Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Poured Out Wine
If we are not in full , consious allegiance to our Lord it has nothing to do with our personal salvation with this broken bread and poured out wine aspect of life. God can never make me wine if I object to the fingers He uses to crush me. If God would only crush me with His own fingers, and say, "Now My son, I am going to make you broken bread and poured out wine in a particular way and everyone will know what I am doing." But when He uses someone who is not a Christian, or someone I particularly don't like, or some set of circumstances which I said I would never submit to, and begins to make these the crushers, I object.
I must never choose the scene of my own martyrdom, nor must I choose the things God will use in order to make me broken bread and poured out wine. His own Son did not choose. God chose for His Son that He should have a devil in His company for three years. We say, "I want angels; I want people better than myself; I want everything to be significantly from God, otherwise I cannot live the life, or do the thing properly; I always want to be gilt-edged." Let God do as He likes. If you are ever going to be wine to drink, you must be crushed. Grapes cannot be drunk; grapes are only wine when they have been crushed. I wonder what kind of coarse finger and thumb God has been using to squeeze you, and you have been like a marble and escaped? You are not ripe yet, and if God had squeezed you, the wine that came out would have been remarkably bitter. Let God go on with His crushing, because it will work His purpose in the end.
- Oswald Chambers
"God uses broken things. It takes broken soil to produce a crop, broken clouds to give rain, broken grain to give bread, broken bread to give strength. It is the broken alabaster box that gives forth perfume. It is Peter weeping bitterly, who returns to greater power than ever"
- Vance Havner
I think of the lives of Corrie Ten Boon, Darlene Deibler Rose (missionary and POW during WW2), Joseph Scriven (who wrote the hymn, What a Friend We Have in Jesus), and many others who have lost loved ones, suffered long term illnesses, or experienced a series of unfortunate events, and that have been crushed through very difficult, and even horrific circumstances.
They knew their Lord and rather than becoming bitter, they recognized that their trials and sufferings were from His hand, refining and making them vessels for His glory, and thus became sweet wine. Some of the sweetest people I have talked with are the ones who have suffered much. It is so beautiful to hear their stories end with "God is so good." I recently talked to a woman that lost her husband a few years ago unexpectedly. She had the sweetest spirit and repeatedly expressed how blessed she was despite her suffering. It is men and women like these whose lives portray the God that is bigger than any circumstance.
I look at my own life and my own sufferings, which are small in comparison to many, and realize that I am many times like the hard marble. If I am not in concious alliegance to the Lord and the things He is using to crush me with, then I miss out on the opportunity of becoming more like Christ, of letting God accomplish what He wants to do in my life, of knowing Jesus more intimantly, and of glorifying my Father.
Oh, that I would be broken bread and poured out wine. I would hope that through whatever trials I may suffer, that my life would be as the broken alabaster box, giving forth a sweet perfume to those around me.
...That God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 4:11