Moments in the life of a Pastor

Walking with God


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Pandemic Perspective – Part 55 A heart of Trust Part I

2 Chronicles 16:9

9 The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. What a fool you have been! From now on you will be at war.”

In 2 Chronicles 16 we find the prophet Hanani speaking a word of rebuke from the Lord to King Asa, because Asa had turned from the Lord and looked to others for his help. In life we are always confronted with the decision of who we will trust, who we will receive and rely on and who we will reject. In the turning to there is always a turning away from, and in his trials and circumstances Asa sought a human solution to his problem. Instead of relying upon the Lord to intervene in his battle Asa buys a treaty with another king to take care of his problem. It is not sin to use human means to solve our problems, but it is sin to trust them more than God, to think they are better than God’s ways, or to leave God completely out of the problem-solving process. Instead of seeking God Asa had sought the help of pagan nations to help Him. Who do you seek and turn to for help, who do you include in the problem solving aspects of your life? Asa was searching for a solution, but it wasn’t just Asa who was searching, in the midst of this word from the Lord, we find a powerful truth that not only applied then but also applies to us today. God was also searching and we need to be aware of the “Searching of the Lord”. What does it mean to search? It’s the process of looking or seeking after something in order to find or uncover. Can you remember a time in your life when you were searching, when you were looking for something? Maybe it was a set of keys, or a job, may be even a relationship, searching requires time and focus, it requires effort on our part. The Lord is daily and diligently searching, and just as we are looking for something of value to us so is He. 

So, what is it that He is actively searching for? Unlike most of our searching that is external the Lord is daily searching the hearts of people throughout the earth and His searching is an internal one. Remember what the Lord said to Samuel the prophet as Samuel considered anointing David’s brother as the next king. I Samuel 16:7 “Do not consider his appearance or his height for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the HEART”. In King David’s charge to his son Solomon in I Chronicles 28 he says “acknowledge the God of your father, and serve Him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches EVERY HEART and understands every motive behind the thoughts..”. Scripture reminds us that the Lord is constantly searching the hearts of people to see the motives, the thoughts, the attitudes and desires hidden inside.  Hebrews 4:13 reminds us that “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.”  Who we seek and who our hearts are committed to reveals several things:

  • RELATIONSHIP

The first thing that is revealed in this passage is our relationship and we are confronted with the question, “How is your heart in relationships?” We have a loving Father who longs to have a good relationship with us, God longs to have a strong relationship with those whose hearts are committed and loyal to Him. In Mark 12:30-31 Jesus summed up the whole law when He said “Love God and love people” that concept of loving God and loving our neighbor as ourselves is certainly not the way of the world. The way of the world is, I am number one and I am going to look out for me, everyone else can look out for themselves. As for God and His ways well if it is convenient, I will fit Him into my schedule, after all God helps those who help themselves right? Wrong God helps those who can’t help themselves but repent and cry out to Him for help. We come into right relationship with God when we believe in and trust in Jesus and His finished work on the cross. God desires for us to experience that right relationship and we must be prepared to be fully committed to him.  The same goes for our earthly relationships it requires commitment and loyalty for them to work. How do you shape up are you fully committed to a right relationship with God Father, Son and Holy Spirit and are you fully committed to a right relationship with those around you, your neighbors? Are there trust issues in your relationships that are holding you back? What is holding you back from a commitment to right relationships? 


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Pandemic Perspective – Part 54 Trust that produces Peace – Part 2

Isaiah 26:3-4 

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! 4 Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock.

In part I we were reminded of where peace comes from and we had to ask ourselves who we are looking to and trusting in? We were confronted with the greatest question of all: Have you begun your pursuit of peace, have you trusted in the promise of eternal life made possible through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ? Verse 4 is the logical assertion of the truth of verse 3, “Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock.” If it is true that trust in God results in a steadfast mind which is kept in peace, then everyone should be urged to trust in the Lord. The cry of the redeemed should be for all men to place their trust in the One through whom redemption and peace is found. Trust involves a renouncing of confidence in you or in any other and placing complete reliance upon Yahweh alone.  If you truly desire hope and peace in this life then you have to wrestle with the question in who have you place your confidence, is it in God?  We cannot obtain peace on our own because our minds are unstable and rest upon nothing solid, nothing eternal. The human heart by its very nature is not stable, our mind is prone to waver and change with every shifting wind of thinking and teaching. The stated reason to trust God is because He is the eternal rock the Rock of Ages. The Lord God is the rock who endures forever, He is the eternal One, the only Rock upon which eternal life can be built. All the assaults and aberrations of time itself cannot change or alter God, He alone stands sure and enduring. The truth that no matter what happens the Everlasting Rock is there for you is your priceless possession. In an uncertain world God is the only firm and tested foundation upon which we can rest. Are you abiding in the firm and constant foundation? Are you resting on the Rock Eternal and unchangeable, preserved in His perfect peace, or are you trying to run through the changing quicksand of human opinion?

Peace can only be found in the Eternal God who has revealed Himself through the Bible, will you trust in Him who was, who is, and who is to come? He is the Rock of Ages, a firm and lasting foundation for faith and hope upon whom to build your life. The words to the old hymn “Rock of Ages” were written by the Reverend Augustus Montague Toplady in 1763 when he was travelling along a gorge and was caught in a storm. Finding shelter in a gap in the gorge, he was struck by the title “Rock of Ages” and in the midst of the storm he scribbled down the initial lyrics in the sheltered of the fissure.

“Rock of Ages cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee;

Let the water and the blood, From Thy wounded side which flowed,

Be of sin the double cure, Save from wrath and make me pure.

Not the labors of my hands Can fulfill Thy law’s demands;

These for sin could not atone; Thou must save, and Thou alone:

In my hand no price I bring, Simply to Thy cross I cling.

While I draw this fleeting breath, When mine eyes shall close in death,

When I rise to worlds un-know, And behold Thee on Thy throne,

Rock of Ages cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee.” – Toplady

The house that is built on the eternal rock will provide and protect in any storm and those that trust in God not only find in Him, but receive from Him, everlasting strength. This same strength that carries them through life will also carry them into everlasting life, into that blessedness which is forever and ever. Are you ready to trust God every day and never cast away or lose confidence in Him? Have you found peace with God? For those that do, God offers a relationship that leads to experiencing more and more of the peace of God in the here and now of our daily living. God is aware of your circumstances, but He calls you to live above not beneath your circumstances. He calls you to a steadfast confidence in Him and in His Word. Regardless of our circumstances we serve a God whose strength is as limitless as His love, and who has purposed to bless all those who will commit themselves to Him. Will you focus your mind and your life on God and trust Him? If you do the peace of God which surpassed all understanding will guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus. The issue of trust is always the key, in whom or what are you trusting? The answer to that question is found in the reality, the extent, and depth of the peace you are currently experiencing. When we repose upon the Lord, we find that place of rest and the mind that rests upon Him is the mind that takes refuge in Him. Is He your Rock of Ages?