I’m back !

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Hi Dear Friends !

I hope you are all doing well ! It’s been already 8 months (!) since I last wrote on the blog. I terribly missed it ! The reason for my extended absence was simple- an incredibly busy internship in Toulouse, in the South of France, where I completed my Master’s degree in a pharmaceutical company. I still have my dissertation defense on September 8th (I would definitely appreciate your prayers !). God willing, right after it, I will move to Lyon for an apprenticeship in a pharmaceutical company. Having changed my career path, I need extra experience in the new field I have chosen, which means I’ll be enrolling in another Master’s degree in September in Strasbourg. My time will be split between classes in Strasbourg University and work at the pharmaceutical company in Lyon.

Anyway, I’m so glad to be back on the blog ! Writing regularly is a huge pleasure of mine and it is something that helped me, through the years, to be intentional, especially in my spiritual discipline. Today, I started “journaling” in a beautiful little notebook about something I have done in the past, as a young Christian, but that I have not been consistent with through the years: Scriptures memorization.

This summer, we went to a one week conference in the beautiful mountains in Ardèche, France, and one brother made the following remarks during a youth group study: “If there is one thing I can tell you, it is that I feel like I have wasted a lot of time in my life.”

It is something I can echo to. I have wasted a lot of time on things that were not profitable, and neglected, at times, communion with God, which caused me lots of grief. As you are reading this, please pause with me for a second. How many time do we pick our iPhones, aimlessly scrolling (sometimes for hours !) on pages, social media, and, when the evening comes, we realize that we have not spend time with the Lord, but-since we are tired, we postpone that to the day after, only to repeat the same cycle ? I am definitely guilty of that. And as the cycle repeats itself, day after day, week after week, we can grow colder toward the Lord and His Word-and that is a great danger, along with all the consequences that come with it. Is it not something worth pondering that sometimes, it is the innocent, everyday life “stuff” that keeps us busy ? This year, I realized that you can make an idol out of literally anything. As I think of all the times I have enshrined something else than Christ in my thoughts, it makes my heart cringes. Idols are so cheap. For me, an idol looks like the desire for approval from others, as well as the crave for respectability-a deadly thing. And the time spent for that idol ? Aimless hours spent seeking for finding ways to gain more approval.

As I was sitting with a brother in a conference, he gave me an advice: “while you’re young, memorize scriptures”. I want to make those words a reality-not simply bow to them and nod “Yes, that’s vital”, and leave them there. Whatever it takes, I pray-and I will need to really pray for that, because resolutions are easy to take, but I need the Lord’s help to carry on– that I will develop the habit of hiding God’s word in my heart and allow it to transform me, day after day. I want to dedicate a time, everyday, for this, and make it special.

Today, I memorized Psalm 1:

Psalm 1

Blessed is the man
Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
    Nor stands in the path of sinners,
    Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
    And in His law he meditates day and night.
He shall be like a tree
    Planted by the rivers of water,
    That brings forth its fruit in its season,
    Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.

The ungodly are not so,
But are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment,
Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

For the Lord knows the way of the righteous,
But the way of the ungodly shall perish.

 

What a good place to start ! I noted in my diary the interesting fact that there is a “versus” between verse 1 and 2: “Blessed is the one who does not…” “But whose delight is in the the law of the Lord”. It might seem evident that as we walk with the Lord, we are kept from evil, but do we actually delight in the law of the Lord ? Do we meditate on it ? Or do we just appreciate the idea of it, without really practicing it? Maybe other time consuming things keep us from doing so?

I love this psalm because in a way, it is a good introduction to Scriptures memorization, by reminding us of its importance. I look forward to blog, Lord willing, about this journey of mine.

Truly yours,

Stéphanie

 

 

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“In due time”

“God’s Holy Spirit and man’s sin cannot live together peaceably; they may both be in the same heart, but they cannot both reign there, nor can they both be quiet there; for “the Spirit lusteth against the flesh, and the flesh lusteth against the Spirit;” they cannot rest, but there will be a perpetual warring in the soul, so that the Christian will have to cry, “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” But in due time the Spirit will drive out all sin, and will present us blameless before the throne of his Majesty with exceeding great joy” -Charles Spurgeon

Lord’s day: All the Poor and Powerless

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This is one of the great paradoxes of the gospel. It is the poor he makes rich, the weak he makes strong, the foolish he makes wise, the guilty he makes righteous, the dirty he makes clean, the lonely he loves, the worthless he values, the lost he finds, the have-nots who stunningly become the haves — not mainly in this age, but in the new creation to come. David Mathis

Today, I’m reading, maybe for the third or fourth time this sermon on David Brainerd, one of my favorite missionaries. He struggled with depression, loneliness and hardships and died at 29 from tuberculosis-and left us a diary which is one of my favorite books as well… 

Lord’s day

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Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. (Titus 3:1-8)

Lord’s day: He is precious

 

UNTO BELIEVERS JESUS CHRIST IS PRECIOUS. In himself he is of inestimable preciousness, for he is the very God of very God. He is moreover, perfect man without sin. The precious gopher wood of his humanity is overlaid with the pure gold of his divinity. He is a mine of jewels, and a mountain of gems. He is altogether lovely, but, alas! this blind world seeth not his beauty. The painted harlotries of that which, Madam Bubble, the world can see, and all men wonder after her.

This life, its joy, its lust, its gains, its honours,—these have beauty in the eye of the unregenerate man, but in Christ he sees nothing which he can admire. He hears his name as a common word, and looks upon his cross as a thing in which he has no interest, neglects his gospel, despises his Word, and, perhaps, vents fierce spite upon his people.

But not so the believer. The man who has been brought to know that Christ is the only foundation upon which the soul can build its eternal home, he who has been taught that Jesus Christ is the first and the last, the Alpha and the Omega, the author and the finisher of faith, thinks not lightly of Christ. He calls him all his salvation and all his desire; the only glorious and lovely one.- Charles Spurgeon, Christ Precious to Believers

Lord’s day: poverty

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“Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.” (Proverbs 19:17 NIV)

The last pagan emperor of Rome, Julian, wrote the following lines. It is interesting to note that though he hated the early Christians, he could not help but admit that they were full of good deeds.

“These impious Galileans (Christians) not only feed their own, but ours also; welcoming them with their agape, they attract them, as children are attracted with cakes… Whilst the pagan priests neglect the poor, the hated Galileans devote themselves to works of charity, and by a display of false compassion have established and given effect to their pernicious errors. Such practice is common among them, and causes contempt for our gods (Epistle to Pagan High Priests).”

He who despises his neighbor sins, But happy is he who is gracious to the poor. (Proverbs 14:21)

Have a blessed Lord’s day !

Lord’s day: Silk

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Roses from my garden…

A man is made by that which he feeds upon, and for the best manhood you need the best food. As certain silk-worms have their silk coloured by the leaves on which they feed, so if we were to feed on Christ, and nothing else but Christ, we should become pure, holy, lowly, meek, gentle, humble; in a word, we should be perfect even as He is.” C.H. Spurgeon