Tuesday, July 4, 2017

When There Is No Other

“…so that from the rising of the sun to the place of its setting men may know there is none besides me.  I am the LORD, and there is no other.  I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things… ‘let righteousness grow with it; I, the LORD, have created it.’” Isaiah 45:6-8.

To fully experience the face of God we must revere the sovereignty of His power, but remember the motivation of His heart.  He wills circumstances into our lives that are both joyful and sorrowful… blessings and calamities.  But this verse also tells us that these situations are means to the beautiful end…righteousness in Christ and the strength to face any adversity that comes our way.  Whatever we are experiencing we can be confident that God is equipping us to walk through it.  Adversity is not sent to us just for the sake of experiencing it.  It finds a way to burn off the things of this worldly kingdom and purify the things of the spiritual kingdom.  Adversity shines a bright light on what we really believe and the depth of our faith.

Our passage gives a clear message of God’s desire as the outcome of our circumstances…the growth of our righteousness.  Through our increasing righteousness we become more aware of what has previously gripped our hearts and mastered over us.   

J. I. Packer once wrote, ‘Still he seeks the fellowship of his people and sends them both sorrows and joys in order to detach their love from other things and attach it to himself.’  We all have been guilty of this in the past or maybe even in our present circumstances.  So, I ask each of us this morning:  To what have we attached ourselves that has wreaked havoc in our lives?  Does that attachment continue to master over us bringing chaos and painful circumstances?  What will it take to replace that destructive attachment with the wholehearted attachment to God?  

God wants to bless us with His abundance and lavish love but He will wait until we are ready to receive it.  He will continue to create situations that will urge us to lay down the things that no longer work for who we are in Him.   Whether it is a behavior, an attitude or a fear that paralyzes us we must engage in constant fellowship with the only One who can set us free.

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.  Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by the yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5:1.

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