17. Gold in your hand.

“Unbelief will destroy the best of us: faith will save the worst of us.”  Charles Spurgeon.

No matter how much we learn, there will always be some mystery surrounding God’s character and ways. It is always a reminder that He is so much bigger and more than we could ever imagine in our wildest dreams. Just when you think you know Him better, He will reveal something more that brings you to your knees in worship and wonder.

One of the things that are a constant reminder of God’s infinite greatness is time. The concept of being outside of time is hard to grasp. We live as “prisoners” of time if I may say so. God is all knowing and therefore sees all of history in a moment. Nothing ever surprises Him. This single realization is such a comfort to me. No matter what happens in my life; if my life is submitted to God, He is in control and nothing robs Him of His ability to work it out for my good, even if the worst may happen to me. Life happens and that could be an unpleasant surprise and a big shock to me, but God is never surprised nor shocked.

He knows when things go wrong, He knows when I am going to mess up, He knows all my failures even before they happen and He knows my pain of regret or pain of grief for things beyond my control. In everything He supports me, carries me through and forgives my sin.

Many years ago I saw failure and tragedy as a “side road” that happened when I left the planned “highway” that is set out for me by the will of God. I thought my life journey is planned in a concrete ditch-like road from which I should not step out. Failure to stay within this rigid, specific plan will cause ultimate spiritual failure.

I slowly came to realize, by the conviction of the Holy Spirit that my journey is a combination of the decisions I make with my sound mind in submission to God’s direction through prayer. I might decide to take a job in another city and move or I might decide to stay where I am, it will not alter the will of God for my life. The only important factor is submission in prayer. God helps me to make the right decisions when I make prayerful choices. In either one of the choices, His presence makes the difference. He will work it out to my advantage and will bring me through all crises that might come my way. There is no path that guarantees smooth living. The broken world we live in brings tragedy and heartache in which we are comforted from the Source of love and compassion. Even the heartache works to my advantage when my life is submitted to His hand and direction.

Jude 24

Now to Him Who is able to keep you without stumbling or slipping or falling, and to present you unblemished (blameless and faultless) before the presence of His glory in triumphant joy and exultation, with unspeakable, ecstatic delight—

When God says He presents you, then it is His working in your life that will bring you blameless and faultless, into His presence and before the Father. He will make you the joy of heaven. It will not be your own efforts of good living, only your decision to prayerfully submit.

Romans 11:36

For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. [For all things originate with Him and come from Him; all things live through Him, and all things center in and tend to consummate and to end in Him.] To Him be glory forever! Amen (so be it).

This is our faith in God. He is much bigger that you think and He directs all things in your life. Although the world is broken and in the hands of the evil one, God steps in on behalf of His children.

2 Chronicles 16:9:

For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth to show Himself strong in behalf of those whose hearts are blameless toward Him.

A blameless heart is only possible through the cross. God Himself cleanses our hearts.

Psalm 51:10

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right, persevering, and steadfast spirit within me.

Acts 15:9:

And He made no difference between us and them, but cleansed their hearts by faith (by a strong and welcome conviction that Jesus is the Messiah, through Whom we obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom of God).

This is such a relief. My own efforts always end up in disappointment, but Jesus works in me to be cleansed and worthy to enter into the presence of God.

Romans 8:28

We are assured and know that God being a partner in their labour, all things work together and are fitting into a plan for good to and for those who love God and are called according to His design and purpose.

The Greek word for purpose is prothesis meaning: pro = previously and thesis = a place. It indicates a conscious plan of preparing a place, called to the place where you belong. The magnificent design for salvation was already in place in the Garden of Eden when sin entered.

How do we know that we are included in this plan?

1 Timothy 2:3,4:

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

We bring ourselves into this wonderful plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. Further in 1 Timothy 2: 5,6 :

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as ransom for ALL ……..

If the Word of God says ALL then it means ALL. God already knows who will accept Him and who will reject His invitation. It is always an invitation, free to be rejected, otherwise it is not love. True love is always a choice.

Greek has two words for time – chronos and kairos.

Chronos reminds us of the word chronology and indicates calendar time, measured time, counted time, the relentless and constant passing of time in minutes, hours, days, months, years, decades, centuries and millennia.

Kairos is the liberating concept of God’s time and is defined by Strong’s concordance as: opportune time, set time, appointed time, due time, definitive time, seasonable time, proper time for action.

God’s time is always the right time. If we submit our lives we will be assured of the fullness of time when things happen at the right moment.

Colossians 4:5:

Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the TIME – kairos. The Amplified puts it this way: making the most of the time, and seizing the opportunity.

Can we relax in God’s timing and rest in the Holy Spirit to trust Him fully for the defining moment when the timing is the best it could ever be. He knows best. Do you believe that? When we yearn for things or solutions, it is complicated and our faith in His timing falters. We need wisdom to discern the timing and God promises that in James 1 without reproach.

Amongst all the genealogies and chronological documentation of the book of Chronicles, this remark stands out:

1 Chronicles 12:32

…of the sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do…

Being mindful of time gives us a new perspective. In the end all we have is today. Everything we do this moment, which is all we have at our disposal, determines our future as well as our concepts and perspectives of our past. God enables us to “work” with our time.

The past is under the blood. Isaiah 1:18 is the key:

“Come now, and let us reason together,” says the Lord,

“Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;

Though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

This is the only way to get rid of wounds and hurt, failures and disappointments. Forgive other people and accept God’s forgiveness in your life. Even if circumstances do not change (which it will) you will change. A free heart and a new way of thinking are priceless. Again – it is not your own efforts, but His purpose and grace. Praise God for this!

2 Timothy 1: 9:

…who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began..

The future is in God’s hands. The content of our future is the promises of God in His word. Just as certain as the daybreak each day and the changing of the seasons, you can rely fully and wholly on every word He says in the Bible. He will do what He says He will do – period.

Genesis 8:22:

As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.

Can you accept the challenge to trust the Holy Spirit today with everything in your life and submit to God’s season for your life?

1 Peter 1:6,7:

In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

The gold is in your hand…

I am reading: Experience the Impossible by Bill Johnsons – highly recommended.

 

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