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  • Writer's pictureKevin Troyer

Then There Were Four

Updated: Feb 12, 2021

From the very beginning there were five. Now you are wondering what is Kevin talking about? Senses, I’m talking about senses. God created us with 5 senses. We have the ability to see, taste, smell, feel and hear. Those five abilities are a blessing that help us enjoy a comfortable life. We take care of those five things, so that we don’t lose them. We protect our ears from excessive loud noises. We take care not to burn our taste buds and we keep our nose clear. We are careful not to touch things that will damage the sensitive nerve endings in our skin. Perhaps, most of all, we protect our eyes. We cover them, we put them behind lenses to enhance them and we do everything we can to keep them healthy. We even do our best to put them in an environment where they can function at their highest level. That means doing our best to dispel the darkness that makes eyes ineffective.

All of our senses working together help us to control our lives. With control comes security. With security comes comfort. Today as I write this, the date is March 23, 2020. Tonight, at midnight, here in Ohio, by the governor’s order, a two-week shutdown begins. What will happen between now and when this newsletter is distributed, is something we do not know. How many of us are comfortable right now? Probably all of us are not entirely comfortable with what’s going on. Why not? We can still taste, smell, feel and hear. The problem is we can no longer see. We have lost our sight. The future has become blurry and dark and our eyesight can no longer penetrate it. Our control is slipping, and as it goes, so does our security in life.

The question that all of us need to consider is, what do we do? What many of us are doing is running. We are running to the stores to get supplies and in some cases stripping the shelves bare. We are running to the banks to withdraw money. We are running to take care of business, and see people before things get worse. Some of us are running for cover. Some of us are running to church; and then when all else fails, we run to God. Running to God shouldn’t have been necessary. We should have already been there. However, that doesn’t change the fact that God wants us and is welcoming us with open arms.

What do the arms of God look like to us? The old hymn describes it well when it says: “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms,” “What a fellowship, what a joy divine” …” What a blessedness, what a peace is mine” …” Safe and secure from all alarms” …” Leaning on the Everlasting Arms.” Wow! We really do want to run into the arms of God. Here’s the interesting part about the arms of God. Sometimes inside those arms we find pain, sometimes we find financial hardship, sometimes we find sickness, and yes, sometimes we find a virus called COVID-19. Did we expect to find those difficult things there in the arms of God? Surely, when we run to Him, when we pray and call on His name, He will take those things away from us. There have been many calls to prayer in the last couple weeks, and we should pray, we should draw closer to God. God hears those prayers and He will answer them. Are we, the “children” of God, going to hear and be okay with His answer?

The apostle Paul asked God to remove an infirmity, an uncomfortable thing from his life. God heard his prayer and answered it. He said “no.” II Corinthians 12:9 gives us God’s answer. “And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Paul’s response to God tells us what his relationship with God was like. This is what he said in the same verse. “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” He follows in the next verse by saying – II Corinthians 12:10- “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.” How many of us, right now, are begging God to remove this infirmity, the virus from our lives? Just as He did for Paul, God is hearing our prayers. What if God answers us like He did Paul? What if He says no? Are we willing to hear and accept that answer? Not only did Paul hear it, he accepted it. He gloried in the infirmity that God was using in him to display the power of Jesus Christ. I believe that the ministry of Jesus Christ was magnified through Paul, because of Paul’s willingness to accept the sovereignty of God. How about us? If God’s answer if no, are we willing to accept that answer so that Jesus Christ may be magnified through us to our friends, family and neighbors?

Yes, in God’s arms, there may be pain. There may be hardship and sickness. There may even be a virus call COVID-19, but there is also peace. A peace that passes all understanding, a peace that those around us can’t help but see. These arms are everlasting, and waiting. They will hold us in the most difficult times. In these arms we will not find fear, panic or turmoil. In these arms we will find peace.

II Timothy 1:7. “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”

Let’s remember as we go through this together, that the arms of God are always open to His children. And as Paul said in Romans 8-That(we), the church of God, are more than conquerors because of the love of Jesus and that nothing, absolutely nothing, can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

As we face the unknown, and a future we can’t see, let’s remember we do know who holds the future! In the words of the Duane Mullet Family, as they faced the loss of their son Austin, think about this: “We are a winner, either way!”

Intending to Win,

Kevin


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