MAKINGS THROUGH BREAKINGS! Compiled 4/87--"Yield & Obey!"--Part 3 DFO 2305
(See definitions of complicated words on Pg.16 [EDITED: "not in this file"].)
1. MY MOTHER OFTEN USED TO SAY, "THE LORD HAD TO BREAK MY BACK IN ORDER TO BREAK MY WILL!" She spent five long years in bed before she finally got the point & yielded her life to the Lord! But look how the Lord was able to mightily use her once she submitted to the breaking, repented of her sins & completely turned her life over to Him.--She had a tremendously fruitful life & ministry in which countless souls were saved & multitudes of broken bodies & broken hearts were healed, TYJ!
2. BUT THE TROUBLE WITH MOST OF US IS THAT WE WANT TO BE USED JUST LIKE WE ARE, WE DON'T WANT TO BE BROKEN!--But God only uses broken people, no others will do!--Others are too proud & self-confident in their carnal flesh, talents & natural abilities, & would take the glory to themselves if God were to use them. This is why He chooses & uses the weak things, the foolish things, the despised things, "that no flesh should glory in His presence!"--1Cor.1:25-29.
3. THE LIST IS ALMOST ENDLESS OF ALL THE MEN IN THE BIBLE WHOM GOD HAD TO HUMBLE BEFORE HE COULD USE THEM, of all the leaders God had to bring down to the depths before they could stand to be exalted--lest they would have taken credit to themselves & not given God the glory!
4. LOOK AT JOSEPH!--Of Jacob's 12 sons, he was his father's favourite. His elder brothers finally became so jealous of him that they nearly killed him, threw him into a pit, & then sold him into slavery!--But that's what the Lord used to humble him. Joseph had to be made a slave & a prisoner & be condemned as a criminal before God was able to exalt him to become the saviour of His people! (Genesis 37,39-41)
5. AND LOOK AT MOSES!--For 40 years he was groomed in the very courts of Pharaoh, & rose to become the second most powerful man in all of the mighty world empire of ancient Egypt. The Bible says he was "educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians" (Acts 7: 22), but God could not yet use him to lead His people to freedom, for he was full of the ways of the World & not the ways of God. Moses had to be broken first. So God allowed him to become a fugitive from Pharaoh, & he had to spend 40 years in the wilderness doing nothing but tending sheep, until finally he was broken & humble enough for God to use him for the great task He had designed him for! (Exo.2,3)
6. AND CONSIDER KING DAVID, the greatest king that Israel ever had: When he fell in love with Bathsheba, purposely had her husband, Uriah, killed in battle, & then tried to lie & cover up the entire crime! God had to completely expose him, humble him & severely judge him!--And he was soon driven from the throne by his own traitorous son, Absalom. (2Samuel 11,12,15)
7. BUT WAS DAVID'S FALL REALLY A FALL DOWNWARD, OR A FALL UPWARD? God's way up is sometimes down--usually in fact!--Just the opposite of what we think! And David was humbled, & the whole kingdom was humbled, & they were all reminded that it was only the Lord Who made them great! And from that squeezing & twisting of David's life came forth the sweet honey of the Psalms, & the fragrance of His praises to the Lord for His mercy!--A lesson that's been an encouragement to other great sinners like me & you ever since!
8. THE GREAT, BRAVE & MIGHTY PROPHET, ELIJAH, WAS ABLE TO CALL DOWN FIRE FROM HEAVEN to confound the false prophets of Baal & to prove that he was right! (1Kings 18) But after slaying hundreds of false prophets, he panicked & ran away from one little woman, the wicked Queen Jezebel! Hiding out in the wilderness, he became so discouraged that he wished that he might die! But there in his time of desperation, this prophet of fire & thunder became a meek little man who learned to listen to the still, small voice of God! And he became a much better, humbler instrument in the hands of the Lord.--A prophet who fearlessly returned to face not only the queen, but the king & all of their soldiers! (1Kings 19 & 21)
9. AND LOOK AT THE APOSTLE PETER!--He was so proud & self-confident that he swore to Jesus, "Though all others forsake You, I am ready to go with you both to prison & to death!"--John 13:37, Luke 22:33. But just a few hours later, when Jesus was seized by the Temple guards & hauled before the Jews' religious court, some people outside of the building recognised Peter & pointed him out as one of Jesus' followers. Peter vehemently denied that he even knew Him, cursing & swearing that he had no idea what they were talking about! (Mark 14:66-71)
10. AS HE WAS DENYING THE LORD THE THIRD TIME, Jesus, Who was being led by His captors to another part of the building, turned & gazed upon Peter, & Peter suddenly remembered how he had sworn that he would never deny Him. The Bible tells us that Peter then "went out & wept bitterly".--Luke 22:62. Was this the end of Peter's service for the Lord?--NO!--It was shortly after this humiliating defeat, this great failure, this breaking of his pride, that the Lord anointed & raised up Peter to become the leader of the Early Church!
