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Tag Archives: fear

My God is looking at the heart 1 Samuel 16:7

1 Samuel 16:7b – The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance,

Homeless: Don't Judge Me

Don’t judge me

but the Lord looks at the heart.

Don’t judge a book by its cover 

How many times have our moms said that to us? Our whole lives we’ve been told you can’t judge based on appearance, but to be honest, we all do. We see a well dressed man and think he must be a titan of industry or at least a successful businessman. We see a disheveled looking woman sitting at an intersection, and we assume she’s the product of her own choices.

What does your cover look like? 

We work hard to keep our covers looking good too, don’t we? I know I do. I want my hair to look good, my husband to be kind and my children to be polite. Those things are all good, but part of my motivation for these things is that I want people to assume my life is good. I want them to think that I’m a good wife and mother, that I’m kind, that I’m trusting in God, that I’m not full of sin. Some of the time I am those things, but I also fail quite regularly. But I don’t want anyone to know that. I don’t want to admit my failures.

God judges the heart

God can see through our cover. He can see right through to our heart. He knows our motivations, our failures and our successes. He knows what we truly value and where He is on that list. He’s not judging us on what we’re putting out there, but what is going on in our hearts and minds. He knows the true us, like no one else. Even those we are closest too don’t know us as well as the Lord does. He knows our fears, short comings, talents, gifts and humor. He gets us. He loves us.

He loves us

He knows the whole story. He knows where you’ve come from and where you’re headed. He knows that it’s because of the way your father treated you that you have a hard time trusting your husband. He knows that it’s your insecurity and need to look good that makes you yell at your children when they embarrass you. He knows that you love your mom and want to stop fighting with her. He knows you’re still sad about your grandpa’s death, even though it happened years ago. He knows us and loves us. He delights in us.

Don’t judge a book

The truth is, our failures and success are both necessary in who we are becoming. Often sharing the truth about our feelings, who we are and what embarrasses us is actually the best way to build true relationships. When we share our innermost secrets, we find ourselves bonding, exposed and vulnerable. It’s not always an easy place to be, but when we’ve found people we can share things with, we find ourselves in true relationship. We no longer have to pretend. They know us, and have either accepted or rejected us for who we are, and there is something really freeing about that. That is how it is with our Lord. He knows us so intimately. He knows our thoughts, dreams, fears and pain. It is because of that vulnerability of Him truly knowing us, and loving us anyway that we can build that true relationship with Him. One of freedom and growth that can only come when one feels truly secure in a relationship.

Do you feel secure?

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Posted by on December 27, 2012 in 1 Samuel, My God is looking at the heart

 

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My God is…Ever-Present Psalm 46:1-6

Psalm 46:1-6 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. “Selah” There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. God is within her,she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.

Sometimes we get busy. Sometimes we get bored. Sometimes we’re pissed off. Then something amazing happens, maybe a call from a long-lost friend or someone repays an old debt. Maybe it’s just that you hit all the lights green, but that something amazing can reawaken you. Get you revived and looking for the good things in life. In Genesis 28 Jacob was sleeping when he was given a message from God that reawakened him. After he awoke he said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.”

I didn’t know it.

How often could we say that about our own lives? The Lord was here and I didn’t know it. We forget. We get busy and distracted by the life we’re leading. We get overwhelmed by work, family and play. We let our eyes slip from what’s really important. But He is not distracted. So often we only look to God when we need something. There’s a reason for that, He’s reliable.

An ever-present help in trouble.

Our verse from Psalm 46, above, reminds us that our God is an ever-present help in trouble. No matter what kind of trouble. Many people are concerned about the politics of our nation. What does the verse say about that? “Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts.” He can take care of it. He could melt the world with His voice if He wanted to, surely we can trust Him to handle our politics. We can trust Him with anything.

Therefore we will not fear

I am frozen by fear. Ok, not frozen really, just extremely slow-moving. Snails move at a faster pace. I don’t like to take risks. Not even calculated ones. In fact, I can create fear where there shouldn’t be any. In school, I never tried to get A’s, because I was afraid of what would happen if I didn’t get them. I am afraid when I enter a room. I’m not just afraid in a room of strangers, but even people I know. I’m afraid I won’t know what to say or worse, I’ll say something stupid. I have great ideas, but I don’t follow through, because I’m afraid they won’t work. I’m afraid to watch my kids play on the playground, afraid they might hurt themselves. Obviously I face many of these fears, and for me they’re not debilitating, but I wonder what my life would look like if I had no fear. What if I trusted the Lord. I don’t mean being stupid, but not living in unrealistic fear. Would I start a business? Write a book? Go on a speaking tour? Make a new friend? Spread the Gospel?

Living boldly for Christ

I want to start living boldly for Christ. I want to be brave and trust that the Lord has got my back. I’m scared to say it, but I want to face challenges head on. I want to be able to wake up and say, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.”

How are you living boldly?

 

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My God is…the God of Power and Might Psalm 89:5-8

Psalm 89:5-8 New International Version (NIV)

The heavens praise your wonders, Lord,
your faithfulness too, in the assembly of the holy ones.
For who in the skies above can compare with the Lord?
Who is like the Lord among the heavenly beings?
In the council of the holy ones God is greatly feared;
he is more awesome than all who surround him.
Who is like you, Lord God Almighty?
You, Lord, are mighty, and your faithfulness surrounds you.

Oooooh! Aaaahhh!

Every Forth of July you can hear around the country the same thing. Children, families and adults alike looking up into the sky and oohing and aahing. Fireworks are amazing things. They’re beautiful, exhilarating, loud, and dangerous. We look up into the sky and see these amazing colors bursting in the air. We’re amazed.

Fireworks are dangerous

To tell you the truth, I’m kind of chicken. I got nervous when my boys would climb the jungle gyms at the park. I couldn’t watch. In my brain the first thing that comes to mind seems to be the danger than could occur. My focus is not on the fun of the moment, but the potential disaster. I’m sort of pessimistic (my husband says I’m the most cheerful pessimist he knows). So with that information, you won’t be too surprised when I tell you fireworks make me nervous. Why? Because they are powerful. Even the small ones (ok maybe not the black worms that you light and they foam out of the small pill the started out as) make me nervous. They bang and pop somewhat unexpectedly. While this seems to bring everyone else great joy, I’m always thinking of the emergency room visits that people will be making that night, and how to avoid one in our family.

Fireworks are beautiful and exciting

Ok, so please don’t email me telling me I need to go back to counseling, but I have to admit that while on the one hand fireworks freak me out, I also enjoy them. I like how beautiful they are and enjoy the brilliance of the unexpected delights I’ll see. You sort of know what you’re going to get when you light your fireworks, but not exactly. Each one is different. The city fireworks are amazing. Laying on your back seeing them burst overhead.

In the council of the holy ones God is greatly feared

In our verse above, we hear that God is greatly feared among the holy ones. Not because He’s dangerous, but because He is more awesome than anything else. He is more powerful, more truthful, more consistent, more everything good than anything else in the whole world, universe or beyond.

For who in the skies above can compare with the Lord?

So while you’re enjoying the fireworks this Fourth of July, looking up to the skies and seeing the bright array of colors and hearing the loud booms, remember our Lord. Our God is more awesome than all of this; more exciting, more powerful and more amazing. He is more amazing and awesome than even the stars in the sky. Nothing can compare with the awesomeness of our God. Maybe even throw some oohs and aahs His way as you are amazed at what those He created have made.

 

 

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