Lesson 7 -- third quarter 1996
July 14, 1996
by Mark Roth
© Copyright 1996, Christian Light Publications
I've a notion to leave most of this page blank! Then each one in your class could write a personal page of praise to God for at least some of His marvelous works in your lives this week. However, a number of people at CLP expect me to fill this up, so I had better meet my obligations. Nonetheless, I challenge you to prepare to bless your class (and God!) with some fresh personal praise to God. (I know! Since this page isn't available, you could use the inside cover of your quarterly.)
As I mentioned earlier, we humans notice the set-backs and problems so readily. Then we allow our focus to skew our perspective and disposition. That in turn scrambles our talk and our walk.
God wants us to seek the Lord and His face. In other words, He wants our focus to be on Him. Then we can remember what He has done, is doing, and has promised to do. Then we can begin to give thanks to Him. Then we can talk of His wondrous works. Then we can make known His deeds. Then will our hearts rejoice.
Now let's check my own example a bit. I've let you know some of the things that have gone "wrong" in my life recently. Just some. I haven't told you about my mother-in-law lying on her deathbed, about my computer going belly-up, about school starting next week (and I haven't done any preparing yet), about...never mind! Today's lesson has some very positive commands I haven't been faithful in obeying. So let me give thanks to the Lord now!
Yesterday morning I received a shocking phone call. The Lord has rewarded my efforts to rebuild trust. Some who have deeply mistrusted me now want me to take a significant speaking assignment. Praise the Lord! (Don't get me wrong -- I can do without the assignment; I'm thrilled about the message it conveys!)
This past week my home page on the Internet's World Wide Web yielded some interesting contacts. One is a man in Texas whom the Lord turned into a conscientious objector despite being an officer with the Army Rangers. This man (of Roman Catholic background) became a Mennonite, then left the Mennonite church because the one he attended was too worldly. He has all kinds of questions which he is posing to me via Internet email. I'm so thrilled because I get to help someone. I praise the Lord because He is turning a small part of the Internet into a beacon in the dark!
Our school's middle-grades teacher just arrived this weekend. I think she is somewhat unsettled by the unsettled state of things here at school. Starting on time looks very uncertain. And that may mean running further into next summer than we'd like. But you know what she commented to me this morning (of all mornings!) -- "I wonder what the Lord wants us to learn from this." Isn't God faithful!!!
Mildred and Darlene have helped care for my mother-in-law. They have endured much inconvenience, particularly in this busy harvest time. They have willingly burdened themselves physically, and especially emotionally, when they could have said, "Let the family bear their own burdens." We praise the Lord for these Sisters in the church!
"Praise is comely for the upright" (Psalm 33:1). So let's keep our Gratefulness Awareness razor sharp lest we fall into complacency and then ungratefulness. God does so much for us. Does He know we know?
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