LORD, PLEASE SAVE ME FROM MYSELF!

20 03 2017

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How does God choose a man or woman to use for his glory? People are often way too easily impressed and swayed by qualities that while valuable to the human race are just not that important to God. Men and women tend to be drawn to those that are physically attractive. Studies show that Teachers spend much more quality time helping the better looking students in their education. It is the bold and beautiful that makes the covers of magazines. It is the charismatic speaker that can actually get away with fudging on the facts as long as he or she is heavy on the charm. God does not particularly champion the external traits of popularity, humor, academic intelligence, being an extrovert, and so on like the masses do. If an individual is so full of themselves you can best be sure that there would be no room for God to move through that person. So the Lord will always choose the meek and humble spirit over the proud and haughty selfie king. Crowds are notorious for choosing the wrong people with the wrong qualities for all the wrong reasons! What is in down here is out up there where the Lord’s will reigns supreme.

 Whose words are you more influenced by, the Lord’s or your own? Would you still choose to obey God even if you weren’t too crazy about the agenda? Are you settling for short text type prayers rather than entering fully into a conversation with the Lord because you don’t feel comfortable in not being able to control the dialogue? Are you only offering Heaven a much edited, fully filtered view of who you really are on earth? Can you honestly let it all hang out or do you guard the image you portray for your public in much the same way a bodyguard would conceal the celebrity that hired him? How has God saved you from yourself or are you living life vicariously through your social media devices? Selfies anyone?

 In the midst of a society and rule that desires to push God out of the picture completely, leaving the Lord unworshiped, and blatantly ignored; is God absent? When evil appears to be running rampant and injustice is just another word for anything goes, has God abandoned the big cities for some peace and quiet and alone time in the Bahamas?  People who have chosen to be selfish need to understand that they will only someday reap what they have sewn. If a person thinks that he or she can pull a fast one on the Almighty, they better slow down quickly! If you keep pushing for a world where God is only cosmetic window dressing, don’t be shocked when the Lord gives you what you have been asking for. If a nation chooses to plant thorn bushes over olive trees and grape vines then they must not be surprised when they harvest a whole lot of hell. 

 Where is God when all this bad stuff is happening? How can a good Father allow such lousy results? Who are Believers supposed to trust when life proves to be so unfair? I hear these questions all the time. Just because God might seem silent doesn’t mean that God is absent! Just because you can’t see the Lord doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have his eyes focused upon you.

 When I was at Philadelphia College of Bible, I was one of four Seniors who were chosen to preach a message before the whole student body in a Chapel Service. I was beyond excited and very nervous. I had so hoped that my Dad would be able to come down and be there to hear me give this message. Having so many siblings didn’t make that a sure bet. As I stood up to bring the sermon that morning, I looked out in the crowd but could not find my Father anywhere. Right away discouragement began to speak lies to my brain. I immediately hushed that nonsense and I proceeded to passionately exegete the text of Ephesians 3:14-21. I was flying high by the end of my message; and was even more shocked when I walked down from the stage to find that my Dad had been there the whole time. Just because I couldn’t see him didn’t negate the fact that he could see me! The same is true with God. Emmanuel means “God with us” and there is never a time when he has abandoned us like an old car on a deserted highway. Heaven’s silence doesn’t equal to an earthly solo act. The same Lord who began a good work in us will bring it to a victorious finish if we only faithfully continue to trust and obey.    

 I hate waiting; but if I don’t choose to be still and if I selfishly proceed to take matters into my own hands, disaster is soon on the horizon. Three days, three years, three centuries doesn’t cancel out a promise that God has made us. He is the ultimate promise keeper and it is always too soon to resort to taking the steering wheel away from the God who will come through just like he said he would. We all must learn patience and trust.

 We may have sunk to new record depths of disobedience to the Lord and we may not even consider admitting our sorrow; but that doesn’t prevent God from being right there with the rescue process ready to kick in. Sometimes our greatest enemy is ourselves. God’s people, ultimately, need a Savior who will rescue us from ourselves, from the failings and ambitions of our own hearts, and from the divisions and strife that we cause among us. Aren’t you glad that God knows all about us and isn’t surprised by our bad behavior and terrible manners? Maybe today the prayer we all need to pray is something like this, “Dear Lord, I ask for your way in my life and keep me out of the way from allowing it to happen! Please save me from my own stubborn self.”  


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