When it is Good it is Empty

God always outgives us

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Has it happened in your Life?

Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5. New International Version

There is a proverb amongst many older pastors: When the times are good the churches are empty. When the times are bad the churches are full.

I am sure for most it has been a distant memory, but has there ever been a time in your life when you had it all. You know, you had a house (actually, the bank had your house with the mortgage). You had a car (Actually the finance company had your car. You were just kind enough to make payments on it). You could eat out at fancy restaurants. Where was God in your life at that time? Was He distant? Was it He who was distant? I lived like that many, many years ago. And you know what? My spiritual life and contentment was as empty as a balloon.

Now, I spend a lot of time with Him and my life is the best it has ever been.

I may not be rich like Bill Gates, but, I am rich like the Apostle Paul. Joseph- Anthony: Green

Now that the hard times are here, you call out to Him.

Why not live by the KIS rule? Keep it Simple. Instead of playing with your Wi-Fi, why not go enjoy nature, where you can walk and talk with God? While you are doing that you can enjoy all of His beauty in the flowers and clouds while listening to the songs of His beautiful little birds. Instead of pigging out at a restaurant why not enjoy family time, cooking and eating a meal at home? Instead of watching all the garbage on TV, why not watch Christian movies? Instead of going to the bar, why not go to a Bible study group? Instead of asking God why He is far from you, why not ask yourself why you are far from Him?

God is only as close to you as you let Him be. It is not that He is far from you; it is that you are far from Him. Joseph- Anthony: Green


No, God will never leave you, nor forsake you. But, have you left Him and forsaken Him?

I came to the end of myself.

Last week my left ear was blocked. For six days I tried every method I knew to unblock it. Finally, Thursday evening in my prayers I just surrendered it to Jesus, saying Jesus if it be Your will, please unblock my ear. If it not be Your will I will accept it. Upon waking up Friday morning guess what? No more blocked ear.

I have been praying for about two years to find a Chinese web site where English movies and shows can be watched. From my experience all the DVD’s here are pirated and cheap quality. I searched and searched to no avail. Then I just said “Okay, God, I guess it is not Your will. I give up. On Wednesday I felt moved to read this article, I don’t even remember which one; it mentioned two web sites in China to watch English shows. It is great. I can watch classics like Andy of Mayberry and the classic show about the average American family Married with Children and the classic about British society Keeping up Appearances. As well I can practice my Chinese by singing along with Christian praise songs in Chinese.

I have been trying to sell my photography and eBooks online for over a year. Each time I am blocked because I can not use PayPal I know the Lord has promised to provide for me, I just wanted to help Him along. I tried to set up a site where people can donate money to me to help me along. It too was not possible because of PayPal .Then I listened to a sermon by Pastor Tom on Drive Time about how Abraham and Sarah tried to help God fulfill His promise for a son by getting Hagar pregnant. It ended in disaster and they are still paying for it in the Middle East today. It was God saying “Don’t try to jump ahead of Me. I promised to take care of you and My promises are always fulfilled. He has fulfilled His promise for over three years now. But it took Pastor Toms sermon to help me realize God doesn’t need my help that I surrendered and promised not to try to go it alone.

Why do we try to bargain with God? Just as Jacob tried to bargain with God after God promised him in his dream of the ladder. Jacob said If God does this I will do that. Why try to bargain when God already said He will do it.

I felt ashamed. God had already promised He would take care of me months before. I tried to say Yes God I know You will take care of me, but let me help you by selling my photography and eBooks.

You know what? It was only when I came to the end of myself that God answered the prayers.

Prayer: Please Jehovah Jireh (God our provider) forgive me when I try to bargain with You. Guide me to trust You completely with every aspect of my life. I ask this in the name of our great Mediator Jesus Christ. Amen

May the sunshine of Jesus’ sweet love bless you today and every day.

Comments 12 comments

jamesrk profile image

jamesrk 4 years ago from Salem, Oregon

Nice article. Yes, God does listen to our prayers and sometimes provides the response we requested; other times not according to request. Paul the Apostle, for instance, prayed for a "thorn" to be removed which wasn't. It certainly doesn't mean that God was oblivious to Paul, of course not. It's just that God knows better what is good for us, and like Paul, we must be willing to take "no" for an answer and continue to trust Him nonetheless.


teacherjoe52 profile image

teacherjoe52 4 years ago Author

Hi James.

Thank you for your comment.

What I believe Paul was asking for was God to remove a bad habit from him (possably his short temper) but God used it to keep Paul humble.

God bless you.


gottabegod 4 years ago

Yes, I've been there, exactly as you described - money flowed, attendance & membership was large, but there was so much stress, so much worry, so much striving to 'grow God's church'. Then the blocks began to tumble down, everything began to shrink, things got tighter & tighter - my prayer? "Oh God, purify our hearts & cleanse our hands! Keep us humble in your ways and help us to love what you love, cherish what you cherish & live out a simple message - Jesus saves!" We now live on a 1/3 of what we used to & have paid off nearly all of our debts, both personally & the church! Now that's how God does things! And the peace, joy & love is priceless!

Voted up, interesting & helpful!!

God bless!


Michele Travis profile image

Michele Travis 4 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

This hub is very good. We do not always get what we ask for, and is probably a good thing. We just need to understand more about that. Thank you for this hub.


teacherjoe52 profile image

teacherjoe52 4 years ago Author

Hi gottabegod. Yes when we have God we have the greatest riches.

Hi Micheal.Very true. I have seen the end result from others who got what I wished for and am glad I didn't get it.

Thank you for your comments.

Gods bless you.


glmclendon profile image

glmclendon 4 years ago

teacherjoe52, this was good. We use to sing a song called you can't beat God giving. We must trust and pray and God will take care. When you pray, God hears every thing you say He knows our thoughts and He loves us.

Stay Well


teacherjoe52 profile image

teacherjoe52 4 years ago Author

Thank you glmclendon for sharing your wonderful insight.

God bless you.


Nikki Major profile image

Nikki Major 4 years ago

Very good teacherjoe....be encouraged. remember he's all we need. I have suffered great loses as well...but in my loss...i realize he's all i need. i thank him for what i do have.


Abrushing1968 profile image

Abrushing1968 4 years ago from USA- Florida

hang in there bro. You are in my prayers. I too am trusting in God for his provision.

Peace

ABR


teacherjoe52 profile image

teacherjoe52 4 years ago Author

Hi Niiki. Yes He does take with one hand and gives back so much more in the other.

Thank you Abrushing and Nikki for the encouragement.

God bless you.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

I thank you for the reminder of how God works in our lives. It is something we must keep in mind, it is in his timing and not ours.


teacherjoe52 profile image

teacherjoe52 4 years ago Author

Hi teaches.

I agree. I always thought I was a patient man until becoming a Christian. Now sometimes I have to wait years for an answer. What I do not understand until later is that the Potter was molding me the whole time.

God bless you.

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