Partakers.Net is the photography blog of Bea Kennedy. Here you'll find my latest pictures, links to my Etsy shop and my Photoshelter gallery, random life snapshots, and thoughts about following Jesus Christ. Please feel free to join the conversation.
The name Partakers.Net comes from the Bible verse in Hebrews 3:1, which says, "Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus . . ."
Here are a few memorable quotes from the first week.
Joe Davis, speaking about Jesus' words in Matthew 11:28-30 spoke about how young oxen are trained by being put into the yoke with an older, bigger, more experienced ox.
"The little ox doesn't pull anything. All he has to do is learn the yoke. The burden is all on the big ox."
Do you want to be a disciple of Christ? In Luke 14, three times Jesus says you can't be his disciple. "Verse 33 kicks most people right out the door. . . . He's not trying to keep people from being disciples. He's showing us what the path of discipleship is."
"Americans have so much stuff we're trying to get rid of some of the stuff so we can get more stuff."
"How can we make disciples if we are not disciples?"
"Christ is first. . . . He makes the choices. . . . He owns it all. . . . One of those three will knock most people out of the race."
"There are many things you can know about the Bible, but there are many things you will never understand until you give your life to the Gospel."
From Jonathan Quinn:
"God's priority is to redeem fallen man, not make us happy and comfortable."
"We think the community we live in is the world, but Jesus died for everyone on the face of the globe."
"We think the call to serve God is something only a few people have, but the call is to the world, and we're all responsible."
"There is going to have to be some suffering that has to take place in order to get the Gospel out to the world."
Listen to the radical way Paul puts it in 2 Corinthians 12 . . . You remember the situation. He’s got a thorn in the flesh. We don’t know what it is, but it is causing him pain. He says, “Christ, please take it away.” Three times. And Christ says, “No.” And then Paul says, verse 9 . . .
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. . . .
There’s more of Christ. Do you see that? Do you want more of Christ? Christ’s grace. Christ’s power. Christ’s fellowship. Do you want more and more and more because he is your treasure? Paul did, and therefore he said . . . Most gladly . . . Don’t miss that amazing counter-intuitive word . . . Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
For the sake of Christ, then, I’m content . . . . I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
Magnifying Christ by being satisfied in him in pain, in calamity, in suffering, in insult, and weakness was the passion of Paul’s life. His passion was not the American Dream of escaping insult, calamity, pain, suffering. His passion was any life and any death that enables me to know you better, see you more, and magnify your greatness more. Bring it on, Jesus. All I want in my life and in my death is to make your worth more vivid for the world to see.
So, I ask you tonight. Are you going to throw away your life? Are you going to buy into the American Dream, minimize suffering, maximize comfort, maximize ease, maximize security, build bigger barns, work for the bread that perishes, lay up treasure on earth, covet the praise of man, and be happy for 80 years, and PERISH? Is that the way that you’re going to waste your life?
Or are you going to see Christ crucified and risen and reigning and bearing your sins as the infinite treasure in your life that he really is and then make life choices that display to the world his value?
Suffering is a subject that seems to keep coming up in one way or another in the ladies’ Sunday school class that I lead – the suffering of the martrys, in particular, but also the suffering that simply accompanies being alive in a body and a world that is decaying.
The verse that my title today is taken from refers to the death of the saints, but I think it could equally be applied to the suffering of the saints. Listen to Peter:
. . . though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
So, in a week that has seen one saint enter the valley of suffering, and another saint testify of God’s faithfulness in the valley of suffering, I’m encouraged to know that the things I’ve been reading in the scriptures and teaching in my class are true. I’m encouraged to know that when it’s my turn, whenever that might be, that God will be there for me too. I’m encouraged to know that these things are precious in His sight, as well.
Thanks, Tom, for giving us a small taste of the worth of our Savior tonight.
I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live. The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow. Then called I upon the name of the LORD; O LORD, I beseech thee, deliver my soul. Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful. The LORD preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me. Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee. For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living. I believed, therefore have I spoken: I was greatly afflicted: I said in my haste, All men are liars. What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me? I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD. I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people. Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints. O LORD, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds. I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD. I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people, In the courts of the LORD’S house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise ye the LORD.