Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Glimpses of Heaven

"He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters" Psalm 23:2

What a beautiful image the words of the 23rd Psalm paint in my mind when I hear them. 

I see a mountainous region, with towering peaks in the clouds. Below them lays a lush, green valley. In the valley is a meadow full of flowers and a cool, blue stream winds through it. This is the place the Shepherd leads me to. It feels like Heaven.

I know that my mind cannot picture what Heaven really is like. We probably do not have words to describe it. There may be sounds I've never heard before and colors I cannot see. God shows little glimpses of what Heaven will be like to me now so I do not lose hope. The beauty of a sunset, the taste of a delicious meal, the satisfaction of seeing a job finished after hard work are all tiny doses of Heaven.

I may not be in Heaven right now, but God is, and I can seek Him diligently each moment of my life.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Seeking God's Perspective

"Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things." Colossians 3:2

Whether I am happy or sad, peaceful or stressed, content or conflicted, simply depends on my perspective. There is more than one side to every story and more than a single point of view to look at life.

Too often I get wrapped up in what I want, what I think, and what I think I am feeling that I lose my perspective on the truth. I need to be able to move beyond myself and find a different perspective.

The truth originates with God. It is only by seeking Him and learning to see from God's point of view that I can see things as they truly are.

My days, my months and my years will have ups and downs but they may not be the mountains I perceive them to be when viewed from God's point of view.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Soaring by the Spirit

“So don’t be so surprised when I tell you that you have to be ‘born from above’—out of this world, so to speak. You know well enough how the wind blows this way and that. You hear it rustling through the trees, but you have no idea where it comes from or where it’s headed next. That’s the way it is with everyone ‘born from above’ by the wind of God, the Spirit of God.” John 3:7-8 (The Message)

I heard a sermon recently where the pastor described a Christian as being like a kite soaring in the wind. He said that until the wind filled up the kite and enabled it to fly and dance, it was a dead thing. We are like a kite soaring and dancing when God's Holy Spirit fills us up and we allow Him to carry us.

We are dead until we are made alive again by Christ and the indwelling of the Spirit. Sometimes it is difficult for us to fly, especially in the beginning, because we allow ourselves to be weighed down by our "excess baggage." A kite will not fly if it is too heavy, and neither can we soar by God's Spirit if we weigh ourselves down with too much of ourselves.

By letting go and letting God be God for us we are freed--from sin and the weight of running our world--to fly and dance with God.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Relax, Rest and Be Open To God

I, Jude, am a slave to Jesus Christ and brother to James, writing to those loved by God the Father, called and kept safe by Jesus Christ. Relax, everything’s going to be all right; rest, everything’s coming together; open your hearts, love is on the way! Jude 1:1 (The Message)

There it is, plainly written in The Message version of the Bible, the words "relax," "rest" and "open your hearts." What better way is there to describe the attitude I should have as God's child?

Relax, everything's going to be all right. No matter what I do or do not do--nay, even in spite of my sinfulness and pride--God will make everything all right for those who know Him and are obedient to Him.

Rest, eveything's coming together. It is happening, I should close my eyes, exhale, and release my supposed "control" and just let it be as God wills it.

Open your hearts, love is on the way! God is love. To prove this He sent Jesus Christ, His beloved Son--the best of God in the flesh--to call us, to teach us, to die for us, to be resurrected for us, and to lead us. I should be open to God's love and let it fill me.

Relax, rest, and be open to God.

Friday, June 14, 2013

The Meek

"But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity." Psalm 37:11 (NIV)

Who are "the meek?"

They are those who know God, who submit themselves to the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ, and who have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

We must remember that earth is not Heaven. We will have troubles and there will be turmoil. We will also enjoy happiness and know love. This world is the battleground between God and sin. As long as there is sin in this world we will suffer from it.

But we have hope, a future awaits us in Heaven where "the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity."

To get there we must simply follow God.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

All Will Be Still

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10 NIV

God will be exalted, and there is nothing anyone can do to stop it or otherwise affect it.

God is. Many of us know God personally and expectantly watch for Him. Many do not know God, many deny Him.

Just as sure as we are that the entire awesomeness of the created Universe--everything from the grandest galaxies in space to the tiniest particles of matter--speaks to the existence of God, we are sure that God will be exalted.

Everyone will be still before Him because we won't be able to help ourselves before the glory of God, even those who do not believe up and until that moment.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Transformation and Revelation

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. Romans 1:20 (NIV)

Now that I have been reborn as a new creature through my faith in Jesus I can clearly understand and agree with this verse from the Bible. But before, when I was lost in the darkness, I never would have agreed nor understood it.

Atheists, and others who are too close to sin see, cannot comprehend the meaning of Romans 1:20. It is only when God opens our eyes and ears, when He transforms our minds, that we are able to see clearly. God reveals Himself to those whom He chooses. We cannot open the eyes and ears of someone lost in the dark, nor do we transform them. But we can be the vehicle God uses to begin the revelation of Himself to someone.

Just because God choose who He calls and then does the transforming work does not mean we do not have our parts to play. We must always be ready and expectantly watching for those who have recently had their first contact with God.