Sunday, April 29, 2012

Rekindling your Relationship

This morning I was reading about some of the most influential men in Scripture.  Abraham, Moses, David, Abel and Enoch.  They are influential to every Christian that ever has been and ever will be.  I think you could sum up their reason for eternal impact in a word, “relationship”, specifically relationship with their God. The Scriptures reveal the importance of their personal relationship to the Almighty God which at times resembles best friends.   

Quick, in a word or two, what character trait is associated with Abraham?  Faith.  How about David?  Heart for God.  This one might be a bit harder, Moses? You might say humble, you might say spoke to God face to face, like two friends or you might just say relationship.  All these biblical heros are canonized by their hallmark accomplishments and their walk with their Creator.  It is the relationship they had with God that makes them stand apart...even to this day.  They stand head and shoulders above the rest. 

Therefore, shouldn’t we examine their lives to see why God responded to them?  Wouldn’t we be better men and women by imitating the best parts of their lives and learning from their mistakes? 

These heros walked with God, having a very special relationship with Him.  Adam and Eve started their life having a friendship with God.  Moses, talked to God face to face but always respectful of his position before God.  He fell on his face over and over and begged God to be merciful to sinners.  Abraham walked and talked with God.  Again, very respectful as if your best friend was king.  David pours out his heart to God as one would do to a best friend.  He talked to God about everything. You and I are afforded the opportunity to have a special relationship to personally speak to our King, our Savior, Creator and God.   

What do we talk to God about?  How do we use our relationship with the omnipotent and omniscient God?  Is it a relationship in which you only ask God for stuff?  Do you only call on Him in the difficult times and ignore Him in the good times?

Today, examine your relationship with God.  If the Spirit is bringing to mind things that need to be changed, then pray, confess and begin anew your relationship. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Eating Myself to Death

The way we think, the way we respond, our actions to any given situation is defined by our life view.  I have been watching the new series Duck Dynasty and I have to say I love it.  Redneck millionaires that, for the most part, have not allowed their riches to change “who” they are.  Yes, they live in mansions, they drive expensive cars and they fly to business meetings in helicopters, but they still eat off the land, have strong moral values and recognize the importance of family and God. 

For us city dwellers, I would venture to surmise that the majority of us are more susceptible to our environment.  We grow restless and discontent with our two year old car, we want a bigger and better house (though we can’t afford it), we see what our neighbors have and we desire to have the same...or better.  Hollywood produces our heros and they change spouses more often than we change cars.  We venerate their unrealistic lifestyle with reality TV (see the irony?) and it comes as no surprise that we quickly find someone else to bring us today's fading pleasure. 

Today my Scripture reading finished up in Numbers 11.  The Children of Israel see God’s cloud on the tabernacle.  God miraculously provides water and food for them every day.  He protects them, he keeps their clothes from wearing out and they daily see Him speaking with their leaders.  Surely, if this was our input, our reality TV, our daily influences, we would be basking in the glory of God and singing His praises for His wonders and provisions...wouldn’t we?

11:1 “And the people complained in the hearing of the Lord about their misfortunes.”  11:18 “For it was better for us in Egypt.”  Wow, a slap in the face of God.  So God gives them what they think they need and the very food they desire, and they eat themselves to death (11:33).

Now before I had a chance to judge these vial and ungrateful people that lived in a time when God’s hand was never more displayed, I began to think about my own “misfortunes”.  Oh, come to think of it, it is really easy to complain.  It is even easier to forget how God has saved my bacon more times than I can count, more than I will ever know (this side of heaven).  Suddenly, this passage penned by Moses many thousands of years ago hits home.  I am humbled and recognize my own attitude of grumbling, discontent and lack of trust.  Falling to my knees, I begin to declare the the wonders God has done in my life, making known the glory due to the sovereign ruler of all the realms.  His ways are right, His ways are perfect, always on time, never late and if His eye is on the sparrow, then I should remember and know that He watches me.