Someone reminded me of something yesterday. Sometimes our best lessons are learned when we see a bit of ourselves in someone else. Sometimes we see that trait that we fight gone amuck in the life of another person, and God warns us. He shows us what it would look like if we allowed ourselves to live out our natural inclinations.
It's funny what people think sin is. Most see it only in terms of bad things that we do. Ask people to tell you what sin is. I guarantee you that you'll get a lot of lying, cheating, stealing, adultery, and substance abuse. And they would be right. Those things are all sin.
But once you've been saved for a while and learn to walk with the Lord, those things cease to hold much attraction or draw. Once you've grown in the Lord and love Him, those things have very little dominion over you.
Satan knows that, and don't think that when you get to this point that his work is finished and that he will leave you alone. Because that's when the devil steps it up a notch. When fleshly sin no longer draws you, the devil knows just what to do. He goes straight for your heart.
God knows this, of course, and is already there. Phew!
Jeremiah 17:9-10 - "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."
One of the biggest lessons that I've learned most recently is that the things that we see as good and righteous can be displeasing to the Lord if we're not very careful. There is not a person on earth who can help me with this, but it is only revealed to me by staying as close as I can get to the Lord.
People serve God out of great sacrifice. They make themselves to be martyrs for the Lord. They are weary and tired, but they press on. They press on for God. Woe is me! I've been there.
God does not need my service. He needs my heart. He needs me to love Him and want fellowship with Him. See God's Needs. I believe that more today than the day that I wrote it.
And once I've learned this secret, my service to and for others is all Him. Not me. Him! My dear Lord and Saviour. And it's not burdensome or loathsome. It's not some life of sacrifice. I am not a martyr, nor will I portray myself as one.
It's all Him. And it's filled with love, and it's joyous! And the love and joy of Jesus draws men to Him. And my burden is light!
Matthew 11:28-30 - "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
You can just drag that cross around all day long if that's what floats your boat. God will let you. But that's not what He wants for you. I know this because I've done it both ways. I want to show outwardly the amazing joy and peace that is in my heart. If you knew my circumstances, you'd know that my joy is just as much a miracle as was God removing the cancer from Sarah's body. Maybe even more so.
And if God should ask of me one day my life as a result of my stand for Him, by God's grace I will give it. God knows my heart. But then and only then will I be a martyr. Until then, I will live each day with the joy of God in my heart. And if you catch me on a day when I'm not living this, please bring me back to this post and admonish me to get things right. Because I can guarantee you of one thing-- God will be right where I left Him. It will be me who wandered away.
1 Peter 1:8 - "Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory."
I am not a martyr. I live a life of great joy. I want to stay so close to God that He shines on my face. Lord, help me!
I have found the joy no tongue can tell, How its waves of glory roll! It is like a great o’erflowing well, Springing up within my soul.
It is joy unspeakable and full of glory, Full of glory, full of glory, It is joy unspeakable and full of glory, Oh, the half has never yet been told!
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