The PCO (Protestant Church in Oman), TAISM (The American International School in Muscat) and a beautiful family are all experiencing a season of deep grief as we try to make sense out of a senseless tragedy that occurred in Minnesota on August 17th, less than 2 weeks ago. Michelle and Julia Hoffman (as well as the mother-in-law) were taken from us to be with the LORD. Here is a news report about the horrific accident. Michelle and Julia’s obituary is found here. The son, Jason, was only spared by the grace of God thanks to the quick reaction of a good samaritan. Memorial services were held in the States last week. It was such a beautiful service celebrating these two hearts of gold and many of us were only able to witness it from this youtube clip shared on facebook.
The worship from 14:15 to 19:15 is so incredibly deep and uplifting and is proof of Psalm 22:3 that “But Thou art Holy, O Thou that inhabits the praises of His people.” Music soothes the soul like nothing else. This is why Ephesians 5:19 tells us to, “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord.”
TAISM had a special, private ceremony this past Saturday and wrote this page, TAISM Community Mourns Loss, on their website. For those who knew and loved Michelle and Julia, there will be a Memorial Service on Sunday, September 2nd at 4pm in the Bosch Hall, Ghala. Please be praying for the family-Michael, Jake, Joey, and Jason. Today’s sermon from Pastor Michael Peppin could not have been more appropriate.
We all have “giants” in our lives. Every single one of us.
“When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary; When troubles come, and my heart burdened be – And I am still and wait here in the silence until You come and sit awhile with me.”
“I waited patiently for the LORD; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me (or raised me up! ) out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” (Psalm 40:1-3) “David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God.” (1 Samuel 30:6, (NIV) New International Version) “Andy was greatly distressed because fill in the blank with whatever battle I may find myself in..But Andy found strength in the LORD his God.” (1 Samuel 30:6, (AIV) Andy’s Internalized Version)
Another fine sermon from Pastor Barry Dawson. This was from the book of Judges in the Old Testament.
The Israelites of the OT constantly turned their backs on God and refused to follow Him steadfastly in obedience. Yet they cried out to God time and time again to send a deliverer and in His mercy He would. This time the deliverer (or “Judge”) was Gideon.
Gideon was an unlikely hero from the least of his tribe who sees himself as unqualified and inadequate. God does not give up on Gideon due to his own perception. God does not see things/people like we do.
2 New Testament examples of God calling the unlikely are Matthew the tax collector and Paul who was persecuting the church. A great example of God’s grace-using a bounty hunter of Christians to turn his life around and lead others to Him, as well as using him to write about one-third of the New Testament.
God puts in an unexpected twist. The fearful or trembling are told to leave and go home. 22,000 leave. Only 10,000 remained. God adds another twist to bring the forces down to an unbelievable number so there would be no doubt that it was not their own strength that saved them. 1% of the original forces are left. 99% are given an “honorable discharge”. Otherwise they would have concluded that they were responsible for the victory.
There are parallels between Gideon and our own lives. We are often weaker than we want to admit.
Paul writes in the New Testament about some physical ailment that he refers to as “a thorn in his flesh” which he prayed three times to God to heal. God does not permit it as it trusted him that God’s grace is enough. When we are weak (physically), then we rely on God (physically and spiritually).
“And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
February 2, 2012 in Sermon, The Bible
Tagged 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, 2 Corinthians 4:7, God's grace, inadequate, Judges, lesson from Gideon, Pastor Barry Dawson, strength from God, thorn in the flesh, trusting in God's strength, unqualified, when we are weak