Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Reassurance of the promise

I was held captive, with no way out
except to give in and self-destruct.

I cried out to you, and you set me free.
I asked you, "Will they be coming back?"

As You embraced me, you said, "Yes, they will,
as sure as I'll be with you when they return."

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. -Deuteronomy 31:8

Monday, March 05, 2007

What do you need?

One of the greatest spiritual needs we have as Christians is to simply “need” God. We need the assurance of the unconditional agape love of the Father and all that it implies: Nothing -- and He does mean N O T H I N G -- can separate us from His love. As long as we continue to allow God to fill our needs, we will enjoy the comfort and security of his refuge. And no matter how far we stray from the protection afforded to us in God’s fortress, He will joyfully run to us with open arms and say, “Welcome Home!”

If God’s fortress is such a safe place, why would anyone want to leave? Why would anyone walk away from that kind of love? One reason may be that we believe that “something, somewhere, out there” can fulfill a need that we think we have. Often, that perceived need is a selfish desire; sometimes we believe that “out there” the need can be met faster or better than God can. Whatever it is, if it is a need that we look to have fulfilled away from God, we risk falling into sin, and separation Him, and away from the safety of His fortress and security of living in His love.

After a while, we find ourselves trying to fill our needs only to have them time and again come up empty. We start to make wrong decisions. We search for comfort in a bottle; in debt; in a high; in the arms of a stranger. The happiness is temporary. The satisfaction is fleeting. The more we search for fulfillment, the emptier we become. Safety and security are only as strong as the walls we build around ourselves. And we can’t help but think that there has to be more to life than this. We convince ourselves that we’ve fallen so far that God wouldn’t -- couldn’t -- possibly want anything to do with us.

So how can we ever become right with God again?

The truth is, we can’t. At least not on our own. The almighty Creator of the Universe could say, “Those people got into their mess…let them stay there.” But he doesn’t say that. He loves us too much to let us wander forever.

God loves us.
He loves us so much.

He loves us so much that he sent his one and only Son so that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

Did you catch that?

God sent his son to save us from our separation from our creator!

Do you know what that means? Do you really get it?

Remember when you lived in the safety and shelter of God’s fortress? Everything you ever needed was yours, just for the asking. That’s because the Creator of the Universe had you and me in mind and loved us before he even created the universe!

That means we don’t have to be wandering in a desert of emptiness, trying to find fulfillment in things that will leave us wanting more. God knows exactly what we need, because we are “fearfully and wonderfully made!” Just read Psalm 139.…and believe!

And believe in God’s son Jesus. He’s the way that God provided for us to fill the need to be reunited with our loving Creator.