Read Luke 22:31-34
Have you ever went through a sifting? I remember as a little girl watching my Mamo make a cake and she would sift the flour with a cute little metal sifter. I picture this when I hear the word sift. All I remember it doing was taking the lumps out of flour and making it lighter or finer in texture. Maybe that’s what sifting does to us softens us and gets the lumps out of our lives and makes us “finer.” (I don’t know if that is a word but I just used it twice to mean different things and I’m going to keep it.) When someone ask you today how you doing, just say “finer” and watch their expression and see if you get a smile. (Okay, that rabbit was loose but I hemmed him up in the corner and I’m talking about “sifting.”) I have had trials that gave me the option either I’m going to continue to trust God no matter what, or give up. Some of the trials/sifting seem on-going, almost no land in sight, so-to-speak. Peter was warned of his sifting that was to come. Makes you wonder if under Peter’s big talk was a little boy possible shaking in his boots. Peter doesn’t seem to get it… Christ is always right. No need in arguing with God, He will get the last word!
I read a book one time, by Marion Bond West. I can’t think of the name of it right now, but it was a true story about her life, and she based the whole book on the scripture in Habakkuk 3:17-19 and it reads: Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield not meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls; Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. This verse carried me through some storms. Maybe if you are going through a trial, you need to write this out and place this verse somewhere you can see it everyday, or even write it on a business card and have it in your pocket to pull it out when you need to, all during the day. I do this sometimes, and I may give the scripture I have in my pocket away to someone that might need a verse of encouragement. I had to put myself in this scripture by changing the words at the beginning to fit my situation, for instance “Although my child is being rebellious, and the truck payment is due….” (you get the picture- put your situations there- make it personal)
Even though you may be going through a “sifting” time God is still faithful. Amen!!! I like ole’ Peter. He was real. Now some of the other disciples you couldn’t get to know like Peter. You always knew where Peter stood on things. I believe in vs.33 he thought he would withstand anything. He was talking real big, but I believe it was out of the love he truly had for the Master. This trial he went through brought him back to reality that he was still human and if not staying in prayer and on guard could slip into sin. The Lord gave him a clear warning, but he remembered the warning later. (I don’t want to get ahead, sorry Angie.)
Christ told Peter in vs. 32 that He prayed for him. I thought that was moving. Don’t it feel so good for someone to come to you and tell you they are praying for you. I always feel some immediate strength when I hear someone tell me they are praying for me. Spend some time this morning praying for someone and tell them you are praying for them, or drop them a card. It will bless them and you, too!
My husband went through a time of depression one time and that is what brought him out of it, writing notes of encouragement to people. Don’t turn inward when you are depressed, turn outward to help others. It will be worth the effort! God bless you and sisters I’m praying for each of you.
Keeping the Faith,
November 17th, 2008 at 3:19 am
Woo Hoo !! Amen to this dear Aimee. I love what you said about do not turn inward, turn outward toward others. So powerful, and very true. That verse in Habakkuk is awesome. Be blessed, you are in my prayers sweet sisters.
November 17th, 2008 at 5:18 am
I love you Aimee!
Thank you for this post. I too have used that verse in Habakkuk to get me through a time or two of sifting. I love God's word how it is full of healing and strength.
I pray that all of you beautiful ladies have a wonderful day. May He bless you beyond measure.
November 17th, 2008 at 10:18 am
You hit the nail on the head sister. Especially when I have whined and carried on so the past couple of days about our computer being stolen. God WILL be glorified—WE DO REJOICE—in the God of our salvation!
Very important message in that passage…no matter what comes or goes…we are to rejoice! “This world is not my home…I'm only passin' thru….my treasures are laid up…somewhere beyond the blue….”
Love you sister! Bernadine, Gail, Regina and Denise and Denise we are SO GLAD to have you join us on this journey—it is drawing to a close—I hope you are feeling the LOVE of God the Father more than ever before—and feeling CLOSER to the HEART of Jesus more than you ever dreamed possible! KEEP ON!!
November 17th, 2008 at 10:36 am
Marion's book is titled PRAYING FOR MY LIFE. It's published by Guideposts.
November 17th, 2008 at 10:56 am
I LOVE this passage. Christ's words to Peter are words I have returned to time and again when I'm disappointed in my behavior. I draw such comfort there. It reassures me that
1) God already knew I would screw up
2) Jesus was already intervening on my behalf
3) God never doubted that I would return to Him (even if I doubted myself)
4) God would create beauty from my ashes of disobedience. I could use my journey to encourage others in a way I could not if I had never blown it.
Love you all, my beautiful sisters!
November 17th, 2008 at 4:11 pm
Is it just me or is it getting more awesome as the days go by? I am learning so much from this study. Aimee I love that verse you used from Habakkuk also. I just remarked to a friend today that I was beginning to feel more myself again, more joyful & happy and I think it's due in part to going through this study with you wonderful group of ladies.
November 17th, 2008 at 10:52 pm
I am enjoying this study more and more, too Bernadine. Gail W. that was awesome thought points. Regina and Denise we are so glad to have your input. Andrew, thank you for reminding me of the title of the book, it was very good. I'm sure you didn't know but, my sister Wanda is in Heaven. She went to be with Jesus in February of this year and she only had one post on our blog written. You can click on Wanda's post at the top of our blog to read it. Thanks.
November 18th, 2008 at 10:59 pm
And they overcame him (the enemy) by the WORD OF THEIR TESTIMONY and the blood of the Lamb! How powerful is our testimony to the Lord….. as we speak our ears hear and as our ears hear our spirit man is strengthened.! OH my what a LOrd we serve!