Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Daily Reflection

Did you know that you don't have to go to Church to be in the presence of the Lord? No…really…it is true. Being in His Holy presence is such a privilege. Nothing compares to being in the presence of our God. King David was sought after His presence more than anything else. He wrote in Psalm 27:4, "One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple." His only desire was to be where God was…in His house. An old song has been going over and over in my spirit all day long. Here are the lyrics:

IN HIS PRESENCE - Geron Davis

IN HIS PRESENCE

IN HIS HOLY PRESENCE

THE WEARY CAN FIND PERFECT REST

THE BROKEN ARE RESTORED

IN HIS PRESENCE

IN HIS HOLY PRESENCE

THERE'S NOTHING LIKE

THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD

Yesterday, my wife and I were out to an appointment. She had about an hour to do something so I was waiting for her so we could go home together. Rather than sitting in the waiting room and twiddle my thumbs, I decided to go for a walk. It was a beautiful night so I just walked around and just started praying. I didn't really pray for anything specific I just started thanking God for His goodness to us. His presence came and it was almost like He was walking with me. I did not have a specific need but He came and met me in fellowship as my friend. God is Omnipresent, which means He can be everywhere all at the same time. Last night, you were probably praying and feeling His presence too! Isn't that wonderful!? We were both in the presence of the Lord, being restored, being filled, and finding perfect rest together. God is so good!

I've been put on a pretty important project at my job so my days have gotten crazier over the past several weeks. Throughout this craziness, I've really gained an appreciation for the ability to just pray and meditate on the Lord, even while I'm working. If I'm doing paperwork or researching something, I'll throw on my .mp3 player and just listen to worship music and His presence comes. If I'm working through a problem I can be praying in my Spirit and His presence comes. How wonderful! I don't have to be in church to hear Him speak to me. He is with me as I go through my life and as I call out to Him, He answers! What a blessing. It is so wonderful to be in the presence of the Lord.

Spend some time in His presence. If you're reading this, you're probably on the computer. Why not turn off the computer and spend some time meditating on His goodness. If you have a specific need, tell Him about it. If you just want to talk to a friend…talk to Him. There's truly nothing like the presence of the Lord.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

God’s Guidance in a Chaotic Situation

My friend David is a pastor from upstate New York. We've known each other for at least 10 years. He is a very gifted teacher of God's Word. He and his family have been driving 6 – 7 hours to teach at our Bible School here in Virginia. Each class is taught for 2 weekends a month and they teach 5 or 6 classes a year. It is a sacrifice of their time to come and minister and we are very thankful for them.

Yesterday, on his way down, someone plowed into his car while he was stopped at a stop light (gotta love D.C. area drivers). He called me at about 8:30 pm to inform me of the situation. He said, "Jay, I just got plowed into….my car's wrecked…and I have no idea where I am. I'm on route 7….somewhere…" I said, "First…are you ok?" His response, "We'll live." I reminded him, "Bro, 'We'll live' is not an appropriate answer to 'Are you ok?' in a car accident situation. Are you hurt?" Thankfully he and his passenger (his wife and children stayed home on this trip) were not hurt, nor was the gentleman that hit them. As one that has been in a couple of car accidents in his life I know that it is hard to think of things to be thankful for in those types of situations, but God is so good. Cars and possessions are replaceable…David is not! J I am very thankful that my friends were not hurt and were able to walk away from this accident. I know David has many other things for which to be thankful and you'll have to ask him about it sometime. However, I do have something to add to this story that I think will encourage all of us.

