Monthly Archives: June 2016

Who are You???

Meditation Journey Day 40                            

Hi Friend, ready to break camp and move on? This meditative journey into Psalm 139 has been exciting to me even though I have been walking through it for many years. This is true of all God’s Word. It never becomes boring when He walks us through His beautiful Kingdom of grace.

Ahead on our journey, in verses 13-16, are the  majestic mountains

VLUU L200  / Samsung L200

Majestic Mountains of Purpose

of Purpose. From their heights we will see the amazing and wonderful way God made us. David, the author of this psalm, will break into spontaneous praise and thanksgiving as he marvels at God’s creative work. I pray that we too will have eyes to see God’s beautiful purpose in us. God, help us to have ears to hear the whispers of Your joy in us in the gentle breeze of the Holy Spirit.

Today, please pause and read through these four verses of Psalm 139:13-16 several times. Allow the Holy Spirit to begin to engraft them into your soul.

 “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.  My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.  Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.”

The world says we are simply biological accidents that emerged from the slime; just smart Hex coil 1germs. God says we are His beloved children made for a holy and high purpose. We have been formed to be His instruments of grace and love.

Remember, God’s word is “living and active.” (Hebrews 4) As you humbly receive His word you allow it to work in your heart. Receiving the truth that God has a divine and unique purpose for some people is very hard to believe. Please pray with me that each of us reading this today will began to see the distinctive and very special person God created us to be.

Observation: David gives us the revelation of how and why God created us in verses 13-16. He is overwhelmed by the purpose and plans of God for his life.

Interpretation: Knowing we are created by God with purpose is a powerful understanding. The world says people are just naked apes that come and go like any other animal. God’s word shatters that lie as we receive and believe the truth through Psalm 139.

Application Prayer: Father God, Thank you for making me. I am in awe that you take such interest in me. I am sure I will never fully understand why you saved me, but please help me to glorify you each day. Please help me to fulfill the purpose you created me for in this world. … in Jesus Name, Amen.

What is your take away?

The Wicked Weapon of Rejection

Meditation Journey Day 39    

Hi Friend, Though you might like to read a comment about last weeks Meditative Journey:

Hey Pastor Neil,

I’ve wanted to thank you for all the messages that you send, they are great to read. I appreciate the time you take to help those of us who don’t understand the word of God as easy as you do. Thank you for all you do to help me get closer to the Almighty!!!

JM

Now back to Psalm 139……..

Rejection is a wicked weapon in the hands of our Enemy. The need to know we are unconditionally accepted by God is vital to our spiritual growth. Satan will use people and circumstances to slam our hearts with the feeling we do not belong and are unloved. Knowing what God says and thinks about us becomes our shield of faith. It gives us strength to face the rejection that we experience in our world. Psalm 139 verses 7-12 express very strongly God’s truth about our place of belonging in His heart.

Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol (hell), you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

The eleventh verse of this section again focuses on David’s rebellious choice of trying to run and hide from God; this time it is in darkness. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night.” Hiding in darkness is the natural bent of mankind. In John 3, Jesus had a piercing commentary on why people like the darkness, “For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.”  

When we sin, our human nature wants to hide.Adam

We become afraid. We got this bent from our first parents Adam and Eve. “They sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.  And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.” Genesis 3

They tried to conceal their nakedness with fig leaves and then when God approached them they ran into the darkness. We still act the same way.

What David finds in hiding is the consistent presence of God, even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.”

Rejection 2We know God is everywhere because He is omnipresent, but what these verses reveal is the attitude He has toward us everyplace we go. In all places, but hell, we will find the loving kindness of God. In our last meditative entry (38) we learned when we take the wings of the morning and rebelliously run away He is there dancing with us. At our deepest despair and most wicked moment, God’s attitude towards us is never condemnation and further rejection. For His children, it is unconditional love, mercy and grace. His love for us is not determined by our behavior, but by His patient enduring mercy given to us through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

I trust this truth about God’s grip of grace on you will help you to turn to Him continually. Satan wants us to hide in fear; God calls us to walk with Him in the light of His confident love. Christ is with you in the great times, the good times, and even the really bad times! This even includes your worse choices and decisions.

I pray that you continually allow your soul to soak in the truth of these verses. The message of God’s gracious love can be easily pushed aside when we are hit by the fiery arrows of our Enemy. Please humbly tend the garden of your heart with the confidence of God’s loving presence in your life.

