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Dr. Dominic Aquila Discusses Reformed Theology and the Family Caregiver

Hope for the Caregiver / Peter Rosenberger
The Truth Network Radio
October 25, 2020 9:18 pm

Dr. Dominic Aquila Discusses Reformed Theology and the Family Caregiver

Hope for the Caregiver / Peter Rosenberger

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October 25, 2020 9:18 pm

In this episode, I invited Dr. Dominic Aquila to the show to discuss the importance of solid theology to support the weight of our suffering and heartache.

Dr. Dominic A. Aquila is president of New Geneva Theological Seminary in Colorado Springs, Colo. At the present time, he is also serving as an interim pastor of Covenant Reformed Presbyterian Church in Ft. Pierce, Fla.

He is editor of The Aquila Report (, an independent web magazine for and about evangelicals in the Reformed and Presbyterian family of churches.

Peter Rosenberger is the host of HOPE FOR THE CAREGIVER.  Now in his 35th year as a caregiver for his wife, Gracie, who lives with severe traumatic disabilities, Peter draws upon his vast experience to strengthen fellow caregivers. 

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This is the nation's number one show for you as a family caregiver told how you doing this is for those who are knowingly, voluntarily, willingly putting themselves between the vulnerable love one. And even worse disaster. Maybe it's somebody that you figure whose aging. Maybe somebody to give resident addiction issue with alcoholism issue may be of a special needs issue in your family my case somebody who has to deal with the effects of trauma. Healthy caregivers make better caregivers was that look like that's what the show is all about it. We are just grateful to have you with us if you want to be part of the show 877-655-6755 877-655-6755. This is the podcast part of the show we will broadcast every Saturday morning laugh a couple hundred stations and we are just enjoying so much the interaction we have with family caregivers who are now finding a place where they can come and draw strength and encouragement and find a path to safety and in and be able take a knee if they have to catch their breath and develop a better way of dealing with the very brutal challenges that they have in their life and again, if you will be part of the show 877-655-6755 877-655-6755 today is Reformation Sunday now Reformation. Some somebody because of what the world was that have to do with me and family caregiver lobby.

Why would that happen over 500 years ago while we talk about this. Let me explain. I'm in my 35th year as a caregiver's longtime and everything that I do here draws upon my own journey with Christ alone. Spiritual walk no matter what were talking about. We could be talking about dealing with a parent with dementia. We can be told about a child with special needs or whatever, but work. It's always good be anchored in my own Christian journey, which is been through reformed theology and I was talking to my pastor back in Nashville.

We live in Montana now but I'll start my pastor back nationalist very close friends. I said you know what I had this privilege of sitting under subs right great teaching and theology are supposed to do with this. How do I be a steward with this. I'm not a theologian and and and and the people that I'm talking to, though, are struggling in and entered dealing with hard questions about God and about God's love for us and about the providence of God in the suffering that comes along in this life and and and what does this mean there were dealing with the global pandemic and so forth, and Reformation Sunday is a time to reflect on something remarkable that happened that changed everything worldwide, not just in the church but geopolitically, but also now that still stretches 500 years later into the future of where we are now in dealing with the things that were dealing so I thought I would invite somebody on the show here was a lot wiser about the sort of things that I am in work and have a conversation today about this.

This is Dr. Dominic Quillen is the president of new Geneva theological seminary, Colorado Springs, Colorado is also the interim pastor of covenant reformed Presbyterian Church in Fort Pierce, Florida. He's also the editor of the acquittal report, and it's an independent web magazine for and about evangelicals in the reformed and Presbyterian family of churches and they have published several more articles and we got to know each other and it's been a real treat for me to be able to have access to this man in an and bang around ideas. Okay is this it in my hitting the mark here and to my knowledge no one is speaking like this to the family caregiver and so I wanted to come on today and just have a conversation with Dr. Quill and and let's talk about this abductor clinic. Thank you so much for being a part of the show we are glad that you're here. Thank you so much was wonderful to be with you.

Share out from the Scriptures and experience things Probably will. Let's jump right into it. Reformation Sunday just just give us a at a Cliff's Notes version of of what it what is this mean what what's going on with that because some people from looking at their at their phone right now and there listening to the show on the podcast whatever they think of what the world you talk about us.

Cliff's Notes version of the very good.

