Keeping God First


This is precisely how I feel sometimes: the depths of despair, as Lucy Montegomery has Anne Shirley sigh in Anne of Green Gables.
It feels like forever. The constant waiting and waiting. When, Lord? When will You go to my defense? When will You fix this problem? When will I see daylight? When will I feel normal again? When will I be able to look up from this problem and focus on others again? When will You release me from this prayer vigil? When can I stop and rest?
That's just it. We must rest or we burn out. God knows just how long we need because it was He that issued the 6 day work week and the 1 Day of Rest. Only that day of rest is supposed to be completely devoted to God and the worship of Him.
Huh?
Isa 58:13 "If you watch your step on the Sabbath and don't use my holy day for personal advantage, If you treat the Sabbath as a day of joy, GOD's holy day as a celebration, If you honor it by refusing 'business as usual,' making money, running here and there-- 14 Then you'll be free to enjoy GOD! Oh, I'll make you ride high and soar above it all. I'll make you feast on the inheritance of your ancestor Jacob." Yes! GOD says so!
I am not preaching "no football" on Sunday afternoon. What I am saying is that I have to sit down with God everyday or the anxiety takes over. I have to practice giving it all to Him or I'll take it back and try to "fix it" all the while making the matter worse. Some problems fix themselves, other problems need the hand of God. I have a lot of the latter kind of problems, yet I get in God's way while He's trying to fix them... or teach a lesson. You can go ahead and admit you are like that, too, because I know I'm not in the boat alone. We are skimming over the water far too fast, I can't row that fast so I know I'm not the only one rowing.
Keeping God first is a DAILY thing, not just a Sunday thing. Peter sank when he took his eyes off Jesus. The disciples couldn't remove the demon from the boy because they didn't have the faith of a mustard seed. David was lollygagging at the palace when he should have been at the war front with his men and that's when he lounged on the roof and caught sight of Bathsheba. The Bible is full of all kinds of examples of life situations that went awry when folks quit putting God first and that was the first step down their path to trouble.
Not so, Joseph. He got up in the middle of the night and went to get his bride who was pregnant and brought her home with him, effectively silencing any recriminations against her. The likelihood of Mary being stoned was almost certain. I think about my life and I don’t see one problem that has that kind of likelihood of an end result. So why am I so anxious? Was Mary anxious? How did Joseph feel when he looked upon his swollen bride?
It is one thing to read about an event, to imagine the sweat, the dust, the cold, the animal smells, but it is something different to live through it.
And that is just the beginning of trials and tribulations. God never promised easy living. What would we ever learn if life's most pressing decision was which bon bon to eat next? Job had an easy life until God allowed Satan to put his foot in it. So, guess who's messing with us now?
Did God allow Job to be harmed past endurance?
Did God share with Job that Satan was the one playing havoc in his life?
Were any of us around when God laid the foundations of the world and when He hung the stars in place?
The correct short answer is, “No.” Although, I’m quite sure that if I had been there, I would have given Him a suggestion or two about how to hang the world. I would have completely not known that it hanging crooked in space is a good thing, not a bad thing. If it didn’t hang crooked, then we wouldn’t have our seasons, and I love the changes as the year progresses.
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