(I will be taking the next 2 weeks off- so I’m jumping to chapter 7 in the discussion of “The Fire of Delayed Answers” by Bob Sorge. I apologize for any confusion)
There’s so much I want to say about this chapter- I can’t go into detail, but I want to hit some of the highlights:
1. As I mentioned in my previous post, God told me this year would be tough- that I would learn how to depend upon HIM. But how did I get to this point in my walk with Christ? Why did He give me such a challenging word?
Sorge says, “He put the cry there, and He destined an answer to that cry.” (pg 99-100) “Jesus never imposes this painful process upon us. Instead, He cultivates within us a great dissatisfaction and a deep cry for something higher and greater... Then, He answers that prayer.” (pg 106).
In the preceding year God cultivated a deep cry in me for MORE OF HIM. And in 2013 God set about answering that cry. Little did I know the amount of pain that would be involved in making room in my heart for MORE of Him. To have more of Him, there had to be less of me.
2. I’ve also mentioned I have a toddler. Disciplining him isn’t easy. Sometimes I truly believe it does hurt me more than him. While shopping the other day he wanted a toy. I told him “no”. He proceeded to throw a HUGE fit. It would have been much easier to give in and buy him the toy. But for numerous reason’s, the answer was “no”.
Through this book and from my son, I am learning to appreciate God as being my Father.
“God does not discipline us simply to punish us for wrong behavior, but rather to restore us to right behavior.” (pg 101)
I don’t want to break my son or crush him. I don’t want to diminish his will or take away his dignity. I simply want him to learn how to resist giving into all his selfish desires and to think of others. My telling him “no” prepares him for a life time of challenges.
I’m also learning discipline doesn’t diminish my son's love for me- I'm his mommy no matter what. Likewise, I should love God more for who He is and less for what He gives me. I should long to be with Him even when He tells me “no”.
Finally, even in the middle of the biggest tantrums, my son clings to me…but do I cling to God like that?
I should, it’s what God wants.
“How did Jesus respond when the pain increased? He sought God more earnestly.” (pg 102)
3. As you know, I like politics. So it should come as no surprise that this next part captured my attention:
“True Christianity is seen only under intense pressure…The church in Laodicea knew very little persecution. The climate of Laodicea was that of religious tolerance. The Challenge for the Laodiceans was to serve Christ in the midst of a very permissive, hedonistic society. The Laodicean church had become lukewarm because of the fires of resistance had burned low.”(pg 111-112)
A common theme to this book is the need for God’s refining fire to purify us, to make us more interested in building HIS kingdom and less about building our own.
I challenge you to re-read the quote above, but to replace all the references of Laodicea with America.
America needs God refining fire…but can we handle the heat?
Has God created a cry within you?…if so, be ready, He will answer it.
Join the discussion, “The Fire of Delayed Answers” by Bob Sorge, You can read more about this chapter from: Jason, Sarah, Rick, Dusty, Kari, Glynn, and Joell. (and possibly a few more people- sorry if I left you out. Please let me know so I can add you to the list.)