Monday, June 24, 2019

still

God works in subtlety
he does not tend to wave his arms
in big sudden movements
but comes in a whisper
like a gentle breeze
that is easy to miss
if we aren't paying attention

Thursday, June 20, 2019

God and or God alone

For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken. (Psalm 62:1-2, ESV)

The Hebrew version of Psalm 62 starts with the word only:  “Only for God does my soul wait in silence.”  It then repeats that word numerous times over the next eight verses.  Needless to say, it is the major theme of the psalm.  God is the only one who is worthy of our trust, and we are only trusting in him when we trust in him alone.  A. W. Tozer says it this way: “When religion has said its last word, there is little that we need other than God himself.  The evil habit of God-and effectively prevents us from finding God in full revelation.  In the “and” lies our great woe.  If we omit the “and” we shall soon find God, and in him we shall find that for which we have all our lives been secretly longing.”

Unfortunately, it is a very short trip from God alone to God and.  It is a very subtle shift in thinking and in being that is very hard to recognize.  We start out trusting in God alone, and then, before we know it, we begin to trust in God and our own comfort, God and our own opinion, God and our own agenda, God and our own desired outcome.  Somewhere along the line our desires have shifted from God alone to God and, and we didn’t even recognize it.

So how are we to know when we are trusting in God and rather than God alone?  The psalm, once again, gives us a clue.  Whenever we trust in God alone, we are not shaken (v. 2, 6), whatever that may look like.  It is our reaction to circumstances and situations that will let us know where I real trust lies.  If I am too attached to a certain outcome or opinion, if I am consumed with a certain situation, if I am frustrated or defensive or argumentative—all of those are signs that I might be trusting in God and rather than God alone.  Which means that I must recognize it, confess it, and repent (turn around).  I need to turn from God and, and return to God alone.  For trusting in God alone takes a good healthy detachment from my own desires, preferences, and opinions.  It requires us to be indifferent to anything but the will of God.  God become the end, not merely a means to an end.

O Lord, help us to recognize all of the ways and all of the places where we are trusting in you and something (or someone) else.  Help us to let go of those things—whoever or whatever they may be—and return to you alone.  For you alone are my rock, my refuge, and my fortress.  My salvation and my honor depend on you—alone.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

with you


"Don’t try to fix it, just be still.  Don’t start running around like a crazy person trying to manage and manipulate and control things, just know that I am God.  Whether you believe it or not right now—whether it looks like it or not—I will be exalted.  Do not allow fear and anxiety and disappointment to get the best of you.  Nothing has changed, I am still the Lord God Almighty.  And I am still with you."

Saturday, June 8, 2019

low

O Lord, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me." ~Psalm 131:1


     The Water Song

Come, oh come!  Let us away
Lower, lower every day.
Oh, what joy it is to race
Down to the lowest place.
This the deepest law we know—
“It is happy to go low.”
Sweetest urge and sweetest will,
“Let us go down lower still.”
Hear the summons night and day
Calling us to come away.
From the heights we leap and flow
To the valleys down below.
Always answering the call,
To the lowest place of all.
Sweetest urge and sweetest pain,
To go low and rise again.
~Hannah Hurnard

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

find rest

My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from him.  He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.  (Psalm 62:1-2)

The only place your soul will truly find rest is in my unfailing love.  You will not find it in circumstances.  You will not find it in your own efforts.  You will not find it in the praise and admiration of others.  You will not find it in achievements and success.  You will not find it in what others think or say about you.  You will only find it in me…alone.  And only when your soul finds rest in my unfailing love alone, will you be able to love others the way I love you.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

becoming together

“How good and pleasant it is when brothers and sisters live together in unity.” (Psalm 133:1)

“We are never more ourselves than when we pray.  But if we remain only ourselves, then we are less than ourselves.” ~Eugene Peterson

We can only become our truest selves together.  It can never fully happen alone.  Only together will we ever have the courage and the strength and the wisdom it takes to stop listening to the lies of the world—and our insecure hearts—and listen to the Voice of the One who whispered us into being.  Only together will we ever be able to let go of the false self and become who and what we were really intended to be.  Alone we will always either cave in or chicken out.  Alone we will always be at the mercy of mood and whim and circumstance.  But together there is strength.  Together we are able to call each other to more—to being all that God desires us to be.  Now that really is good and pleasant!