Know Before You Go

Know Before You Go

“Be still, and know that I am God; . . .” Psalm 46:10a (NIV)

Just the facts.

That’s what I want.

For God to spell it out, step by step, where to go, what to do, with whom, the end result, and all the whys behind it tied neatly with a bow.

God, instead, puts relationship first. Since He knows us so well, the discovery becomes ours: who He is, who we are, and who we can be in Him. Scroll through the Old Testament and we find a lengthy list of names for God. Spend a few moments with each name, and we find a circumstance where a person looked for a to-do list, but came away with a new Who:

  • Hagar, the willful servant who overstepped her boundaries, discovered the God Who Sees Me, in spite of her sin (Genesis 16:13).
  • Moses, the runaway prince turned shepherd, found I Am Who I Am, his true God and King and regained his calling (Exodus 3:14).
  • The once self-sufficient Abraham realized God was the LORD Who Provides (Genesis 22:13-14).

Did instructions follow? Often.

Yet before instruction, God gave revelation.

Why?

Because God’s not interested in employees. He wants sons and daughters willing to work alongside their Father.

Someone who’s willing to feed the Spirit’s flame rather than setting the thermostat on auto.

So, before you seek His will, sit at His feet. Know before you go.

Workout of the Week: Know Before You Go

Memory Verse: “Be still, and know that I am God; . . .” Psalm 46:10a

Meditation Passage: Psalm 46

Just Do It: Know before you go.

Chosen

Chosen

 

Chosen

You are chosen.

Not like kids picking sides for kickball at recess.

Chosen by His good pleasure.

Like it or not, God is selective.

Ephesians 1:4-5 (NIV) tells us about our choosing, “For he [God] chose us in him [Christ] before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his [God’s] sight. In love he [God] predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.”

Here are some training notes. Think of it as mental prep for the week:

Timeless: Your choosing was timeless. Before creation itself was called into being, He knew and chose you. If that doesn’t blow your socks off, check your pulse.

Different: You were chosen to be different. Holy. Blameless. All of God’s purity and holiness lives in you. Equipped with the Holy Spirit, you can master sin and live in continual fellowship with God.

Permanent: Your choosing was forever. Eternal on both ends. You’ve been adopted. You’re family. It’s for keeps.

Gracious: God chose you just because. Nothing you could do would make Him choose you or skip you. It’s His pleasure.

Praise His glorious grace.

Now, go nail your spiritual workouts and change your corner of the gym.

Workout of the Week: Chosen

Memory Verse: “For he [God] chose us in him [Christ] before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his [God’s] sight.” Ephesians 1:4 NIV

Meditation Passage: Ephesians 1: 11-14

Just Do It: Before God made one drop of water, He chose you. Now, act like it.

Tweetables:

Like it or not, God is selective. Click to tweet.

Your choosing was timeless. Click to tweet.

You were chosen to be different. Click to tweet.

Your choosing was forever. Click to tweet.

God chose you just because. Click to tweet.

Abide: Spiritual Staying Power

Abide: Spiritual Staying Power

Abide. What does that word mean to you? Merriam-Webster defines abide as:

  • To accept or bear
  • To stay or live somewhere
  • To remain or continue

Stay with me, because it was the synonyms and antonyms that caught my attention.

Synonyms: stay, dwell, hang around, remain, stick around, tarry

Antonyms: bail, bail out, bug out, buzz (off), clear off, clear out, cut out, depart, exit, get off, go, go off, leave, move, pack, peel off, pike, pull out, pull off, push off, push on, quit, shove (off), take off, vamoose, walk out

Our culture does not abide well. We are the anti-abiding culture. Examples? The divorce rate. Split families. Job turnover.

Thankfully, God is different.

In Hebrews 13:5, the author, quoting from Deuteronomy, says, “Never will I [God] leave you; never will I forsake you.” Brother Lawrence and Frank Laubach in the book Practicing God’s Presence advocate being mindful of God’s presence with you each and every moment of each and every day. Jesus takes it a step further and gives us a word picture, “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5 NASB)

In Romans 11, Paul speaks of how we as Gentile believers were grafted into God’s family, pictured by an olive tree, “and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root.” (Romans 11:17 NIV)

To receive nourishment, we must abide.

Stay put.

Graft in.

Become one with Him.

Is staying put so hard? To simply receive and grow?

Too many branches break off on their own accord and go wandering. They wonder why the life within withers and dies.

So abide.

Commit for keeps.

Stay connected to your Vine and allow His Spirit to empower budding, blossoming, and fruit-bearing as a result of the ultimate connection to the Savior.

Questions:

What’s your branch status?

Thriving? Fair? Dry?

Where are you?

Wandering? Distracted? Connected?

How do you need to connect?

What hinders your connecting and abiding?

Tweetables:

It was the antonyms that caught my attention. Click to tweet.

We are the anti-abiding culture. Click to tweet.

Is staying put so hard? To simply receive and grow? Click to tweet.

Too many branches break off on their own accord. They wander and wither. Click to tweet.