Posts Tagged ‘Kansas City’

The Map

June 28th, 2010 No comments

John 16:7-12 (8)

7But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt[a] in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: 9in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; 10in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.

12“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear.”

After moving to Los Angeles my 92-year-old father wanted to learn how to get to the store, the bank, and other points of his interest.  I printed a map and marked where the locations he desired including the home address.  We took several trips to these places and I had him tell me which way to turn as he consulted the map.

Several weeks later I had to return to Kansas City on business.  During my absence he decided to go to the grocery store.  He made the trip safely and bought his groceries.  While in the store, however, he unknowingly became disoriented.  When he left the store he turned South instead of North.  He traveled through the city for quite a distance before he accepted the fact that he was in unfamiliar territory.  Stopping, he asked a FedEx employee directions.  The man showed him on the map how to return home.

Although we study God’s road map for our lives there may be times when circumstances in life cause us to lose our sense of direction.  When our spirit begins to warn us that we are getting farther away from home it is important that we consult our map and ask the Holy Spirit to once again help us to get on the right path.

Later we purchased a compass to put in our truck.  It constantly informs us what direction we are going.  In like manner, the ever present Spirit is an assurance that the believer need never stray from God’s presence.

Dr. Gayle Woods

Categories: News

A God with Folded Arms

July 21st, 2009 No comments

Psa 74:10-11

Today’s local news is no different that yesterday’s news. It was no different last week, last month, or last year. It is depressing. An Independence, MO second grade teacher iss accused of smoking marijuana at the school where he is employed. A gunman robs a bank. A man is shot while sitting at a stop light waiting for his turn to go about his business. Police find a young father dead on the streets of Kansas City, MO. It seems never to change, never to let up. The news has no intention to turn from its evil way.

Laying the newspaper aside the heartache becomes more acute. Questions flood the mind. “Lord, how long?” “Lord, don’t you care?” “Lord, where were you when the little girl was raped?” “Lord, did you turn your head when the elderly lady was beaten and then locked in her room by her grandson?” “Lord, why won’t you do anything?” “Lord, the mountains around may abound with your chariots but are we really on the losing side?”

Auschwitz cries from the past, “God, where were you?” Warsaw moans out of the pages of holocaust history, “God, we need your help. Why don’t you answer?”

Local police raid, Qilin Mountain Villa in the suburb of Uramqi City, Xijiang Autonomous Region, where some Christians are having a Bible training program held by a Korean pastor from America. The pastor is dragged away to prison. A muslin sheikh converts to Christianity and then is placed in an Egyptian jail charged with “insulting Islam.” China sentences a crippled house church leader to two years in prison on charges of “illegal business practices” after he prints and distributes Bibles for other Christians “free of charge”. Eritrean security police torture two Christians to death, two days after arresting them for holding a religious service in a private home south of Asmara. “That’s what is in the news, Lord. Where were you when all of this was taking place?”

The Psalmist cried out in anguish, “O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? shall the enemy blaspheme thy name for ever?” (Psalm 74:10) One calamity steps on the heels of that which just preceded it. Trouble trips over trials in its eagerness to bring us to despair. The Psalmist continues, “Why withdrawest thou thy hand, even thy right hand? pluck it out of thy bosom.” (Psalm 74:11) “Lord, you have a reputation to preserve. People of the past have said that you arm is mighty to deliver. Why do you stand half-turned as if you are uninterested in our trouble? Why do you stand with your arms crossed as if you don’t want to get involved?”

There are times when we feel helpless, hopeless, and hapless. It may seem that God has gone on a vacation and has not left a phone number where He can be reached. It seems, at times as if He has moved and has not left a forwarding address.

The same Psalmist who wrote during the dark night of his soul saw the other side of the picture on another occasion. He writes to encourage us in Psalm 37 when he says, “1 Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. 2 For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb.” We are told to Trust (3), Delight (4), Commit our way (5), and Rest in the Lord (7), knowing that His arms are not folded in disinterest. He is at work in our behalf! The Psalmist assures us that he knows from experience that even when the night is the darkest the Lord is there. Even when the clatter of the enemy’s armor can be heard on every side, God is at our side. In the end, we can be sure that all has not been done in vain. “17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous. 18 The LORD knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever.” (Selected portions from Psalm 37)

by Dr. Gayle Woods

Categories: News