirit came for a visit.I was looking for something to read besides the histories and baseball books I usually read. I picked up a book my wife had bought entitled The Lame Prince. It told about the relationship between David, Jonathan and Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth. I began to identify with Mephibosheth. I like Mephibosheth had been lamed. I too had been living in a dry place. When I read how David’s messenger went to Mephibosheth,telling him it was time to leave Lo Debar to live in the Kings palace, the Holy Spirit began to take me out of my dry place. I began to cry as God poured out His love and presence on me. Deep calls to deep in the roars of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. Psalm 42: 7. If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him. John 7:37-38. The experience can best be described as a flood. Gods love is so big, bigger and deeper than the oceans. My wounds and cynical heart were washed away with the flood. He overwhelmed me with his love. Like Mephibosheth I was aware that I am living with the King totally undeserved!I don’t know the circumstances of your wounds. I don’t know who was or wasn’t at fault, but I do know that if you have stopped participating in a local church you like me have responded wrongly and sinned against God. I know now that God broke me for a reason. I am closer to Christ than I have ever been before. He remade my heart into one that was better. If you are scattered and lame and want healing for your wounds and from your own attitudes and actions ask Christ and he will answer. Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a new heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you. Psalm 51:7-13.