October 31 1317, Martin Luther lived in the Hamlet village maybe will small city of Wittenberg, Germany had after many years, wrestling with the question known throughout how can I have peace with God. My spiritual life be right with him because of what he had been taught prior to come to the place where he realized that the only way he could have peace of God is to realize that God want to give that gift of peace through his son Jesus Christ and the Internet.

In one doctrine. Note boggled our conduct and branches to others, known as justification by faith alone.

I would simply mean that the question is how can we have a right relationship with God and that he found out that it wasn't true. What he did himself in all good works, and putting his himself and his body and his mind. His circumstances to all sorts of contortions trying to be a spiritual possible by the realize that God already did that for him and probably all those who would believe. Jesus Christ on the cross and so how we made right with God are made right with God by God treating us as if we had never sinned, because Jesus took our stand and he really did pay for them all so that October 31, which we call Halloween.

And the reason is called out. It all hallows Eve. That is, they can be some church calendars only mainly turkey follow very strict liturgical calendar November 1 is all St.'s day, all souls Day and so was the day in which your people would visit the cemetery.

They would honor though their family there souls who are already past and and was the Eve of that and so that you become part of ritual and that someplace is called the day of the dead, that the dose in Latin America Princeton and out quite a bit of celebration quite a bit of pomp and circumstance in the thought was that you need to make sure that you honor those who have gone before you go there spirit with font to may be hunger there souls out right over that their agreement on that day, they can certainly let loose and if you haven't really taken care of the grade you haven't well of them and they might that come after you have that weekday, just the regular release and so with that kind of thinking he said no that I now can you see that's not true. The only way that we can be rightly God is by trusting him and the messages given to us in salvation through Christ along so just just to be justified on earth like you break it out just as if I had never sinned, not because we haven't sent because we have, but because I am treated by God as if I had sent because there was a real death on my behalf and that was the death of Christ well and okay and thank you for that. By the way, the case is not easy to some of the Reformation in about two minutes with you just so kudos to you for that now here's where I wanted to go with this today on why this important chapter in one of the books of written call 7 Caregiver Ln. months in one of those landmines number seven is titled, it's all up to me and there's a point in my journey as a caregiver, where I ran smack dab in that that landmines so many times thinking this was all up to me and that that spilled over not just to take care of Gracie but everything in it spilled over into my theology in my my everything and I was astonished how Luther actually came to resent the very God. He was serving as a monk with this whole idea of somehow thinking that he's got to like you said turn himself in all kinds of contortions that so that he can please this this this frowning God that inflicts all types of demands on us that are impossible and and then all of a sudden it just broke with Luther. Any realize, oh my gosh, it's not all up to me this isn't about me at all. In fact, it will things that came to Luther regarding Betty, he really did have a conscience and even the way, for he would count himself is what we call a true believer ready really understood that he was a sinner and dad and the under God's judgment.

He had such a fear of God and help prepare a good one. In that sense, but the what he thought was is that if he didn't do what was right. Then he could be struck down at any point, and he whipped out God's wrath and so forth. We did have that that clear, and so they leave with that crisis moment when the Christ the light came when he was walking home, there was a big thunderstorm. He saw a large haystack in the field. So he said let me run to that he got into that haystack. And the thing therefore the storm was ferocious.

It was lightning and thundering as needed know if he was going to survive and he just was mortal fear for his own life and he then made the promise that most of us tend to do bargaining with parking study I get through this. I will be a great become a priest.

Thinking that was wholly much holier static and what his father wanted to come as a lawyer and so he course thunderstorm parents teach abroad and so he took that seriously.

So he went home does father's father wasn't very happy with them and the circuit up with his jumping on this dating thing is not added greatly to the agreement with work where the money come from combat and so by five so they do bargaining with God. That kind of fear is kept in a sensitive conscience just drove him to explore more and more how he could do what was right. So you the question that was sort of modernized data that would be if you were to die today tonight and you appeared before God that he would say to you, fill in your name. Why should I let you into my heaven, what would you say well, depending on where you would look at Luther's life during that period of time he would say different things until the end when he nailed the 95 cases on the church door and Brittany Burke that he could finally say that the it isn't what I've done.

