Recession-proof Christian Life
7/8/10 at 03:34 PM 0 Comments

Double-dip Recession or the best half for 4 lepers

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Peter Morici, a professor at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business, says the likelihood of a double-dip is at least 50 percent. "What's going to happen here is either the economy is not going to collapse, or it's going to avalanche. Because once you start cycling down, then it develops a momentum of itself. And if it goes down a second time, then it becomes very difficult to resuscitate [it]," he says in Yahoo Finance article.

For investors, a double-dip, if it materializes, would be a throwback to 2008, with a floundering economy punishing stock returns. Jeff Tjornehoj, Lipper's research manager for the United States and Canada, says the Dow Jones industrial average could touch 9,000 by the close of 2010. "Is it reasonable to expect it? I think it's reasonable to put some odds on it," he says.

Nahum 1[9] What do ye imagine against the LORD? he will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time.

2 Kings [7:1] Then Elisha said, Hear ye the word of the LORD; Thus saith the LORD, To morrow about this time shall a measure of fine flour be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, in the gate of Samaria. [2] Then a lord on whose hand the king leaned answered the man of God, and said, Behold, if the LORD would make windows in heaven, might this thing be? And he said, Behold, thou shalt see it with thine eyes, but shalt not eat thereof. [3] And there were four leprous men at the entering in of the gate: and they said one to another, Why sit we here until we die? ... [18] And it came to pass as the man of God had spoken to the king, saying, Two measures of barley for a shekel, and a measure of fine flour for a shekel, shall be to morrow about this time in the gate of Samaria: [19] And that lord answered the man of God, and said, Now, behold, if the LORD should make windows in heaven, might such a thing be? And he said, Behold, thou shalt see it with thine eyes, but shalt not eat thereof. [20] And so it fell out unto him: for the people trode upon him in the gate, and he died.

As we enter the second half of the year, it remains to be seen if it will be the best half or another record low as a double-dip manifests.

The 4 lepers in 2 Kings did not have much theological background and perhaps never even heard the prophesy of Elisha. They simply came to the conclusion why not do something...if they did nothing they would die anyway. There is someone reading this blog with an idea, a dream, a new book, a new business, a new plan...and the odds of success seem grim given all the indicators. But consider what would happen if you did nothing. The difference between the worst case of your new venture and your do-nothing scenario tells you to move forward.

Move forward in the Lord...the flood gates of heaven have opened for you. Enjoy a new beginning. The blood has cleansed you and brought you justified for an overflow of blessings. May you be so extraordinarily blessed in this second half of the year that all who associate with you will also be blessed. Amen

An area of caution ...watch your confession. Your words have consequence.

At a deeper level we see these 4 lepers as unwanted strangers ready to die ... they gave their very lives... consider what you could ultimately loose if you do not move in self-sacrifice ... Zac Poonen writes on the spirit of sacrifice ...

In Ephesians 5:25, it is written that "Christ loved the church and gave HIMSELF for her”. To build the church, we have to love the church in the same way. It is not enough to give our money or our time. We have to give OURSELVES - our Self-life.

When God wanted to describe His love to man, He could compare His love with only one earthly example - the love of a mother for her newly-born child (See Isaiah 49:15). If you observe a mother, you will see that her love for her baby is full of the spirit of sacrifice. From early morning to late at night and right through the night, a mother sacrifices and sacrifices and sacrifices for her baby. And she gets nothing in return. She endures pain and inconvenience, year after year for her child, joyfully, expecting nothing in return. That is how God loves us too. And that is the nature He wants to impart to us. But it is impossible to find a fellowship anywhere in the world about which it can be honestly said that they all love one another like that.

Most believers know only how to love those who agree with them and who join their group. Their love is human and is far removed from the sacrificial love of mothers!!

Yet Divine love is the goal towards which we should be striving. So each time we sing the above lines, we should not only honestly admit that our love is not yet like that, but also confess our hope and longing that our love will become like that one day.

A mother does not care whether others around her are sacrificing anything for her child or not. She joyfully sacrifices everything herself. In the same way, one who has seen the church as his own baby will not be bothered whether others around him are sacrificing anything for the church or not. He will sacrifice himself joyfully, and he will have NO complaint or demand against anyone else. Those who complain that others are not sacrificing for the sake of the church are not mothers but hired nurses. Such nurses have fixed working hours and will complain when the nurse for the next 8-hour shift does not come on time.

But a mother does not work 8-hour shifts each day. She works a 24-hour shift daily - year after year - and she does not even get paid for it. Even when her child is 20 years old, the mother's work is not over!! Only mothers can have milk for their babies every day. Nurses cannot produce milk for the babies they care for. In the same way, those who are like mothers in the church will always have a word for their spiritual children - in every meeting. Many elders have no word for the church because they are nurses, not mothers.

A mother does not expect any payment from her children. No child ever pays its mother for her service. In fact, if you were to calculate the wages a mother should be paid, at the rate of Rs.20 per hour (as paid to nurses), you will find that every child owes its mother more than 3 million rupees, by the time it is 20 years old!! Which child can ever repay such an amount to its mother?

Now the question that comes to us is: Who is willing to work like that for the Lord and for His church - without receiving any payment, but giving oneself, day after day, year after year, until Jesus comes? If God can find just one person with that spirit anywhere, He will use him to build the church, much more than He can use 10,000 half-hearted believers who try to serve Him without the spirit of sacrifice. When Jesus returns to earth and you stand before Him, will you have any regrets over the way you lived, or will you will be able to look back over a life spent usefully for the kingdom of God?

Many are drifting along and wasting their lives on earth. Wake up before it is too late, and ask God to show you that His way is the way of sacrifice. He who has ears to hear let him hear.

Back to the lepers... I pray you do get a 24-hour miracle and enjoy a new beginning in the second half of the year. God bless you.

(Originally published in recessionproofchristianlife.com)

Bode

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