Friday, October 16, 2015

For Not All Have Faith

I need to be spending more time in God’s word. I can feel it when I am not. Things get out of focus and I have to recalibrate, get realigned. I haven’t even written much lately, other than school papers, because I have been so out of sorts.

The scripture that has struck me the most, during bible study each morning with my children, are James 2:10 and Deuteronomy 32:4.
10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it. (James 2:10. ESV.)

“The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he. (Deuteronomy 32:4. ESV.)

I would be lying if I said I do not struggle, sometimes, with these scripture passages. I am sure it is prideful of me to say I work really hard to live “upright”. To not intentionally hurt others, to not lie, cheat, or steal. To treat my family right and with love. To treat my friends and all I meet with respect, understanding, and love. To share Jesus with others. To walk in the spirit rather than the flesh and live out the fruits of the spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Only to find when I mess up along the way it negates everything. How frustrating! But, that is EXACTLY why when God looks at me He, thankfully, does not see me. He sees His precious Son who took away ALL of my sin. I am not saved because of my own efforts or behavior. It is because of Jesus and His grace and as a result I have the Holy Spirit and fruit. Not the other way around! See, I have to preach to myself, often!

Which, now, brings me to Deuteronomy 32:4. “Everything He does is just and fair.” Say what?! EVERYTHING! I can name some stuff I feel is not either of those…this thorn in my flesh for one! How on God’s green earth is THAT “just” and “fair”? I have suffered greatly because of it! And, why? I am a child of God! I am His! This “messenger of satan to harass me” (2 Corinthians 12:7) is not! How is that right? I am at His mercy…which He gives me, every day! And grace. And forgiveness. When I am angry and sad and struggling with hatred toward the thorn in my flesh, God’s grace is sufficient. When I reach out to others who either do not understand or do not seem to care, God reminds me I need Him alone.
It is better to take refuge in the Lord than in man (Psalm 118:8).
Always! I am to serve and love and trust in God, alone. I notice when I need that reminder the most, He removes all deep relationships from my life. At first I feel alone but then I realize, He’s showing me once again because I have forgotten…or am being stubborn.
I can do ALL THINGS through CHRIST who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13).
NOT man.

If I do not preach to myself, regularly, I begin to listen to my negative self-talk. And that does not do me any good, at all! I must immerse myself in the word of God and talk to Him regularly. No, I am not talking to myself, though I am sure that is how it appears, sometimes, as I am driving down the road chit chatting with God…thanking Him for the precious little lambs He has entrusted to me and praying for their souls and safety, each day. I am thankful I may approach the throne of grace, anytime, because of Jesus.

1 Finally, brothers, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, as happened among you, 2 and that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men. For not all have faith. 3 But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one. 4 And we have confidence in the Lord about you, that you are doing and will do the things that we command. 5 May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ. (2 Thessalonians 3:1-5. ESV.)

(Photo information: Bing Public Domain.)
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