My Utmost for His Highest 11/10/08

After sanctification, it is difficult to state what your purpose in life is, because God has moved you into His purpose through the Holy Spirit. He is using you now for His purposes throughout the world as He used His Son for the purpose of our salvation. If you seek great things for yourself, thinking, “God has called me for this and for that,” you barricade God from using you. As long as you maintain your own personal interests and ambitions, you cannot be completely aligned or identified with God’s interests. This can only be accomplished by giving up all of your personal plans once and for all, and by allowing God to take you directly into His purpose for the world. Your understanding of your ways must also be surrendered, because they are now the ways of the Lord.

I must learn that the purpose of my life belongs to God, not me. God is using me from His great personal perspective, and all He asks of me is that I trust Him. I should never say, “Lord, this causes me such heartache.” To talk that way makes me a stumbling block. When I stop telling God what I want, He can freely work His will in me without any hindrance. He can crush me, exalt me, or do anything else He chooses. He simply asks me to have absolute faith in Him and His goodness. Self-pity is of the devil, and if I wallow in it I cannot be used by God for His purpose in the world. Doing this creates for me my own cozy “world within the world,” and God will not be allowed to move me from it because of my fear of being “frost-bitten.”

–Oswald Chambers

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Veteran’s Day

I heard at church this weekend that Veteran’s Day was coming up, and I’m embarassed to say I had no idea.  I mean, I’m sure I would have heard about it before Tuesday, but still….

Tomorrow is Veteran’s day.

I’ve never served in the armed forces, and am veteran of no war.  But there was always something about the armed forces that stirred something in me.  I remember learning the pledge of allegiance back when I was in elementary school, and turning toward the flag.  Sometimes it was hard to make it all the way through, even as a kid.

Now, it’s worse.  Now, when I see the flag somewhere, and think about the men and women serving overseas on my behalf, it’s sometimes almost overwhelming.  There is a war going on, and people are being killed.  Thanks to our military, they are not being killed in America.  This is because we are bringing the fight to the enemy. 

Yes, it is an unpopular war, and we currently have an unpopular commander-in-chief.  It was the same during Viet Nam.  Yet now, as then, people are being freed.  And also now, as then, our troops are often not afforded the respect and gratitude they deserve.

Think what you want about the war, and the decision to send troops overseas.  People talk about the war going on not being a worthwhile one, and that soldiers, airmen, Marines, and sailors are dying in vain.

I’m sure they don’t think so.  Neither do I.

The truth is that we have a volunteer armed forces.  They are not drafted.  They are not conscripts.

They volunteer.

They volunteer to serve, knowing that they could be sent to fight. 

They volunteer to serve, knowing that they could be killed, or maimed, or have to kill other people.

They volunteer to serve, so that I have the right to say they’re fighting an unjust war, and dying in vain

They volunteer to serve, so that I do not have to.

I think it’s fitting that Veteran’s day is so close to Thanksgiving.

Because I’m thankful.