Thursday, April 2, 2009

And the winner is...

Okay... I know that I have let March 31st come and go without announcing the winner of the giveaway... and I am sure that you few have been by here everyday to see if it is you. (okay... well, maybe not) I was pretending that I would figure out how to post a picture of the giveaway before I announced the winner.... but I didn't. I am sure that if I could have pinned one of my children down long enough they could have shown me... but that didn't happen either.

So.... with no more delay... the winner is

Elaine at Peace for the Journey

Elaine, please send me your mailing address so that I can get it in the mail to you.

Hopefully I can get a picture up soon.

Many of you know that my Tuesdays and I are working through the Beth Moore study entitled Jesus the One and Only. Awesome study. We are finishing up our study next week... so right now we are doing the homework for the last 24 hours of the life of Christ. Wow! What a great time of year to be studying this. I have been so blessed. There are more than a few things that really marked me... let me tell you about some of them...

Satan was able to enter Judas because he was available. Think about this... Judas had followed Christ for several years. He had seen His power. He had seen his life. BUT he had never really given his heart to Christ. This happens in churches too. There are people that have gone to church for years. Sang in the choir. Served in the nursery. Sat next to people that were authentic in their faith... but never really given their heart to Christ. Available.

Satan asked permission to sift Peter as wheat. Christ granted him permission. Christ wouldn't grant the devil permission to do anything that can't be used for God's glory and our good... if we let it. Christ also told Peter that He prayed for him. (Luke 22:31-32) And then He said... "when" you turn back strengthen your brothers. Think about this... Christ knew Peter's heart. He knew that even being sifted and shook up by the enemy wouldn't keep Peter from Him. The enemy can only read us from the outside.... Christ reads us on the inside. Christ knew that Peter could be trusted with the sifting. Am I trustworthy??

Not only did Christ DO so much for us on Calvary... there are things that He could have done that He chose not to. According to Matthew 26:54-56, He reminded them that He could call on His Father, and He would put at His disposal 12 legions of angels. But.... He chose not to. He was so totally God... He could have called the whole thing off... but because of His great love for us and His great desire to do His Father's will.... He chose to stay on that cross. Not only did God do what He didn't have to do... but He also didn't do what He could have done. Now that is powerful!!

Christ knew from the beginning that Judas would betray Him. The fact that the disciples discussed which one would be the one to betray Him shows us that Jesus never treated Judas any differently than the others. Even after Judas planted the betraying kiss on His check... Jesus called him "Friend". (Matthew 26:50) Christ loves us all the same. There is nothing that we can do to change His love for us.

Also... Can you imagine the look on Jesus' face when He and Peter made eye contact after the betrayal. What do you think His eyes said to Peter?? Do you think that they were full of condemnation?? I think His look must have been full of love. It is God's kindness that leads us to repentance. Peter had actually come face-to-face with the fact that in him no good thing dwelled. The sifting removed the unuseable in Peter... and left him useable to Christ. Although I really don't like to be sifted... I do want to be rid of the chaff and unuseable junk in my life so that Christ can use me.

God has really used this study to give me a deeper view of Calvary. I know that most of us have read and heard this story over and over.... but re-read it. Ask God to give you a fresh new look at it. I believe He longs to do that. And... don't be afraid of a little sifting....

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7 comments:

Tracy said...

Great insights, Lynn! I did this study a couple of years ago and couldn't agree with you more...Calvary became so much more real to me because of this study. What a timely reminder you've shared.

Congratulations to Elaine! I'm so happy for her. She's a dear soul! = )

Blessings!
Tracy

JeanMac said...

Good "sermon":)

Paula (SweetPea) said...

I guess I missed that post. I just scrolled down and didn't see any titled giveaway.

Congrats to Elaine.

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I won something?! I never win anything. Thanks, Lynn. I'll send you my address forthwith. Do I have your email?

Jesus, the One and Only, was the first study I did with my group here. It holds a special place in my heart and, undoubtedly, means something extra special to you in this time of our Easter pilgrimage.

Thanks, again.

peace~elaine

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Lynn:
Please forgive...I have a dozen Lynn's in my email address book. Please email me at eolsen2@nc.rr.com, and I will email back my address. Thanks.

~elaine

Shabby Olde Potting Shed said...

I'm so glad I came here tonight and read this! Thanks Lynn!

Laura said...

I think His eyes were full of love too, Lynn. :)

I am loving the cds you sent! Still listening. shared some too. You have blessed us here in WV!

Beth is in New Orleans this weekend. Missed her by a week!

Blessings.