Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Keeping the Lord's perspective on relationships

Jesus did not commit Himself to them…, for He knew what was in man. —John 2:24-25

But the disillusionment that comes from God brings us to the point where we see people as they really are, yet without any cynicism or any stinging and bitter criticism. Many of the things in life that inflict the greatest injury, grief, or pain, stem from the fact that we suffer from illusions. We are not true to one another as facts, seeing each other as we really are; we are only true to our misconceived ideas of one another. There is only one Being who can completely satisfy to the absolute depth of the hurting human heart, and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. Our Lord is so obviously uncompromising with regard to every human relationship because He knows that every relationship that is not based on faithfulness to Himself will end in disaster. (Oswald Chambers)

I want to have this disillusionment of God. To see people with clarity and truth...understanding that they aren't perfect, that they will fail me at times...and yet keeping myself from reacting as I normally do (in anger and self a porcupine) Instead, I ought to keep loving, reacting in the gentleness that come from His spirit.

Men and women will fail me eventually and I will fail others. It's the human thing. The trick is to keep God's perspective on it so I am not thrown by disappointments (in both others and myself). To gain that perspective, we must seek God's by being in his word that is found in the Bibie and in devoted time of prayer to Him.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

God's Purpose, or Mine?

I just loved today's devotional. So applicable to what the Lord is teaching me.

The question of whether or not we arrive at a particular goal is of little importance, and reaching it becomes merely an episode along the way. What we see as only the process of reaching a particular end, God sees as the goal itself.

What is my vision of God’s purpose for me? Whatever it may be, His purpose is for me to depend on Him and on His power. If I can stay calm, faithful, and unconfused while in the middle of the turmoil of life, the goal of the purpose of God is being accomplished in me....What He desires for me is that I see “Him walking on the sea” with no shore, no success, nor goal in sight, but simply having the absolute certainty that everything is all right because I see “Him walking on the sea” Mark 6:49It is the process, not the outcome, that is glorifying to God. (Oswald Chambers)

I am seeing this to be more and more true in my life. I've had many goals in life that actually have never come to fruition. I'm 48 years old...and some of them just aren't going to happen. I'm learning to accept that this is okay. Life is about the journey, not all of the accomplishments we make.

Lately, I've been looking for a job as a school librarian. I have had interview after interview...with no luck. It has hurt very much. For the last few months I have heard the word "surrender." It's like God has been whispering that word in my ear. So I'm learning to surrender this to the Lord. I'm learning to trust that even if I never get a job as a school librarian, it is going to be okay...because I see Jesus walking on the waves of my stormy sea. Just as he has done for me in even stormer weather.

What is His goal for me? It is for me to love and trust and follow Him to the end. To keep my eyes on the prize. To keep running. To know that he is able to walk on the stormiest seas in this life.

Monday, July 27, 2015

On Prying My Fingers Loose

If anyone wills to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine… —John 7:17

If spiritual things seem dark and hidden to me, then I can be sure that there is a point of disobedience somewhere in my life. Intellectual darkness is the result of ignorance, but spiritual darkness is the result of something that I do not intend to obey. 

When Jesus drives something home to you through His Word, don’t try to evade it. If you do, you will become a religious impostor. Examine the things you tend simply to shrug your shoulders about, and where you have refused to be obedient, and you will know why you are not growing spiritually. (Oswald Chambers)

I can actually think of a time when I refused to be obedient to the Lord. I knew He was convicting me about an idol I had in my life. He whispered again and again in my ear that it was sin and it needed to stop. I loved my idol. I loved my idol more than any thing or anyone in the world. I knew it to be true...and I knew that I loved that idol more than I loved the Lord. I was afraid that if I confessed to the sin, then the Lord would ask me to get rid of the idol. I knew I wouldn't do that.

Needless to say that I wasn't really growing spiritually. When I was 19 and I left for college, the first thing I did was seek out Christian fellowship. I found that in Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship (IVCF). I signed up for the fall retreat which was at the end of September. It was there that I decided to rededicate my life to Christ. I wanted to take my walk with Him up on a different level. I prayed that the Lord would "Make me into a woman of matter what it takes." Yes..I actually added the words at the end. I meant that prayer with all of my heart and decided to pray that prayer every day.

