Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Fulness of Joy

You will show me the the path of life;
In Your presence is fulness of joy;
At your right hand are pleasures
    Forevermore. Psalm 16:11

In His presence is fulness of joy, and fulness of joy
is nowhere else. Just as the simple presence of the
mother makes the child's joy, so does the simple
fact of God's presence make our joy. The mother
may not make a single promise to the child or ex-
plain any of her plans or purposes, but she is, and
that is enough for the child. The child rejoices in
the mother herself, not in her promises. And to the
child there is behind all that changes and can change,
the one unchangeable joy of the mother's existence.
While the mother lives, the child will be cared for,
and the child instinctively, if not intelligently, re-
joices in knowing this.

And to the children of God as well there is behind all
that changes and can change, the once unchangeable
joy that God is. And while He is, His children will 
be cared for, and they ought to know it and rejoice in
it as instinctively and far more intelligently than the
child of human parents. What can God do, being what
He is? Neglect, indifference, forgetfulness, ignorance
are all impossible to Him. He knows everything. He
cares about everything. He can manage everything.
AND, He loves us! Hannah Whitall Smith

Reader, we saw some heartbreaking stories today of
children who have become Christians in hostile coun-
tries, but who will not not renounce their faith. They
have nothing. The parent they love is sometimes not
available to them, and school, for some is not  possible.
Yet, they cannot go back. The joy of the Lord, and His
protection His compassion sustains them.
They know they are loved. 

Monday, September 24, 2018

The Penny Dropped

Yet in all these things we are more than conquerers. 
Romans 8:37

What are these things? Tribulations, distresses, famine,
persecutions...For your sake we are killed all the day
long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 
(35,36.) The Amplified says that "we gain a surpassing 
victory through Him who loved us." Paul prays a 
prayer for the Ephesians church, Eph 1:17-23, in which he 
asks God that He "would give to them a spirit of wisdom 
and understanding, that the eyes of their understanding 
being enlightened they would know what is the exceed-
ing greatness of His power toward us who believe, 
according to the working of mighty power which He 
worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead..."

Surpassing victory, exceeding greatness, the working of 
mighty power, resurrection power!!!!!!

Reader, the penny has dropped. These thoughts are new
to me. For the past few days I have been pondering why 
Major Ian Thomas went from a discouraged legalist to 
a mighty force for God. Well, He discovered by reading 
scripture that within him was the resurrection power of 
His risen Lord! This understanding allowed him to move 
from failure to victory. He saw the Christian life as a 
challenge, as is the invigorating challenge of rock climb-
ing or shooting the rapids in spring. Most of the Centers 
He set up are located in an areas that offer physical chal-
lenges. Students come and study the Bible and then parti-
cipate in activities that stretch the mind and body. The 
physical and spiritual are then integrated. Most of the stu-
dents are on the younger side--those who want to be doing 
meaningful, difficult things. 

If you have not looked into this or if you want to know 
more about this man and what he birthed--as well as what 
continues through his four sons--check out the site below.

Now I wake up and say, "Lord within me is your power,
your resurrection power. May I live it out today."

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

An Exhilarating Life

Yesterday I shared a quote by Major Ian Thomas. I was
impressed with what I read about him and what he acom-
plished in his lifetime--and how it has been passed down
to the next generation. Here is part of his testimony:

"By the age of 19, every moment of my day was packed
tight with doing things. Thus by the age of 19, I had been
reduced to a state of complete spiritual exhaustion, until
I felt that there was no going on..."

"In my despair I discovered that the Lord Jesus Christ
gave Himself FOR me, so that risen from the dead, He 
might give Himself TO me, He who IS the Christian life. 
I learned to say, 'Lord Jesus, I can't, You never said  
could, but You can, and always you said you would. 
That is all I know.'  From that moment life became the 
adventure that God always intended it to be."

You can read his whole testimony by clicking into the
website and then scrolling down to "Learn more about 
Major W Ian Thomas." Today I looked more deeply into
the website and visited some of the 25 camps. It seems
that Major combined the Christian life with adventures
outside and he had a great love for young people.


