Calm or Turbulence

lynnFor he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof…He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still” (Psa. 107:25, 29).

Jesus stilled the storm and made it a calm when His disciples cried out, “Save us: we perish” (Matt. 8:25). He also gives us a calm in our souls.

Storms came into my soul when I thought, I cannot do anything about my emotions. Without realizing it, I had failed to trust God who can do the impossible. At that time I neglected to apply my life verse, “Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it” (1 Thess. 5:24). Three times nervous breakdowns disabled me after I came to Christ. Each time I returned home from a field of service.

After I went to the Navajo mission field, and met the man who became my husband, I suffered no more breakdowns. However, I still thought, I cannot do anything about my nerves. I bypassed their true names: burdens, worries, anxieties. My pastor counseled me, “Lynn, you carry too many burdens.” I did not understand the simple verse, “Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you” (1Pet. 5:7). In my heart I kept calling them “nerves.” It took years for me to grasp the truth of this Scripture.

After my husband passed on to Heaven, I experienced blessed communion with my Lord. My “nerves” took flight. On the following night, the devil battled against me. My “nerves” started to return. I prayed, “Lord, please take them away.” Again they flew away. Now, troubles still face me, but I am learning to cast my cares upon Jesus. When tempests come, the Captain gives a calm. “My peace I give unto you,” He promises me in 1 John 15:27.

We all face an enemy. Satan and his allies challenge us daily in warfare. Though we cannot see him, he is real. If we allow the Captain to lead us, we will win. However, when we insist on our own way, we will fall into the devil’s traps. God’s Logbook says, Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4). Let us continually remember that our Captain is greater than our enemy.

What can we do? Jesus tells us to put on the gospel armor which He provides (Eph. 6:10-18). His Logbook tells us, “Pray in the Holy Spirit” (Jude 20). He warns us to watch out for the enemy and endure hardness. Trust in Him, and God will give us the victory.

 

11. Hope in God’s Mercy

lynnPsalm 147

God showed mercy to Joseph when his brothers sold him into slavery. Potiphar, an Egyptian officer, bought him. “The LORD was with Joseph,” and he made him prosper in His master’s sight. “Joseph found grace in his sight.” Potiphar made him overseer over all he had. When Joseph refused to sin with his master’s wife, she lied against him. Potiphar believed his wife, and “his wrath was kindled.” He put Joseph in prison.

Even in prison God was with Joseph. “The LORD was with Joseph, and showed him mercy.” He “gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison.” This man committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners.

Later, Joseph is brought before Pharaoh. Pharaoh, king of Egypt, dreamed two troubling dreams. He told his dreams to Joseph. He interpreted these dreams which had the same meaning. In them God told Pharaoh seven years of plenty would come. They would be followed by seven years of famine. God gave Joseph wisdom, not only to interpret the dreams, but to advise Pharaoh what to do. This pleased Pharaoh, and God extended mercy to Joseph through him. He set Joseph over all his land. Not only was Joseph released from prison, but he became a ruler. (See Genesis 39-41 for the full story.)

God showed mercy to me, too. Growing up, I was a shy, bashful kid. It appeared that I would not amount to much. I feel so unworthy of God’s mercies toward me.

When in the seventh or eighth grade, I heard that Jesus died for sinners and rose again from the dead. It must be true, I reasoned, because it comes from the Bible. I believed it in my head and thought of myself as a Christian. However, I did not know what a true Christian was.

Years later, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart. “Repent. Lynn, you are a sinner. Christ died for your sins. He arose from the dead that you might live. Repent.”

Then I fell upon my knees by my bed, and Jesus came to live in me. When I arose, peace like a river flooded my heart. Though unworthy, He made me His child.

My life has not been perfect since, but His mercy does not leave me. He promised, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Heb. 13:5). His mercy to us unworthy creatures is everlasting.

