READ Sermon Below:
Have you ever prayed and asked the God give you direction?
I’m willing to bet that everyone here has felt what it is like to be cruising along fine and then be attacked.
Now I’m guessing it wasn’t by a shark…
Maybe it was at work, maybe at school, maybe at Church, maybe a tornado
But the question is where do you go from there?
In the case of Bethany the response was 2 fold
First she saw the miracle of God that it was that she was still alive.
The girl speaks to this being a miracle and knowing that she is watched over by God. Did you catch what she said the EMT said to her as she laid there?
“God will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6
In case you didn’t catch it there is something that you need to remember from all of this. For 3 weeks before Bethany was attacked she and her mother had begun to pray that God would use her and show her the fruit of what she was doing. “God… Bring your will into her life.”
That’s when God answered her prayer and started using in big ways.
Then the attack.
Second she determined to take what was supposed to be the end of her and to make it the beginning for an awesome ministry.
Romans 8:28 …we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
You see when Satan sees us begin to shine in the name of Christ he is bound to challenge us.
8 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
9 “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
12 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
The story of Job is a real eye opener.
- Satan speaks directly to God
- Satan is always ready to prosecute use. He is like the prosecuting attorney in the trial of our life.
- He must have the permission of God to do it
- God believes in us
The question at hand is what are you going to do in the trail.
OK, so now how does the story of Bethany really work in our lives.
During this week’s visitation I saw something that brought this all to me in a very real and touching way.
Loretha and Ed…
I went to visit Loretha. A lady who attends Church here and has for years. She lives in a nursing home and is brought to Church by Dave and Sharon.
She lived in the nursing home with her husband for a while and he passed away. See Loretha and her husband helped each other. He had dementia and she is mostly blind. So when he died she could have laid down and stopped. But not Loretha.
Loretha explained that she would rather be dead than in a nursing home. But that she has been shown her place in the Kingdom right where she is. Now she meets people where they are and brings hope. She sees it as an opportunity.
Loretha met a man named Ed who is also in the nursing home and is a follower of Christ. They got together and lead several Bible Studies in the nursing home. Loretha goes to the rooms of others and speaks to them, encourages them, and reads the word to them. She speaks to them like adult human beings; not meat and not children. They drink it in. Real Love is very refreshing to the soul.
Ed knows the Bible very well and helps to lead these captured souls to a better understanding of the Promises of God in Jesus.
No Hero in the Bible has gone without attack. They have all had to change course. Abraham, Lot, Joseph, David, Daniel, Peter, Paul, and yes Mary…
Now, What do you see in the face of the attack. Is it the end of your story or is it the beginning of hope. Maybe even hope for someone else.
Roman 12:12 “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”