“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jer 29:13)
There are people who spend incredible time and effort searching for God. Does God exist? If so, where! Some resort to books of philosophy and science where they pore through looking for a clue. Others engage in spirited debates deflecting every argument with their knowledge. Some wish that maybe they could have a “near death experience” to get a glimpse of the creator. And more!
Now ( and this may dissapoint some) the first way to find God is to have a childlike faith. “Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” (Mathew 19: 14). Of course, as we all know, the little ones will not give themselves the headache of “cross examining” facts. But God reveals Himself deeply to them!
Knowing ( or finding) God is not a right, as some think. Its a privilege. “All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him” ( Luke 10:22). Like a Grand chess player; it is the Creator with all the trump cards. At his pleasure, God chooses what part of Him to reveal or none at all!
What though God has given us is if we serve Him more then He can decide to show more of His likeness to the deserving. While on occasion God may reveal Himself to the un deserving, including the skeptic to make a point, the surest way of finding God is deepening your relation with Him through obedience and service.
Finally, if God decides to reveal Himself, it is He who decides how far. The Apostle Paul was one person who in his earthly life got to know more about God. Refering to himself in second person he writes, “I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell”’ (2 Cor 12: 1-4). Then Paul offered a caution, “But I refrain, so no one will think more of me than is warranted by what I do or say, or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me” ( vv 6-7).
What had happened to Paul is that God revealed Himself a bit. Note, never the full length and breadth of His entire vast nature. Also, God strapped a certain “gag” around Paul- such that he could not become “boastful”!
Do you really want to know God! Have the simple faith of a child. Serve God deeply. And then, of His choosing and time, God, will decide how much and far He blesses you with His knowledge of Him!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, for all my desire to know you, I accept you with the faith of a child, and in serving you, bless me with more of your knowledge, this I pray in Jesus’s name.
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“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful” – ( 2 Timothy 4:7).
Fighting may be looked at as a non-desirable way of life, especially by those who are pacifists. In fact, throughout Christian history there are many who have literally taken Jesus’s admonition of “turn the other cheek” in Mathew 5:39, to mean nonresistance in the face of attack. The fact that Jesus rebuked the Apostle Peter for drawing a sword against his captors ( Mathew 26:52), means giving in to those who attack them, as a sign of humility.
Yes, of course there are moments where Christians must practice that humility and give in to those who attack them well remembering His word, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay, says the Lord” ( Romans 12:19). However, that said, Believers in Christ would be mistaken to imagine that they must not fight for their faith, whenever under attack. For in reality, the faith of believers is under constant attack from Satan, who comes to “kill and destroy” ( John 10:1).
Faced with this, Paul went at great length to advise Christians to “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” ( Ephesians 6:11). To ward of constant attacks by the enemy Paul challenged us to “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” ( vv 14-17).
Paul is telling us that if you think that ours is a walk over faith where you are not going to fight back against the attacks of the enemy you are very mistaken. Fight we must, and hold our ground. The devil respects that! And when all is done, we can then gladly say, “we have fought the good fight, finished the race” and thank God Almighty we are free at last!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise ready to resist the attacks of the enemy, by wearing the full of armor of God, and with the sword of the Spirit, fight back to victory, this I pray in Jesus’ name!