I Must Decrease

It’s Friday.

“Every great batter works on the theory that the pitcher is more afraid of him than he is of the pitcher.”~~Ty Cobb
(BrainyQuote)

Today’s word of the day, from the Oxford English Dictionary, is moliminous, which means, “Massive, cumbrous; weighty, momentous.”

Today is Tolkien Reading Day. It is designated as such because March 25 is allegedly the date of the downfall of Sauron.

It’s Friday.

We had a nice evening, last night, the only interruption being a gentleman who came over to look at our yard and provide an estimate for laying new grass. We were discouraged, as he said that, with the large amount of shade we are getting from a tree in the front yard, it most likely would not survive (the grass). None of the other estimates had mentioned that, so we are stepping back and rethinking the whole thing.

Christi has the day off from work. They get Good Friday as a holiday. That’s nice. I tried to get PTO today, but we already had two people off, and one of them would have to be covered by our lead, who would also have to cover my work, if I was out. That made it implausible for me to be off. Oh, well.

Our church is partnering with two other area churches, to have a Good Friday service, this evening at 7:30. The service will be at CityView Church, located at 4001 Summerfields Blvd, Fort Worth, TX, 76137. Anyone who is in the area is invited to join us.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

It’s Friday.

(From Praying With the Psalms)

O LORD, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath!
For your arrows have sunk into me, and your hand has come down on me.

There is no soundness in my flesh because of your indignation; there is no health in my bones because of my sin.
For my iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me.
My wounds stink and fester because of my foolishness,
I am utterly bowed down and prostrate; all the day I go about mourning.
For my sides are filled with burning, and there is no soundness in my flesh.
I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart.
O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you.
My heart throbs; my strength fails me, and the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me.
My friends and companions stand aloof from my plague, and my nearest kin stand far off.
Those who seek my life lay their snares; those who seek my hurt speak of ruin and meditate treachery all day long.
But I am like a deaf man; I do not hear, like a mute man who does not open his mouth.
I have become like a man who does not hear, and in whose mouth are no rebukes.

Psalm 38:1-14

While sin can cause pain and suffering in the body and soul, it also causes prayer. “Implicit in the cry to God, however wailing and self-pitying, is a recognition that God can reverse the effects of sin and bring wholeness.”

“‘Lord Jesus, think on me, and purge away my sin; from earthborn passions set me free, and make me pure within.’ (Synesius of Cyrene, ‘Lord Jesus, Think On Me,’ translated by Allen William Chatfield). Amen.”

It’s Friday.

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
Romans 8:26-27

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

He must increase, but I must decrease.
John 3:30 (spoken by John the Baptizer)

In Today’s reading, “Decreasing into His Purpose,” Oswald Chambers says, “If you become a necessity to a soul, you are out of God’s order.” Our main responsibility, as Christian workers, is to be friends of the Bridegroom. When we begin to see the light of Jesus Christ shining on a soul, we can be assured that our influence has been good. At that point, “instead of putting out a hand to prevent the throes, pray that they grow ten times stronger until there is no power on earth or in hell that can hold that soul away from Jesus Christ.” We must not be “amateur providences” in the lives of people. When we make that mistake, we might actually prevent God’s best in their lives.

We must not rejoice with someone else over the wrong things, but rejoice with all our might over the right things. This takes great wisdom in the life of a believer, and it also takes a willingness to say, along with John the Baptizer, “He must increase, but I must decrease.” It’s not easy to sit back and watch a life implode, but sometimes, it is necessary. “You may often see Jesus Christ wreck a life before He saves it,” and our tendency is to step in and try to prevent the wreckage that is necessary before salvation takes place. When we do this, we get in God’s way, and are not helping him.

Father, make us faithful saints and give us wisdom. Help us to not attempt to be “amateur providences” in the lives of other souls. We are not you. We do not always know exactly what you are doing, so it is sometimes necessary to simply sit and watch until someone finally begins to walk in your light. At that point, we must rejoice with them and be an encouragement to them. Let us not attempt to prevent what you are doing in their lives. Give us wisdom. Teach us your ways, that we may walk in your truth.

Come, Lord Jesus!

It’s Friday!
But Sunday’s a-comin’!

Grace and peace, friends.

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