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alone with God

It has been my desire and prayer for a while to draw closer to God. You ask, “Isn’t that every Christian’s desire?” It should be. But do we really act on that desire? Or do we just say it?

Yesterday one of the Bro’s at church testified to the same desire. He spoke how God told him, (and I paraphrase) “If that is what you want, do your part. Take more time to be with me. If you can spend hours online, you have time to spend with me. You want to draw closer, you read more, you pray more. I am here, you make the time to know me better.”

I too have heard God tell me this…take more time to spend with me. He said it again yesterday through testimony. I made a determination to put this into practice. Not to just say I want to draw closer, I need to read the Bible more, I need to pray more…but to do it. If I have to, I will make an appointment to spend the time with God. What I have done in the past is no longer enough for me. I desire a deeper relationship with God. To truly be one with Him and Him in me.

prayWhen I have prayed about the different things that I struggle with, the thought has come, if more time was spent in the Word and in Prayer, these “things” wouldn’t be such a trial. You would have more strength and a greater back bone to handle the temptations and situations presented by the enemy of souls. A benefit of drawing closer to God, is gaining the complete victory that has previously alluded me because of decisions I have made to please the flesh.

As I am structure or schedule oriented, I have made a plan. It will at least help get this started. While it may seem funny and one may think that it isn’t right to be so “organized” about it, but let the spirit move. Yes we need to be guided by the Holy Spirit, but God gave us a mind and free will. If this is how I am going to get my flesh under control and set time aside for God, then so be it. This is what I will do.

I am going to stBible-and-handsart a study in Romans. Read a little each day, pull out a nugget and meditate on it. I will also use one of the Streams in the Desert books as a supplemental reading. I want to specifically take time to pray for those at work and the day ahead before I walk in the door. This in addition to a morning prayer. I want to specifically pray and give thanks for my food. Yes I am faithful to be thankful. But sometimes I find myself just saying “Thanks for the food”. Again, there is nothing wrong with this. And I am not saying that there has to be a 10 min prayer at every meal, but I want to take more time and talk to God, not just at him. Not just out of form or repetition or habit, but to make a connection with him.

Since writing helps me process what I read and think, I shall share my journey. Starting with Romans 1.

Romans was written to Saints. To us. To those that are saved and living with out sin. Not to sinners. (Although there is good for them too)  Romans 1:7 reads “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints…” The beautiful thing about the Bible is that it is current and applicable for us as saints just as it was to the Romans that Paul wrote to.

Paul starts his letter to the Romans with his commendations (vs 1-5), he testimony of where he came from. He follows this with a greeting and a desire to visit the saints (vs7-13). In this he mentions that he is looking forward to working with the saints to bring in a harvest. Ready to preach the gospel and not being ashamed of God’s work.

 

Paul is an exampannouncerle to us. Always ready to enter the work of God where needed. Always ready to speak of God. Not shrinking from duty or other opinions that might oppose God’s truth. Romans 1:16-17 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God to salvation to every one that believeth: to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” Paul recognizes the power that is in the gospel and how it can change a soul and give life. This is what he wants to bring to those in and around Rome.

We too need to take this example, to not be ashamed, but to recognize the great power in God and the gospel, the good news about Christ and spread that to those around us. Whom have we spoken to about Christ recently? Have you shared what God has done form you? Have you said a word about Christ? Are you ashamed or are you willing to be lead by the spirit and speak of the gospel?

 

In Revelations 1:8 God states that he is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending…it hit me this morning…and maybe I am a little slow sometimes, but this just doesn’t apply to us spiritually or metaphorically, but very personally. For each relationship, situation, new start, He needs to be the beginning and ending of it. Our choices and decisions need to begin with him and end with him. If we are careful to keep God at the start and throughout each decision, we can be sure that our steps will be led by him.

Last week in the Bible discussion group on Wednesday we spoke about silver and how it is used in the Bible.

1. In the days of Christ, 30 pieces of silver was the price of a slave. That was the value that was put on Jesus. He was worth no more than a slave to Judas and the Pharisees that bought him. However it was that “worthless human”, Jesus Christ that paid for our sins. He alone was the acceptable sacrifice. 1 Peter 1:18 and 19 reads “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:” We were bought by the priceless sacrifice of Jesus whom the world deemed worthless.

2. Silver a costly and precious metal is used as a representation for the value of wisdom and understanding through out the Old Testament. We read this in: Proverbs 2:3-5 “Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.” 3:13-14 “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.” 8:10-11 “Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold. For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.“ 16:16 “How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!” Let us value those things that need to be valued. Wisdom and understanding are not just for those that are older and have followed God for years, it is something that all saints need to strive to increase.

I have been thinking a lot about life, the plans we make, and the paths we take. Who directs those? What is our motivation? What gives us direction? Here are the scriptures and thoughts I came up with.

In Bible study this last week our lesson was on this topic and this scripture stood out to me. Proverbs 16:9 KJV “A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” In my personal study I read the previous verses in both the King James Version and the Amplified. The Amplified reads as follows starting in verse 1:

The plans of the mind and orderly thinking belong to man, but from the Lord comes the [wise] answer of the tongue. All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirits – the thoughts and intents of the heart. Roll your works upon the Lord – commit and trust them wholly to Him; [He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed. (I stopped at this thought of God causing our thoughts become agreeable to his will. This is highly important for our plans to succeed. If our motivation and desire is to do God’s will, he will turn our thoughts so they accept and follow his perfect plan.) … When a man’s ways please the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. Better is a little with righteousness – uprightness in every area and human relation and right standing with God – than great revenues with injustice. A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps and makes them sure.