He and his wife gathered Christian men and women at
the end of the WW 2 and shared the truth that Christ is 
Life. That He, the resurrected Lord lives within and that
He desires to be our power. It had an amazing impact on
the young people who named the experience as becoming
"Torchbearers" of His light. It is interesting to me that all
four of his son's and their wives joined the ministry which
continues to this day. Thomas died in 2007 at 92 but his
wife is still alive.

Reader, it was in 2005 that I came across the truth that
there is another way to live the Christian life that is not
connected to "oughts." I had plenty of intellectual know-
ledge but it seemed disconnected from my heart and I
was desperately dry. In the process I came across the
books of men like, T Austen-Sparks, Andrew Murray,
Watchman Nee, Oswald Chambers and others who under-
stood that we--
"have been crucified with Christ. (past tense.)
And now it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in 

Are you terribly dry and tired of trying to be a Christian?

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

A Letter

You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts,
known and read by everybody. You show that you
are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry,
written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living
God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human
hearts. 2 Corinthians 3:2,3

The Christian life can only be explained in terms of
Jesus Christ, and if your life as a Christian can still
be explained in terms of you--your personality, your
will-power, your gift, your talent, your money, your
courage, your scholarship, your dedication, your sacri-
fice, or your anything--then although you may have
the Christian life, you are not yet living it!

If the way you live your life as a Christian can be ex-
plained in terms of you, what have you to offer to the
man who lives next door? The way he lives his life
can be explained in terms of him, and so far as he is
concerned, you happen to be "religious"--but he is
not! Christianity may be your hobby, but it is not his,
and there is nothing about the way you practice it
which strikes him as at all remarkable. There is 
nothing about you which leaves him guessing, and 
nothing commendable of which he does not feel him-
self equally capable without the inconvenience of 
becoming a Christian.

It is only when your quality of life baffles the neigh-
bors that you are likely to impress them. It has to to 
be patently obvious to others that the kind of life you 
are living is not only highly commendable, but that it 
is beyond all human explanation. That it is beyond the 
consequences of man's capacity to imitate, and how-
ever little they may understand this, clearly the conse-
quence only of God's capacity to reproduce Himself 
in you.

In a nutshell, this means your fellow-men must become
convinced that the Lord Jesus Christ of whom you 
speak, is essentially Himself the ingredient of the Life 
you live. Major Ian Thomas  191402007

Reader, this is a tough one. Only God can show me
how I am living my life. He wants me to tap into His
power in the inner man, So, when I realize that I am
functioning out of myself instead of from Him, I confess
it, and then give Him back the freedom to be the motor
within. So much more restful that way...

I have dug into the life of Major Ian Thomas and found
enough things to make this blog into two. Below is a
short video of part of a sermon which tugged at my heart.


Monday, September 17, 2018

The Law

...the strength of sin is the law. 
       1 Corinthians 15:56B

You can have Christian law just as much as much as
you can have Mosaic Law; you can be in bondage in
Christianity just as much as men were in Judaism.
Christianity can be made into an imposed system just
as much as Mosaic law was, and there are many Christ-
ians today who live under fear of the "Thou shalt" and
the "Thou shalt not" of a legalistic conception of the
Christian life.

You can take the Bible as God's standard for your life
and try to fulfill it and yet be burdened with a sense
of constant failure. It is God's standard, and it is a very
exhaustive one which leaves no part of the practical
life untouched, but those who make the effort to try to
live up to it only end in disillusion.

No, it is not just a matter of a Book, but of a Person, 
the Person who did live up to that standard, absolutely
 fulfilling every least demand and with the most perfect 
success, so satisfying God to the full. By His death He 
has delivered us from the bondage of legal demands. 
This same Person now lives in us by His Holy Spirit, 
seeking to work out that perfect will of God not on the 
basis of some binding instructions from without but as 
a living force within. We have the law written in our 

Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new
spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone
from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I
will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk 
in my statutes...Ezekiel 36:26, 27

To be in Christ is a matter of life and not of legalism.
T. Austin Sparks  1888-1971

Reader, I was so far into legalism that whatever I was
doing was not quite right and there was no freedom in
my relationship with God. About 13 years ago, God
began to lead me into the scriptures which painted a
picture of all that is IN CHRIST including that big word
"sanctification." It is His Life in me that brings Life to
all I am doing. What freedom!  What joy!

T. Austin Sparks life: