Here are the notes from Chapter 7: The Excellence of Contentment.
1. By contentment we come to give God the worship that is due to him.
2. There is much exercise of grace in contentment.
a. There is faith, humility, love, patience, wisdom, and hope which are tried.
b. There is a great deal of strength found in quiet contentment.
c. There is a great deal of beauty of grace. God's glory appears in the man living quietly in adversity.
3. By contentment, the soul is fitted with quietness to receive mercy.
4. And the soul is fitted to do service, once it has been quieted.
5. Contentment delivers us from an abundance of temptations.
6. There is an abundance of comforts in contentment.
a. He doesn't depend on any else for comfort but God.
b. If God raises him, he is assured it is by love.
c. No matter storms or tempests, there will be light in his soul.
7. God fashions our spirits to our conditions.
a. Possessions won't bring contentment like grace in the soul.
b. Possessions don't better my soul.
c. Satisfied desires can be the result of self-love versus contentment which is from love to God.
d. Acquiring one thing, we'll only desire more and more, while true contentment brings comfort in all conditions.
8. Contentment is a great blessing upon the soul.
9. God will give the comfort of the thing which we are contented to be without or something in lieu of it.
10. Through contentment, the soul comes the closest possible to God.
Notes from Chapters 5 and 6 The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment
Christ Teaches Contentment
1. He teaches it through self denial.
a. We are nothing in ourselves.
b. We deserve nothing.
c. We can do nothing.
d. We cannot, of ourselves, even receive good.
e. We can make no use of what we have if God withdraws from us.
f. We are worse than nothing.
g. If we perish, it will be no loss. God can raise another to serve.
h. The soul comes to rejoice and take satisfaction in all of God's ways, even those which don't suit our own ends.
A discontented heart is troubled because he has no more comfort, but a self-denying man rather wonders that he has as much as he has.
2. He teaches it through the knowledge that all things of the world are vanity. There is nothing which will feed our hearts.
3. He teaches it through the fear of eternity. Earthly concerns seem to have no consequence in comparison.
4. He teaches we are pilgrims on earth; our momentary stay needs little comfort.
5. He teaches the good we do have is from God's hand; it can draw us closer to God, and it can cause us to be of better service.
6. He teaches us to examine our own hearts.
a. We'll find the root of our discontent.
b. In the affliction, we'll know it is suited for us, particularly.
c. We'll be content knowing what we can manage, and that this condition is perfect for us.
7. He teaches that the prosperous condition is a burden.
a. There is a burden of trouble.
b. There is a burden of danger.
c. There is a burden of duty.
d. There is the burden to give account to God.
8. He teaches it is a great evil to be given up to the heart's desires. Better a plague than a hard heart.
9. He teaches the right knowledge of God's providence.
a. God's providence has universality. Nothing is outside of it.
b. God's providence is not altered by us, even our loudest rantings.
c. All the infinite varieties of providence work in an orderly way.
d. He makes us familiar with God's ways of working.
* God's ordinary course is that his people in this world will be afflicted.
* Often when God intends the greatest mercy, he brings a person into the lowest condition.
i.e. Joseph in prison, David hunted, Christ crucified.
* God will often use evil for his good.
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How about chickpea fritters, white bean and kale soup, Persian rice pilaf, or caramel apple french toast? I am working my way through this beauty and enjoying the artistry, journey, and taste. Further features are found at the website where an interactive community thrives. Find Herbivoracious and eat your veggies!
Herbivoracious A flavor revolution, with 150 vibrant and original vegetarian recipes
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Continuing on in this book of awesome, here are the notes from Chapter 3 and 4.
1. The contented believer lives on God's blessing
a. knowing what he has is God's love.
b. knowing what he has is sanctified for his good.
c. knowing he won't be called to pay for what he has as it's already been purchased by Christ.
d. knowing what he has is an earnest for future glory.
2. The contented believer sees God's sweet love in all afflictions, evils, and mercies.
3. The contented believer sees the afflictions are sanctified in Christ who suffered the same and takes the curse of the current affliction.
4. The contented believer brings Christ's strength into his soul.
5. The contented believer makes up all loses in God. He has the Kingdom within him.
6. The contented believer gains contentment through the Covenant of Grace
a. when seeing disorder in his life, he knows there is order in the everlasting covenant
b. by seizing the promises of God.
7. The contented believer makes up all his outward wants from what he finds within himself, as he has God within.
8. The contented believer makes the Kingdom of Heaven present by faith in the midst of trial.
9. The contented believer opens and lets his heart cry to God.
An update as I'm living in the predni-ZONE. This is my second round of prednisone in my fall, 2012, flare. The first wasn't strong enough, so the dosage is doubled. At the 8 week mark of being housebound, I'm looking at 4 weeks in the zone. Hopefully, the flare cycle will be broken!
There's a love/hate relationship with prednisone, that's for certain. As a powerful steroid, it has the potential to heal. It removes pain. But along with the: "I love, love, love how this works!" is the: "I hate this drug of evil evilness!" Here's the dialogue that might be exchanged these coming weeks. The response is always: "I'm in the predni-ZONE."
"It's 1 AM. You are still up?"
"It's 3 AM. You are starting your day?"
"Really? You can't concentrate?"
"Why are there cuts on your hands?"
"Are you drinking pickle juice?"
"I think your face has grown round as the moon."
"Why are you crying?"
All of this calls for the big guns. I finished reading A Place of Healing by Joni Eareckson Tada which was wonderful and encouraging.
Here are 218 unpublished poems by 75 poets. There are 36 poems for each grade level, K-5 -- one for each week of the school year. 5 tips are included for every poem as a theme each week links all the grade levels together.
Teachers, poets, readers of poetry, check this work out! e-versions will be up in September. Sweet!
What does it take to fly with the Trifecta: Lupus, Sjogren's, and Rheumatoid Arthritis? On my recent flight to and from Kauai, I made a mental note to post this info. Maybe it will be helpful to someone else. Here goes:
First up is KT tape for tendons, as I have to lift and carry bags.
Refresh Plus to combat the dry plane air.
An eye patch for when the drops don't hack it.
Lidoderm Patches are great for lower back spasms.
A lacrosse ball is another way to chase spasms away.
An Empi Electrotherapy Device in case things go downhill quickly.
Ankle braces, hopefully on after security or I have to take them off.
A walking stick is super helpful. Mine's collapsible from REI. It fits in the overhead bin.
Naproxyn and backup pain meds, of course.
I think that's it! If I've forgotten a tip, I'll add it in the comments. Otherwise, Aloha and safe travels!