The Blessing of Things Going Wrong

You’ve made all your plans. Everything’s prepared. You double-checked and triple-checked. You committed it all to prayer. You’ve made every effort. Despite all the preparation, something goes wrong. The computer crashes and you lose all your data. Your guest speaker suddenly can’t come. The kids fall terribly ill. All of a sudden, your well-made plans are scuttled and you’re left wondering what on earth went wrong.
 
At this point, you can consider a couple of responses. God forbid but some blame their bad luck. The most natural response, in my opinion, is to point the finger squarely at someone else and, trust me, there’s always someone close enough to the matter to be blamed. Or, attribute the matter to spiritual warfare. The worst of all is to back away from ever attempting something quite as audacious.
 
The one thing we’re taught never to do is to attribute bad things to God. But perhaps that’s precisely what we need to do? Now, hold your horses before you crucify me. I hold to the belief that God is good and with Him, there’s no shadow of turning. There’s not even an iota of darkness or ill intent in Him but consider a few passages of Scripture:
 
“For God has committed them all to disobedience, that He might have mercy on all. Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!” Rom 11:32-33
 
Paul speaks here about his fellow Jews who had rejected the Messiah. It’s a lament by Paul for his own people. He saw the harvest of souls amongst the Gentiles, but also his own people rejecting the Saviour Who came from the Jewish people. It broke his heart. The people from among whom the salvation of the world would spring forth soundly rejected the Christ when He finally appears. The One they’ve been waiting for millenniums finally comes, and they could not see Jesus for Who He really was. If there be a well-laid plan that went awry, this would be it.
 
Yet, in the finally analysis, Paul was overtaken by the wisdom and ways of God. For a moment, his view was stretched beyond the present to see an all-encompassing outcome that would extend to the ends of this age. Israel’s rejection of Christ would propel the Gospel to the nations in an unprecedented manner. Yet, at the same time, Israel will not reject Him forever. The acceptance of Christ by the Gentiles will eventually open the hearts of the Jewish people to their Messiah.
 
God has a way of making right the things that have gone wrong. It isn’t just about setting right what’s not, but He goes far beyond to accomplish good for us that’s beyond our imagination. An economic downturn that seemingly destroyed Naomi’s family eventually led her to Ruth and a part in God’s Messianic plans. A betrayal by his own brothers paved the way for Joseph to orchestrate the next 400 years of Israel’s birth as a nation in Egypt.
 
“All things work together for the good of those who love Him, who are the called according to His purpose.” Rom 8:28
 
God is good. Just remember that His timeline for working out good may not be in line with yours. Nonetheless, if you hang on, it’ll all work out. So the next time something goes wrong, remember to consider that God’s going to turn the bad eventually into something good. A conflict now may well lay the foundations for a future covenant relationship. A business failure now is what may open the door to prosperity for generations ahead.
 
And, it was a cruel death that brought salvation to all mankind.


Ps. Lim Lip Yong

When God Doesn’t Make Sense

February 2019 was an interesting month for me. I received not one – but two – watches. Instinctively, I began to seek its spiritual and prophetic significance as I believe the Lord is saying something to me through this. And so my mind began to run through all the ‘watch-related’ Scriptures for clues.

Is the Lord asking me to ‘watch and pray’ more (Matt 26:41)? Or am I to be ‘His watchman on the wall’ (Isa 62:6)? Maybe it’s about learning to ‘number my days’ (Ps 90:12) or to learn more about moving in ‘times and seasons’ (1 Chron 12:32) like the sons of Issachar, since one was a classic retro-looking watch and the other a modern high-tech watch. Or perhaps the Lord is bringing me into a ‘time of refreshing’ (Acts 3:19)? Or the new watches replacing the old read more…

Strengthen the Weak

“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees.” 
Heb 12:11-12

Over the last few weeks, I’ve learnt a painful but valuable lesson, one which could permanently affect the way I live, how I move, and what I’m able to accomplish with my family. On a family trip to Mt. Kinabalu, I suffered a painful injury to my knee while carrying my youngest daughter on an uphill forest trail. I believe God is teaching me a spiritual lesson and reminding me to strengthen my aging body.

As God’s children, may we continue to allow Him to discipline us and follow His instructions, training, and correction to strengthen the body read more…

The Dark Side of Success

In Luke 12, there was a certain rich man whose ground yielded plentifully. This man could be any person – a stockbroker whose portfolio of stocks had risen greatly in value; a real estate owner whose property assets had dramatically improved; or even a businessman who had just gotten the deal of the century. Or, he could just be a senior pastor who’s seen increase year upon year and all it’s been is hunky dory. Whoever he is, he’s someone who’s struck gold and has now more than he can accommodate. So, he has a logistical problem. He doesn’t have enough space to store his increase.