Much time passed. In my mid-thirties He called me to the Navajo mission field. Leon Wallace came to the same place where I was. We prayed and believed that the Lord wanted us to serve Him together. We married. God gave us a daughter who presently studies law and manages a business.

Sixteen years later on June 22, 1987, God called my beloved husband home. What will I do now? I pondered. In about a week I visited a church where the pastor preached about writing. He described my shanty that he had never seen. I knew the Lord was speaking to me. Since that time I’ve been writing.

In 2008 Ambassador International published my first book, Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women. Now I am seeking opportunities to speak. In myself I am not worthy; God gives me grace and mercy to help me. Butterflies flutter in my stomach as I plan to do power point, a new thing for me. By His grace and mercy I can do it. I cannot give up.

God delights in mercy. He takes pleasure in all who fear Him and hope in His mercy. Have you placed your trust and hope in Him? In Hebrews 6:19 the Lord says this is a “sure hope.”

My book, Our Lifeship, is available from Lynn’s website: http://www.writingfrommyheart.com. Watch for changes to this site from time to time.

4. Hope and Wait on God

lynnPsalm 39:7

And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is in thee.

On this earth believers are strangers and pilgrims. Abraham hoped in God. God told Abraham, “Get thee out of thy country…unto a land that I will show you” (Gen. 12:1). Abraham left his homeland, Ur of the Chaldees, and went out. He did not know where he was going. Abraham’s forefathers served other gods. God took Abraham, and He trusted in the true and living God. God led him to Canaan, the promised land. He possessed no land, but dwelt in tents. He confessed he was a starnger and a pilgrim.

David felt like a stranger and a pilgrim when King Saul sought to kill him. However, he knew God had chosen him as Saul’s successor. Jonathan and David became close friends. Jonathan, though the king’s son, knew God had appointed David as the next king. He helped protect him from his father.

David lived in exile after the people crowned him king of Judah. His own son, Absalom usurped the throne. King David became a fugitive and a sojourner. Tears of sorrow ran down his cheeks when Absalom died. Later, when Sheba set up himself as king, David said, “Now shall Sheba the son of Bichri do us more harm than did Absalom” (2 Sam. 20:6). David sent an army after Sheba and a woman saved the day.

God called David “a man after my own heart.” David sinned and suffered for it. Why did God speak this of him? He loved the Lord and trusted Him. The psalms of David attest this.

David in all his problems hoped in the Lord, and waited for Him. As human beings, we get impatient at times. “Wait” is not our favorite word. In Hebrews 10:36 God reminds us we need patience. “Ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise” (Heb. 10:36). He uses our trials to teach us this virtue. However, we often scoff and complain instead. Our attitude is, “I want it now.” The godly learn to wait upon God’s timing. His timing is always perfect.

David ended Psalm 39 with these words: “Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears: for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were” (Psa. 39:12). He knew that one day he would go to Heaven to be with God.

God says to believers today, “Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul” (1 Pet. 2:11).

A sojourner is a temporary resident. We are temporary residents on this earth. Those who trust in Jesus Christ as Saviour, the children of God look forward to the hope of eternal life in Heaven. On the other hand, those who reject Him in this life will receive a permanent residence in Hell, a place of everlasting fire, torment, weeping, and gnashing of teeth.

In the Bible foreigners are called strangers. As believers in the true and living God, we have a dual citizenship. We are born as citizens of a country on earth; God says, “Our conversation is in heaven” (Phil. 3:20). In other words we are “citizens of heaven.” This behooves us to walk as such. On this earth we are strangers. People of the world do not understand us because, though we dwell on this earth, we do not belong to this world.

The word, pilgrim, means we are only temporary residents on this earth. If we know Jesus, we will one day take up permanent residence in Heaven. Oh, what a joy that will be when our Jesus we shall see!

Are you mindful of the fact that earth is only a temporary home? Have you made the preparations for Heaven? Do you hope for His coming? Do you live as a stranger and a pilgrim on this earth?

