Archive for March 10, 2009

When the Load is too Heavy, God Sends Helpers

Yesterday there was no time at all to write a blog. Right now, we are sitting, waiting, waiting for Dan’s 1:15 appointment.  It’s 2:20.  But when we do get in, we will meet with one of the world’s best plastic surgeons.  I’d like to share with you the message Tim Brinleys, in Greece, sent to us last night. They constantly encourage us.

“We recently sang this old hymn in the international worship service we attend and the words with the simple tune came across as such a powerful message that we both mentioned how the hymn touched us. I believe part of the struggle is holding fast to the hope that regardless of the situation or how bleak a believer’s life looks physically or spiritually we are called to hold up our fellow brothers and sisters with great resolve.

How Firm a Foundation
Selections of: John Rippon
‘How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?
In every condition, in sickness, in health;
In poverty’s vale, or abounding in wealth;
At home and abroad, on the land, on the sea,
As thy days may demand, shall thy strength ever be.
Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen and help thee, and cause thee to stand
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.
When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of woe shall not thee overflow;
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
When through fiery trials thy pathways shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
Even down to old age all My people shall prove
My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love;
And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn,
Like lambs they shall still in My bosom be borne.
The soul that on Jesus has leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.’
In the recent weeks we’ve seen where we have been lacking in our encouraging those who are in need. We need to be more resolved as we were reminded in the final verse of this hymn. It is easy to slip into a feeling of fatalism about the faith of our fellow followers of Jesus; to believe that we play no part in the development of their spiritual character.

It comes as no surprise that the hymn was a favorite of several presidents and sung by both the North and the South on Christmas Eve, 1989, on the Quemados hills near Havana, Cuba. This tune speaks first of God’s amazing saving power and his faithfulness throughout trial, but finishes with the task at hand – to hold fast to the souls of our brothers knowing that their lives are in the midst of a spiritual war. In these verses I felt the admonition of the Lord to not let go of several for whom we have been praying for here, and the moving to continue to encourage the local believers in even greater ways.” T.Brinley, Greece

March 10, 2009 at 9:19 pm Leave a comment