David's car was not able to be driven from the scene so he needed someone to come get him. However, not being from the area, David was a little unclear as to how to tell me where he was. If you've ever been to the D.C. area you know that the roads can get a little confusing. I've been living here for just over 3 years and I still get turned around in certain places. So he says, "I'm on Route 7 and I see a sign that says 'Tyson's Corner'." I knew he was coming from a certain direction, but that could have been anywhere over a stretch of about 40 miles. I got in my car and started driving towards what I thought was his general location. I tried calling David to get a little better feel for his location, but he was talking with the police at this time and not able to answer his phone. I'm driving with a general idea but I am not really sure where he is on route 7 and if I go the wrong way I could drive for many miles and not find him for quite some time. So…it dawns on me…why don't I just pray??? What a brilliant idea! So I just prayed a very simple prayer, "Lord, I don't know where they are but you do…please take me to them." I continued praying and driving and, when I came to the point where I had to turn, I had to make a decision. "Lord what do I do?" My original plan was to go
east, but I felt in my spirit to go west, so I was obedient and turned west. Within five minutes, I had found them! Praise the Lord! Had I turned the other way (which was my original plan) I would have ended up in congested traffic and had to fight it all the way back to them. Praise the Lord for His leading!

If you've been in church for any period of time at all you've probably been taught many times about following the quickening of the Holy Spirit…I've even taught it myself. But, until you're in a situation where you have absolutely nothing you can do but cry out to God for direction, there really is no way of really apprehending this message. I am so thankful to know that God is in control and will lead me and guide me. This is a real example of a chaotic situation. I needed to find David. David didn't know where he was and wasn't able to guide me…so I prayed and the Holy Spirit took care of everything! All I had to do was listen to His voice and obey. What a wonderful God we serve!

Do you know our Father's voice? When He speaks, are you obedient?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Day Thoughts

Just in case you missed the 9,000,000 commercials, or never had any tele-polsters call you, or missed out on the lovely opportunity of actually having real, live pollster visit your home in the evening I wanted to let you know that today is Election Day. I don't remember what it was like growing up in Michigan, but since I've moved to the D.C. area I've had the wonderful opportunity to experience all of these things on a daily basis for 6-8 months out of each election year. There is a growing concern for politics and politician. People are getting "educated" and becoming "aware" and actually voting. So…please…vote. Voting is an important duty of every citizen of this country. Voting is one of the ways we can express the freedom given to us by our country as well as the God-directed righteousness we have felt we are to display by our vote.

However, there is a responsibility that is far greater than voting and that is praying for our leaders. Christians are instructed by the Word of God to pray for those in positions of authority in our lives. I Timothy 2:1-3 say, "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior." The footnote following this verse in the Spirit-Filled Life Bible says: "We must pray for those who are in authority over us if we wish to reap the benefits of good government, which is a prized gift from God for the church's welfare and advancement of the Gospel." Romans 13:1 says "Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities, for there is not authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God." The authorities that exist are appointed by God (See also Daniel 4:32; Psalm 75:6,7). Think about that next time you complain about a politician or mock our president. You're really mocking the person that God has placed in authority over us. This doesn't mean we agree with everything that he/she does. Paul does not suggest that God approves a corrupt government, ungodly officials, or unjust legislation. Sometimes, however, in punishment for the sins of a people, or for other reasons known to Him, God allows evil rulers to have authority for a time, as the OT prophets frequently testify. Ideally, God grants authority to serve good ends (vss. 3, 4). How that authority is exercised will be the accounting of each to whom it has been given. Our only hope in this area is God's sovereignty…He is in full control of every situation. It's much better to pray…pray for him/her.

II Chronicles 7:14 gives us all the ammunition we will every need, "If my people, who are called by My Name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land." Here we find the promise God has made to Abraham's seed, of whom we are offspring. This promise applies to America, if we will have faith and PRAY! How important it is to pray! I don't usually get involved in political things…not that I'm not politically aware…but because I know the One who rules the Heavens and the Earth. I know the only One who can ever really change anything and that is the King of kings and the Lord of lords…Jesus Christ. So if you're upset with the state of our nation, pray. If you don't agree with the legislation that your elected officials have initiated, pray for them…and, of course vote!


 

"I'm Jason and I approved this message."

*This message was brought to you by one citizen for a Godly nation. J