Lynn’s website tells more about herself and her book. The URL is www.writingfrommyheart.com.

1. Hope in God

lynnPsalm 16

Psalm 16:9

Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.

In June 1953 Lynn placed her hope in God. At that time the Holy Spirit spoke to her, “Repent, repent. Lynn, you are a sinner. Christ died for your sins. He rose again that you might live.” She knelt by my bed and Jesus Christ came into her heart and life. He gives her hope, peace and joy.

He gave Lynn His righteousness. In myself Lynn was unworthy of the least of His mercies. Any goodness in her is what the Lord placed in Lynn. He gave her the gift of salvation. This took away her sin and gave her His righteousness. This gives Lynn hope.

 

This does not mean He took away her sin nature. However, He gave her a new nature. This causes an inward conflict. Which one wins? It’s like Lynn has two dogs. The one wins to whom she says “sickem”. Lynn wants the new nature to win, but Satan tempts her and sometimes the old nature wins that battle. When she confesses that sin, God forgives her, and makes her clean inside. This fills Lynn with hope.

The Lord is her portion. In other words He made Lynn His heir. She does not know nor understand of what all this inheritance consists, but He promises it is “incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:4). When she passes from this present life, she will receive it. Oh, what hope, and what joy!

The Lord gives her counsel. With it He gives Lynn a choice. She can choose to follow His counsel from His Word, or ignore it. He blesses her when she is teachable and obeys His will. This gives her hope.

The Lord always goes before Lynn. He promised, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Heb. 13:5). When she has troubles, He knows all about them. He faced problems, as she does, when He walked upon this earth. Because He has been there, He understands all Lynn’s ups and downs. She is so glad He’s there and helps her go through trials. Hope comes into her soul when she knows He is with her.

At times in my life, my emotions went out of control. I wept and could not restrain myself from weeping. I lost a loved one and could not weep. Since that time, God has helped me greatly. Now my heart is fixed. It is like when I alter a garment. Now it fits me. When my heart is fixed, I am not torn up emotionally. God has given me stability. When this happens in my life, it gives me great hope.

David wrote this psalm. It looked forward to Christ’s coming in the flesh. They laid His body in the grave, but it did not see corruption (Psalm 16:11; Acts 2:25-28). After His resurrection, His heart filled with joy. Many shall turn to Him as Saviour and Lord before He returns in glory. This was the “joy set before Him” (Heb. 12:2).

In conclusion God showed Lynn the path of life. In His presence there is fullness of joy. In Heaven pleasures await her forevermore. This is her sure hope. All who come to Him in faith become His children. He gives them hope. He wants you to enjoy this hope.

Lynn and Leon, her beloved husband, served as missionaries to the Navajo Indian for several years. After God took her honey to Heaven, He called her to write for Him. Many of her articles found publication, and two Sunday School curriculum packages. Ambassador International published her first book, Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women. She tells more about her hope at www.writingfrommyheart.com.

9. Calm in Trials

9. Calm in God’s Pavilion 

“For months Ellen’s body wracked with pain,” her husband, said. She lay helpless from two compressed disks in her back. He winced as he helped her with simple needs like personal hygiene and eating.

Ellen had said, “My hobby is helping others.” For months she lay unable to help even herself. Riveting pain often interrupted her sleep. In those long pain-filled hours she turned her thoughts to the Lord.

After many months flat on her back, Ellen rejoiced to be able to attend church again. “I’m thankful,” she testified. “When I can’t sleep at night, it gives me more time to pray.”

After she became a widow, she moved to a nursing home, debilitated and in a wheel chair. “How are you?” she asked residents, wheeling toward them. “Jesus is with you.”

How did Ellen think of others when she faced such great needs of her own? She testified, “I have known the Lord about forty years, and I still have much to learn. I place my full dependence upon Him.”

Ellen displayed contentment. Her heart seemed to be somewhere other than the nursing home. Perhaps she found a secret hiding place—a place of renewal.

