Posts Tagged ‘City’

The Image of God

January 6th, 2012 No comments

Genesis 1:26-31 (26)

     And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

I was surprised when I saw this literally taking place.  Bro. Andrew had just taken Bro. Trussell and me to visit some of the church plants in the area surrounding Mandalay, Myanmar.   Now we were in the large city of Mandalay.  We visited a huge Pagoda (Buddhist temple), we saw the prison where Adoniram Judson was incarcerated and then Bro. Andrew pointed to a building we were passing.  “That is where they make idols,” he said.  It was picture taking time.  Sure enough, in a ram shackled building men were pouring cement into large cast molds.  All around the building we saw the finished products.  Big Buddhas.  Little Buddhas.  Medium sized Buddhas.  They were all staring lifelessly back at us. 

So often we try to pour God into our own mold.  “Let us make God in our image.”  We want Him to think like us.  We want His Word to say what we believe it should mean.  We want a God we can manage.  On the other hand, He created us to be like Him.  We have failed miserably but that is still His desire.  Romans 8:29 reminds us that God’s predetermined will is that we be “conformed to the image of His Son.

Dr. Gayle Woods

Categories: News

A Dry River

July 21st, 2009 No comments

Psa 63:1-2

Moving to the southern California concrete jungle was a learning experience for our family. One of the things that intrigued me was the huge concrete trenches cutting across the landscape of Los Angeles. These manmade ruts were very wide and deep. They had cement walls on each side and a rocky base. I asked one of the parishioners why the city’s unique beauty was marred by these dry furrows. His answer was simple. “Those are our rivers.” I laughed.

I understood what he meant when the snows in the mountains began to melt. The water rushed down toward the city and quickly gorged the “river” so that they were filled from bank to bank.

As I recalled this experience I remembered times when my spirit was as dry as the Los Angeles “rivers.” On one occasion as I went through a dry spell I cried out to the Lord for a time of spiritual renewal. I had not sinned. I was doing my best to live close to God.

I was in college and was serving as an usher at the Overland Park Church of God (Holiness). The church was full each service. The ushers had to put out many folding chairs. We had to continually be aware of any empty spaces so we could seat people who arrived late to church. One particular Sunday I was standing at the back of the Church prepared to help anyone needing assistance. I felt an inner ache. I prayed asking God to touch my spirit with His refreshing presence. He answered as the song leader began to lead the old hymn written by Charles Wesley: “Arise, My soul, Arise.” The snows melted in the mountains. The waters of deliverance gushed down through the mountain passes. The dry, barren river bed of my soul was suddenly gorged with the blessed presence of God.

By Dr. Gayle Woods

Arise, My Soul, Arise
Arise, my soul, arise; shake off thy guilty fears;
The bleeding sacrifice in my behalf appears:
Before the throne my surety stands,
Before the throne my surety stands,
My name is written on His hands.

He ever lives above, for me to intercede;
His all redeeming love, His precious blood, to plead:
His blood atoned for all our race,
His blood atoned for all our race,
And sprinkles now the throne of grace.

Five bleeding wounds He bears; received on Calvary;
They pour effectual prayers; they strongly plead for me:
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry,
“Nor let that ransomed sinner die!”

The Father hears Him pray, His dear anointed One;
He cannot turn away, the presence of His Son;
His Spirit answers to the blood,
His Spirit answers to the blood,
And tells me I am born of God.

My God is reconciled; His pardoning voice I hear;
He owns me for His child; I can no longer fear:
With confidence I now draw nigh,
With confidence I now draw nigh,
And “Father, Abba, Father,” cry.

Categories: News