Saturday, 24 August 2019

I Saw the Light

A week ago I posted a story about how I saw my demon.  Today I wanted to share the lesson that I’ve learned, and am continuing to learn, from that experience and from life in general.

People have their own viewpoints about the spiritual realm, and it is not my intention to make any statements of complete understanding of that which I’m sure is not so easily understood.  Yet it seems apparent to me that the “demon” I saw, which was representative of something real and dangerous, was also caused by what I was letting myself dwell in.

I was continuing on the path of seeing my own sin, and my own inability to escape from it.  I was focusing on my fear of it and my failures.

Mentally, I “knew” the answer.  I put that into quotations because sometimes it’s easy to know something by theory without the experiencing of it.  We all know that water is wet and can quench thirst.  But we know it at a different level when the liquid is on our tongues.

I was hyper-aware of the demon, but what I needed to do is to be hyper-aware of God’s presence.

What comes to mind when I quote the following passage?

On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink.  Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.~ John 7:37-38

Do you “know” that to be true?  For those of you who do, are you thinking, “yes, Jesus is the answer for all of us,” or are you thinking, “woo hoo!  I am blessed by the Saviour and it’s awesome!  Come, everyone, with me to this fountain of living water!”

Knowing that God is present means that we are just as open to hearing his voice speak to us at this present time as we are ready to hear from the person standing across from us.  It’s recognizing that God wants to speak to us, and He longs to spend time with us!

Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.~ James 4:8

Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”?~ James 4:5

I want to point out that this isn’t about “staying positive,” or about having an emotional response.  We are to focus on what is good and pure (Philippians 4:8), but it isn’t about psyching ourselves up.  It’s about recognizing the truth.  Sometimes the truth is painful, especially when we see our own shortcomings.

Let me repeat a verse I quoted earlier, but in context.

“Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.~ James 4:8-10

We need to recognize that although God is forgiving and He loves us, that there’s actually parts of us that He forgave, parts that were offenses against Him and that we should repent from.

Repentance is more than just saying “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” and recognizing our failures, but actually changing our direction to the right one.

It’s hard to go in the right direction, which is why the lesson I learned is so pertinent.  Believe that God will save you, and actually trust Him to do it.  “That is a life-saver,” means something completely different to someone who is on a boat than to the one being held on the surface of the water by the floatation device.  One actually believes something when they act accordingly.

Here is some truth that helped me, and I pray that it will be truth that I will continue to rest in…

Psalm 63-

O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you;
    my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you,
    as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
    beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
    my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live;
    in your name I will lift up my hands.

My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food,
    and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips,
when I remember you upon my bed,
    and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help,
    and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
    your right hand upholds me.

Doesn’t that sound awesome!  God wants to be our source of pleasure, our source of joy, our strength, our very object of focus!

God created us as image-bearers of Him, and the more we look upon His glory, the more we let ourselves see Him revealing Himself to us, the more we will be able to let him work in us and through us.

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” ~ 2 Peter 1:3

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