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What We Know For Sure

Romans 8 28 picIn one of my current places of service to the Lord, I find myself at Calvary Chapel Santa Cruz, in support of the pastors and ongoing ministry of the church. Currently, the senior pastor is ill and may be out for a while … only the Lord knows how long. Therefore, the assisting pastors must do as well as they can ministering to the body AND comforting the body in the absence of their pastor.

So I was selected to bring last Sunday’s message. Which text shall I choose? Lord, how shall I minister to Your people? It didn’t take long before I settled on Romans 8:28-30, a passage I’d been spending time with in my own times with the Lord.

I want to share with you that message. I think it’s an important word from the Lord … not just for CCSC, but for all of us, especially in this hour.

I hope you enjoy and benefit from it. Feedback on how it may have spoken to you is appreciated!

Here it is: www.billholdridge.com/Topicals/What_We_Know_For_Sure.mp3

God bless you!

In Christ,

Bill Holdridge

  1. Peggy
    August 4, 2009 at 9:12 am

    Not by my power or might, but by God’s Spirit … those words in Zechariah resound again and again as I wait for God’s wisdom and further revelation knowledge in those places where I am still in an area of not understanding all that His Word has to say, to give.

    I’ve been waiting on God’s Holy Spirit to reveal the Truth within the lines of this Scripture text of Romans 8:28. I’ve been waiting a long time.

    The waiting room door, however, may have just opened a bit wider for me after listening to what God spoke through your message, Pastor Bill. I admit to trepidation. After all, my chair in this particular waiting room has become quite form fitted by now … kinda comfy, but in that, “well, there are no other chairs available so this will have to do” kind of way. That’s not God’s way. He wants me to have His Truth bound to my heart and to my mind. And He knows all about the struggle I’ve had with this passage.

    I believe we who love God and know Him as Lord of Lords and the Saviour of our eternal lives are all His works in progress, His, “poema” … in some cases, there are more chapters written on the hearts than in and on others…we are all in differing places on this pilgrim sojourn. I am submitting, today, to this: that He is still writing the chapter of Romans 8:28 on my heart, because I just don’t seem to get it, and I know I am not to strive, but continue to wait.

    In listening, more than once, to the message God gave you to speak regarding His Word in Romans 8, I was buffeted. I just sensed that ol’ battle brewing up over this passage … the truth is, that in my life, I have bought in to the enemy’s lie that Romans 8:28 was for most other Christians, but not for me. I have a thousand testimonies it would seem, messages of the awesome saving grace and love and power of our Lord Jesus Christ. And they all come from a heart speaking truth about those works of God in my life.

    But somehow, whenever the Romans 8:28 passage has been before me, whether in my own reading or in study and teaching, I have just glossed over it. I thought it was for those who had been the “victim” of others’ sinful choices … even though that victimization hurts big time, I thought, they are the ones who get to have everything work out … I am on the other side, the side who made all of the wrong sinful choices, and only those whom my actions have hurt will have things work out “for good” … but not me. Yeah, I know … stinkin’ thinkin’ from the father of all lies; in a word, condemnation.

    I think today I finally heard something different. I did not hear the verse say, as I have in the past, “all bad and sinful choices are good” … that’s where I just couldn’t go on … how can God tell me that those abortions are going to work out for good? Interpretation from the enemy has always been, “that verse doesn’t apply to you, you’ve done nothing good” so how can anything work out for good … dead children, dead Jews, the ravages of this world…the answer for me lies within the remainder of that verse, and on to those that follow.

    I have lived, witnessed and walked out some aspects of my sinful actions that have brought glory to the Father because of the forgiveness Jesus died to give to me, yet somehow I could never squeeze the word, “good” in to all of that … not yet … I did a word study on “good,” I am praying.

    I’m sensing I am missing some integral nugget here, but that the excavation is well underway as I listen again to your message, Pastor Bill, and your complete teaching on Romans in its entirety. A gift, that is.

    If my experiences, good and bad, conform me more in to Christ’s likeness, then I submit and am thankful. I keep wanting to change the word, “good” … I think of the passage in terms of the fact that God reigns, and I am His, and as long as I am keeping my eyes on Him and staying in love with Him first and foremost, then every experience, which is “allowed” by my own free will choice, can be used in some way … for His glory.

    I must be stuck midspan on the bridge, somewhere between belief and certainty. I totally received that part of the message; a great analogy that revealed to me some of my own heart. But again, the example I hear most is this passage being used by and toward those who have experienced the fallout of someone else’s wrong choice, and how the Lord is turning their wounded life around for His good purposes. I get that. What I don’t hear is how it is working for good in the life of the one who made the wrong choices … not a lot, anyway. Sin has consequences, I realize that. I may just be in a place right now of needing my Hope rekindled, I don’t know.

    But what I really wanted to say, Pastor Bill, is that, your message has been and is being used by God’s Holy Spirit to begin a work in me; I just don’t see the last chapter yet, where it’s all wrapped up nicely and I have received it and am walking in a new truth, a more complete freedom in Jesus Christ.

    I did not even realize how “stuck” I have been in this … I thank God for His Pastors, Bill, who teach His Truth which will, indeed, as I keep praying, I know, make me even more free.

    Thanks for a great launching pad … I’m up and off of that “comfy” chair and expecting the Holy Spirit to speak on these things. I pray for a teachable spirit … ears to hear, eyes to see, a heart willing to receive, those sometimes hard truths … but glorious ones, because they are absolute, founded on the perfect Love of God.

    Ugh, I just re-read this … excuse, please, the chopped up thought process … further proof to me that I am to stay with this excavation process and let God do His work … whenever I receive a wisdom nugget from your teaching, Pastor Bill, I get all fired up and shout and praise and thank the Lord and I GET IT and WALK WITH IT. Those are times of affirmation and joy. I sense God has some integral piece here for me, and that He is already blessing me for sitting still and listening and praying over this passage … and going to Him with my discomforts … and I believe, as rambling and choppy as this missive has been, that He would have me hit, “submit comment,” and continue to submit my spirit to Him in this.

    Thanks for reading.

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