Situational nearness

“In that day people will look to their Maker and turn their eyes to the Holy One of Israel.”  Isaiah 17:7.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Isaiah 15-18 and Hebrews 10.

Things must have been really tough!

When do we turn to God?  A time of crisis is a common one.

I chose today’s verse because I want to always be looking to my Maker for guidance.  Often, I don’t do that.  I get disconnected and distracted.

I try to write this blog daily and often when I’m writing it I will get a Godsight.  I write about it and then go about my life, only to return the next day and start all over.

I long for a consistently Godly life.  Not one that is recognized and lauded by others but one that slides along on a steady path with Him.  The ups and downs are not obvious.  What is obvious is a consistent relationship.

How can this happen?  I must be mindful of Him.  He is in my midst.  I cannot ignore that fact.  I need to act accordingly.

“Lord, I need You every second.  Help me to be mindful of You throughout this day.  Forgive me for wandering away from the reality of Your nearness.  How can I continually do that!  I love You, Father.  Fill me with an awareness of You.”

Are you aware of God’s presence and do you live accordingly?

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God is running the show

“For the Lord Almighty has purposed, and who can thwart him?  His hand is stretched out, and who can turn it back?”  Isaiah 14:27.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Isaiah 11-14 and Hebrews 9.

Lest we forget Who is in charge!

We like to think that we can influence God and there are Bible stories in which that appeared to happen.

That God has the capacity to change a course of action proves that He is in charge.  His Way will be The Way.

Even the side-trips that we live out are part of His Course for us.  We have free will, but He knows how our free will play out.  It is simply inconceivable for us to fathom.

Since God is in charge, I am desperate to be in His Will from the get-go.  I’m looking for a smooth run with Him.

I must continue to pray without ceasing.  How do I do that?  When a thought pops into my head, I must turn it into a prayer.  I must without ceasing see His Hand in my midst.  Every good gift is from Him.  Am I aware of those gifts?

“Lord, You are in charge.  My ways are silly and stupid.  Fill me with You.  Take over every part of me.  Forgive me for wandering off.  I love You, Lord.”

God is indeed in charge.  Are we living accordingly?

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What are you trusting in?

“What will you do on the day of reckoning, when disaster comes from afar?  To whom will you run for help?  Where will you leave your riches?”  Isaiah 10:3.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Isaiah 8-10 and Hebrews 8.

The Assyrians are going to be coming for Israel.

They don’t know it, but Isaiah is warning them.

The warning is good for all of us.  What do we trust in for security?

We build up securities to make our life more comfortable.  We collect money.  We buy vacation spots.  And the list goes on.  But when trouble comes, those things will be worthless.

The Israelites are going to be carried away.  Nothing is going to save them.  And Isaiah rightly asks them how their cash will help them then.

Our trust must be in God.  We must be storing up treasures in heaven.  What does that mean?  We must be doing what God wants us to do.  We must be trying our best to please Him in everything because we owe Him.  He’s preparing a place for us in the after-life.

“Lord, everything I have is a gift from You.  Forgive me for hoarding what You give me.  For trusting what You have given me to save me.  You are my Savior.  In You I trust.  Take every part of me over, I beg.”

Where have you placed your ultimate trust?

 

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This is what we need to do

“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.  And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”  Micah 6:8.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Micah 5-7 and Hebrews 7.

It is spelled right out for us: how to live a Godly life.

Can we do it?  Not on our own strength.  That’s for sure!

How do I “walk humbly” with God?  I see it as not making my presence too obvious.  To be in the presence of God is to realize that I don’t belong there. In several instances (Isaiah and Peter) being in God presence overwhelmed them because of their own inadequacies.

Do I approach Him as if I do belong?  He isn’t my buddy.  He is my all-knowing Father.  My two ears must be doing most of the interacting with Him.  Not my mouth!

I must strive to stay with Him.  I cannot be drifting in and out of a relationship with Him. I must be with Him every second.

Some days I find it easy to go it alone.  The sun is shining.  I’m feeling good and my relationships are in place.  So out to the end of the limb I go because I am not walking with Him.  Then something snaps, and I wonder what happened to me.  What happened was that I wasn’t walking with Him.  Even during the “good” times I MUST walk with Him in great humility.

“Lord, good stuff in today’s verse.  Help me to get my walk right with You.  I love You, Father.  Prick my conscience when I am getting loose from You.  I know better.  Guide me, Father.”

Today’s verse offers great words of guidance.  Will we act them out?

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Broken connection

“Then they will cry out to the Lord, but he will not answer them.  At that time he will hide his face from them because of the evil they have done.” Micah 3:4.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Micah 1-4 and Hebrews 6.

You don’t like what is happening, so you cry out to God about it.  He’s won’t be changing anything.

Seems wrong until we understand that God knows best.

Sometimes it is appropriate for me to suffer the consequences that my words/deeds create. This is what Micah is prophesying about.

I do not want to disconnect from God.  If I am going to go through trouble, I want Him with me.  I cannot go it alone.

My relationship to Him must be steady/tight.  It must be ongoing.  Too often it has lulls.  Suddenly I will realize that I am moving on without Him.  I have chosen a path without His counsel or without even inviting Him along.  Silly for sure!

“Lord, please never leave me.  Prick my conscience when I am losing contact with You so that I can rectify it.  I need You every second.  Guide me, O thou great Jehovah.”

We must stay attached to God.

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How are those other gods working out for you?

“Where is your king, that he may save you?  Where are your rulers in all your town of whom you said, ‘Give me a king and princes’?”  Hosea 13:10.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Hosea 13-14, Psalm 100 & 102, and Hebrews 5.

God does not like competition.  He is indeed a jealous God.

When a real crisis comes along, where do I turn?  Invariably to God.  The rest of the time?  Not so much.

The more I know about God the more that I know that I need Him in charge of my life.

I resist His lead because I would rather go my own way.  I would rather call the shots.  This behavior is sin.  Why?  I am creating and following a counterfeit god not The God.

When I rely on counterfeit gods, myself included, I will end up unsatisfied.  Like a large piece of lasagna that seems good when I eat it, my digestive system in time will reveal the folly of my way.

“Lord, forgive me for turning away from You and following counterfeit gods.  They are all terminal and are lousy substitutes for You.  Forgive me for ignoring You.  Forgive me for not seeking Your Will.  Forgive me for not knowing You well enough to instinctively do Your Will.  Take me over entirely. I want You guiding me, O thou great Jehovah.”

Are you clinging to any counterfeit gods?  What could you not do without?  That’s your counterfeit god.

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Words to live by

“But as for me, it is good to be near God.  I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.”  Psalm 73:28.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading; Hosea 10-12, Psalm 73, and Hebrews 4.

Plenty of good instruction in today’s verse.

Being near to God is crucial.  God is already in the midst of the believer.  “Being near” requires my recognition of His presence.

I was part of a group interviewing Tim Tebow before a baseball game in Portland.  Every word Tim said was recorded and we all listened intently.

I must be tuned into the fact that the Holy Spirit is omnipresent.  He’s everywhere including the room in which I am writing this entry!  What does He think about what I am writing?  What would He want me to say?  I can ask.  I can let Him guide me.  Surely this is the wonder of having God in my midst.

God doesn’t leave me.  I ignore Him.  He’s where He has always been; nearby.

“Father, Your Words are the only ones that matter.  I am listening for them.  Open my heart to take them in.  I want to live right.  I want to please You.  I thank You for always being nearby.  Guide me to where You want me to go.  I surrender now to You.”

He’s right with you.  Live accordingly.

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