Tag Archives: God’s love

Two Unlikely Characters

I love Bible study! Be it on my own or listening under the teaching of others. And one of my favorite times is the Teen Class at Victory Baptist Church. I co-teach with a couple of fella’s whose characters are as far from one end of the spectrum as the other, but both bring such wisdom to the table and allow the kids to see that God’s method of understanding is personal.

This past Sunday I sat with the youth and listened to a lesson from co-teacher Doug that I told him I was totally going to steal and not give him credit. I wouldn’t do that… at least not entirely. Below is what I gleaned from Doug’s wisdom on Isaiah chapter 1.

Isaiah 1:1-3 

1The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.

Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the Lord hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me.

The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.

God uses two unlikely Characters… hmmm…. Just like Doug and me, to teach a lesson about the rebellious heart. The ox and the ass. Two animals who knew more about submission to authority than the nation of Israel. But before we step out of the stall and consider ourselves to be above that, perhaps we should check the bottom of our shoes to see what we’re treading in.

It seems that no matter how far I come in my walk with Christ, I still always have plenty of path before me. I have nowhere near arrived! There has always been a rebellious, just roll with it, side to me that gets me into trouble. I never give God full control. I always hold back just a little of Shari to mess things up.

Israel had unfortunately kept a lot of themselves in their Nation and rebelled again and again on God their Creator.

Doug’s lesson had four wonderful points that are so very worthy of pondering.

  1. We were Created by God.
  2. We were Stolen by Satan (separated from God through sin)
  3. We were Bought back through the blood of Christ! Glory!
  4. We were Gifted life by God

We were created in God’s image (Genesis 2:16-17). The ox and the ass know their masters here on earth, although they too can be rebellious and stubborn. But so much can be learned from God’s creation.

We have several critters around our home, but the three who I deal with beneath my feet daily are Izadora, Versace and Callie. A Chihuahua, a Jack-Huahua (1/2 Chihuahua and Jack Russell) and a calico cat. The dogs are adoring creatures who just want to love us continually. They cannot get close enough. Callie the cat is a vicious creature who loves nothing more than to come from nowhere to grab your bare feet with her claws and scare the daylights out of you! She is self-absorbed and could care less if you like her, so long as you feed her. True story! But which creature sounds more like God’s human creation?

That’s because Satan stole our hearts. Oh my goodness! That thought makes me so sad. When Satan tempted Eve in the garden, he tempted her with something that would steal her heart from her Creator God. She fell, Adam fell and because of that, we are all a fallen, stolen creation from the Savior. (Romans 6:23) The wages of sin is death. Once we get to the age of knowledge, when we can determine right from wrong, Satan has us in his clutches, just like he did Eve underneath that tree.

But praise God! We were bought back. 1 Peter 3:18 ~ For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.

It’s a price my mind cannot fathom. I try. But I just can’t wrap my mind around the physical pain that He endured for me, and His separation from His father. How could He love me that much (John 3:16) even in my rebellion? A point Doug brought out that sorrows my soul is that Christ even did it for those who will never accept Him as Lord. He loves us all the same.

God’s greatest gift to us was the freedom of life.

Doug’s favorite verse is Matthew 11:28. It’s one of mine too and it’s a reminder that we do not have to live with the burden of sin and strife.

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

The ox and the ass know where to go when it’s time to rest. They go to master’s crib. We too should find ourselves cradled in the arms of God when life gets too much. O God… to be so wise…

Thanks Doug for the thoughts, and thank You Jesus for your word.

How Well Do You Know God?

How many times today have you said that you loved someone or something? Things like “I love French fries or cake, or the shoes on my feet. Perhaps you told someone you loved them, and genuinely meant it, or maybe not.” The point is we use the word “love” a lot. And often as nothing more than a term of affection meaning “really like.” We wouldn’t dare compare the love of chocolate cake to the love of our family. So if we rated love on a scale of 1-10, where would chocolate cake rate, and where would our mother rank. And if by comparison we threw the love of God into the equation, in that He gave His only begotten Son to die for sins, where then would chocolate cake rate? I know it really is relative, but it’s a point worth pondering.

How much do we understand the love of God?

What does God know about you?

God knew you, before you were you

Jeremiah 1:5 –  Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest  forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

Of course God speaks of Jeremiah the Prophet, but being that God is no respecter of persons, He put the same thought into you prior to your birth. Your life was a blue print in God’s mind before you became the child of your parents. While your parents were planning the color of your nursery, God was planning your career. I know the love that I had for my girls and the planning and preparing that went into each of their arrivals. But I didn’t love them to the depth that God loved them. While human love created the children, God’s love created the possibility for it to happen, in that He allowed me to conceive. He created the Passion for David and I to love each other and He created the potential for my girls to become who He wanted them to become.

When the world tells us that we are unworthy, and for me that is often. God says, “You have no idea of the time I’ve invested in you.” That should make us pause for reflection on why we feel unworthy. It’s not because the Creator makes us feel that way.

That is why, I believe that God starts speaking into our lives at a very young age, and so does Satan. Satan loves to try to undo, God’s creation. He’s very good at it in some areas. But in our lives, he is only as good as we let him be.

God Knows the Hairs on your Head

Matthew 10:30 – But the very hairs of your hair are all numbered?

What attention to detail! Most of us don’t even notice when someone we care about gets their hair cut, but God not only notices, He has each follicle numbered. It shows the depth of God’s love and concern for everything aspect of our lives.

Following the surgery, my hair was showing a lot of damage. Possibly from the stress on my body overall. It was frustrating to look in the mirror at the broken and dead ends of my previously healthy-ish hair ( I do color it after all). But I have friends who have lost their hair because of cancer treatments. How can I complain about split ends. Because God knows for me it’s not about vanity as much as it’s about wanting to appear healthy so that people aren’t concerned and worried about me. To the world, it may seem vain. But God knows and cares about my heart. Maybe for you it’s another part of your anatomy or life that causes anxiety. Believe that God cares.

God Knows your Desires

Psalm 37:4 – Delight thyself also in the Lord; and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

I can’t tell you how many times that I’ve read and favored this verse. But today as I read it, the word “also” jumped from the page of scripture.

If you read the verses going into that verse you’ll see in the context that there is method to God’s plans. Psalm 37:1-3 says Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the Lord and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.

Leading up to the often-quoted verse of God granting us the desires of our heart is the acknowledgement that we are often aware of others who seemingly have the world as their oyster while we have crawl crabs on the creek bank. Can I get a witness on that!? Today as I traveled the highways I was having one of those moments as I looked at the countless blessing of folks who were far from serving God and yet they had “so much” materialistically speaking. I was ashamed of myself as soon as the thought came into my mind; but it didn’t stop me from thinking about it again.

But God does know the desires of my heart, and how many of those has He given me? Countless! And what does the lost have if they have not Christ? Nothing of any value. So when I read “also.” What that said to my heart was God allows our hearts to desire things of Him and things that are not of Him. And so long as they are not harmful to the cause of Christ, they are fine. But it’s up to God when to dole out the blessings. Just as it’s up to Him to call the final day in the life of a lost soul.

Verse 5a: Commit thy way unto the Lord;

Stay committed regardless.

God knows every thought we have before we have it. He knows our down rising and our uprising. David said I Psalm 139:8 – If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed hell, behold thou art there. There is no where that we can go, no thought nor action can we have that God is not aware. No sin…

That is what’s so amazing about John 3:16

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

He knows every sin and failure, yet He was still willing to allow His Son to pay the price for our sin.

Who would you do that for?

How well do you know the Love of God and the depth of it? He knows everything about us. Every second of the day He is prepared to hear us and provide for us. How many seconds of the day are we prepared to hear His voice and get to know Him better? How many minutes on Sunday do we commit to know Him better?