Daily Archives: April 21, 2014
“Because Your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise You” – Psalm 63:3.
IT IS BIBLICAL to state that God has richly provided us with everything to enjoy (1 Timothy 6:17), but just like “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify” (1 Corinthians 10:23) – so the “all” is where we discern, not by our standards, but by the Holy Spirit’s to what is pleasing and displeasing to God. As well as distinguishing right from wrong, there is also telling apart the best from the good as Oswald Chambers stated, “The good is the enemy of the best.”
The world’s enjoyment is found only in things made while the Christian’s enjoyment is found first and foremost in God, the Giver of life; the world is wrapped up in the material but the Christian is enveloped with God Who is spirit; the world strives for but never quite achieves life to the max, but for the Christian, life in abundance has been promised and has been encountered by millions of Spirit-born Christians despite lacking in material wealth.
One of the greatest dreams, apparently, for man or woman to fulfil, is to orbit the earth. It has been said of some astronauts that achieved such a high goal have descended back to earth with a ‘crash’; now that they have fulfilled such a desire, there are no other heights or thrills to pursue and many have lost their zest for life itself. Is it not the same for many who reach stardom and fame? They relish the few years of glowing recognition and extravagant living only to be read of years later of their addiction to heroin, broken relationships and a fear of society itself. Their climb to fame has been but a magnifying glass in exposing their flaws for the world to see. Fame turned into notoriety has to be one of the most painful descents.
How would the many professing Christians today cope with the sudden end to material enjoyment, through ill health, loss of employment, national crises or a world war? This is a question worth serious and careful thinking. What if situations in the world were to suddenly inhibit us from living in ease – and global affairs are heavily pointing in that direction? What has literally filled our lives over the last five years? Has our contentment been lying in the material things we have enjoyed or have we been turning endlessly to the Fountain of life Himself?
God never said that we are not to enjoy things; the problem comes in when we relish after things before God and place them above Him. That is idolatry; whatever fills and satisfies our lives apart from God is idolatrous. A man or woman living in their fallen state will see this as being utterly ridiculous and so will the unregenerate professing Christian.
Anyone who loves their life more than God can never say, “Your steadfast love is better than life”; it is as meaningless and preposterous as viewing heaven as being a place where we just strum our harps on an isolated golden cloud for eternity, if we do not know God whispering to our hearts, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness” (Jeremiah 31:3).
Christian what gives you the most joy in this life? What do you long for more than anything else? What does your heart breathe after? Can you say that nothing is more precious to you than knowing God’s steadfast love is directed towards you? Is your greatest fulfilment in knowing that God is your inheritance and that you are God’s possession? What is the greatest jewel in your life: knowing you are going to heaven to avoid hell, or the fact that you are chosen by God, known by Him and called His own?
Just like the merchant who sold everything he had to buy that one pearl of greatest value (Matthew 13:45-46), so we ought to be anchored, content and blessed beyond words in Christ, if we were to lose all except Him.