Have You Heard God Speak?

sparrowAs I drove home, Saturday night, September 26, 2015, I was privileged to hear Pope Francis’ sermon on families.

Briefly, some points of his sermon included:  A child asked him what God did before He created the world.  He answered the child with –  “He loved.”  Then God needed to create the world to be able to share His love.  The Pope declared the greatest thing God created was the family.  But man fell into sin, so God had to send his own Son to a family who nurtured and loved him.  He became a sacrifice, and was resurrected.

It is love which keeps a family together.  But there can be difficulties in families.  He quipped:  “Sometimes plates fly,” and said he would not speak about mothers-in-law.  He went on to say, it is the lack of love or misplaced love which ruins families — both marriages and extended family relationships.  Only love can overcome the difficulties.

A point he made about families:  we need to take special care of two things  — children and grandparents.  Children are our future while grandparents are the living memory of the family.  It is the grandparents who transmitted the faith to us.  To keep a family strong, parents should never let a day end without making peace!  He encouraged his audience to protect families, saying our future is in the family.

Nagging issues awakened me at 4am Sunday morning.  After being awake for a while, I decided I would not rise at 6:45am to make it to my early Methodist Church service, but sleep in and catch up on rest.  God would have NONE of that!  He wouldn’t let me sleep and transmitted to me – “There is no reason not to go.  Get up and go to church!”  So I did.

I have known for a while tough times are coming, yet I am placing my trust in the verse in Matthew:6:26 — “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”

I trust God to take care of me, but when pressures come, one can easily lapse into worry.  When I walked into church,  on the screen I saw the words to “His Eye is on the Sparrow,” a song I know well as my mother sang it often.  And I knew why God had kicked me out of bed!

Why should I feel discouraged,
Why should the shadows come,
Why should my heart be lonely,
And long for heaven, heaven and home,
When, when Jesus is my portion,
My constant Friend is He;
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
I sing because I’m happy.
I sing because I’m free.
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

It was early, and the worship team ran through “God Will Take Care of You” one final time.

Be not dismayed whate’er betide,
God will take care of you;
beneath his wings of love abide,
God will take care of you.

God will take care of you,
through every day, o’er all the way;
he will take care of you,
God will take care of you.

All you may need he will provide,
God will take care of you;
nothing you ask will be denied,
God will take care of you.

No matter what may be the test,
God will take care of you;
lean, weary one, upon his breast,
God will take care of you.

Did God plan this service for me??

Then the congregation sang my favorite gospel song:  Blessed Assurance!
Could God have talked any louder to me?

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
O what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
born of his Spirit, washed in his blood.

This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long;
this is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.

Perfect submission, perfect delight,
visions of rapture now burst on my sight;
angels descending bring from above
echoes of mercy, whispers of love.

Perfect submission, all is at rest;
I in my Savior am happy and blest,
watching and waiting, looking above,
filled with his goodness, lost in his love.

These songs led up to the sermon:  Why does God allow pain and suffering?
Anyone asking that question acknowledges two assumptions:  God exists and God is all powerful.  So, if he is all powerful, why does he allow pain and suffering?  How do you reconcile pain and suffering with God?
One answer could be providence.  When God closes one door, He opens another.
Romans 8:28 gives the best answer:
“No matter what happens, God will make the best out of the situation for your benefit.”

Like Adam and Eve, we desire to do things our way instead of God’s way.  The Lord’s Prayer tells us temptations are evil.  “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”  The seven deadly sins are lust, anger, envy, gluttony, greed, sloth, pride.  How do we handle pain and “stuff?”  This proves we need God as we are too weak to never fall into temptation.  We need to lean on God and listen for His voice!

We cannot understand pain and suffering, nor do we understand God.  But He does have His reasons and they are for our betterment.  Hanging on to God is the ONLY way to get through pain and suffering.  Go here to see a video of the service and sermon on September 27, 2015.


About 9awalsh

A genealogist and writer who has uncovered legacy stories which must be told. I also write a blog, Deciphering Life, trying to figure out why life becomes so tangled -- www.9awalsh.wordpress.com
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