Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Lion King

We are all familiar with the famous movie, "The Lion King." My family loves to quote one liners from movies and the Lion King is one of our favorites.

Do you remember? Let me set the scene:

The young lion, Simba is the king. His uncle is jealous and he wants to be the king. He set it up with his friends, the hyenas, to lie in wait for the young lion Simba to appear. Their job is to kill him. With Simba dead the uncle would then be king. But the hyenas are hungry and they are looking over a pack of wildebeests. One says to the leader of the pack, "I can't help it....I'm so hungry. I've just gotta' have a wildebeest! Can't I just pick off one of the little sick ones?"

Okay, the movie is over. Credits are rolling. The curtain is closing. Back to the here and now.

Allow me to list a few biblical facts.

Jesus is the Lion of Judah.
He is King.
we are his sheep.
Wolves won't spare a flock of sheep.

Many of us, especially when we're going through difficult times, tend to retreat. Like a wounded animal, we stay to ourselves, lick our wounds, and wait for healing to come. And there may be a time and a place for that. But we must be careful. Too often we separate ourselves from the flock when we shouldn't. That makes us much more vulnerable. We become an easy target for the wolves. They lie in wait. And yes, they're hungry! They're just waiting to "pick off one of the little sick ones."

The bible says we must not forsake the gathering of ourselves together. Whether we are together in a church meeting, bible study, or a chicken pie supper, the scripture tells us to " be together."

Why? "To encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near." Hebrews 10:25

So I encourage you. If you are one of those sheep, if you have separated yourself from the flock, I encourage you to come back to your flock. This blog post is God's voice calling you. He will leave the ninety nine in search of you! He wants to pick you up, place you on his shoulders, and carry you. You just have to yield to his arms.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!

In Deuteronomy 5:27 the children of Israel told Moses, "Go near and hear all that the LORD our God will say, and speak to us all that the LORD our God will speak to you, and we will hear and do it." How foolish of them. They couldn't keep even one of the commandments and they thought they could "do" what God instructed? But you have to give it to them for trying, right? You see, they knew that drawing close to God meant losing their own lives and that wasn't exactly appealing to them. Or to us!

God told Moses in Exodus 33 , "You can’t see my face, because no one may see me and live.”

And Hebrews 12:29 says, " For our God is a consuming fire."

So it is very apparent that walking with the Lord means what John 3 said it means, "He must increase and I must decrease."

Hebrews 4:10 tells us clearly: "for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his."

Have you ever thought about this scripture: "But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day." 2 Peter 3:8

We know that creation took God six days and on the seventh day he rested. And we are told we are to rest too, just like he did.

Yet, if you're like me, you find yourself "doing." "Creating" if you will. Always busy. Always "doing." I am a creative person. If there is something that needs doing, just let me at it. Give me my "to do" list and I'll get it all taken care of. Give me the reigns and get out of the way.

Got a problem I can help with? I can do it.

Got a chore that you need help with? I can do that too.

You know, it's a good thing that God has a sense of humor. I mean, I'm not nicknamed "Debbie Do" for nothing!

In the book of Jonah we read how the Lord told him to go to Nineveh. Jonah didn't want to go to Nineveh! So he hopped aboard the nearest ship which was headed to Tarshish. (meaning "from the presence of the Lord.") "But the Lord sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken. Then the mariners were afraid."

They all decided to cast lots to see who was responsible for the evil that had befallen them and we know that Jonah drew the short straw. The men asked Jonah what they should do and Jonah told them to throw him into the sea. But then in verse 13 it says, "Nevertheless the men rowed hard to bring it (the ship) to the land, but they could not."

Here we have a perfect picture of those of us who are habitually always "doing." These men knew that Jonah had fled from the Lord. They knew that God caused the raging storm because of it, they knew Jonah was responsible for the entire situation, they asked Jonah "what should we do". And when Jonah told them to throw him overboard they rowed even harder! They were sure they could "do" it. They could take care of the whole situation.

But God saw to it that they couldn't.  

I want to remember to keep my hands off. To let God do it. To "let go and let God." To rest. God is looking for a people in which to rest. I want to be one of them.

Lord, help me to rest in you. Help me to stand in you and stop doing.

"Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it." Hebrews 4