At a time when truth is irreplaceable ... these thoughts:
Soulful tunes and well-written lyrics seem to break down walls and seep into streams that feed the emotional reservoirs of our hearts and minds. Music speaks to me. And because I notice it seems to speak to others too, I employ a lot of it when I teach--even from the back of the Ford truck these days! Yes, I love music.
Our challenge in 2020 has been how to take control of our thoughts which tend to be running amok, causing fear, anxiety and generalized discontentment -- particularly with this highly charged election and all that goes with it.
In my last Morning Briefing about this critical time, https://conta.cc/3mTczvJ, we recognized that our God is both Way Maker and Miracle Worker. Today, we look at two more of his attributes from the song Way Maker.1 These thoughts form a powerful individual prayer to our magnificent God.
Our God is a
Promise Keeper - It is true - one thing we know about God - he keeps his promises. While there are so many promises I could quote, promises that he has kept, I should like to highlight two from the last chapter of Hebrews:
v. 5 - Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.
v. 8 - Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Do not miss God’s promise in Hebrews 13.5 ~ … never will I leave you, never will I forsake you. If that strikes a chord in your memory, that is because he had stated the promise in full in the Old Testament: Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.2 ‘O my gracious,’ as my little almost three-year-old Logan said as he got out of the van for his first day of preschool today,3 ‘that is so fitting!’
And Jesus? The same yesterday as today? Now this is amazing news, Friend.
The same Jesus we read about in the pages of the gospels is our Jesus.
~>The same Jesus who was moved to tears when Lazarus died is moved with
compassion for us today.
~>The same Jesus who could reach across the aisle to those despised by
most is the same Jesus today.
~>Think about the Jesus revealed by his best friend, John--the One we
have been reading about, who could wash Judas’ feet even though
He knew he would serve him up for arrest later . . . that is the same
Jesus who loves us.
Wait, so the Waymaker is also the Miracle Worker and Promise Keeper? Yes, the same God who made a way in the desert will make a way--even when there seems to be no way--for you. And sometimes God chooses to do that in a way that only he could, by doing the miraculous, just as he parted the Red Sea for the Israelites.
Light in the darkness -
Last night I prayed with Franklin Graham who conducted prayer for our nation live on Facebook; he commented that the world seems so very dark just now. I would have to say that it sure feels that way at times, which is why what Jesus said of himself means everything:
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me
will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”4
There are times we battle darkness of various kinds; some folks battle depression as a matter of course. Nonetheless, when we belong to Jesus, we know (intellectually)that Jesus is our light and that does not change. I know that when things seem dark around me, I KNOW deep in my soul that I belong to Jesus, and the promise that he will never leave me alone gives me calm assurance . . . no matter my emotions, no matter anything else. My God is faithful.
So, we can pray, ‘You are here, moving in our midst and we worship you. You are Waymaker, Miracle worker, Promise Keeper and Light in the Darkness . . .’ therefore, we will not fear. We will trust in You. Amen.
1 - written in 2015 by Nigerian gospel singer, Sinach
2 - Deuteronomy 31.6
3 - identical twin grandson in Wake Forest, North Carolina
4 - John 8.12
5/Worship: Waymaker, Michael W. Smith, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SE_M9noEhNE