It is what I might do. The only thing that I would have to offer to God is. You have no right heaven other than you made an offer in your son Christ that if I trusted him believed in him that I would have eternal life, and that the only basis on which we can get in the habit now that has ramifications for some of what you're talking about the implications for where we are now as we live through this life and with the different types of suffering that that in the caregiving that we provide. Because there is the application that every category of our various life experiences will a dozen and you said a couple things I want to circle back to one of them is that bargaining with God, and I remember and I don't say things it may get me emotional abuse had to be family with me, but I remember one time Gracie was groaning. I mean, groaning and even of you been a pastor for a long time you've been around suffering. You are no stranger to seeing this and observing and watching suffering is a hard thing to do and and I was so angry with God. It was in the hospital with the enter enter lay on never feeling her legs. This is what were trying to save her lower legs and that which eventually were amputated and a member putting my hand on her leg and it was she was straining so hard that it just felt like a piece of concrete and she just groaned and groaned and groaned and I was alone in the hospital room with her and I looked up at the ceiling tiles that are said it was it.

I didn't say it respectfully and I'm ashamed of it but not the I'm just this is who I am and I said why are you doing this. Give her a moment's relief and I won't tell anybody.

So it won't thwart your will that was that was a one of my lower points of bargaining with God. I was throwing it in his teeth. I was throwing his his provision in his sovereignty, and so forth all the sinks in his teeth and along the way. In my journey as a caregiver enough had the privilege of having just such good gentle people come alongside me to walk me back from that cliff and I I've been just determined that I was going to help as many other caregivers and speak to them in that place with with clarity it away. They could understand because I understand how painful that is. And in the longer we have come to understand, wait a minute. First off, he's not ready to hurl a thunderbolt at me for even asking the question. The question was important. It was important for me to get to that place and then I came to understand that his sovereignty in his providence are not things to be afraid or fear or bargain with, but to run to and to fall into into it to cling to an grasp to when things look crazy and I've I've talked to so many family caregivers in that situation would have special needs child was born when Gracie first had her accident. Dr. Quill of the that a woman came into her hospital room Gracie's in traction 17 years old led to the Lord by Corrie 10 boom and this woman Linda Gracie said what did you do that God would do this to you and this is what I want to speak to in this is why I wanted to take the message of reform, theology of of of of of what Luther himself wrestled with that he came to this understanding that something had to so that had to give that you can't live like this.

And in that you ever read every peanuts. Charles Schultz's comic strip. It was as once he got a few member this one thing where Lucy was looking at it raining. It was pouring and she's a look at is what this will be another flood and Linus explained to her why there'll never be another flood and she said that's very comforting and Atlantis responded good theology does that to you and I did. Well that's it is good theology is not something that causes you to wrap yourself in the pretzels, but that you can just you can breathe. I know so many caregivers who are so wound so tight that they can't they can hardly breathe and so by the end of today show.

I want you to walk us through some the things that so that some people can breathe as they look at their special needs child is a look at that love one who's the alcoholic who was just circling the drain that they can breathe and trust in a in a loving God who is not inflicting but is providing through right well it that that statement provided was a random theologian on telegraph that that is what good theology tended to do in the comfort and now the comforter, that the difficulty taken away and that's what Wheatley normally lucky to have a don't you need to have pain or you get rid of the pain and you and that's where we wrestle and widely read come up with it over and over again why the Scripture repeats that theme over and over again and it goes back to something else that Luther finally came to grips with that speaks to this boat and the spiritual dimension which has been at spillover and application into our everyday physical and emotional life and that is the what happened and what is the effect that took place with the fall with the spill out and spillover of that historical event when I've been a disobeyed God and drive began the week but we call Original Sin or are the fall, and he followed Augustine to go further back in history now with theologian who spoke to this and who was very sensitive to care for wanted to produce theology that would bring comfort and Augustine basically said that when Adam and Eve said when they disobeyed God that they sin entered the world, and it had an effect on them so got what you got that as the day you eat of this type what you do and you will surely die while two things happen one is a God spiritually immediately and so you will want to speak about something because they made that choice suffering actually began right there, internally and actually began spiritual but the second thing that happened was that it wasn't that the body became simple is that they were the God cursed the creation of which are body was part of member Adam was created from the dust of the Erika dirt so I went nature physically is a very dirty now it's of the dirt and it and so when God cursed, but God said at the end of each day of creation, except one.

You know, it is good and is good, including when he had made man and craved him.

In Genesis 1, so God cursed back which was good. Now he didn't go lower. It's the name court that it still is significant and to the point where the resurrection of Christ really points not only to the reality that God expected is that and write that but also points to our resurrection in the midst of all of our stuff in the day will come when the curse will be lifted and we won't be suffering any they will be in suffering any longer.

The tears will be gone in the. The angst and the worries of the software that come along with it. So Theological statement, but now we need a flesh that out so that it speaks to us as is it in the context of why is there something so for someone to say that the reason why you not hear stories because you really think got off.

It isn't really badly think that we don't usually know the reason the net can be any number of reasons that are going on here that have nothing to do with our ethical behavior are practices and support serve my job not boy that was born Amanda was born blind with the parents do that because this boy this baby to be born blind and Jesus responds very assertively now.

This didn't happen for anything they didn't do anything.

It happened in order that God's glory will be manifested now that really care crawl because when it was a really caring loving God then you can get glory out of allowing a little baby to be born blind and the answer is yes, because Hassell at that at the top of statement actually say that, but it wasn't because there was a quid pro quo.

There wasn't this cravat.

There are instances when there is a bit back for various reasons, but that's not the case and so we don't trying to dig into our hearts and just break us ourselves down to face it. Only I and you could in political yourself to death. This is what Luther did in the confessional booth on when he was spent hours going over my new and finally a priest. Something told him so he looked come back when you've done something and and and I and and in this case and with this applies where we are is that I see so many family caregivers particular parents of special needs children who bear such tremendous guilt for bringing this child in the world and what we do wrong, or do we take the wrong medicine or did you have this or that and the and and and what my hope and my prayer is is that but is the walk with us through this program today is that they will start to unravel some of that you don't want to things that I tell people that when when Lazarus was called out of the tomb of Jesus calling back to life, Lazarus was alive and he didn't stink anymore, but is grave close did and his friends had the loose and that's part of our journey I think is believers reach others.

We help loose these these terrible bondage.

The things that are holding us from being at so that so that I'm not that angry young man in that hospital room, watching his wife grown and shaking my fist at God, but saying you know a bit but were going to grow were going to grow were going to weep or go to mourn. That's part of it but but I don't. Without any hope that the party will make a distinction between there that kind of action which may be the case.

At times, but the point is that the reason there something the world just in general as everyone suffers from some great is because of what happened with Adam and Eve and their disobedience so that it brought pain and suffering into the world in general not Lias we we experience it at different levels and different way. But there's no way to get around to it and so are the way I put it this way all things to say in the book of Romans that that decision led to death while dad is the ultimate result of the fall and that is the ultimate pain. If you would, that we will experience. So the question is when we ride at that that ultimate what will we do then I will that be handled and one of the things the gospel says is that if you come Remley got remedy. I should site for this is that instead of just looking to that without bleak eternity.

Here is what I will do and I'm going to provide my son who will give himself that and he will suffer as the suffering servant as Isaiah refers to him and he will suffer on behalf of sinners in order to remove the part of the curse that doubt we will not have to experience it for all eternity. So the there's just a general principle, vendors effectively live in a fallen world.

And then there's probably more. We will go through the suffering and just living life. Normally without any other problems whether there accidents. Whatever is just very difficult by the sweat of your brow you can bring forth that's been reportedly occur so good to work the land is good to provide food for yourself.

So, assuming that nothing else happens. You still breaking your back.

Make ends meet. As a part of suffering that some of it is more but not when I could escape it on any level and uses a custom to be mad at Adam and Eve when I see them in and then Paul goes and says look her in Adam.

Everyone did this.

We all did this, we are all guilty of this.

But the good news is, and that's what's coming up is is that in one man were all redeemed, and this is what brings us to this place today. We got to go to break were talking with Dr. Dominic Willett of Fresno new Geneva theological seminary to this Reformation Sunday and I wanted to talk about this why this is important to assist caregivers. For those of us who want someone suffer.

This is Peter Rosenberger this is caregiver don't go away will be right back in the speed. Rosenberger never helped somebody walk for the first time I've had that privilege many times through our organization. Standing with when my wife Gracie gave up both of her legs follow this horrible Rick that she had as a teenager and she tried to save them for years and if it just wouldn't work out. And finally she relinquished them, and that while this is that I'm now heavy legs anymore. What can God do with that and then she had this vision for using prosthetic limbs as a means of sharing the gospel to put legs on her fellow amputees and that's what we been doing now since 2005 was standing with hope. We work in the West African country of Ghana and you can be a part of that through supplies through supporting team members through supporting the work that were doing over there. You could designate a limb.

There's all kinds of ways that you can be a part of giving the gift that keeps on walking and standing with would you take a moment ago understanding with and see how you can give they go walking and leaping and praising God. You can be a part of as a caregiver. Think about all the legal documents you need power of attorney will, living wills, and so many more than about such things as disputes about medical bills.

What if instead of shelling out hefty fees for a few days of legal help paid a monthly membership and got a law firm for life while we are taking legal representation and making some revisions in the form of accessible, affordable, full-service coverage.

Finally, you can live life know you have a lawyer in your back pocket who at the same time is an empty it's called legal shield and its practical, affordable, and must for the family caregiver visit that's caregiver Isn't it about time someone started advocating for you on independent associate about the hope of the caregiver. I'm Peter Rosenberger. That is my wife Gracie from her record resilient and she is indeed he knows the plans he has for you and this is comforting to assist caregivers in today's whole conversation is about that that that profit is that sovereignty, that provision of God that that envelops us as we suffer initially wants someone suffer, and I know so many of you who are doing this, who are watching things in you and your fist are as tight as they can be. And so I brought in someone today to just walk us through what the gospel means in this. What does it mean when you look across the hospital bed at your pastor and in the pasture wants to say something to you if you desperately want to hear it. What is going to sustain you as I told Gracie earlier just a section of the way home. Her theology, it sustains the weight of her suffering because she hangs onto Christ in this. What does that look like heavy flesh that out when were looking at someone we love the client and go down the drain and and and or their mentally ill or leave a traumatic brain injury or or you get a special needs child or the it's all falling to partner summary different scenarios and we caregivers watch this and we bargain we we rage against this man and I've done it. It listed on the crash test dummy of caregivers. If you could fail at it. I failed it but along the way have had great people come alongside me, who have strengthened me and help me understand fully from a true biblical point of view. What this means in the Reformation Sunday Sunday were one of the most famous people in history had some of those same feelings of how do I make this work, reconcile. This was Martin Luther, 30, 80, 80 lit a match that exploded across the world and changed everything for every wasn't the only one doing and in he had contemporaries with it and I don't want to talk about why that was important and how we as caregivers can develop healthier theology that will support the weight of our suffering/Dr. Dominic Willett to be here is the present new Geneva theological seminary is also the editor of the acquittal report which I would highly recommend going out to. It's the acquittal will link to it in this podcast as well so Dr. acquittal thank you again for being with this insular suite we explore this journey of developing an understanding of a of a loving, providing God in the midst of this great suffering, who was not just arbitrarily inflicting suffering on people, even global pandemics and and IIII look at John Calvin. When he got married at his wife. She she caught the plague which were in the middle of a global plague right now.

She caught the plate. She had a couple children that died in his he was wrestling with the same concepts. His critics would say to him that these children were dying because of his heresy and Eddie was a caregiver for his sick wife and he said one of the greatest quotes. The use of his that I love of his is where Scripture is silent we should be silent as well and I and I often tell people that were goes off the rails theologically for Job's friends is after Job to verse 13. They sat there silent for seven days and then they started talking and God allowed 37 chapters of bad theology is his Scripture to be on parade, so that we could see what the hallway was and cease a whole different side of God's provision talk a little bit about that.

Did I get that wrong or did Did get close to the mark on that yet.

All your your spot on the word used here is where you will come from, and that's called theodicy and that is never just a pure human desire having night, neatly wrapped up answer when we don't have. We get close. We almost feel it but it seems to elude us, especially going to paint one of the ways I like to resolve it, and I've used it many times in my pastoral counseling and trying to encourage people who are going to start to try to make sense of it is what happened to Abraham in Genesis 18 when God visited him. Christ visited him in his pre-incarnate form along with the two other angels to angels and he said God Jesus said, or the Lord said that this is Genesis 1820.

The outcry against bombing and more great, and there's been so grievous that I will go down and see if what they're aware I've done is as bad as the outcry that is reached, make that work, they work this thing was so offensive that was yelling to get to heaven if you would think I was go check it out. Now what was concerning. Here was Abraham heard the my nephew Lot lived down there and and he was concerned that in verse 22 says the man turned away to angels from jail and toward sound but Abraham remains pending before the Lord and then Abraham approached the Lord, will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked.

If there's somebody that's good. There will be :-) punishment will they have to suffer along with those who are doing wicked thing. Verse 24 but if there are 50 righteous people in the city, will you really sweep it away and not near the place for the sake of 50 righteous people, not a fair question, as he began negotiating with God. Here about that and then doubt the first 25 part B from you to do such a thing to kill the righteous with the wicked in treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Part B from you and then he says will not the judge of the earth do right that they there probably carried me through more of my own thing and mild suffering and others are adopted as well to recognize that the judge of the earth knows exactly what he's doing. He is not human like we are the is God and he knows how to put all the pieces together even if we don't comprehend it will not. The judge of the earth do right and so on that basis. Nate Abraham negotiated with him below to get a sense that the older 50 righteous.

