Echoes From the Campfire

An’ all choices have results…  Sometimes those results ain’t good.”
              –C. Wayne Winkle  (Frank Bannon–The Fixer)

    “Go and say to David, ‘This is what the Lord says: I will give you three choices. Choose one of these punishments, and I will inflict it on you.’”
              –1 Chronicles 21:10 (NLT)
Sometimes I sit, look around, pull on my mustache and stroke down my chin.  I ponder, many times, since September 11, seventeen years ago.  We are definitely a different nation.  I wonder if this country will ever be “E Pluribus Unum”.  The differences seem to be widening, caused much in part by the influence of the media and the left-wing agenda.  There can be differences without hatred, but it seems that hatred is part of the agenda today.
    Nevertheless, that day will not go unremembered in my memory.  The enemy, global terrorism sponsored by militant Muslims, are still a threat.  On our shore and in other nations throughout the world.  Be vigilant, my friends, not only of jihadists, but of other threats, such as criminal immigrants.
    Remember Congress standing on the steps of the capitol singing “God Bless America.”  How much they have forgotten, and many of them have surely forgotten God.  
    I have heard often, perhaps too many times, that God will grant your dream.  He will give you the desires of your hearts.  Hmmmm, only partly true, as first we must delight in Him.  “Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart.”  (Psalm 37:4 (NASB)
    Seldom, at least in this current culture, that we hear preached or even mentioned that God may ask someone to give up and abandon their personal dreams.  My that would be a shocker coming from a pulpit.  Self-sacrifice.  I think of the department store owner, Wanamaker, who desired to be a missionary and God said “No.”  Can you imagine, God saying “no” to someone who desired to be a missionary?  God said that He has set him apart to be a businessman.  By the end of his life Wanamaker was supporting ninety missionaries full-time.
    Or think of this man of long ago.  We know him as Abraham and he was told by God that a great nation would be his heritage.  Isaac was born, Abraham rejoiced.  Then came the day when the Lord was going to take Abraham’s dream away.  It didn’t seem to bother Abraham.

              “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son; it was he to whom it was said, ‘In Isaac your descendants shall be called.’ He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type.”
                         –Hebrews 11:17-19(NASB)

There may be that time when God wants you to abandon what you desire.  In my life, there were a couple of situations, and I’ll mention one.  I was stationed at the USAF Academy and optioned to reenlist.  We had discussed it and we fully intended to make a career of the military.  I enjoyed the life.  Vietnam was coming to an end, and I was asked if I wanted to get out.  I really didn’t want to, but my career field was closing to military personnel and would be civilian.  After almost six years of duty, I took an early out, and became unemployed.  My life surely had changed along with that of my family.
    The word “tested” or in some versions “tried” means an “intense examination that is done to prove the fitness of an object.”  It is the testing that will reveal true quality of an object or a character.  It is important that we go through tests correctly.
    So, my question in closing is, has God asked you to give up something to follow Him more closely, perhaps a career, or occupation?  Maybe it is the location in which you live.  Leave Ur and head for a land that He will show you.  Maybe you will have to give up your dream in sacrifice to aid your children and family.  Are you willing to let the Lord “try” you?