Tuesday, November 3, 2009

On Hearing the Spirit of the Lord

Hi face to face and e-Friends. Just about to get on the road home, but had some thoughts on something I like to always remind myself about regarding priorities. Don't know about you, but I can so easily get my priorities so outta whack fast if I'm not careful. Do you strive to have right priorities, but forget to deal with the most important one of all? Don't mean to be a pessimist really, but unfortunately too many these days do and that is one reason why our beloved nation has been getting out of whack. Well, be encouraged.. fixing this prob starts with one at a time. Look in the mirror OK and I will do the same.

On Hearing Him

Speak, for Your servant hears. —1 Samuel 3:10

I love reading about God's seer, Samuel, and how the Bible describes the way he learned to listen to and basically detect the most important voice of all -- the voice of the Spirit of the Lord calling Him (See 1 Samuel 3).

I have sadly seen many people get too busy serving the Lord in my day (you too?), I mean too busy ..like that in and off its self was noble.. to continue spending time alone with the Lord. It's religious and wrong. I've watched how some dear and generous Christian friends became very frustrated inside ..wanting to accomplish more.. wanting to be more.. so they kept taking on more and more responsibilities, more of a work load. Yes, until they lost their devotional time in God's presence and then lost the fruit of the Spirit which is love.

Personally, I too can so easily get distracted and become a "reactor" to daily happenings and demands that pop up in my face (yup, reacting [instead of wisely acting] in the flesh rather than in the Spirit of compassion), I guess wanting to be more pleasing to the Lord via works.. wanting to be a better soul-winner via push n shove (Who Kurt? Aww never!). And I find out that I am not good.. that there is One who is good. I have fallen on my face blundering more than I feel like admitting, but really knowing the Lord is better than knowing mere service of the Lord, but I quickly forget as I start watching others ...and that's why I need to be reminded.  

Yes, when my day gets off to a Starbucks kind of start, the most important thing for me is to get up early enough to go be with Jesus and just listen to His Word ..and get real with Him about all that's on in my heart and mind. Gotta let His thoughts seep into the depths of my being so I can walk in peace. Don't get me wrong, we all can hear from the Lord as we stay in contact with Him and serve Him all day long.. and we should stay in touch constantly! But my point is that Christian activity will never replace focused devotional time of adoration before Him.This is nothing new. The need is still so great in this area though.

Do you remember how Sam back in the day, prayed saying, "Speak, for Your servant hears" (v.10). Do you remember how consistent and victorious he was in his daily life—such a great representative for his Lord! He was a real hero, letting the people of Israel know what God was really like because he spent time with God. Sure they watched him just like they are watching you. Do your coworkers know that you are a believer yet? That's exactly how I want to be—consistent like Samuel! It was no three religious steps and some holy sounding formulaic type of prayer that Samuel spouted regularly; it was pure honesty from a supernaturally natural kind of love relationship that is very hard to describe unless you've experienced it first hand. How glorious just to think about such vertical harmony! You can have this too! God wants you to.

I'm convinced that Word-input (into your heart i.e., hearing God's voice with a humble heart to obey Him) coupled with wise application of God's Word ..is in direct correlation to victory outflow for any Christian (See Ps. 119:11 and 165). That's why you need the Bible when you pray and listen. This Book will keep you from sin and sin will keep you from this Book! There's just way too much presumption in the area of listening to God out there. 

Q: In the so called human family, what is our first priority in life (and that goes for the Christian as well as for any other person sucking air on this big planet, because basically we've all been bought at a price and none of us belong to ourselves)?

Is it doing good works to help other people or the environment?

Is it caring for our families and our relatives?

Is it serving at church or in the communities where we each respectively dwell?

A: No. it is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, your mind, and your soul! (Deut. 6:5). Yup, for He is ever the Rewarder of those who diligently seek Him! (Heb. 11:6). And that includes full commitment and fully believing upon His holy Name, as well as tasting the true manna from heaven! Yup, as well as partaking of the true Bread of life, the very Son of the living God! Who? That's Jesus Christ, the One and only.. the Bible Jesus. This is the One you need most. How can you or I expect to hear from or know a Person we never spend time with?

Jesus alone is the One who can properly care for and sustain you forever! He is the One.. by His Spirit.. who can meet all your needs while temporarily here on this Terra Frima, and has a good plan for your life to be ever caught up in union with His.. from life to death and then on into glory everlasting in Heaven! Excitamente--can hardly wait! I don't know what kind of reputation you have or how much you have blown it in the past (we've all done some of that jive--sinning needs to be avoided. If you commit sin, the simply repent of it—living a life of repentance from that point on). Christ is the One who wants to forgive you, can forgive you, give to you a white stone and a new name!

Nothing beats simply sitting at his feet and by the Holy Spirit, hearing His voice as we meditate upon the Word of God! Nothing surpasses our time spent with Jesus! And hearing from the Lord right ..is so radically important! Jesus' sheep hear His voice, so have you given your life over to be His sheep yet? Think about it, can you imagine how it would have been if the prophet Samuel missed the will of God and didn't hear correctly as God was directing him to anoint the second Jewish king of Israel? It was critical. Saul really blew it big time and Samuel was standing there looking at the brothers and actually about to choose Eliab the older brother of ruddy David (See 1 Sam.16:6). Fortunately Sam didn't and heard right. God told him, "Do no look at his appearance or at physicaly stature" (See 1 Sam. 16:12). We so often go by what we see in this world, but we aren't to lean to our own understanding. We are to lean on Christ! Nothing surpasses hearing the voice of the Chief Shepherd ever!

No evangelistic efforts…

No church programs…

No social help with a club or any practical deeds of horizontal love!

That's why we praise His name and rejoice, it because the Bless-er is far better than any of His blessings ..and those really are so bad! It's just that He's so GOOD!

"Blessed indeed are those ears which listen not for the voice sounding without, but for the truth teaching inwardly. Blessed are the eyes that are shut to outward things but intent on things inward. Blessed are they who are glad to have time to spare for God, and who shake off all worldly hindrances. Consider these things, O my soul, and hear what the Lord your God speaks." ~Thomas à Kempis 1379-1471

By feeding on Your blessed Word, dear Lord, I will no longer weak and childish be;
And as I listen to Your Spirit's voice, may Christlike love and grace be seen in me. —Hess

"Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Spirit and understand what the Spirit is saying to the churches. Everyone who is victorious will eat of the manna that has been hidden away in heaven. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it" (Rev. 2:17, nlt).

God speaks by His Spirit through His Word to those who open their hearts to listen. Will you hear Him when He calls you?

Got a few minutes for some good music?

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