Guess what the first thing that the Lord needed to deal with was?......You got it! That idol in my life. And so began the process of the Lord prying my fingers loose on that idol. I wasn't going to give it up willingly. It was the most painful thing I ever went through.

So, my readers...don't do as I did all of those years ago (28). Take his words to you seriously. When you hear him whisper in your ear about something that needs to to Him in obedience.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Into the light

“This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:19-21‬ ‭NIV‬‬

 Sometimes it's hard coming into the Lord's light and truth. That is when you relinquish control and allow the Lord to speak to you. And when he speaks to'd best listen. I've done it both ways. I've been stubborn and gone my own way...because of my selfish desires. Because His way doesn't look like a good way. His way seems uncertain. I look where He points...and sometimes I say, "There, Lord? Are you sure?"

Other times I have listened, but sadly not often enough.

Jesus will never insist that I obey, but if I don’t,I have already begun to sign the death certificate of the Son of God in my soul. When I stand face to face with Jesus Christ and say, “I will not obey,” He will never insist. But when I do this, I am backing away from the recreating power of His redemption. It makes no difference to God’s grace what an abomination I am, if I will only come to the light. But “Woe is me” if I refuse the light. (Oswald Chambers)

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Move Over and Let God Do the Work!

“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,”. 1 Corinthians‬ ‭2:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

What is so cool about this passage is the reassurance that it is God that does the work...not us. We don't have to be fancy in our speech, or eloquent, or very academic. It is the Holy Spirit's work to move hearts. Not ours.

Belief in Jesus is a miracle produced only by the effectiveness of redemption, not by impressive speech, nor by wooing and persuading, but only by the sheer unaided power of God. The creative power of redemption comes through the preaching of the gospel, but never because of the personality of the preacher. (Oswald Chambers)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Nothing slips by Him

I think that Oswald Chambers' devotional today is one of my favorites yet! It is perfect for what I am wrestling with lately. God is so good! Why don't I always believe that? Why do I forget that he is in control of everything?

He knows everything that has happened in my life. He knows everything that will happen in my life. I just need to trust him. I know it is true. He has shown me marvelous things that cannot be coincidence. He has whispered things in my ears that have come true. Why do I doubt? He holds everything in his hands. Nothing sneaks by him.

My Father in heaven loves me! Why do I not seek him with my whole heart? Why do I turn away from him? Why do I brood about things that I cannot change? "Oh Heavenly Father, I am so sorry that I have doubted you. Forgive me." 

Fill your mind with the thought that God is there. And once your mind is truly filled with that thought, when you experience difficulties it will be as easy as breathing for you to remember, “My heavenly Father knows all about this!” 

Jesus is laying down the rules of conduct for those people who have His Spirit, and it works on the following principle: God is my Father, He loves me, and I will never think of anything that He will forget, so why should I worry?

Jesus said there are times when God cannot lift the darkness from you, but you should trust Him. At times God will appear like an unkind friend, but He is not; He will appear like an unnatural father, but He is not; He will appear like an unjust judge, but He is not. Keep the thought that the mind of God is behind all things strong and growing. Not even the smallest detail of life happens unless God’s will is behind it. Therefore, you can rest in perfect confidence in Him. (Oswald Chambers)

 I need to live this truth.

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭7:7‬ ‭

“If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭7:11‬

He is my Father. I must have an attitude of trust that he has good gifts for me and that He wants me to ask him for things, to come to him...climb up on his lap and listen to him.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Oh, Holy I need you to fill me

Many of us who call ourselves Christians are not truly devoted to Jesus Christ. No one on earth has this passionate love for the Lord Jesus unless the Holy Spirit has given it to him. We may admire, respect, and revere Him, but we cannot love Him on our own. The only One who truly loves the Lord Jesus is the Holy Spirit, and it is He who has “poured out in our hearts” the very “love of God” (Romans 5:5). Whenever the Holy Spirit sees an opportunity to glorify Jesus through you, He will take your entire being and set you ablaze with glowing devotion to Jesus Christ. (Oswald Chambers)

 Oh how I need the love of the Holy Spirit in me. How I pray for and yearn for that, as I fall so far short on my own strength. That's what I truly be filled with the Holy Spirit. How I grieve the Lord Jesus with my sin of hatred.