A circus.

Circus[1]

Recently a travelling circus  happened to pitch its tent not far from our house. I intended to drop the older one’s at the circus & come back for them later, while the little one’s went home. I didn’t think they would last there for two hours. At the entrance I explained to the circus worker what I’m doing.

‘I don’t think the little one’s will last.’

‘Oh, most children are.’  His voice was full of confidence and pride in what he does. It moved me so much that I went and bought tickets for all of us. Their performance truly was spectacular: the  girl turning up near the ceiling  on the long scarf; the man eating fire,the acrobats,the clowns spilling water&popcorn all over you, the janglers.

For some time I could not forget the way this circus performer felt about his occupation in life. I’m sure there is nothing easy about his lifestyle. They live as gypsies: in caravans, traveling from place to place, not very highly paid, denying themselves in modern comfortable lifestyle, constantly practicing & perfecting their acts. If it is not for the passion, that he feels about what he does & immense pride that his job is important, he would not last on the road even a few months.

That made me think how I feel about being a Christian. If I’m not ready to separate myself from the world and its pleasures, if I’m not willing to suffer for His honor (if need be), I would find it extremely challenging & difficult to do. That’s why so many show great interest, but  late they can’t do it. As one of the young man puts it: ‘Your whole life revolves around Christ. I don’t think I can do it.’ So true. God is not interested in our weak efforts. He gave His whole life in its prime. He laid His divine, eternal glory aside for a time. We need to feel honored by it. Another young man went to Uni and he found friends who had interesting hobbies. He thought it was so much fun to be with them that he had no more time for the church. Later he told his mother : ‘I don’t think I was a true believer. I just followed you & dad.’ Perhaps. At the same time, he has fears that he can’t overcome. He doesn’t even drive a car because he saw two horrible car crashes. What about fear of eternal death? Who besides Jesus is capable to overcome it for us? That is the final question.

I was reading from Spurgeon for my devotional life. I don’t think any other writer can be so effective to bring a point across. As a Christian of many years, I was so challenged. Here what he said on verse in Hosea 7:8 ‘ Ephraim is a flat cake not turned over.’

‘ A cake not turned over is uncooked on one side. Thus, in many respects Ephraim was untouched by God’s divine grace. Though there was partial obedience, a great deal of rebelliousness remained.

Dear soul, I ask if this is true in your case as well? Are you thoroughly obedient  in the things of God? Has His grace so permeated the very core of your being that it flows through & divinely affects all your strengths, your actions, your words & your thoughts? You goal & prayer should be to become fully sanctified in spirit,soul,and body.  And although your sanctification may not yet be perfect, the process should be affecting every area of your life in equal degrees. There should not be the appearance of holiness in one area while sin continues to reign supreme in another, or else you will be a ‘cake turned over.’

As believers, we don’t have to display beyond average abilities & constant work to stay fit that the circus still hired us, all we have to do is to come to the Lord daily for His amazing, divine, surpassing understanding grace, to stay  fit spiritually.

What must we fight?

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One day I was standing on the high pier about to jump off it in to the Black Sea. I was in my early 20’s, not a great swimmer, but loving a challenge.  It is one thing to set up a challenge, it is  completely different to   go through it. Often we say ‘this year is going to be a year of changes’, the year comes to an end, but still no changes.  So, I stood there for about 20 minutes which seems like forever.  Two spectators were passing by, one of them commented: ‘And how long are you going to stand there?’  After that I knew ‘if I don’t jump now, I will never respect myself again.’ So I did. It is hard to describe, but  that was one of the most liberating experience of my life. I wasn’t a good swimmer, I just learned how to dive, and I was jumping off the high pier. When I came up from the depth of the water, I was so full of joy and confidence. I jumped tirelessly from that and other places  since.  The first step towards a challenge is often defines who you  will be. Once you done it, you have conquered your particular fear!

I can see that the Bible plain clear about fighting  against our sin. The Lord Himself is on our side: ‘And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ .’ Any believer can rest assured that God will do it no matter what, and even in spite of ourselves at times. But what is really interesting to me is where our personality and habits fit in? You have two Christian mothers going to the same church and yet  they miles apart by their personalities (which is fine), but also habits. That is puzzling indeed.

I don’t know if my theory is correct or not, but this has been my experience, so I might as well share about it. After I became a Christian, I realized that I must fight my habits. Even my  very own personality. I think when we by the grace of God come to that conclusion, we present more opportunities for God to use us for His glory. I believe this is exceptionally vital for the future mothers. Children will copy everything that you do even if you don’t want them to. So that is another generation at stake right there. One of the Christian mothers I know of struggles with a messy house. You can’t even imagine it. She suddenly decided to home school of  her children. This is rather commendable, but how can you organize your thoughts and actions if your house is one big tip?

On one of the travels my husband met a pastor of a massive church in Indonesia. After getting to know him a bit, he learnt that this pastor’s mother made a habit of praying for him and his brothers. Today he is not only a pastor, but a leader of many missions around the world. That’s what God can do when we develop and nourish godly habits in our lives.

An encouraging thought.

Every time when we decide to do something against the main stream, take a stand for the Lord or simply live a quiet but godly lives, it will present a challenge. If not to ourselves, possibly to the world around us. Our stand in life won’t be popular, will be criticized & ridiculed. So what? All that opposition & swimming against the tide  only make a fish stronger and tastier, I mean a more Christlike person out of a Christian! Let’s do it & let’s not forget that we are not the only one’s.

Top Tip

Godly habits & challenges to our personalities are vital. When I started this blog I thought: ‘there is no chance, English is my second language, it can’t be done and ect.’ A few months later, I’m still writing away with bigger plans as ever before, finding more & more like-minded or completely diverse from me fellow bloggers. One more fear got conquered. Blessings are abounding. This battle will carry on till we die. Then it can safely cease it. Not because we are no more, because we will have superior, up to total perfection personalities!