A Planting of Faith Seeds for the Glory of the LORD
Keeping our eyes on Jesus…
“…Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him endured a cross and despised the shame and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.” (Hebrews 12:1–2, HCSB)
You might remember me mentioning God’s tendency to hide from us but in case you don’t let me refresh your memory. “The Christian life is a life where the manifest presence is enjoyed, experienced , and celebrated, but the manifest absence of God is to be equally experienced and learned from as part of the normal Christian journey. This will be great news for some of us; many of us have gone a long time without sensing God’s presence or experiencing dramatic answers to prayer.” (Mike Erre, “Astonished: Recapturing the Wonder, Awe, and Mystery of Life with God,” page 43 published by David C. Cook. Kindle Edition)
Today’s scripture addresses and offers undeniable hope specifically for those times when God does seem absent. I am sure you remember the phrase, “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” Well, not only does absence makes the heart grow fonder it also can and does deepen the relationship. When we affix our eyes on Jesus the Holy Spirit reminds us of Jesus’ accomplishments while he lived on the earth. One of the last things Jesus said to the disciples before his betrayal was, “I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.” (John 16:33, HCSB)
Jesus could tell the disciples to be courageous when they could no longer see him because he knew without a doubt that in his absence the Holy Spirit would take his place. Jesus knew the Holy Spirit will intensify our faith and make livelier our hope that even though we are unable to sense God’s presence his intimacy is not only present but intensifying as well. Mike Erre hits a sensitive spot in my faith journey when he explains that one of the reason God hides from us is to “wean us off receiving God the way we want and to begin to receive Him on His own terms.” (ibid page 47) God wants us on his terms not ours and he will go to great lengths to get us on his terms.
If you have eyes only for Jesus you are on your way to having everything you’ll ever need to sustain you when the going gets tough!
Believe it! Experience it!
Grace and PEACE!
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“Therefore we do not give up. Even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person is being renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16, HCSB)
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Scripture quotations marked HCSB are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Holman CSB®, and HCSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.