Observation: David, like Adam and Eve, ran and hid from God. In verse 11 he tried darkness, but even there God was with him. As His children, there is no place in our existence where we are ever away from our loving God.

Interpretation: God’s gracious love extended in unconditional terms is astounding for all who trust in Jesus Christ. That He takes our worse choices and works them together for our good and His glory is comforting. We will always face the consequences of our choices, but never will we face them without His gracious presence. This is all because of the love poured out on us through Jesus Christ!

Application Prayer: Father God, I am so grateful you sent Jesus to die for me. I may feel alone, but I know those feelings are never true. You are always with me, always holding me. I humbly surrender to you and trust your love to guide me.  … in Jesus Name, Amen.

What is your take away?

 

Does God Dance with you?

Meditation Journey Day 38

Hi Friend,

Psalm 139 is a very condensed communication of God’s mercy and loving kindness to each of us. It is reasonable to believe God loves me when I am doing well, but to think He still loves me at my worst stretches my faith.

Consider verses 9 & 10 in our journey: “If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.” They tell us of the tender and reassuring love of God even when we are very sinful and rebellious. It is reasonable to believe God loves me when I am doing well, but to think He still loves me at my worst stretches my faith. In Psalm 139 this is exactly what David, the writer f this Psalm, is reporting.

First, I need to tell you why I can say God’s love is so consistent even when we are willfully disobeying Him. The very simple answer is Jesus’s sacrifice. Jesus Christ died for all our sin; all our past rebellion, present willfulness, and even our future wickedness. Trusting His sacrifice pays for all the moral debt we owe. When we put our faith in His righteousness we also receive His merit of goodness. From the moment we exchange our rags of self-righteousness for His moral purity, God looks at us differently. Paul said it this way,

What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone. A new life has begun! All this newness of life is from God, who brought us back to himself through what Christ did…  For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.” 2 Corinthians 5

Now read the verses again, “If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.” David is remembering times when he willfully and rebelliously ran from God. He wanted to fly away and find a place where he could live his own way. No matter where David went he found God there! What is remarkable to David and should be to us, is God’s attitude and actions towards David. Notice God’s one hand is leading David and the other, God’s right hand is holding David. Allow me to suggest this is a dancing position. God is facing David looking at him directly in the eyes and God’s left hand is holding David’s right hand. God’s right hand is around David’s waist and holding him.

Knowing more about the hands is very important in our meditation. The right hand is a term in scripture that refers to the power and might of a person.  The right hand of God is a metaphor for all the power of God! Consider with me the placement of the hands in these verses.  David’s right hand, all his human strength, is being held and directed by God’s left hand. It is when David’s strength is finally rendered powerless that he realizes he is in the hands of God. He is at the end of his rope and yet God is leading him. God’s right hand, His power and might, is holding David. Just like David, at our most wretched moments when we are in rebellion to God, he is still holding and leading us. This is hard to Dance 3imagine but the placement of Father God’s hands resemble the placement of someone dancing! Is it possible that when we are at our worst God posture is to dance with us!!!  Grace says this is true, but our minds resist this kind of grace.

That my friend is the kind of love I need and have found in Jesus Christ. I find this overwhelmingly kind and precious of God to be so patient with my failure and sin. This Psalm made it real to me at my worse moments, and God will reveal the depth of His great love for you as you fill your mind and heart with His Word.  Remember Proverbs 2, “My, Child if you will receive my word…”

Have you taken the wings of the morning? Do you wish to run away from life and are you struggling against the grip of God? Know that at your worse He is still dancing with you. Please turn to Him now and trust Him so the dance can be enjoyed by both of you!

My your day be filled with grace and peace…. from the Lover of your soul…Jesus!

 

Observation: David finds even when he willfully runs from God, The Lord never leaves him. He also realizes that when he is in rebellion God is still holding him.

Interpretation: God’s attitude and actions at David’s greatest failures is pure grace and love. The way God is holding David appears to be a loving and kind posture. This is a picture of great grace and mercy at our lowest moments.

Application Prayer: Father God, thank you for sending Jesus and covering my sin. I was so afraid that when I chose my own way you would leave me in my brokenness. Knowing that you are always there holding me helps me trust you and relax in your faithful love. … in Jesus Name, Amen.

What is your take away?