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Friday, September 16, 2016

The Other Side of the Coin

I read an article on desirringgod.com today and the lady that wrote it pretty much wrote my heart out. Earlier this year, I wrote something similar in my journal.
See this as a sequel to my article on trusting God; from the other side of the coin.

Testifying and Faithing it

I was at that point where I was just evaluating how far I had come in my relationship with God. I

thought about the things I had believed God for that came to pass and the ones I was still believing
Him for. And then I realized how much my joy in God revolves around these two things most of the
time. I'm either testifying on something He's done in the past or "faithing" on what He's going to do.
While there's absolutely nothing wrong with these things in and off themselves, it is important to check our hearts and make sure we are not being so in love with the hand of God that we totally miss His heart. God is our father, He wants us to ask Him for things and also show gratitude when we get those things but what He desires most for us is to love who He is more than what He gives.

The Source of Our Joy

I decided to write down everything I had believed God for and the ones I was believing Him for. I then challenged my self with the question, "Apart from these things, would I still find Joy in the Lord?" If none of my requests are ever granted, if I never get to behold some of my deepest heart desires, would God still be my joy and my delight? It wasn't until I striped myself of my wants, desires and aspirations that I saw how naked my Joy really was. I am ashamed to admit this but I am thankful that I can be honest enough with myself to see this truth.

It is painful when we really really want something, beg God for it with all of our hearts and we don't get it. It is even much more painful when we see someone who doesn't even know God dangle that very thing before our very eyes. It is a painful experience that can lead to so much resentment towards God that we run the risk of growing apart from God. So how do we prepare our hearts for these types of soul wrenching disappointments ? How do we truly let God be the ONLY source of our joy ? How do we desire God more than we desire the things of the world?

Paul's Response
"What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ"- Philippians 3: 8
"I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have complete boldness, so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain"- Philippians 1: 20 and 21
King David's Response
"I say to the LORD, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.”- Psalms 16:2
"Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart." - Psalms 37:4
“One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple." - Psalm 27:4
Habakkuk's Response
"Though the fig tree does not bud

and there are no grapes on the vines,

though the olive crop fails

and the fields produce no food,

though there are no sheep in the pen

and no cattle in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the Lord,

I will be joyful in God my Savior.

The Sovereign Lord is my strength;

he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,

he enables me to tread on the heights." - Habakkuk 3:17 & 18
Our Response

Think of the things you believe you can't do without; your deepest desires and slowly loosen your fist and give them to God. Wake up everyday for the next couple of days, with a spirit determined to find joy in nothing else but God. Meditate on the scriptures above, pray the same prayer Habakkuk prayed and make it more relatable to the things specific to you. Ask God to help you delight in Him. Slowly, gradually let go of your dreams, aspirations and desires to set them at the feet of Christ. 

With every passing day, you will find that even in situations of seemingly insurmountable pressure, God will lead your heart to that very point of taking delight in Him and Him alone because that is where true joy lies. And as the things of the world grow dimmer in your heart, the things of God shine brighter. Not that we become free from disappointments but that we are able to deal with it in a much better way...
We all need this and I pray the Holy Spirit guides us in that direction... AMEN

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