There will you relent and I also got the guesswork.

50 are right. So he went and served in a survey, February 1 50 righteous.

There are 40 and 40 and then 30 and 20 he got God down to 10 that and doubt verse 32 L May the Lord not be angry with me and speak just once more and all he kept saying that because he kept speaking once more what is all he can can be found there are righteous there and he answered, for the sake of 10, I will not destroy. He did that and then it says that the Lord had finished speaking with Abraham. He left and Abraham returned home. Nothing is that Abraham said will not judge the earth do right course, you will gain knows exactly what's right.

He judges correctly and well and he knows what he's doing and Abraham quit negotiating it back on and said I will expect that the judge here will do right to what better place. That's a hard place to be is it it is and you negotiated, you know, we all parted God when we do that is the nature do this you do that and I was so Abraham finally came to a real-life experience to care so much about his nephew Lot that he said is there some way that we can turn away from this, and God is willing to do that but at the same time. The he was allowing late in the reality of the ideas have consequences or actions or consequences to go forward and sent out more than the people I've built heat. God gave us left us with our conscience, even though were fallen.

We don't conscience so that even the most wicked person in the world does just saying that ugly things to other people to hurt them and wound them for satisfaction of whatever purported reason I did that person has a conscience and that some point that conscience kickstand and and they no doubt be that what they have been doing is not right and the Going Okay so for example, now I remember when Gracie was wrestling with the decision to if you tutor like this was her first leg and it seemed like such a failure seem like such a a a a horse thing.

I remember there were multiple people that came to her and said one. One lady had the leave in the brashness to say, look, you're not. You're not acting. This is long before I met get the theological construction okay and they said this is a lack of faith on your part of this is in rebellion towards God and and I and I I I recoiled at that. I was so angry with that and I didn't have the vocabulary to be able to respond back to it.

Plus, on the 2nd black belt now, so I would respond differently to multiple left but but I didn't have the ability to respond back to that. I was just been receiving with anger.

How dare you. We are wrestling with one of the hardest decisions we've ever made in our lives as a couple but my beautiful young wife is going to give up leg and trust that God is going to be on the other side of that operating room door at it at night. I was so furious with this with this type of thinking and that is what is propelled me into doing the show. Not only do the entire shoe ability show like this today to help people reorient their thinking to trust that will not he do right and and finally we had some good counsel did look this is not a moral decision.

You sit down with your doctors.

You look at what's the best they can. Sometimes the limb has to go and and and and and and then then we were able to be free and that in and people look at amputation to some type of God's displeasure don't think away minute Hugh Hefner lived his entire life as a non-amputee explained that to me. You know the answer of God was in the business of handing out amputations for sinful behavior. Prostitutes would be billionaires at end. So this is what helped reshape the senescent okay I'm going to I'm knuckle to stay here in this place.

I'm going to push deeper than this and and and I had some people that took me by the shoulder took him by the hand to do things and one of them was about pastor national Jim Bachmann in the heat that you can be speaking at his church here soon and next week I think is a matter fact were trying to somehow live stream in the grace and I can sing but but but I am Jim and I did a lot of funerals together. I would play the piano and and he preached minium and I looked at that is is quite an honor and he told me this. He looked at it is an honor to walk souls and their their families walked at least people to the grave to the cemetery that was the role of pastor and and and I II never play weddings. I hate playing latex but I will I will play for pretty much any funeral that amassed play because that is my chance to minister to people who are in great distress and my goal for my fellow caregivers is to help them get that point were there when they are standing at a grave that they're not standing there with clinched fist at themselves at their level and at at at it, family and friends at doctors at God and and and when the caregiving stops in the grass is growing on the grave.

They are still caregivers who were so angry with God over what they had to walk through it and I wanted you know just just in the last lives we have of this, speak to that speak to those broken heart and help them understand one thing that I have all people in the New Testament that was used in such a monumental way. Of course the apostle Paul and once he came to pay God used in light of a mold get out one third of more of the New Testament is written by Paul he planted more churches. At least that we have record of.

During that period time he wrote the Scriptures. He discipled all the people that he refers to the look of the list that Romans 16 of all greatly talking about how he will you gain counsel to church leaders and so forth.

