Monday, January 12, 2009
The other day at work I was talking with a couple of people and the topic turned to religion. One of the nurses made the comment how she didn't understand why people (her parents especially), who claimed to be saved, still clung to this world so much. Why their lives didn't look much different, and how they feared death, even though the scriptures they believed in gave such hope. It turned into discussion of varying religions, and the benefits of believing in them. With the world at our fingertips, so to speak, we now have a smorgasbord of even religions to pick from. As a kid I don't recall anybody being anything but a Christian, or maybe Jehovah's Witness, in our small community. Now anything is possible.
So, as I was reading in Ephesians this morning, that conversation came back to my mind. Paul writes:I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance of the saints, and his incomparable great power for us who believe.
Wow! I want that! Wisdom and revelation so that I may know God better. I want the eyes of my heart enlightened in order that I may know the hope to which He has called me. To see the riches of His glorious inheritance to me, and His great power for me because I believe.
John and Stasi Eldridge, in their book Captivating, talk about people in church. (This won't turn into a church thing, I promise!) Take a look around at the people in church, or even in your Christian circle. Do they look like people who are enthralled by God? Seeking for his wisdom and revelation that they may know him more. Trusting and obeying Him? Living just for Him? It is interesting to watch people in Christian circles just to watch for this. I'm not talking about who has perfected the outside appearance, or who has the least sin showing, but who is truly seeking and found that great joy and power that is promised. I haven't found too many, sad to say. Most of them are too busy squabbling about who said what, or who is on the nursery schedule, or who has to clean up after potluck.
I find myself truly wanting those things in my life. I want to daily, every moment actually, walk so close to God that I can feel Him by my side. To pray and trust and live in such a way that it is evident. That people wonder what in the world is wrong with me! But, mostly I am a coward and enjoy sulking in my own self concerns.
I have been reading a book from a friend called First We Have Coffee, by Margaret Jensen. She tells the story of her mother, who was a pastor's wife, and the legacy she left her children, with the simple acts of walking close to God and in that touching every life she encountered. The way that God rewarded that, in the immediate sense, was by fulfilling his Word in being faithful. She tells of a time when they were traveling through Canada to her father's new post, and her mother asked to stop for a cup of coffee. Her father stopped at a little restaurant, and having only enough money for coffee for her mother, the family was surprised when he came back to the car telling them all to come in, the Oriental owner was going to treat them all to lunch, for free. Well, as if that wasn't enough answer to prayer, months later the father went back to the same place in his travels, intending to pay the man and thank him again for his hospitality. There was nothing in the place of the restaurant but an empty field. After inquiring, he discovered that there never had been a building of any sort there, nor an Oriental man who ever lived there. God had provided in a way unimaginable. I want stories like that to tell in heaven. Here was a simple woman who was given these gifts, of seeing God work, that she may know him better.
I want to live out the hope that He has called me to. I want to reveal, through my life, the riches of his glorious inheritance. Again, I am at His throne, on my knees, asking for His will.