11. AND CONSIDER THE GREAT APOSTLE PAUL: He had been a prominent Jewish leader, the Rabbi Saul, & had personally taken it upon himself to put an end to the fast-growing sect of the followers of Jesus of Nazareth. Journeying by horseback to Damascus, where he intended to capture, imprison & execute as many Christians as he could find, God had to literally knock him off his horse & blind him with the brilliant light of His presence! Trembling, helpless & totally blind, the once proud Rabbi had to be led by the hand into the city where he was so astonished that he was unable to eat or drink for three full days! A disciple of the Lord then came to give him God's message & pray for his eyes, & Saul was converted & became the Apostle Paul! But God had to humble & break him first, & make him a new man before He was able to use him! (Acts 9)
12. IN FACT, THIS IS THE STORY OF EVERY ONE OF US WHO IS OF ANY REAL USE TO THE LORD'S WORK.--To get us to be what He wants us to be usually requires many breakings, humblings & meltings, remolding, reshaping & remaking into a better vessel, better than we were, better than we thought we were, & much more yielded & useful for His Kingdom!
13. BUT THE LORD WON'T FORCE IT! The breaking depends upon you & your yieldedness & willingness to be made willing! Such tests, trials & tribulations will either soften & melt you, or harden & embitter you! Suffering makes you either bitter or better, one or the other. So watch out that you don't get hardened, bitter & resentful in your heart against God when you're going through it. His Word says, "Look diligently, lest any man fail the grace of God, lest any root of bitterness spring up & trouble you, & through it, many be defiled!"--Heb.12:15.
14. IF YOU LET TRIALS HUMBLE YOU & MELT YOU, YOU'LL BE A WHOLE LOT HAPPIER, because you'll be drawn a whole lot closer to the Lord. But if you allow yourself to be "hardened through the deceitfulness of sin" (Heb.3:13), you'll wind up like the guy in that horrible poem, "Invictus": "I am the Captain of my soul, I am the Master of my fate!--My head is bloody but unbowed!"--Even though he was bruised, buffeted & bloodied, he still insisted on being his own boss & would not yield or "bow" to the Lord!
15. SOME PEOPLE, NO MATTER HOW MUCH GOD DOES, EVEN IF HE BEATS THEM OVER THE HEAD, THEY'LL STILL NOT GET THE POINT & BOW THEIR HEAD TO HIM!--They'll still not call out to the Lord & confess that He's their Captain or their Master. Though their head is bloody, it remains unbowed!--What a hell of a picture of the unyielding sinner in his rebellious defiance of God! How much better the beautiful picture of the true saint, the yielded sinner, on his knees saying, "Lord, please be merciful to me a sinner!"--Luke 18:13. I like that picture a lot better, don't you?
16. IF YOU HARDEN YOUR HEART AGAINST THE LORD'S DEALINGS WITH YOU, if you resist the Holy Spirit & harden your heart against God's Love & against His Truth, your heart becomes calloused, & soon it no longer even feels it so much any more, and you become "past feeling".--Ephesians 4:19. It's like the Lord says, "He that being often reproved but hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed!"--Prov.29:1.
17. TRUTH RESISTED WILL LOSE ITS POWER OVER YOUR SOUL! Every time you resist the truth, you're hardening your spirit against the Lord! It's like when you have a little tender spot on your foot where your shoe has been rubbing. At first it's very, very sensitive, really sore, it hurts! But if it keeps on rubbing & keeps on rubbing, pretty soon you build a big callous, the skin gets thicker & tougher & hardened.--Which is what happens to your heart if you continually refuse to yield to the Lord!
18. BUT HARDENING YOUR HEART IS NOT THE SOLUTION! He says, "Harden not your hearts!" (Hebrews 3:15) But rather, "Cast thy burden upon the Lord, & He shall sustain thee! Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near! The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart, & saveth such as be of a contrite (broken, repentant) spirit!"--Psa. 55:22; 34:18; Isa.55:6.
19. WHATEVER GOD DOES, HE ALWAYS DOES IT IN LOVE!--"The Lord is merciful & gracious, slow to anger, & plenteous in mercy. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as the Heaven is high above the Earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him. Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust."--Psa.103:8-14.