Only big man was important. So when you get there. The first Roman imprisonment and he was not a never comfortable setting at all and he writes the Philippian and he basically puts it in the context in the context is that subversive 121. Most people know it for it to me to live is Christ and died again and just parse that for a moment.

You have if I'm going to live on going to look for credit. Whatever that means. Whatever it takes and that's a good like because it's a full life.

It's like hope of life now and eternal life but you know what if something should happen here I am at present and I may lose my appeal to Caesar and I'll die what happens. 12 guy is gay death is the ultimate result of the fall and so I die. But what happens is because of Christ. There I am that data no longer has power over me. The victory of death is Don this thing is Don because I'm I'm in Christ so people get all Volvo. Please note that don't sleep that way.

You're too important in the lives of the church. Look at all that you.your ear. The model of the apostle here you eat out of disciple or a preacher of teacher evangelist church planter and so we need you and he said he just sort of that.

You know what I will take my press clippings that seriously I really don't believe press is enough.

Look, if I die each year, God will take care he'll fill the slot that I take.

I have on their right using breakout don't take the water into poker, but I have a full glass of water and uncertain point.

Excellent happened and I stick my finger and then I pull it out. I said that what Paul's view was and what the biblical view is that as soon as I pull my finger out about hole in the water as it will be filled out. I said as quickly as one is that goes up is how quickly God will fill the whole name being called home to glory. In other words, I'm knuckle. I'm not that indispensable to God that therefore I can't get replacement and that's what Paul is saying, to live is Christ all may be faithful to Christ. But if I die got is it. Isn't it interesting that he started off his career giving his resume by the end of his career. When these languishing in a prison.

He's like none of that matters is that others think that everything really critical is that again go back to legal cause and so forth is that Paul had that notion, and that I Corinthians 12 where he was wrestling with something that he calls a thorn in the flesh, something that was irritating, something that was hurtful, something that was painful enough for him to say it, and even calls it a messenger of Satan and underwear. It wasn't that was satanic. It wasn't that they gave it to him. It was just something that was so painful that he called a messenger of Satan and so he says three times I pleaded with the Lord did take it away from me, but he said down somebody speaking to him about it he said to me migrate insufficient for use for my power is made perfect in that weakness but going through so therefore Paul Vanguard is okay I think I'm getting the message.

Lord, I will boast more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. So what you're saying is Lord. Look at all that I've done and how you view your right Scripture be described with church planter banjos and so forth. Now I'm up if I operated 100% load want I can turn the world upside down. But right now I'm operating about 50%, maybe 40% so you let loose on this and I'll be able to do all that God sorta yawns at him and says he is not those of my power is made perfect and matured. If you would in the weakness. So what does Paul say now I get it I will then not be glad to have my weaknesses because it operated 40 or 50% that Christ's power may rest, and that then he goes on to this is an Corinthians 1210 that is live for Christ sake not just for Christ sake, I delight in weaknesses and insults and hardships, in persecutions and difficulties. For when I am weak, then I'm strong.

While that's that turns everything and flipped it up and we thinking the week. We think that life is valuable only if I operated hundred percent and above less than 100%.

I'm nobody and I'm useless and I'm just a castaway and that's exactly what the Bible says no you cannot think that way you are significant. It does turn everything upside down and and that is a Scripture that Gracie has clung to since I've known her and she was hurt. Before I met her. We went she had about 20 surgeries. When I met her, but now she's gone through the 80 total that I can count another hundred 50 smaller procedures and she hangs on the debt because she she's comforted by boasting all the more gladly.

My weakness and and and there's a point where you make peace with that and you realize okay. He's using this and he doesn't need me to be at hundred percent because he said it hundred percent and a and I love that and and I appreciate that in the last few minutes on a pivot. Just to hear you got your finger on the pulse of what's going on in the organized Christian church in this country and in and around the world to what you do to the acquittal reported so forth.

How are we doing as far as ministering to people that are struggling in these areas. How are we equipping them. Are we already where where are we on that. What kind of grade are we giving ourselves or can we give ourselves any kind of grace we see that were moving in the right direction.

Are we moving away from it are we going back to Haiti if you if you do this gotta do this kind of thing or we are we equipping people to be strong in and have fortitude and perseverance, and endurance are we doing that well.

I really think it is a really hard question to answer in terms of just the numbers on the date get that basically you hear how we began this program and what you think that you said are still true in that it that we do not have a clear theology and because of that we we think that God is the big bellhop inhabitants to what we are in trouble.

