The Welcome Home
A Message for April 8, 2004
Welcome home, sisters! What a beautiful day this is! I trust it is so for
you as well. Many thoughts swirl in my mind as we consider the significance
of this time of year. Ringing everywhere is the sweet refrain: He Lives!
Songs of joy, songs of newness of life in Christ, songs of heaven. Do you long
for heaven? I pray it's your sincerest desire to see the LORD Jesus face to Face
and to hear Him say: "...Well done, good and faithful servant...enter thou into
the joy of thy Lord. (Matthew 25.23) I so desire to serve the LORD in a manner
that brings Him glory and honor. Each week as I think of you all and pray for
you, I pray for the LORD to use me to encourage you if you're needing
encouragement and to inspire you if you're feeling low. I pray that the LORD
will be honoured and you will be blessed by what I share with you. Thank you for
this privilege---it's not taken for granted. Sisters, be encouraged---wherever
you are and whatever you're doing, you have a very important charge to
keep---you're a daughter of the King! If things have been hard lately, remember:
He loves you and is working everything for good! I say this sincerely, because
fiery trials and deep prunings bring forth rich fruit and the thorniest bushes
have the most
fragrant blooms. You're a precious rose to the LORD.
We're so abundantly blessed to be able to hear or read inspiring and educational
messages, to be able to own a copy of the Word and to freely read it, to take
part in singing and listening to beautiful hymns and songs of worship and
praise, and to join with brothers and sisters in the LORD for edification---to
rejoice in our salvation. We're so blessed to hear messages of hope and joy in
our Saviour---messages regarding the gospel account of the life, death and
resurrection of our LORD and Savior Jesus
Christ. But... consider this: if Christ be not raised, then it's all for
naught, it's a cruel hoax----there is no point... there is no hope... there is
no reason for us to gather each week for fellowship or any day for that matter;
nothing to celebrate. But God! But God! There is reason... there is hope... our
Savior lives! We have something to celebrate: we serve a Risen Saviour!
"And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many
waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord
God omnipotent reigneth."
"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that
was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at
the right hand of the throne of God."
There was a price to be paid for our sin. He paid. He paid it. He paid it all.
"...for the joy that was set before him..."
And He said:
John 14.1-6 "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in
me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told
you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I
will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be
also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.
Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know
the way? Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
The night of that day.
After my father died, I sat with him a long while... his head cradled in my
arms; I watched as his life faded from his body. The urgency and the struggle of
the previous moments had faded into a clinical, impersonal documenting of this
significant event. Then it was quiet and was quite sobering to me to see the
dramatic difference mere seconds had made... and then minutes passed. I wondered
what must be occurring at that moment with the LORD. I was thinking of how at
that moment my father was in the presence of the LORD. Alone, the room totally
quiet following the disconnection of machines and the perfunctory documenting of
his death, I made a mental note of everything around me and silently rejoiced in
God my Saviour.
II Corinthians 5.8: "We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be
absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord."
When the LORD Jesus was on the Cross and then was taken down to be laid in the
tomb... it must've been with the greatest sadness that they wrapped His precious
body in the cloths... the sobering reality of what had just transpired must've
been unbelievable---the helplessness unimaginable.
In the room I where I saw staying at the time, through the warm night as I lay
on the bed, I watched pictures of my father in the theatre of my mind and I
cried... the making of memories had ended... all that was left now were the
memories and the photographs that documented milestones along the way. No matter
how long I waited or how much I wished for his return, it was finished. He would
not come to life again... he would not return... it was final. It was many hours
before sleep came, just before dawn... and then only for a very short while and
I was up and on my way home. It was for real. The death was final. There would
be no opportunity to see him again. I learned so much about the love of the
Living LORD in those hours. I felt totally alone and the room was quiet. But. I
knew I was not alone. I knew that because of what happened on the cross, I never
When Mary came to the tomb early on the first day of the week, she must've been
weary with grief, but still managing enough strength to do what must be done for
a proper burial she mustered the courage fulfill her personal obligation. What
an honour it would have been to assist in caring for the LORD in this way. What
a breathtaking thing, then, it must have been for her to arrive and to see what
she saw. Then later, can you imagine her astonishment at hearing the voice of
the LORD say her name...
He was Alive!
He IS alive!
And now looking back on Resurrection messages, I see even more how marvelous and
miraculous is the message of the cross. Isn't it incredible to think of the
fulfillment of Scripture and the perfect fulfillment of every detail:
proving Scriptural accuracy!? In the eyewitness account of His death, we read of
the confirmations that He had indeed died and then reading further we know that
He did indeed rise from the dead and was truly alive. We now benefit, not only
in His having the price paid for our sins, but with the indwelling of the Holy
Spirit...We know Him.
Romans 8.16 "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the
children of God"
Having witnessed and experienced the momentary bewilderment of witnessing death
and then to have watched the preparations carried out to confirm it.... And now
to think that the LORD did in fact experience death, *yet*
He lives! I can only shake my head, look up and say, "thank You." I can
only say, "thank You." He lives today! This is the Good News. He is Risen.
He is our Hope---Christ in you, the Hope of Glory!
I pray about what I write and wait to share---especially when I share on matters
such as modesty or submission or child training---that I'll not offend or appear
to condemn women with the messages. But something concerns me more than that,
and that is that I never want to write anything that would be like gumdrops...
initially shiny and sweet tasting, but then just like sticky gumdrops... you
would be stuck chewing on something of no nutritional value. We are enticed by
such messages sometimes, because they tickle our ears or entertain us but have
no redeeming value---the initial sweetness turns to troublesome stickiness. I
wish to never share useless messages.
I pray these days are sweet for you and that the LORD is dealing well with you.
All God's ways are good---even when we cannot understand or see value in our
circumstances---His ways are only good. He loves you and will carry you through:
take His Hand.
With love for you, in Jesus @--;--pamela--;----------
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