There was a reference over to Psalms 37:23-24:

The steps of a [good] man are directed and established of the Lord, when He delights in his way [and He busies Himself with his every step]. Though he fall, he shall nor be utterly cast down, for the Lord grasps his hand in support and upholds him. Amplified

I was so encouraged by this, that if our motivation and desire is to seek and follow God’s will for our life, he will direct and guide us. But not only that, when we step ahead of him and fall, he doesn’t leave us on the ground saying it is our fault, he helps us to get back on our feet, dusts us off, and gets us going on the path that we needed to be on.

Seek God for direction in your life and be determined to follow his lead where ever it may take you.

I got this in an email today and thought I would share it. Do you have the that link that ties Man and God together.

 

An Atheist Professor of Philosophy was speaking to his Class on the Problem Science has with GOD, the ALMIGHTY. He asked one of his New Christian Students to stand and . . .

Professor : You are a Christian, aren’t you, son ?

Student : Yes, sir.

Professor : So, you Believe in GOD ?

Student : Absolutely, sir.

Professor : Is GOD Good ?

Student : Sure.

Professor : Is GOD ALL – POWERFUL ?

Student : Yes.

Professor : My Brother died of Cancer even though he Prayed to GOD to Heal him. Most of us would attempt to help others who are ill. But GOD didn’t. How is this GOD good then? Hmm?

(Student was silent )

Professor : You can’t answer, can you ? Let’s start again, Young Fella. Is GOD Good?

Student : Yes.

Professor : Is Satan good ?

Student : No.

Professor : Where does Satan come from ?

Student : From . . . GOD . .. . 

Professor : That’s right. Tell me son, is there evil in this World?

Student : Yes.

Professor : Evil is everywhere, isn’t it ? And GOD did make everything. Correct?

Student : Yes.

Professor : So who created evil ?

(Student did not answer)

Professor : Is there Sickness? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things exist in the World, don’t they?

Student : Yes, sir.

Professor : So, who Created them ?

(Student had no answer)

Professor : Science says you have 5 Senses you use to Identify and Observe the World around you.. Tell me, son . . . Have you ever Seen GOD?

Student : No, sir.

Professor : Tell us if you have ever Heard your GOD?

Student : No , sir.

Professor : Have you ever Felt your GOD, Tasted your GOD, Smelt your GOD? Have you ever had any Sensory Perception of GOD for that matter?

Student : No, sir. I’m afraid I haven’t.

Professor : Yet you still Believe in HIM?

Student : Yes.

Professor : According to Empirical, Testable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says your GOD doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son?

Student : Nothing.. I only have my Faith.

Professor : Yes,Faith. And that is the Problem Science has.

Student : Professor, is there such a thing as Heat?

Professor : Yes.

Student : And is there such a thing as Cold?

Professor : Yes.

Student : No, sir. There isn’t. 

(The Lecture Theatre became very quiet with this turn of events)

Student : Sir, you can have Lots of Heat, even More Heat, Superheat, Mega Heat, White Heat,  a Little Heat or No Heat. But we don’t have anything called Cold. We can hit 458 Degrees below Zero which is No Heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no such thing as Cold. Cold is only a Word we use to describe the Absence of Heat. We cannot Measure Cold. Heat is Energy. Cold is Not the Opposite of Heat, sir, just the Absence of it.

(There was Pin-Drop Silence in the Lecture Theatre )

Student : What about Darkness, Professor? Is there such a thing as Darkness?

Professor : Yes. What is Night if there isn’t Darkness?

Student : You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is the Absence of Something . You can have Low Light, Normal Light, Bright Light, Flashing Light . . . But if you have No Light constantly, you have nothing and its called Darkness, isn’t it? In reality, Darkness isn’t. If it is, were you would be able to make Darkness Darker, wouldn’t you?

Professor : So what is the point you are making, Young Man ?

Student : Sir, my point is your Philosophical Premise is flawed.

Professor : Flawed ? Can you explain how?

Student : Sir, you are working on the Premise of Duality. You argue there is Life and then there is Death, a Good GOD and a Bad GOD. You are viewing the Concept of GOD as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, Science can’t even explain a Thought. It uses Electricity and Magnetism, but has never seen, much less fully understood either one. To view Death as the Opposite of Life is to be ignorant of the fact that Death cannot exist as a Substantive Thing. Death is Not the Opposite of Life: just the Absence of it. Now tell me, Professor, do you teach your Students that they evolved from a Monkey?

Professor : If you are referring to the Natural Evolutionary Process, yes, of course, I do.

Student : Have you ever observed Evolution with your own eyes, sir?

(The Professor shook his head with a Smile, beginning to realize where the Argument was going )

Student : Since no one has ever observed the Process of Evolution at work and Cannot even prove that this Process is an On-Going Endeavor, Are you not teaching your Opinion, sir? Are you not a Scientist but a Preacher?
(The Class was in Uproar )

Student : Is there anyone in the Class who has ever seen the Professor’s Brain?

(The Class broke out into Laughter)

Student : Is there anyone here who has ever heard the Professor’s Brain, Felt it, touched or Smelt it? . . . No one appears to have done so. So, according to the Established Rules of Empirical, Stable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says that You have No Brain, sir. With all due respect, sir, how do we then Trust your Lectures, sir?

(The Room was Silent.. The Professor stared at the Student, his face unfathomable)

Professor : I guess you’ll have to take them on Faith, son.

Student : That is it sir . . . Exactly! The Link between Man & GOD is FAITH. That is all that Keeps Things Alive and Moving.

NB:

That student was Albert Einstein.

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