Monday, October 2, 2006
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Romans 8:35-39 – Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered." No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (ESV)

Caroline and I have been having tough times recently with things going on in and around our lives. I suspect our problems have a supernatural origin, because of our determination to be vessels of the kingdom.

Caroline's birthday was one of those days. It was the end of a very long, long week with a whole heap of issues, which culminated in the evening with Caroline's backing our car into a neighbour's car. The neighbour's car just happened to be a very large, newish, expensive one, a Jaguar, which will cost a lot to fix — oh, joy!

Now years ago, I would have spat the dummy (as we say in England), but somehow I managed to rein in my irritation — recognising Caroline's distress. A voice within said to me that washing and waxing the car to keep it sparkling clean was just asking for it to be used as a target for the evil one to have a prod at my materialistic predisposition, to which I cling.

We went out to a local restaurant to celebrate her birthday, anyway. I bluntly refused to let the devil have the victory over what was, after all, only a possession, even if a treasured one. My younger daughter came along for the ride, and so it was a good time to catch up with her.

When we had finished the meal, I asked for the bill. The waiter came back and said that there was nothing to pay. Someone from our church was the chef at this restaurant, and chose to give us the meal as a gift and a blessing.

Caroline was almost in tears with appreciation for this act of grace. She said it was as if God had reached down and given her a great big hug to say He still loved her, and broods over us!

Prayer: Lord, thank You for those acts of grace that are sent from heaven above. Deliver us from the wiles and bad intentions of the evil one. We thank You for those who have been a blessing to us. Bless those who are Your angels of light here on earth, and grant them wisdom and courage to carry out Your will. Watch over those followers of The Way today who do Your will, yet are in danger. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

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Rod Marshall <>
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

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