Years ago, after starting to spend more time in the Bible instead of only listening to CDs, and only to the few Scriptures where they directed me (many out of context), I began to see there was a lot more to the Bible than I ever knew.
But I hadn’t realized that God was preparing me to lose almost everything.
I remember meeting a missionary online who lives in Florida, Debbie. She had biblical teaching with loads of scripture and learning how to read the Bible with the Holy Spirit. She also encouraged scripture memory. And a quote from another friend, Brad, “If we seek God for profit we are not seeking God.”
The Spirit weighed heavy on me about the teachings I had believed over the years. More about what you could get from God and you having power than Him being the sovereign God who has all power and authority.
I asked God to help me to discern right teachings from wrong, this turned into right teachings from almost right, truth from almost truth, because of a quote from C.H. Spurgeon:
Discernment is not knowing the difference between right and wrong.
It is knowing the difference between right and almost right.
I wrote in my journal:
The lines are blurry, the teachings are about us more than You. Greed is running wild, no matter what we have, we will not be happy unless we truly have You…. I get so distracted, doing, doing, doing, my mind wanders from You to chores and things and shopping. Soap dishes, curtain rods, night lights, sleep mask, and on and on and on…. But Lord, there are those who are losing their earthly lives for you every day. Some who don’t even have soap to put in a soap dish, and we give tithe just so You will bless us. Are we not blessed? Are they not living for You? Are they not blessed when they have a peace that only You can provide? And eternal life?
All this was before the fire raged through my house.
If I had nothing, could I be happy?
If I lose everything will Christ be enough?
“And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me… for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content…. Rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy” (2 Cor 12:9; Phil 4:11; 1 Pet 4:13).
Our riches are in You Lord. We open our Bibles to see You. We give to worship You. Our lives are Yours, about You, about Your increase, Your will—”He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30).
Empty me of self, fill me with You!
God was working to change me… the Holy Spirit was convicting me… leading up to the day when the fire consumed our home. If not for God changing me, it would have devastated me.
Through the fire I’ve been set free!
It was all about me. A house full of stuff, I told myself that being blessed meant getting things. It was all about things, not about God. I’m not saying God doesn’t bless you with things, but buying can be like a drug, getting the next high. It does not fulfill. We still need the next fix. Only the Holy Spirit fills.
My blessings are abundant, Lord;
Your Holy Spirit lives within,
A peace that only You can give.
True joy, true love, from above;
Eternal life, without a price.
My life was bought, You paid the cost,
Your blessings are abundant, Lord!
By Tammy Teague