There’s this internal chatter. He asks himself a question, ‘What shall I do since I’ve no room to store my crops or increase?’ In his mind, he replies to his read more…

Move with Lions!

Will this year be an exceptional one of unusual testimonies and exploits? It’s been said that your destiny is not fulfilled until you hold in your hands your own little book. God is showing us our own book and, when we turn the leaves of these pages, I pray for faith to leap in us to believe.

I’ll soon be 59 years old and, like my husband, we’re both inching towards the big 6-0. I’m a good 20 years into the second half of my life if, by reason of strength, I live to 80 years. God is leading me to the finishing line, so there’s an urgency for me to live wisely and well as there are fewer days in front of me than behind. How I live from this time will shape eternity more than ever. The fact read more…

Move With Lions!

Will this year be an exceptional one of unusual testimonies and exploits? It’s been said that your destiny is not fulfilled until you hold in your hands your own little book. God is showing us our own book and, when we turn the leaves of these pages, I pray for read more…

We’re Stewards, And Not Owners

The idea of stewardship is found throughout the Scriptures. In fact, an important foundation that needs to be laid in all our lives is a realisation that we’re all stewards in this life. The one thing that causes us to fail to understand this is when we think we’re owners instead of stewards.

This is easily evident in the way we speak and how we make decisions. When our conversations are filled with ‘mine’ and ‘I’, in all likelihood, we’re no longer thinking as stewards. In the same manner, do we pray and ask God about the decisions we’ve to make, recognising that our lives belong to Him?
 
Interestingly, Jesus spoke about stewardship extensively. In the many instances when He spoke on this subject, they were directed towards the Pharisees – the religious leaders of His days. read more…

Putting a Smile on The Father’s Face

Last November, after speaking at our weekend service for the second time, I asked the Lord what He thought of the message. His reply astounded me – what pleased Him most was not so much the message itself, but what happened the night before the service – the diligence in working through the message and the posture of desperation for His Presence in the service.

And the Holy Spirit said these three words to me that forever marked and changed my life – “Remember this day!” I immediately knew what He was referring to. It was a loving warning from my Confidant to keep this posture in my heart for the rest of my life, so that I’ll not be complacent when it comes to the things of God as I get more fluent in what I do, be it read more…

Strengthen Your Stakes

Long ago, ancient Hebrews constructed tents made of black goat hair, which was spun into strands and woven together, forming panels measuring some 2 feet wide and covering the length of the tent. This took about a year to complete and was primarily the ancient method of tent-making.

Isaiah 54:2 says, “Enlarge the place of your tent, and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; do not spare; lengthen your cords, and strengthen your stakes.” When I think of this verse, I think of us expanding our potential, capabilities, and seeing an increase in the church. The intent of God has never changed but if this growth is going to continue, the church must be willing to be stretched beyond her comfort zone.

I believe God wants us to grow in our triune being today, by enlarging our capacity for others read more…

Musings of An Almost Senior Citizen

Age changes your perception of life. When I was 20, I was very concerned over what people thought about me. At 40, I didn’t care what people thought about me. Now at almost 60, I realised no one was thinking about me.

In just 11 months, I will reach my big 6-0. I’m not sure how I feel. In a way, I’m excited about the new possibilities, yet I’m also feeling a sense of trepidation. One of the things that’s been in my thoughts lately is the issue of life after death. Soon, I’ll breathe my last breath and slip away into eternity, which simply means everything I do now ought to prepare me for that moment.

I find myself reading a lot about books on heaven. I’ve just finished reading Dr. DGS Dhinakaran’s classic book, ‘An Insight Into Heaven’ read more…

An Open Door

2019 will be an exceptional year and it’s going to excel against the previous years! Entering a new year can bring with it many new things, it can refresh old things giving them a different perspective. Learning to view a glass as half-full rather than half-empty, re-defining problems as opportunities, and wearing new lenses to view more options as viable might be the new perspective that works this year. Perspective is the way one looks at something, it’s also an art technique that changes the distance or depth of an object on paper.

2018 is past but re-capturing encounters where God apprehended us are so very important. These encounters are keys God has given to unlock doors, doors which were once closed and now opened. I hear the Spirit say, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the read more…

Time to Discard

It’s a new year and the most common thing that people do is to make new year resolutions. We may not call it that but we all make decisions that amount to resolutions. Pray more, be more consistent with our quiet time, spend more time with family, exercise more, and the list goes on.
 
The point to consider though, is that it’s a lot easier to eat junk food than to exercise off the extra calories we put on. It’s easier to put something off and delay doing it than to be prompt and decisive. Perhaps it’s also easier for us to decide what we’re NOT going to do this year, instead of adding more to the list of things to do. Perhaps the thing that will really change our lives this year is to decide that read more…

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