We circle the rope you ring the bell and goddess postage on down. Is that okay I'm here like a genie in the bottle and unfortunate that way we think and also we do think in this I'll do this. I'll be a good girl get bored and then God will. He's obligated to give me whatever I want you to write, you know he's like you because you know that he's making a list checking it twice what you been naughty or nice and that really stick coming that deep and deeply embedded in our psyche as people so we need to talk Santa Claus theology for biblical theology in the Google theology is that God is the father to the universe. He knows exactly doing in the context of a fallen world that he is still at work doing great and mighty things, and that he uses all things for his own glory, so that what we have difficulty believing that that's exactly what he is doing and so what brings glory to God is the thing that we should desire more than anything else, because that is what God is thinking.

And when we have got good theology that gives us the firm foundation on which to stand and to be able to see how God is at work in a good way so my sense right now is that we probably lean more towards the negotiation with God like Abraham did the Santa Claus view of God the start of the Butler Jesus died in heaven.

That is, therefore, our purpose and out and if he doesn't, then I have a right to be angry with him as opposed to seeing Mrs. Robert knows what he's doing and having the boat you that Abraham came to will not judge of the earth do right and that data in on fatherly love that will with that Abraham landed on that and and God doesn't feel this so I think don't you do you sense that we have is is is believers this that this burning desire to somehow wash God's hands.

You know, does it do you favor since that because it's just that people see these things what about this one at this, and they use these as exhibit a and B and C against the Almighty and and and they miss the complete picture of wait a minute.

Are you even looking at the cross. That's right, he wondered what that means in the context of your suffering] again, what Paul deals with a very typical thing about the whole process of how God redeems us in Christ as these dealing with the question of how he recited some that he uses the example how you know who was who is the creator of God it and and then uses the example of the Potter and the pot and the clay any harder than make the clay unique passions that and he says I'm in a make out here that you made an ordinary waterpark.

Another one is going to do a thing very and he chooses what he chooses to do and when we hear that the same old and we just robots. No, it's just that the one where putting all the pieces together.

We have to start from the Kazakh position of who God is and we can't define him. He is the one who defines he's the creator.

He's the one made in his image and we have to say come along side of that line our thinking with him as opposed to him having to align his thinking with us that morning. By the way that Hume had done only Lord had done with our Potter, I am the clay that that's him that is familiar but is not an easy him to play if you watch some things that we as caregivers have to watch it's it's not in it it it.

You have to make peace with a lot of things in them.

Once you do delete go back to that him and you're like all I wanted becomes like a warm blanket around you and greatly are have opened doors to people that I don't have because of the where you are and the things that you have gone through and what will it do in terms of counting for now as well is eternity and out that that sounds like a very utilitarian, but it isn't very reality that got just like Paul said that now that I realized what God business is willing to say that through that what appears to be weakness really is strength and therefore I'm going to live with that weakness in order be strong in the things of Christ allow grace to be manifested in the things that God can be done you in touch more lives you greatly demand in this area. I mean, you have this program you have this ministry in Ghana with the via the Olympus and so forth that just amazing. Okay that nobody else doing it I mean it didn't cross my mind because that's not my experience but God used you and that to develop this ministry and people give a hearing to you out of that because the reality experience and knowledge reality experience, but also that you're living out the truth of a good biblical theology that gives you that strong foundation so that you can speak with comfort and power and authority to the people who are hurting well this is that that is very gracious of you and and I am on the recipient of a lot of that from your students. So I will I will were all in the mutual admiration society of what God is doing in us in and one of your students letter for harassment, dear friend has of as a phrase that he uses to me a lot when when you look at sometimes you did. There's nothing else to say. You can't say things and we we tend to cut a blather on when we come across some suffering and sometimes we just need to sit and groan with people and Larry just as we run to Christ, we just run to Christ we fall into Christ.

There's no other place to go, you go to Christ. Whatever good theology. I've developed a develop because I've had people alongside me. Who said I see your suffering, I see the magnitude of it and I want to walk with you through it and today Dr. Quill you walk with me through this and a listers here.

I hope that that they are encouraged and strengthened. We just scratch the service. Can we do to give will you are very gracious. Dr. Dominic Tukwila new Geneva theological seminary and go to the acquittal the acquittal and listless journey this together okay let theology support the suffering that your caring and I promise you, you run the discretion you hold on, that's the place to go. That's were we become healthy. Healthy caregivers make better caregivers will see you next week

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