Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Always Outdone

There are characters in the Bible that I would like to emulate. I love Enoch. He is scarcely mentioned in Holy Writ, but the description given him is as a man who "walked with God". I would love to be described that way, wouldn't you?

Yet, there is another man that I have always wanted to imitate. It is the man who was "after God's own heart". My heart envies the description. I want to be after God's heart! I want to be like David. I read about David and am struck by him and the fact that I am always outdone! When David praised God, he was able to put to music and arrange words which would become some of the most beautiful poems the world has ever seen, a shepherd boy composing Psalms that would last for centuries. I am woefully outdone. David was not afraid to bear almost all and dance before the Lord with great rejoicing. I find myself shy, embarrassed, and outdone again. When David fell, he was not content to remain in the state of being separated from fellowship with his God, and repented with great weeping, sorrow, and earnestness. I all too often, forget to repent after asking to be forgiven, once again outdone! (Lord, please forgive my cold heart, for my repentence needs to be repented of!)

David was far from a perfect man, but I cannot "cast the first stone" at him. He suffered at the hand of his earthly king, his children, and had many trials. Yet, he loved God with a whole heart. He was sent from his country and his home, he slept in caves running for his life. He endured the scoffing of those who should have bowed down to Him, and yet he trusted the Lord in all.

But even more, he was after all, just a shadow. He was a dim reflection of the One who would come after Him. David's greater son, the one who would reign with an eternal dominion. The one who with a perfect heart, perfect love, perfect obedience, and perfect submission would be for us the perfect sacrifice.

I want to be like David, but O, so much more like his greater Son! I know that I am always outdone, but I will continue to love my Sovereign. I pray that he would make me like David and more and more like Christ!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Jehovah Tsidkenu- Robert Murray McCheyne

This week I will post a poem by Robert Murray McCheyne that I came across in my private readings. I hope it is a blessing to all, as it has been for me.

Jehovah Tsidkenu- Jehovah our Righteousness

I once was a stranger to grace and to God,
I knew not my danger, and felt not my load,
Though friends spoke in rapture of Christ on the tree,
Jehovah Tsidkenu was nothing to me.

I oft read with pleasure to soothe or engage,
Isaiah's wild measure and John's simple page;
Bet e'en when they pictured the blood-sprinkled tree,
Jehovah Tsidkenu seemed nothing to me.

Like tears from the daughters of Zion that roll,
I wept when the waters went over his soul,
Yet thought not that my sins had nailed to the tree
Jehovah Tsidkenu- t'was nothing to me.

When free grace awoke me by light from on high,
Then legal fear shook me; I trembled to die;
No refuge, no safety in self could I see,
Jehovah Tsidkenu my Saviour must be.

My terrors all vanished before the sweet name,
My guilty fear banished, with boldness I came
To drink at the Fountain, life-giving and free:
Jehovah Tsidkenu as all things to me.

Jehovah Tsidkenu! my treasure and boast;
Jehovah Tsidkenu! I ne'er can be lost!
In thee shall I conquer by flood and by field,
My cable, my anchor, my breastplate and shield.

Even treading the valley, the shadow of death!
This "watchword" shall rally my faltering breath;
For while from life's fever my God sets me free,
"Jehovah Tsidkenu!" my death-song shall be.

This Is the God who we come to worship! May we rest in Him and praise Him for His abundant grace!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

What is your last resort?

When you have a headache, do you administer Tylenol before praying?

When your kids are hurt, are band aids applied before prayer?

When you are frustrated with the unfolding of unforeseen events in the day, do you vent to a friend before you come humbly to God?

I only ask, because I, once again, have found myself guilty! I am guilty of neglecting the great means of prayer. I use it as a last resort. I do not come to the Father, who gives us good gifts before all else. I am too quick to solve my own problems my way, instead of quieting my heart before the Sovereign GOD.

God places attaches such sweet promises to prayer. We know that by the effectual blood of Christ He hears our prayers. (Let that sink in... we have an ear in the throne room of heaven... an ear that can accomplish all He purposes to. Does not your heart leap within you with joy at the greatness of God to be our Father and to answer petitions placed before Him? It should!)
We are told that the "prayers of a righteous man accomplish much". We know that "all things are possible with God", and He promises in 2 Chronicles 7:14, "if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land." There are so many precious promises I do not have the time to elaborate on them all.

Let us not be backward, may we repent and pray! May we pray for God to be glorified, His name to be praised in us, in our families, in our nation, and in the world! May we pray for the brokenhearted and downcast. May we pray for the stranger to be brought home. May we pray for sanctification in our lives. May we pray for peace! May we pray for the wicked to be caught in their own snares. May we pray for our headaches to be removed, hurts to be healed, and may we pray for our children to love Christ above all. May we be creatures of prayer, not ones who neglect it and use it as a last resort!

This great privilege cost our God a great price. Let us treasure what Christ has purchased on our behalf. May we love our Saviour all the more! Let us come before Him to worship with thankfulness and love!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Have you thought about God today? I mean really thought about God? Not in any reference to what He has done for us, (there is so very much that He has done!) not in a prayer offered as a bullet toward heaven for help, not asking for our "list" of prayer needs, not even in our prayers for others, but have you thought about God? We need to completely remove the "I" from our thoughts and prayers and simply gaze heavenward to consider the Almighty! Let us consider Him apart from creation and salvation. Let us consider HIM!

Our God is! He is infinite, eternal, unchangeable. Have you thought about what that means?

Our God exists in One God but three persons equal in power and glory. He is a mystery to ponder!

Our God is good, true, holy, love, just, merciful, longsuffering, powerful, wise. There is much to consider.

Take some time today to think. Stop. Slow Down. Pull your apron over your head as Susannah Wesley would and contemplate our awesome God! (Eloihim, Adonai, Yahweh, Jehovah) In Christ, we are beckoned to worship Him tomorrow. Think on Him. Let our God be exalted in our minds, hearts and lives. May we be as mirrors of His glory and bring Him praise! Let us exalt the Lord! May we be prepared to come before Him tomorrow!

Psalm 98:4-8
Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises! Sing praises to the LORD with the lyre and the sound of melody! With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the LORD!
Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; and the worldand those who dwell in it! Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together..."