Friday, June 26, 2009

All Has Been Arranged


"I see heaven's glories shine and faith shines equal."

Emily Bronte

Mr. Simeon lay on his bed, ready to breathe his last. Many gathered round the old saint. They waited for finality. They hoped for words. They clung to truth. He yearned to speak. . . .

The story shared of this one Charles Simeon compels us to think of that one path we must all walk one day. Before sharing this story from John Piper, please allow me to share just a brief moment from my own heart.
Hearing news of a passing brings startle and wince. Whether such word is brazenly given by media about those well-known, or personally whispered in our ears for one so dearly and closely known by a familiar few, it inevitably leads us all to mediation, deep thought, questions, . . . and answers from God's word.

As Christians, we have HOPE! And, oh, dear friends, this "hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us" (Romans 5:5,).

Sitting at my computer this morning, I read this brief story I am about to share. After reading, the Lord burned Romans 5:5 in my heart. I could only lift my hands, worship God, and say over and over again "Hope makes us not ashamed! Hope makes us not ashamed! Hope makes us not ashamed!" God's presence filled my heart, and peace swept over me.

Our faithful walk with Christ will bring us one day to a finish line, and as we cross, HIS words will rapturously echo, "Well done, good and faithful servant" (Matthew 25:23). We who have run our race and finished the course well will have no shame. Hope will be fulfilled! A forever finality will dawn! The mystery of earthly shadows will no longer be impeded because of holy light! I thank God for this glorious celebration of victory that awaits us!

And here is just one story of that triumphant day. . . .

I've learned beside many dying believers that the battle with impatience can be very intense on the deathbed. On October 21, 1836, those with Charles Simeon (with the Church of England) heard him say these words slowly and with long pauses:

Infinite wisdom has arranged the whole with infinite love; and infinite power enables me - to rest upon that love. I am in a dear Father's hands - all is secure. When I look to Him, I see nothing but faithfulness - and immutability - and truth; and I have the sweetest peace - I cannot have more peace.
The reason Simeon could die like that is because he had trained himself for 54 years to go to Scripture and to take hold of the promises of future grace and use them to conquer the unbelief of impatience.

Dear friends, discover the beauty of these powerful words today, almost two hundred years later. We who live for God have nothing to fear. For there waits ahead of us a "crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge will award . . . on that day . . . to all who have longed for his appearing" (II Timothy 4:8).

May peace, hope, and rest guard your hearts this weekend as you serve our God! May you seize God's holy word, and cling to his promises to you! Embrace them! Cherish them! Live with them! Abide in them!

I love you all because of the precious love of Jesus Christ placed in my heart through His grace.

All scripture is from the NIV Bible.
The story of Charles Simeon is from Future Grace by John Piper.

14 comments:

  1. Andrea, that was beautiful! Thank you for sharing the wonderful HOPE that we as believers have in Jesus and that we do not have to fear death. I am so thankful for that reassurance that we have in Christ!
    Blessings dear sister!!

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  2. I am in my dear Father's hands and all is secure. I sure needed to hear that today. Absolutely beautiful thoughts here.

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  3. Beautiful! That blessed hope...how wonderful and precious it is....

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  4. Dear Andrea,

    As always I am blessed to visit here. Thank you for sharing this encouraging post... Christ, our hope of glory.

    Blessings to you,
    Mrs. Teapot

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  5. Thank GOD for the hope we have in HIM.

    andrea

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  6. What an AMAZING post, dear Andrea!!!! :>)
    That story is so moving!! What a dear brother
    in Christ. Thank you SO much for sharing!

    Love in Him~ Miss Jen

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  7. Hope is one of the themes of my life journey. It never disappoints. He whose hope is on God will never be put to shame!

    What a wonderful way to die.

    John Piper is one of my favorite authors, too.

    Thank you for this post. It is more real to me than ever, because I was beside my husband till he breathed his last. There was a peace in our hearts as we knew for sure, as God had whispered to me, that He had sent angels to usher my beloved husband into His eternal presence!

    It was only HOPE that kept my heart at peace, and gave me the strength to go through that pain.

    If you have a bit of time, I invite you dear Andrea to read the special post I wrote about it at

    http://mla-crownofglory.blogspot.com/2008/11/songs-of-deliverance.html

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  8. Wow. Powerful!

    In recent years, and especially now that I'm in my 60s (closer to grave than cradle), I often think of that place ... that seemingly far off home in which I'll soon reside, leaving no forwarding address except for those sure to follow. My mother's there; daddy too. I can see them, and in the "seeing" I imagine them waving as they come ever-closer into view. Oh what a day that will be!

    And then there's our Jesus. We are His; and He is ours.

    Hugs,
    Kathleen

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  9. Yes, thank God we have hope! I cannot imagine my life without that eternal finish line. Thank you, Jesus! And thank you Andrea for that reminder, that no matter what, we shall not fear because He is our hope. It's all worth it.

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  10. Hi,

    I read your profile. Wow! We have some things in common:

    Living in Alabama
    Former English teacher
    Pastor's wife (but not at the present)
    Love of writing, literature, and decorating
    Grandmother

    And most importantly: Jesus Christ, the Hope of Glory.

    Enjoyed visiting your blog!

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  11. Dearest Andrea,

    How wonderful is this post--how I have enjoyed reading it. I am so grateful for your loving perspective and the words you use to bless the hearts of those who read. God is gracious and sends us comfort and encouragement through precious souls such as you.
    I am grateful for the blessing you provide and ther joy it brings to my heart.
    Continued blessings be yours.

    In Grace,
    Marie

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  12. A timely word for me as I battle doubt and cling to the hope of God's word.

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  13. I have a post from a couple of days ago - you might like- on cleaning with vinegar.
    cheri
    www.itssoverycheri.blogspot.com

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  14. Oh such healing and hopeful words! Thanks for sharing the love of God with us all!!!

    Blessings dear friend in Christ,

    Kim

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Thank you for visiting. I cherish your thoughts. You are special to me, but most of all, you are special to God, who loves you with everlasting love. May your life be swept into His joy and peace.

In the Wonderful Love of Christ our Savior,

Andrea