Praying Friends and Saints:
I've started reading Ezekiel over the last few days and find myself
filled with a sense of grief over the calamities prophesied about God's
people. But really it is not so much all the terrible things foretold,
rather their hard-hearted refusal to listen to His voice. Chapter
7:23-25 says, "...the land is
filled with crimes of blood, and the city is full of violence...
Destruction comes; they will seek peace, but there shall be none."
Actually this all sounds much like currently events in Syria, Egypt,
and many other places around today's world. And sadly, this has been
our plight throughout history. Although we live in a world of natural
beauty with surely enough of everything for people to survive, if not
"prosper", hard-heartedness, selfishness, unrighteousness and sin
continually wreak havoc among us. It is not just Israel, it is all of
People just don't get it! There is
a righteous God to Whom everyone on earth will one day have to answer.
But this "inconvenient truth" has been all to easily swept under the
rug throughout history in favor of a "here and now" and politically
Ezekiel 7:27 finishes by saying, "Then they shall know that I am the Lord!"
But it seems that we're still waiting for the coin to drop. Admittedly
the wait can easily become more than a little frustrating. An objective
look at the world we live in today only underscores the desperate need
of humanity for the Redeemer.
So in light of all this, what is our part? What can we do about it
all? We can't just ignore it all and try to just get by. A key part of
our Romans 12:1 style "reasonable service" is to pray, and pray with a
renewed mind. Heart-rending, heaven-reaching prayers can change far
more than just ourselves. Persevering prayer in accordance with God's
word will change people and circumstances around us.
Ezekiel 11:19-20 expresses a wonderful promise and can powerfully
"arm" our prayers. "Then I will
give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take
the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh,
that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them;
and they shall be My people, and I will be their God."
This is prayer for transformation. This is prayer for revival. And
as Isaiah 61:11 says, "So the Lord
God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the
Your prayers do make a difference!
Dick & Gladys
Friends and Prayers:
I couldn't help but take this picture
the other morning when I got up to the chapel. There are lots of young
rabbits this time of year that go scurrying off into the hedgerow when
I drive down the lane. This one stayed in the entrance of the burrow
and was curious or bold enough to let me get this shot after his
brother disappeared inside!
It made me think immediately of our
position in the Lord. There may be situations in our lives that
intimidate us, but we have a place far more secure than an underground
burrow! Psalm 91:1-2 says, "He who
dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the
shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my
fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.'"
Summer has been racing past and the longest
stretch of warm weather in years seems to be starting to fade away. But
it has given us lots of opportunities for outdoor pursuits, and our vegetable
garden has gotten far more attention than in previous years. Gladys is
showing off a handful of green beans that she picked this afternoon,
and are now deliciously long gone!
There is just something about eating food that
you've planted yourself and watched grow and cared for. It makes us so
clearly aware of God's amazing gift of life and provision. We count it
a special privilege to live in a place that enables us to have our
hands in the soil.
I am also glad to report that I am making good progress in
recovering my strength after the reaction I had to steroids in
June. Being able to work outside again is a real joy, and still yet
another reminder of God's goodness and faithfulness.
We have also been enjoying visitors again from different places. Last
week friends from Singapore spent a week nearby, and we had some good
times of sharing with meals and fellowship with them. It was wonderful
to be able to pray for them and be prayed for by them as well. Though
we be from different churches and countries, we love living life in the
family of God!
Then just yesterday we met with a young
English family that made contact with us through our web page. They
have had a leading to pray for Wales for several years, and came to
spend their holiday here and try to get sense of when and where the
Lord might be leading them to come and settle. So it was a joy to get
to know them and their heart for intercessory prayer.
We continue to be encouraged by so many saints
that the Lord is having focus on this green little land. It is also
wonderful to find that our lives here are such an encouragement to
others, and we are so thankful to the Lord for the amazing privilege of
the calling He's given us.
Thank you for your continued interest,
prayers and support.
Dick & Gladys