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Nothing to do but praise!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Friends, my heart has been heavy these past few days.  There are so many people who are hurting.  Children who are in hospital rooms, fighting for their lives, sick children who are going to be left in an orphange for longer than they should because the judge won't waive the 10 day waiting period, and even precious little ones who have died.  If you know Sarah from Sarah's Covenant Homes, you know that two of her darling girls died recently.  If you don't, you can read about these two beloved girls here and here.

This morning I awoke thinking of Evelyn and Elizabeth and the many other children who live (and die) without parents and families and churches to pour out love upon them.  But, I also awoke knowing that God is good and that their deaths are not a part of his perfect will.  And I found myself praising the Father for his goodness and His kindness and His grace.  I thought of what Bill Johnson said in his book, Strengthen Yourself in the Lord.

"After my dad's death, I discovered the privilege of giving God a sacrificial offering of praise that I will never be able to give Him in eternity.  My offering was in the midst of sadness, disappointment, and confusion--none of which will I ever experience in Heaven.  Only in this life will we be able to give an offering with that kind of 'fragrance.'"

This book has been such a blessing to me.  Through it, I have learned to praise God in the midst of sadness and despair and also throughout the joys and blessings of this life.  And as I do, I realize that He is the greatest blessing of all.

There are so many of you who are experiencing pain.  Do you know that God wants to give you hope and joy?!  He wants you to see His face in the midst of the pain and He wants to shower His blessings upon you.  And then there are those of you who are experiencing the great joy and comfort of God.  Do you know that He wants to strengthen you and encourage you during this time, as well?!

I have an extra copy of Strengthen Yourself in the Lord, and I'd love to bless someone with it.  If you're interested, just leave a comment.  I'll draw a name sometime next week from among those who leave a comment.  Of course, if there is more than one person who would really be encouraged by this book, I might be inclined to buy another copy or two!


Praying that each one of you experiences the Lord's goodness throughout the trials and the joys of this life.
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16 comments:

Jean said...

Please include me in this! would love to read this book!

I am amazed at the praise that is given to the Lord in the midst of such pain.

This week has been a trying week- thank goodness we have him to lean on!

Mike and Mer said...

Don't put my name in the drawing, as I already have the book...but that quote is in my talk for tomorrow... :o) It is one of my all time favorite ones....

SarahinOK said...

I went to look for the book at our public library website before I finished reading your post (and they don't have it). Should have kept reading... I need this book right now. I had the rug pulled out from under me this week and I'm clinging to the Lord with white knuckles. It's so appropriate that my bible study this week was urging me to 'violent praise'. I'd love your prayers.
Sarah
sarah loves india at hotmail dot com

Shonni said...

This sounds like an awesome book. I would love to read it.

The Spicer Family said...

Sarah, I'm cheating, I must confess. I had intended to comment on your post about God liking your daughter because it was so moving and perfect. I would, however, love to be included in the drawing for the book, although honestly I would be happy to get it on my own because it sounds just right.

It's been a tough week for me in my little Reece's Rainbow bubble. I've advocated a number of times on my blog and through facebook for a little girl in Russia with Down Syndrome who reminds me so much of my litte girl from Russia with Down Syndrome. I learned a couple of days ago that a third family has backed out of adopting her and the baby house can't keep her out of the mental institution much longer. My heart is broken for her because she is so full of potential and because some family may miss out on the blessing of having little Lera in their lives.

The RR family has also been following the heart surgery of one of our newly adopted little girls from Serbia. She has already been deemed dead twice and the doctors have not stopped working and have been able to resuscitate her, but it is still touch and go. Her mom's blog (www.allarepreciousinhissight.blogspot.com) is as inspiring and beautiful as any I've ever read, yet heartrending all the same. Rarely do you have a chance to hear from people who truly believe that to live is Christ and to die is gain, especially when they are applying it to their children.

In the midst of this I had a group I minister to tell me they just didn't need me anymore! Actually, they went through two other people to tell me, very junior high-ish. While I don't think the Lord is finished in this situation, I'm still left wondering what happened and why, praying the Lord would prick the hearts of those who have given offense (including me!) and lead to reconciliation.

Sigh. Are you sorry you brought this up yet!? Do you feel like a priest hearing confession? LOL

Praising the Lord and His unchanging, infinite goodness and grace!

Jill, who clearly needs a guv'ner on her keyboard

Kim said...

I would love to be included in the drawing for this book. God is our strength both in good times and in bad. I continually stand in awe at the love He lavishes on us all.
Praying for all those who need encouragement, healing, strength and peace.

Melanie said...

Thank you for such an encouraging post. I often feel burdened in the same way. I just pray and ask Jesus to lift the burdens. Please include me in the drawiing too. I would love to read the book.

Blessings,
Melanie

Cari said...

I would love to be included in this drawing as well, Sarah. Thanks for the post!

sarah bess said...

so encouraging to me. i wanna do so much more. would love to be in the drawing.

Waitingfaithfully said...

Sarah,

I would love to be included in your book drawing!

I'm with Jill-- Lily's "God likes me" post was perfect. (I left you a comment on the post--didn't want you to miss it.)

Love you, friend~

Tina

The Byrd's Nest said...

What a wonderful book.....how hard this is for all Christians don't you think? Because what we want to do is just sit in the midst of our pain in the bottom of our nicely decorated pit....as Beth Moore would say but oh how wonderful it would be to actually be able to be thankful and praise Him during this time too.

Difference2This1 said...

I'd love to read it!! :)

Sherrie Kulwicki said...

Put me in - I'd love to read that since I have lived it! Please read my blog today as I wrote about that very thing. www.fpministries.blogspot.com

Love reading about your precious family. Keep up the good work.

Sherrie

Sara said...

Sarah, I wanted to thank you for being a part of my first year of blogging! What a wonderful year it has been. I'm throwing a little party and as an honored guest, I would love for you to stop by and share a highlight of your year with all of us.

http://justsarahdawn.blogspot.com/2010/04/cactus-happy.html

Cactus Happy,
Sara

Gwen said...

Aack, been so busy lately I've not had much computer time. Would love to read this book!
Thanks for sharing!

Holly said...

Sarah,
I saw your post to another adoptive Mom on a yahoo group we are both part of.
It seems we have some of the same friends in bloggy world!
I really like your blog and even more...your family's heart!!
Blessings,
Holly
www.purposedrivenfamily.blogspot.com

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