Sunday, October 17, 2010

Thoughts from Ephesians (Part 2)

Yesterday we started a theme word study from the epistle to the Ephesians. The three key words are: Sit, Walk, and Stand. Our first theme word was taken from Ephesians 2:6, "Sit". According to Ephesians 1:20-21 and Colossians 3:1, Christ is seated in Heavenly places at the right hand of the Father far above all rule, authority, power, dominion, and every other name that is named. If God raised us up to be seated with Christ (Eph. 2:6), then where are we seated? This is our position in Christ. To be able to WALK and STAND, we must remain in our position in Christ. As we will find out later in our study, one must learn to "SIT" before one can WALK and STAND. The first part of learning to sit involves recognizing that we are seated in Heavenly places both now and into the future. Understanding this should change our perspective on what we call "important" it should prompt us to begin seeking things that are above and not the things of this earth.

Before we move on to walking, there is one more thing that needs to be mentioned about "Sitting" and that relates to the attitude of resting in His presence. Believers have to be content to sit in the presence of the Lord and rest. There is nothing more satisfying than resting in the Lord's presence. Christ does not command us to "Sit Down" like one would tell a 5 year old. Christ has invited us. We have been raised up and placed next to Him. This is a position of fellowship. We are invited to sit in the presence of the King of kings and the Lord of lords. What an awesome invitation. Hopefully, we all pray every day. As part of your prayer life, you have probably experienced the presence of the Lord on many occasions. Isn't it wonderful?

However, too many Christians have a prayer time that more resembles a "Wish List". Consider the following example. "Dear God: thank-you for this wonderful day and the life that you have given me. God, please bless mom, dad, gramma and grampa. Help me on my job. Please provide 'this or that'. Be with my wife today at her job. Help my kids at school" and the list goes on and on concluded conveniently with the customary "AMEN" ('Cause it is really not a prayer unless you say "Amen") J And then you're off about your day. In that type of prayer, when have we allowed God to speak to us? When did we say, "God, what do you want me to do today?" and then waited for His answer?

Learning to "Sit" in the presence of the Lord is developed by the typical prayer time. We have to first understand that we need God for more than just "stuff". God loves to provide for His people and it delights His heart when we go to Him when we need things, but a relationship is much more than that. Relationship is communication and communication goes both ways. Think about Joshua in Exodus 33:11, "And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle." Joshua was invited to the Tabernacle with Moses. He was invited to sit in the presence of Almighty God. He saw the relationship that Moses had and desired that for Himself. He was not content with Moses' relationship; He wanted one of His own. So, as Moses departed, He lingered. He sought the Lord Himself. He had a love for the presence of the Lord.

We have the same invitation. We have been invited into the presence of Almighty God. How are we responding to that invitation? Are we giving God a list of requests? Or are we seeking Him for His direction?

Try this little exercise: Try to fit into your prayer time a certain time for just sitting and listening to what God might say. Try to sit still in the presence of the Lord and not say anything. Don't think anything…just sit with and open spirit and see what might happen. Start off with 5 minutes…them move up from there. This takes time to develop but over time you'll find that your time of actually speaking is reduced and your time of listening is increased.

Do you have an appreciation of just sitting in the presence of the Lord? Do you get your direction from His presence?

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