20. THE LORD LOVES YOU & IS EVEN "TOUCHED WITH THE FEELING OF YOUR INFIRMITIES".--Heb.4:15.--But He knows that He will never be able to fully use you as much as He would like to unless you are humbled & put down & broken up a bit. When He can get you out of the way, then He has a chance! When you become nothing but a tool & a channel--nothing but a little diamond of dust, then He can mightily use you! He has to break you & humble you & melt you in the fire, purge you, purify you, sift you, beat out the chaff! Sometimes He has to beat the hell out of you, till there's none of it left!--Crucify the flesh till it's dead as a doornail!--Mortify the mind till it's almost gone!--So that Jesus can live & think & move in you! (See Gal.2:20.)
21. HE MAKES US THROUGH BREAKING US.--For unless God is able to break your heart & your spirit, you'll never be really useful to the Lord! If you have a proud & haughty spirit, a spirit which is unyielded & unbending & unsurrendered, He'll never be able to fully use you!--And you'll never know how to love the poor lost World & sympathise with & reach others with His Love. But if He can just break & melt your heart, then He'll woo & win it, warm & melt it, & make it bright & happy & burning with His Love!--So you can share that love with others! As Aaron used to sing:
"God says, Yield to Me, & I will break your heart.
Am I not He that hath set you apart?
That's why I gave on Pentecost day,
My Spirit to save & witness alway.
God says, Yield to Me, & I will break your heart!
You've got a job to do.
Don't quit till you're all through.
God really loves the lost, & cries a lot about it.
Don't fret about the cost.
He gave His Son, let's shout it!
He gave His Son, let's shout it!
A Man of sorrows & acquainted with grief.
He's still the same today, in Him is your relief.
You can feel His broken heart,
He'll live through you today,
A heart that's broken for lost souls.
Just let Him have His way.
Yield to Jesus, & He will break your heart."
22. SO LORD, WE JUST ASK YOU IN JESUS' NAME, TO PLEASE HELP US TO REALLY GET THIS THROUGH OUR HEADS & INTO OUR HEARTS, that You know best when You're dealing with us & breaking us & trying to teach us to yield our all to You! Lord, we especially ask You to please help us to be humble, & not get hardened & bitter! Help us, Lord, to get better & not bitter!
23. SUCH GREAT LOVE YOU'VE GIVEN US, LORD, SUCH GREAT MERCY YOU'VE SHOWN US, HOW LOVINGLY YOU DEAL WITH US! Perhaps sometimes it doesn't seem loving to us, & we chafe against it & we think it's severe & harsh, but even then, Your dealings with us are loving, Lord.--Because if that's the only way that You can get through to us, & if that's the only way You can show us, You love us enough to do it, even though You know it hurts.
24. EVEN IF IT SOMETIMES SEEMS HARSH TO US, WE KNOW IT'S ONLY BECAUSE YOU HAVE TO DO IT, LORD, & we know it's done in love! You don't want to hurt us, but sometimes that's the only way that we can be broken & remade. Breaking always hurts, Lord, & You know it has to be done that way, so help us just to thank You for it, not to be offended, not to have our feelings hurt, not to be proud & rebellious or resentful, but to just accept it, Lord, so we can be more fit for Your service.
25. HELP US TO SUBMIT, TO YIELD, TO LET YOU HAVE YOUR WAY, NO MATTER HOW HARD IT SEEMS, no matter how much it hurts, to just say, "Thank You, Jesus!" for it. We know it's necessary because we know You wouldn't give us anything that was bad for us or that we couldn't take, so it must be what's needed, even if we don't always understand it. Help us to be willing, Lord, willing to go through these breakings so we can be remade by You. Help us to yield, to be humbled & broken, to be nothing, so that You can work & live in us, so that Your glory can be seen in us, in Jesus' name, TYL! TYJ!
+ + +
One summer, a lady was on holiday in Switzerland. One day while climbing along a hillside, she came to a shepherd's fold. As she looked in she saw the shepherd sitting down & around him lay his flock. Nearby, on a pile of straw, lay a single sheep. It seemed to be suffering. Looking closely, the lady saw that one of its legs was broken. She immediately felt very sorry for the suffering sheep & asked the shepherd, "How did it happen?"
To her amazement, the shepherd answered: "Madam, I broke that sheep's leg." A look of pain swept over her face. Seeing it, the shepherd went on, "Madam, of all the sheep in my flock, this one was the most wayward. It never would obey my voice. It would never follow in the pathway in which I lead the flock. Many a time it wandered off to the edge of a perilous cliff, & would have surely perished had I not rescued it. And not only was it disobedient itself, but it was constantly leading the other sheep astray also. So though it hurt me to do it, it was necessary to break its leg.
"The first day I went to it with food, it tried to bite me. But as the days passed, I gave it extra love & attention, carrying it on my shoulders or in my bosom when taking the rest of the flock out to graze. So now, when I offer it food, it not only takes the food, but licks my hand & shows every sign of submission & affection. When this sheep is well, as it soon will be, it will be the best example to my flock. No other sheep will hear my voice so quickly. None will follow & stay so closely by my side."
"MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT!" (2Cor.12:9)
26. YIELDING OUR ALL TO THE LORD MAY NOT ALWAYS SEEM LIKE AN EASY THING TO DO, to be able to sincerely pray in each time of testing, "Not my will, but Thy will be done!"--But remember, Jesus promised that He would make His will easy. He said, "Come unto Me, all ye that labour & are heavy laden, & I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, & learn of Me; for I am meek & lowly in heart, & ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, & My burden is light."--Mat.11:28-30.
27. HE PROMISES THAT HIS YOKE WILL NEVER BE TOO HARD, NOR WILL HIS BURDEN BE TOO HEAVY. So if you take it from the Lord, & do His will, it's not going to be too hard or too heavy, amen? And if you can't do anything else, just believe it by faith because Jesus said so--even when it seems like it is too hard & too heavy!
28. GOD HAS PROMISED THAT HE WILL NEVER PLACE A LOAD ON YOUR SHOULDERS THAT'S MORE THAN YOU'RE ABLE TO CARRY. He says, "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: For God is faithful, Who will not suffer (allow) you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it."--1Cor.10:13.
29. HE'LL NEVER GIVE YOU ANYTHING MORE THAN YOU'RE ABLE TO BEAR. So if He gives you a tough test & a tough trial, He knows you can take it, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ! (2Tim.2:3) He just wants to show you & show your Family & show the rest of the World you can! It's a part of your witness!
30. SO IF YOU EVER FEEL LIKE THE TESTS, TRIALS & BATTLES ARE MORE THAN YOU CAN BEAR & YOU JUST CAN'T MAKE IT, they're more difficult than you have strength for, they're greater than you are, remember, the Lord is greater than they are!--So take them to Him! Draw close to Jesus & get desperate with Him & lean on Him!
Give me a task too big,
Too hard for human hands;
Then shall I come at length
To lean on Thee;
And leaning find my strength.
31. WHEN THE BURDEN & THE LOAD SEEMS TOO HEAVY FOR YOU, remember the story of the little boy who was trying very hard to lift a heavy piece of furniture. His father came into the room, and noting his son's struggle with it, asked him, "Are you using all your strength?" "Yes, of course I am!", the boy impatiently exclaimed. "Oh, no, you're not," the father answered. "You haven't asked me to help you!"
32. WHEN YOU'RE WEAK, THEN YOU'RE STRONG, BECAUSE HIS STRENGTH COMES IN.--If you'll lean on Him! He says, "My grace is sufficient for thee; for My strength is made perfect in your weakness."--2Cor.12:9. I've known many times that when I was weakest in the flesh, I was strongest in the spirit because I just had to completely throw myself on the Lord. You don't know how you're going to make it, but He can make it for you! God knows you'll never make it on your own. But if you'll just yield & surrender to Him, then He will make it through you! "For it is God which worketh in us, both to will & to do of His good pleasure!"--Phil.2:13.
33. SO, LORD, WE JUST ASK THAT THY WILL BE DONE IN EACH OF OUR LIVES, TO GET OUT OF EACH LIFE WHAT YOU WANT, LORD, & TO PUT INTO EACH LIFE WHAT YOU WANT, that we may do Your Will to bring many many more lives into Your Kingdom for Your glory, in Jesus' name! You told us that You can only use broken people, Lord, so please break us as much as You have to so that we're only dust & we're nothing, & then You can remold us & use us in the way that You best see fit!
34. JESUS, WE WANT TO BE WILLING & YIELDED, BECAUSE YOU CAN ONLY FILL EMPTY VESSELS THAT HUNGER & THIRST FOR THE WATER OF LIFE & THY SPIRIT. (Mat.5:6) So please help us to be empty, with no will of our own, & no thoughts or ideas of our own, but just willing to receive whatever You have for us, to be broken & remade & have done to us whatever You want to do, Lord, whatever it is. Help us all, Jesus!
35. PLEASE KEEP US ALL CLOSE TO THEE & THY WILL, submitting to You in every area, Lord, in Jesus' name, amen!
36. ARE YOU LETTING THE LORD LEAD YOUR LIFE?--ARE YOU READY FOR ANYTHING?--ANYTHING GOD WANTS YOU TO DO?--You are if you're willing!--If you sincerely want to please & follow Jesus & be what He wants you to be! PTL! God bless you & help you to yield to Jesus & go God's way, in Jesus' name, amen!
Only to be what He wants me to be,
Every moment of every day!
Yielded completely to Jesus the Lord,
Every step of life's pilgrim way!
Just to be clay in the Potter's hands,
Just to obey what His Will commands!
Only to be what He wants me to be,
Every moment of every day!
Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family