Occasionally I am reminded of a post I did in the past that is still relevant today. My pastor at Zion Family Ministries delivered a message this morning that reminded me that most of us get off the path of righteousness sometimes and need to call out to God for direction. Enjoy this revelation from February 2009: http://roadrevelations.org/?p=245
Archives for January 2012
Driving to work on this beautiful day, as I stopped for a stop sign, passing in front of me was a truck pulling a trailer with an old, rusty, shell of a car on it. I barely could tell that it was a late 60s model Plymouth. It had no hood, doors, or front-right quarter panel, and no engine. A skeleton of a car that was once new and useful to someone. Now, it appeared to be ugly and of no use to anyone. But this guy in the truck was taking it somewhere. The thought crossed my mind, “I bet he’s not taking that piece of junk to the junk pile.” “I bet he’s got some plans for it.”
Immediately my thoughts turned to people’s broken and junked lives. Many of God’s creation are like that old car frame, just a shell of what they once were or could be again. I looked at that junk heap and thought, “Somebody paid a price for that mess.” And Jesus paid a price for us. However bad the mess we have made of ourselves, Jesus paid for us and, just like the owner of that junk car, He wants to restore us. In the skilled hands of mechanic, that old car will once again be a masterpiece! It will have new parts, a new engine, restored interior, and new paint. It will once again be new and useful to someone.
If you think you’re a piece of junk, God wants to restore you. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians5:17). Jesus paid a great price for you, (His life), and God has a restoration plan for you, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”, (Jeremiah 29:11). There is no reason to be relegated to the junk pile. The great Restorer has bought you and wants to take you home to work on you. Say yes!
Eternal separation from God. What would that feel like? To be separated from God forever with no chance to get back. Jesus said, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20). So for now, there’s still a chance; the end of the age is not here yet and Jesus is still with us. But people who have rejected Him will know what separation feels like “on that day”, the Day of Judgment. Jesus told us in Matthew 7:21-23, (my paraphrase), “Not everyone who calls me Lord will get into Heaven, only those who do what God says. Many will say they did this and that and performed miracles but God will say ’I never knew you. Away from me you evildoers!’”.
They’ll know what it feels like on that day! They don’t know it now because He’s near. He said He’d never leave us, (Hebrews 13:5), He’s always nearby hoping we’ll repent. God is ready to run to us like the Father did to the prodigal or lost son in Luke 15. But on that day…He will be gone, no more chances, no going back. Those who have not accepted Jesus as their Savior and Lord will be eternally separated from God. And they’ll feel it, they’ll feel that terrible void, the aloneness…forever. Don’t let that happen. Don’t let Satan trick you out of eternity in Paradise.
God is our Father and His Word says He is with us all the time, (Hebrews 13:5), and if someone hangs around you all the time, they’re going to talk to you. Don’t you think? Especially if they’re the smartest person ever and they have things you need to know. They’re going to want to help you and teach you things. But what if they talk and you don’t listen or are preoccupied with stuff around you and miss what they say? This happened to me recently and I’d like to tell you about it.
I had written an IP address, an Internet thing I needed to do something at work, on a yellow Post-it note and when I needed it, I couldn’t find it. I looked in my truck, in my office, in all my pockets but could’nt find it anywhere. I had made several trips back and forth to a building next to mine where I was setting up for a meeting and noticed a piece of trash on the parking lot. Something inside told me I should pick it up but in my haste to set up for the meeting I walked right over it twice. “Ah, let someone else get it, I’m in too much of a hurry now.”, I thought.
However the third time I made that walk back to my office, the Holy Spirit spoke strongly to me to be a responsible servant and pick up that yellow, visible piece of paper in order to “clean up” the parking lot. As I bent to pick it up, it hit me…the note I couldn’t find was yellow and square, post-it size just like this piece of trash. I picked it up, turned it over, and saw that it was the note I’d lost. The Holy Spirit had told me twice to pick up that trash because He knew what it was but I was “too busy, in too much of a hurry”.
How many time does the Lord whisper things to us we need to know or tells us, “Don’t go there!”, or some other conversational thing that we just ignore, half listen to, or don’t even hear? How much are we missing every day because of this? Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:” (John 10:27). He also said in Revelation 3:20 that He is standing at the door knocking and, “..if anyone hears My voice“, He will come in to them and eat with them. IF.
Think about this today. Have a conversation with Jesus like you would with another person. Ask Him questions and wait for an answer. When you get a “feeling” on the inside that you should do something, say “Thank you Lord, I will.” Or, if you get a red flag feeling to NOT do something, heed it. Be blessed!
Given January 6, 2012
I was listening to Joyce Meyer on this day as I drove home from work and she made this statement that stuck with me, “You’re not a failure just because you failed.” And that’s right. We all fail, “..for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23). Even if we don’t sin, we can and do fail at many things but that doesn’t make us a failure. What would make us a failure is to whine and complain how nothing ever goes our way and to not get up and try again; to quit and accept failure.
I began to think of some who failed but are not thought of as failures, in fact, they are famous for being successes. Look at the apostle Peter. One of Jesus’ inner circle who stated he would never deny Jesus but in the heat of the time, failed Him three times. Peter really blew it! But was that the end of it? No, for in Acts 5:15, “As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by.” No failure here, Peter recovered and went on to carry out Jesus’ plan.
King David – He failed by not going to war like the cammander was supposed to, committing adultry with a neighbor, and having her husband killed. Now that is failing! But David admitted his sin, repented of it and went on to be successful although he suffered turmoil in his family. David is known as, “a man after God’s pwn heart.” (Acts 13:22).
Others who failed but were not failures: Thomas Edison reportedly failed 6000 times before perfecting the electric light bulb. Abraham Lincoln failed in business, lost jobs, had a nervous breakdown and lost in seven elections, once getting less than 100 votes. You could eaisly say he was a failure but he didn’t quit. After losing a US Senate race in 1858, he was elected President of the United States in 1860. Michael Jordan, one of the best basketball players ever, failed to make his high school team as a sophmore. That failure spured him on to not give up, work harder, and eventuall make the team and help lead that team to the state championship. He was pretty successful in college and the pros too.
What have you failed in? How many times have you failed at something? Are you ready to quit? Would God accept your resignation? No! “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11). God’s plan for you is success not failure. It’s up to YOU to get up, ask for God’s help, and get back in there. It’s not over, it’s not finished, It’s not ending, It’s only the beginning. When God is in it, all things are new. (Lyrics by Ricardo Sanchez).