Devotional Thought of the Day:
19 And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them. I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a tender, responsive heart, 20 so they will obey my decrees and regulations. Then they will truly be my people, and I will be their God. 21 But as for those who long for vile images and detestable idols, I will repay them fully for their sins. I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken!” Ezekiel 11:19-21 (NLT)
295 Any time is the right time to make an effective resolution, to say “I believe”, to say “I hope”, to say “I love”. (1)
A god is that to which we look for all good and in which we find refuge in every time of need. To have a god is nothing else than to trust and believe him with our whole heart. As I have often said, the trust and faith of the heart alone make both God and an idol.
3 If your faith and trust are right, then your God is the true God. On the other hand, if your trust is false and wrong, then you have not the true God. For these two belong together, faith and God. That to which your heart clings and entrusts itself is, I say, really your God.
4 The purpose of this commandment, therefore, is to require true faith and confidence of the heart, and these fly straight to the one true God and cling to him alone. (2)
This morning, my devotional reading contained the green and blue quotes above. They are simple, they describe a simple life, they describe the Christian life.
I wish they described my life more, I long for that to be my reality.
Or rather, I desire that to be my only reality.
Like Paul, there seems to be a war within me, as various things compete to be my “god”. Or should I say, I choose to allow things to compete for that role. It is hard to admit, but I want leaders I can trust in, in whom I can entrust my life, my
It is hard to admit, but I want leaders I can trust in, in whom I can entrust my life, my family’s and my church’s future. I want them – both secular and church leaders who will be just and righteous, gracious and merciful. Yet I become cynical when they don’t provide when they don’t comfort; when they are proven to be as broken. For these “gods” I would entrust myself to fail.
But even more dangerous is for me to rebel from them, and make myself my God. It is an easy thing to do as well, encouraged by the world that tells me I have to look out for myself. The world that teaches us that we are the captain of our fate, that if we have the right attitude, and a strong enough world, we can achieve what we desire. The same world that laughs, or worse, ignores me, when I fall on my face, and can’t get up on my own.
Enough failures and my heart will become hard, crusted over with by scars and bruises. I want to become immune to the failures, and I become offensive, assured that it is better than being on the defensive. But the offensiveness offends, and I can’t endure my own heart, my own attitude, my own life.
It is amid these moments of not just being broken, but being shattered that I come across Luther and Escriva and so many others, men who knew their own brokenness, and battled it on their knees, and in the scriptures, Men who found incredible hope, and when all is said and done, the answer was simple.
Flee to God.
Cling to Him,
Believe Him and the promises He made us. Depend on them.
Find the hope for our healing in the new Spirit given us, and
Adore the God, who works in our lives. He who always cares for His people. My friends, you and I need, desperately need to believe in, find hope and live this God, who comes to us in our brokenness and replaces our broken hearts with one’s that find great joy is singing His praises.
This is the simple Christian life; one lives depending on God, clinging to Him. for He is our God.
It may seem too simple, but it is walking humbly with our Father, our God…..
Because of that, it is a life lived in sanctuary, and in great peace….
Lord Have mercy on us!
(1) Escriva, Josemaria. The Forge (Kindle Locations 1199-1201). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.
(2) Tappert, T. G. (Ed.). (1959). The Book of Concord the confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. (p. 365). Philadelphia: Mühlenberg Press.