Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Deep Questions

Each of us has a belief system. All, part, or none, of it may be true. I know I keep discovering new areas in mine that are faulty and do not really work to make and keep me walking in life and peace.
The big questions are: Is what I believe helping me in my area of struggle? If it doesn't, then what good is it? What value would it be to someone else when it is incapable of helping me?
To answer these questions requires gut honesty between us and God.
Catherine Marshall said," It's the delight of my life to find God far more practical and common sense than any human being I know. The only time I find my dealings with God less than clear-cut is when I'm not being honest with Him. The fuzziness is always on my side, not His."
This statement has bit me in the butt more times than I care to count since I first read it. But I've learned and am still learning that on the other side of the "bite" is always a new level of freedom from myself, a new measure of life!
The enemy of our soul's intent is to steal, kill, and destroy. Lies are a huge part of that. The Truth is the only effective armor/weapon. He will be sure to tell us what we have to lose by completely surrendering to God, but mum's the word about what we stand to lose if we don't! He works very hard to conceal from us the goodness of God. He wants no whiff of the delight we can live in, to reach our nostrils.
The best way I have learned to combat him, is this gut honesty with God. To let God search me and find my faulty misconceptions about Him. To run to Him for reworking at the least hint of discord in my heart...
I do a lot of reading and the subject has come up a few times, as to what we do with what we read (hear in a sermon) etc. We can read and walk on, tickled with some new insights that change our ideas about God, relieve us in real (or shallow) ways and inspire us. We have a new knowledge to roll around in our minds and enthuse about with others. I have been troubled at how easy this is, without actually taking it in and letting it change us at our core. What is the secret to making it become ours, for it to change us?
While pondering this, the phrase, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand" started rolling around in my heart. At some point I got up (it was early morn) and started to write. Here is what I ended up with, to my astonishment!

Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!
John the Baptist's first message, the one that burned on his heart in the wilderness of Judea was "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Matt.3:2
This message prepares the way of the Lord in our hearts. It makes His paths straight. It did then and it does even now.
Jesus' message to mankind, in teaching us how to live, also began with, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."
Maybe we have glossed over this sentence as an introduction to a story we've always heard. We haven't realized the hidden power and richness in it. Too many times, as we learn something new, some fresh aspect of who God our Father is and what He requires of us, dawns on us. We walk on rejoicing and never stop to realize that every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God is life that is meant to bring us into abundant life, to be lived by! Deut.8:3, 2 Chron.7:14
Our ears itch to hear new tellings of old stories, but we neglect to understand what we hear is meant to be lived! The word of God and life go hand in hand.
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
This was John's message. He said other words too, but this is the message. All we need to hear for us to be prepared to receive Christ into our very hearts is right here.
The message was not "Repent - because you are wicked and you must"...or... "Repent - to be ready for what is coming soon."
Note the little word "for".
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
John's message was complete in one sentence.
In repenting, we make straight paths for the Lord to walk into our hearts, where the King of the Ages wants to establish His kingdom. Long live the King!
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is "right here". It comes in right here! Repentance is the first thing.
If we want to experience more of God, make straight paths for Him into your heart. Let Him in.
You can't give a child something, if they have their fists clutched tightly around what they already have in them, it is impossible. First we have to let go. That is to repent.
No matter what new knowledge we come to, it just remains knowledge unless we make it ours by repenting. Seeing, recognizing, turning, walking, abiding, growing, entering into what God has in store for us.
The kingdom of heaven is truly at hand. He is the King whose kingdom is the heart.
Oh rule my heart, Most Gracious Lord on High. Live Forever, King of Kings! This land is Your land.

May we love God by giving Him His rightful place, believe Him to be as grand and glorious as He really is! Let's walk humbly with Him!

A King was born one silent night,
Not in a castle, but out of sight
In a cobwebby stable that smelled of hay,
God ushered in a brand new Way.
He says the humble shall hear
And the humble shall see.
Humble yourselves in the sight of Me.
I'm looking for room, in hearts, don't you see?
Please humble yourselves and dwell with Me.

He came as a babe, for as we all know
To learn to obey is the way we should go.
He humbled Himself and came as a son,
Who went on to be the Obedient One.
He says the humble shall hear
And the humble shall see.
Humble yourselves in the sight of me.
I'm looking for room, in hearts, don't you see?
Please humble yourselves and dwell with me.

No comments: