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My Utmost for His Highest

Discussion in 'Daily Devotionals' started by solo66 man, Jan 19, 2002.

  1. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    2 Timothy 2

    15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

    By Oswald Chambers - If you cannot express yourself on any subject, struggle until you can. If you do not, someone will be poorer all the days of his life. Struggle to reexpress some truth of God to yourself, and God will use that expression to someone else. Go through the winepress of God where the grapes are chrushed. You must struggle to get expression experimentally, then will come a time when that expression will become the very wine of strengthening to someone else, but if you say lazily, "I am
    not going to struggle to express this thing for myself, I will borrow
    what I say," the expression will not only be of no use to you, but of no use to anyone. Try to state to yourself what you feel implicitly to be God's truth, and you give God a chance to pass it on to someone else through you.
    Always make a practice of provoking your mind to think out what it accepts easily. Our position is not ours until we make it ours by suffering. The author who benefits you most is not the one who tells you something you did not know before, but gives expression
    to the truth that has been dumbly struggling in you for utterance.
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    What am I looking at?

    Isaiah 45

    22 Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth; For I am God, and there is no other.

    Do we expect God t come to us with His blessings and save us? He says -- Look unto Me and be saved . The great difficulty spiritually is to concentrate on God and it is His blessings that make it difficult. Troubles nearly always make us look to God. His blessings are apt to make us look elsewhere. The teaching of the Sermon on the mount is, in effect -- Narrow all your interests until the attitude of mind and heart and body is concentration on Jesus Christ. "Look unto Me."

    Many of us have a mental conception of what a Christian should be, and the lives of the saints become a hindrance to our concentration on God. There is no salvation in this way, it is not simple enough. "Look unto Me." and -- not "you wil be saved," but "you are saved." The very thing we look for, we shall find if we will concentrate on Him. We get preoccupied and sulky with God, while all the time He is saying, "Look up and be saved." The difficulties and trials -- the casting about in our minds as to what we shall do this summer, or tomorrow, all vanish when we look to God.

    Rouse yourself up and look to God. Build your hope on Him. no matter if there are a hundred and one things that press, resolutely exclude them all and look to Him. "Look unto Me."
    and salvation is the moment you look.
  3. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Transformed By Insight

    2 Corinthians 3

    18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the
    glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same
    image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

    The outstanding characteristic of a Christian is this unveiled frankness before God so that the life becomes a mirror for other lives. By being filled with the Spirit we are transformed and by beholding we become mirrors. You always know when a man has been beholding the glory of the Lord; you feel in your inner spirit that he is the mirror of the Lord's own character. Beware of anything which would sully that mirror in you; it is nearly always a good thing, the good that is not the best.

    The golden rule for your life and mine is this concentrated keeping of the life open towards God. Let everything else -- work, clothes, food, everything on earth -- go by the board, saving that one thing. The rush of other things always tends to obscure this concentration on God. We have to maintain ourselves in the place of beholding, keeping the life absolutely spiritual all through. Let other things come and go as they may, let other people criticize as they will, but never allow anything to obscure the life that is hid with Christ in God. Never be hurried out of the relationship of abiding in Him. It is the one thing that is apt to fluctuate but it ought not to. The severest discipline of a Christian's life is to learn how to keep "beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord."
  4. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Overmastering Direction

    Acts 26

    16 "But get up and stand on your feet; for this purpose I have appeared to you, to appoint you a minister and a witness not only to the things which you have seen, but also to the things in which I will appear to you;

    The vision Paul had on the road to Damascus was no passing emotion, but a vision that had very clear and emphatic directions for him and he says, "I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision." Our Lord said, in effect, to Paul -- Your whole life is to be overmastered by Me, you are to have no end, no aim and no purpose but Mine. "I have chosen Him ."

    When we are born again we all have visions, if we are spiritual in all of what Jesus wants us to be, and the great thing is to learn not to be disobedient to the vision, not to say that it cannot be attained. It is not sufficient to know that God has redeemed the world, and to know that the Holy Spirit can make all that Jesus did effectual in me; I must have the basis of a personal relationship to Him. Paul was nto given a message or a doctrine to proclaim, he was brought into a vivid personal, overmastering relationship to Jesus Christ. Verse 16 is immensely commanding, "to appoint you a minister and a witness." There is nothing there apart from the personal relationship. Paul was devoted to a Person not to a cause. He was absolutely Jesus Christ's, he saw nothing else, he lived for nothing else. "For I deternined not to know anything among you save Jesus Christ and Him crucified."
  5. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Leave Room for God

    Galatians 1
    15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's
    womb and called me through His grace

    As workers for God we have to learn to make room for God -- to give God "elbow room." We calculate and estimate and say that this and that will happen, and we forget to make room for God to come in as He chooses. Would we be surprised if God came into our meeting or into our preaching in a way we had never looked for Him to come? Do not look for God to come in any particular way, but look for Him. That is the way to make room for Him. Expect Him to come, but do not expect him only in a certain way. However much we may know God, the great lesson to learn is that at any minute He may break in. We are apt to overlook this element of surprise, yet, God never works in any other way. All of a sudden God meets the life, "When it was the good pleasure of God..."

    Keep your life so constant in its contact with God that His suprising power may break out on the right hand and on the left. Always be in a state of expectancy and see that you leave room for God to come in as He likes.
  6. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Look Again and Congregate

    Matthew 6

    30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

    A simple statement of Jesus is always a puzzle to us if we are not simple. How are we going t be simple with the simplicity of Jesus?
    By receiving His Spirit, rocognizing and relying on Him, obeying Him as He brings the Word of God, and life will become amazingly simple. "Consider," says Jesus, "How much more your Father who clothes the grass of the field will clothe you, if you keep your relationship right with Him." everytime we have gone back in spiritual communion it has been because we have impertenently known better than Jesus Christ. We have allowed the cares of the world to come in and have forgotten the "much more" of our Heavenly Father.

    "Behold the fowls of the air" -- their main aim is to obey the principle of life that is in them and God looks after them. Jesus says that if you are rightly related to Him and obey his Spirit that is in you, God will look after your "feathers."

    "Consider the lilies of the field" -- they grow where they are put . Many of us refuse to grow where we are put, consequently we take root nowhere. Jesus says that if we obey the life God has given us, He will look after all the other things. Has Jesus Christ told us a lie? If we are not experiencing the "much more," it is because we are not obeying the life God has given us, we are taken up with confusing considerations. How much time have we taken up worrying God with questions when we should have been absolutely free to concentrate on his work? Consecration means the continual seperating of myself to one particular thing. We cannot consecrate once and for all. Am I
    continually seperating myself to conseder God every day of my life?
  7. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Look Again and Think

    Matthew 6

    25 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life , what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?"

    A warning which needs to be reiterated is the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of other things entering in, will choke all that God puts in. We are never free from the recurring tides of this encroachment. If it does not come on the line of clothes and food, it will come on the line of money or lack of money; of friends or lack of friends; or on the line of difficult circumstances. It is one steady encroachment all the time, and unless we allow the Spirit of God to raise up the standard against it, these things will come in like a flood.

    "Do not worry about your life." "Be careful about one thing only," says our Lord. "your relationship to Me." Common sense shouts loud and says, "That is absurd, I must consider how I am going to live, I must consider what I am going to eat and drink." Jesus says you must not. Beware of allowing the thought that this statement is made by One Who does not understand our particular circumstances. Jesus Christ knows our circumstances better than we do, and He says we must not think about these things so as to make them the one concern of our life. Whenever there is competition, be sure that you put your relationship to God first

    "34 "So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble (evil) of its own." How much evil has begun to threaten you today? What kind of mean little imps have been looking in and saying -- Now what are you going to do next month -- this summer? "Be anxious for nothing," Jesus says. Look again and think. Keep your mind on the "much more" of your heavenly Father.
  8. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    But it is Hardly Credible That One Could So Persecute Jesus!

    Acts 26

    14 And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew dialect, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads. '

    Am I set on my own way for God? We are never free from this snare until we are brought into the experience of the baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire. Obstinacy and self-will will always stab Jesus Christ. It may hurt no one else, but it wounds his Spirit. Whenever we are obstinate, and self-willed and set upon our own
    ambitions, we are hurting Jesus. Every time we stand on our rights and insist that this is what we intend to do, we are persecuting Jesus. Whenerver we stand on our dignity we systematically vex and grieve His Spirit, and when the knowledge
    comes home that it is Jesus Whom we have been persecuting all the time, it is the most crushing revelation there could be.

    Is the Word of God tremendously keen to me as I hand it on to you, or does my life give the lie to the things I profess to teach? I may teach sanctification and yet exhibit the spirit of Satan, the spirit that persecutes Jesus Christ. The Spirit of Jesus is conscious of one thing only -- a perfect oneness with the Father and he says, "Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart." All I do ought to be founded on a perfect oneness with him, not on a self-willed determination to be godly. This will mean that I can be easily put upon, easily over-reached, easily ignored; but if I submit to it for His sake, i prevent Jesus Christ being persecuted.
  9. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    But It Is Hardly Credible
    That One Could Be So Positively Ignorant

    Acts 26

    15 "Then I asked, `Who are you, Lord?' "`I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,' the Lord replied.

    "The Lord spoke thus to me with a strong hand." There is no escape when Our Lord speaks. He always comes with an arrestment of the understanding. Has the voice of God come to you directly? If it has you cannot mistake the intimate insistence with which it has spoken to you in the language you know best, not through your ears, but through your circustances.

    God has to destroy our determined confidence in our own convictions. "I know this is what I should do" -- and suddenly the voice of God speaks in a way that overwhelms us by revealing the depths of our ignorance. We have shown our ignorance of Him in the very way we determined to serve Him. We serve Jesus in a spirit that is not His, we hurt Him by our advocacy for Him, we push His claims in the spirit of the devil. Our words sound all right, but our spirit is that of an enemy. "He rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of." The spirit of our Lord in an advocate of His is described in 1 Corinthians 13.

    Have I been persecuting Jesus by a zealous determination to serve Him in my own way? If I feel I have done my duty and yet have hurt Him in doing it, I may be sure it was not my duty, because it has not fostered the meek and quiet spirit, but the spirit of self-satisfaction. We imagine that whatever is unpleasant is our duty! Is that anything like the spoirit of our Lord. "I delight to do Thy will, O My God."
  10. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Dilemma of Obedience

    1 Samuel 3

    15 Samuel lay down until morning and then opened the doors of the house of the LORD. He was
    afraid to tell Eli the vision,

    God never speaks to us in startling ways but in ways that are easy to misunderstand, and we say, "I wonder if that is God;s voice?" Isaiah said that the Lord spake to him "with a strong hand," that is by the pressure of circumstances. Nothing touches our lives but it is God Himself speaking. Do we discern His hand or only mere occurence?

    Get into the habit of saying, "Speak, Lord." and life will become a romance. Every time circumstances press, say "Speak, Lord." Make time to listen. Chastening is more than a means of discipline, it is meant to get me to the place of saying, "Speak, Lord." Recall the time when God did speak to you. Have you forgotten what he said? Was it Luke 11:13, or was it
    1 Thessalonians 5:23? As we listen, our ear gets acute, and like Jesus we shall hear God all the time.

    Shall I tell my "Eli" what God has shown to me? That is where the dilemma of obedience comes in. We disobey God by becoming amateur providences -- I must shield "Eli" the best people we know. God did not tell Samuel to tell Eli, he had to decide that for himself. God's call to you may hurt your "Eli", but if you try to prevent the suffering in another life, it will prove an obsruction between your soul and God. It is at you own peril that you prevent the cutting off of the right hand or the plucking out of the eye.

    Never ask the advice oof another about anything God makes you decide before Him. If you ask advice, you will nearly always side with Satan. "Immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood."
  11. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    I have copied this in here where it belongs, because it is a devotional form My Utmost For His Highest, and because it deserves the extra reading. We need to get back to our first love.

    Remember What God Remembers

    Jeremiah 2:
    2 "Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem: "`I remember the devotion of your youth, how as a bride you loved me and followed me through the desert, through a land not sown.

    Am I as spontaneously kind to God as I used to be, or am I only expecting God to be kind to me? There is no jowy in the soul that has forgotten what God prizes. It is a great thing to think that Jesus Christ has need of me. "Give Me to drink." how much kindness have I shown Him this past week? Have I been kind to His reputation in my life?

    God is saying to His people--You are not in love with Me now, but I remember the time when you were. "I remember...the love of thine expousals." Am I as full of the extravagance of love to Jesus Christ as I was in the beginning, when I went out of my way to prove my devotion to Him? Does he find me recalling the time when I did not care for anything but Himself? Am I there now, or have I become wise over loving Him? Am I so in love with Him that I take no account of where I go? Or am I watching for the respect due to me; weighing how much service I ought to give?

    If, as I recall what God remembers about me, I find He is not what He used to be to me, let it produce shame and humiliation, because that shame will bring the Godly sorrow that works repentance.
  12. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Vision and Darkness

    Genesis 15:

    12 As the sun was setting, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and a thick and dreadful darkness came over him.

    When ever God gives a vision to a saint, He puts him, as it were, in the shadow of His hand, and the saint's duty is to be still and listen. There is a darkness which comes from excess light, and then is the time to listen. Genesis 16 is an illustration of listening to good advice when it is dark instead of waiting for God to send the light. When God gives a vision and darkness follows, wait. God will make you in accordance with the vision He has given if you will wait His time. Never try and help God fulfill His word. Abraham went through thirteen years of silence, but in those years all self-sufficiency was destroyed; there was no possibility left of relying on common sense ways. Those years of silence were a time of discipline, not of displeasure. Never pump up joy and confidence, but
    stay upon God.

    Have I any confidence in the flesh? Or have I got beyand all confidence in myself and in men and women of God; in books and prayers and ecstasies; and is my confidence placed now in God Himself, not in His blessings?

    "I am the Almighty God"--El-Shaddai, the Father-Mother God. The one thing for which we are all being disciplined is to know God is real. As soon as God becomes real, other people become shadows. Nothing that other saints do or say can ever perturb the one who is built on God.
  13. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Do You See Your Calling?

    Romans 1

    1 Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God,

    Our calling is not primarily to be holy men and women, but to be proclaimers of the Gospel of God. The one thing that is all important is that the Gospel of God should be realized as the abiding Reality. Reality is not human goodness, nor holiness, not heaven nor hell ; but Redemption , and the seed to perceive this is the most vital need of the Christian worker today. As workers we have to get used to the revelation that Redemption is the only Reality . Personal holiness is an effect, not a cause, and if we place our faith in human goodness in the effect of Redemption, we shall go under when the test comes.

    Paul did not say he seperated himself, but, "when it pleased God who seperated me...." Paul had not a hyper-sensitive interest in his own character. As long as our eyes are upon our own personal whiteness we shall never get near the reality of Redemption. Workers break down because their desire is for their own whiteness and not for God. "Don't ask me to come into contact with the rugged reality of Redemption on behalf of the filth of human life as it is what I want is anything God can do for me to make me more desirable in my own eyes." To talk in that way is a sign that the reality of the Gospel of God has not begun to touch me, there is no reckless abondon to God. God cannot deliver me while my interest is merely in my own character . Paul is unconscious of himself, his is recklessly abandoned, seperated by God for one purpose -- to proclaim the Gospel of God. (cf. Rom 9:3).
  14. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Call of God

    1 Corinthians 1

    17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel : not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

    Paul states here that the call of God is to preach the gospel: but remember what Paul means by "the gospel," viz., the reality of Redemption in our Lord Jesus Christ. We are apt to make sanctification the end-all of our preaching. Paul alludes to personal experience by way of illustrations , never as the end of matter. We are nowhere commissioned to preach salvation or sanctification: we are commissioned to lift up Jesus Christ
    (John 12:32).
    It is a travesty to say that Jesus Christ travailed in Redemption to make me a sasint. Jesus Christ travailed in Redemption to redeem the whole world, and place it unimpaired and rehabilitated before the throne of God.

    The fact that Redemption can be experienced by us is an illustration of the power of the reality of Redemption, but that is not the end of Redemption. If God were human, how sick to the heart and weary He would be of the constant rquests we make for our salvation, for our sanctification. We tax His energies from morning till night for things for ourselves -- something for me to be delivered from. When we touch the bedrock of the reality of the Gospel of God, we shall never bother God any further with little personal plaints.

    The one passion of Paul's life was to proclaim the Gospel of God. He welcomed heartbreaks, disillusionments, tribulation for one reason only, because these things kept him in unmoved devotion to the Gospel of God.
  15. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Constraint of the Call

    1 Corinthians 9

    16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for I am under compulsion; for
    woe is me if I do not preach the gospel .

    Beware of stopping your ears to the call of God. Everyone who is saved is called to the fact but that is not the call to preach, it is merely an illustration in preaching. Paul is referring to the pangs produced in him by the constraint to prach the Gospel. Never apply what Paul says in this connectioon to souls coming in contact with God for salvation. There is nothing easier than getting saved because it is God's sovereign work -- Come unto me and I will save you. Our Lord never lays down the conditions of discipleship as the conditions of salvation. We are condemned to salvation through the Cross of Jesus Christ. Discipleship has an option with it -- "If any man..."

    Paul's words have to do with being made a servant of Jesus Christ and our permission is never asked as to what we will do or where we will go. God makes us broken bread and poured-out wine to please Himself. To be "seperated unto the gospel" means to hear the call of God: and when a man begins to overhear that call, then begins agony that is worthy of the Name. Every ambition is nipped in the bud, every desire of life quenched, every outlook completely extinguished and blotted out, saving one thing only --
    "seperated unto the gospel ." Woe be to the soul who tries to put his foot in any other direction when once that call has come to him. This College exists for you, and you -- to see whether God has a man or woman here who cares about proclaiming His Gospel; to see whether God grips you. And beware of competitors when God does grip you.
  16. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Recognized Ban of Relationship

    1 Corinthians 4

    13 Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.

    These words are not an exaggeration. The reason they are not true of us who call ourselves ministers of the gospel is not that Paul forgot the exact truth in using them, but that we have too many discreet affinities to allow ourselves to be made refuse. "Filling up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ"
    is not an evidence of sanctification, but of being "seperated unto the gospel."

    "Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you," says Peter. If we do think it strange concerning the things we meet with, it is because we are cravenhearted. We have discreet affinities that keep us out of the mire -- I wont stoop. I wont bend. You do not need to, you can be saved by the skin of your teeth if you like, you can refuse to let God count you as one seperated unto the gospel. Or you may say -- "I do not care if I am treated as the offscouring of the earth as long as the Gospel is proclaimed." a servant of Jesus Christ is one who is willing to go to martyrdom for the reality of the gospel of God. When a merely normal man or woman comes in contact with baseness and immorality and treachery, the recoil is so desperately offensive to human goodness that the heart shuts up in despair. The marvel of the Redemptive Reality of God is that the vilest can never get to the bottom of His love . Paul did not say that God seperated him to show what a wonderful man He could make of him, but "to reveal His Son in me."
  17. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Overmastering Majesty of Personal Power

    2 Corinthians 5

    14 For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died;

    Paul says he is overruled, overmastered, held as in a vise by the love of Christ. Very few of us know what it means to be held in a grip by the love of God; we are held by the constraint of our experience only. The one thing that held Paul, until there was nothing else on his horizon, was the love of God. "The love of Christ controls us" -- when you hear that note in a man or woman, you can never mistake it. You know that the Spirit of God is getting unhindered way in that life.

    When we are born again of the Spirit of God, the note of testimony is on what God has done for us, and rightly so. But the baptism of the Holy Ghost obliterates that forever, and we begin to realize what Jesus meant when He said -- "Ye shall be witnesses unto Me." Not witnesses to what Jesus can do -- that is an elementary witness -- but "witnesses unto me." We will take everything that happens as happening to Him, whether it be praise or blame, persecution or commendation. No one can stand like that for Jesus Christ who is not controlled by the majesty of His personal power. It is the only thing that matters, and the strange thing is that it is the last thing realized by the Christian worker. Paul says he is gripped by the love of God., that is why he acts as he does. Men may call him mad or sober, but he does not care; there is only one thing he is living for, and that is to persuade men of the judgment seat of God, and of the love of Christ. This abandon to the love of Christ is the one thing that bears fruit in the life, and it will always leave the impression of the holiness and of the power of God, never of our pesonal holiness.
  18. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    Are You Ready to be Offered?

    Philippians 2

    17 Yes, and if I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am
    glad and rejoice with you all.

    Are you willing to be offered for the work of the faithful -- to pour out your life blood as a libation on the sacrifice fo the faith of others? Or do you say -- "I am not going to be offered up just yet. I do not want God to choose my work. I want to choose the scenery of my own sacrifice. I want to have the right kind of people watching and saying, 'Well done."

    It is one thing to go on the lonely way with dignified heroism, but quite another thing if the line mapped out for you by God means being a door-mat under other people's feet. Suppose God wants to teach you to say, "I know how to be abased" -- are you ready to be offered up like that? Are you ready to be not so much as a drop in the bucket -- to be so hopelessly insignificant that you are never thought of again in connection with the life you served? Are you willing to spend and be spent not seeking to be ministered unto, but to minister? Some saints cannot do menial work, and remain saints, because it is beneath their dignity.
  19. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    (Continued) Are You Ready to be Offered?

    2 Timothy 4

    6 For I am already being poured out like a drink offering , and the time has come for my departure.

    "I am ready to be offered." It is a transaction of will, not of sentiment. Tell God you are ready to be offered; then let the consequence be what they may, there is no stand of complaint now, no matter what God chooses. God puts you through the crisis in private, no one person can help another. Externally the life may be the same, the difference is in will. Go through the crisis in will, then when it comes externally, there will be no thought of the cost. If you do not transact in will with God along this line, you will end in awakening sympathy for yourself.

    "Bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar." The altar means fire -- burning and purification and insulation for one purpose only, the destruction of every affinity that God has not started and of every attachment that is not an attachment in God. You do not destroy it, God does; you bind the sacrifice to the horns of the altar, and see that you do not give way to self-pity when the fire begins. After this way of fire, there is nothing that oppresses or depresses. When the crisis arises you realize that things cannot touch you as they used to do . What is your way of fire?

    Tell God you are ready to be offered and God will prove Himself to be all you ever dreamed He would be.
  20. solo66 man

    solo66 man Well-Known Member

    The Discipline of Dejection

    Luke 24

    21 but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place.

    Every fact that the disciples stated was right, but the inferences they drew from those facts were wrong. Anything that savours of dejection spiritually is always wrong. If depression and opprssion visit me, I am to blame. God is not, nor is anyone else. Dejection springs from one of two sources -- I have either satisfied a lust or I have not. Lust means -- I must have it at once. Spiritual lust makes me demand an answer from God instead of seeking God, Who gives the answer. What have I been trusting God would do? And today -- the immediate present -- is the third day, and He has not done it; therefore I imagine I am justified to being dejected and in blaming God. Whenever the insistence is on the point that God answers prayer, we are off the track. The meaning of prayer is that we get hold of God, not of the answer. It is impossible to be well physically and to be dejected. Dejection is a sign of sickness, and the same thing is true spiritually. Dejection spiritually is wrong, and we are always to blame for it.

    We look for visions from heaven, for earthquakes and thunders of God's power (the fact that we are dejected proves that we do), and we never dream that all the time God is in the commonplace things and people around us. If we will do the duty that lies nearest, we shall see him. One of the most amazing revelations of God comes when we learn that it is in the commonplace things that the Deity of Jesus Christ is realized.