Psalm 27:5 promises, “For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion” (KJV). The essence of prayer is entering into God’s pavilion. Ellen entered and knew how to remain there, especially during adversity. Now she resides in Heaven.

Do we complain when swallowed up by pain? When troubles come do we still have a thankful heart? Do we pray in the face of unwanted circumstances that threaten to consume us? Prayer is responding to God’s invitation to enter into His pavilion, where He hides us under His safe covering. Like Ellen, we can depend on Him and live with a heart full of joy.

Dear Lord, help me to remain thankful when I suffer pain. Equip me to endure troubles. Give me, like Ellen, the habit of helping others. In times of trouble, hide me in Thy pavilion. Thank you, Father, for the safe, tranquil place of prayer where Thou embracest and careth for me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

This is a reprint article by Lynn Wallace, © 1960. It went online in November 1960 on Prayer Support for Women. This does not appear to still be online.

Bio: Ambassador-Emerald International published Lynn’s book, Our Lifeship: Studies in Proverbs for Women. Periodicals published about eighty of her articles and fillers. Accent Publications published two of her curriculum packages. Leon, her late husband, and she served on the Navajo field several years.She plays the piano for Canyon View Baptist Church in Montrose, Colorado. She enjoys jeeping, reading, and artwork. writeheart@montrose.net. www.writingfrommyheart.com (Our Lifeship available from PayPal.)

7. Calm from Bible

7. Calm from God’s Logbook 

“As a sailor steers her lifeship, she gains knowledge of the Captain and His ways from her Logbook, the Bible.”1 

When we sweltered in the summers in Dallas, we rolled down our car windows for air conditioning. Another car stopped at the red light and blared out loud music. What a relief when the light turned green. 

The occupants of that car had not learned godly wisdom from that rock music. Such lyrics take sailors away from church and away from God. They entice them with the world’s ways and wisdom. 

On the other hand a prudent woman gets wisdom from the Captain’s Logbook. She feasts on it. God said to Ezekiel, “Eat this roll” (my Word, Eze. 3:1). 

He said, “Then did I eat it, and it was in his mouth as honey for sweetness” (Eze. 3:3). 

Not only does the prudent woman read, study, memorize, and meditate upon the Logbook. She also listens intently when a preacher reads and expounds upon it. She loves this sweet music she hears at church. 

Do we delight in understanding? To what and to whom do we listen? 

Prayer: Lord, help my understanding that I may learn godly wisdom from my Logbook. May it always be sweet music to my ear. 

Endnotes:

1. From Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women by Lynn Wallace, Ambassador International, page 11. Learn how to stay calm, www.writingfrommyheart.com.

5. Calm in Provisions

5. Our Treasures

The wise sailor takes care of her treasures. With them she buys good building materials. She waterproofs her lifeship so that it will not sink.

Leon, my husband, and I left the Navajo for about a year. We traveled from church to church hoping to raise more support. When we came back, we moved onto the Navajo reservation. They gave us permission to stay there a year.

Now our year nearly expired. We almost, but not not quite, received our church site lease. Subsequent,ly, we had to move. We moved to a mobile home park in our blue International bus. We lacked the $80 space rent. The first month we sold our VW Bug.

Close to the end of the second month, a tourist came by us. “Where can we park out mini-home?” he asked Leon. He showed him a place and the tourist handed him $20.

Our friend came by our space. He worked in the Black Mesa Mine above us. “Leon,” he said, “You can work for me today in the mine.” This netted the remaining $60.

One more month rolled by and we arrived at desperation point. When we went to Page, Arizona for supplies, we found an $80 check in the mail. Bodine Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma sent a note with it. It said, “We took you on as our missionaries for our Daily Vacation Bible School.

Leon had preached there about two years prior to this. However, we had not heard from them since then. Once again God proved His faithfulness to us.

When we trusted God, He provided. He promises to provide for all who remain faithful to Him, not just missionaries.