Saturday, December 19, 2009

God's Permanent Things

As my oldest son nears college age, people ask him, "What do you want to major in?" He has no idea. Like him, a friend's daughter went down the technical path in high school taking all honors classes, acing each one with little difficulty or study. Then she surprised her parents by desiring to be a music major in college. My wry son replied, "I want to be a circus clown."

We talk sometimes about what God's will is for his life. I think when a Christian hears that question they believe that God's will is a one-time, lifetime thing. I used to think so. But the Bible does not teach that. A few things started to bring that truth to me.

First, Romans 11:36 - 12:2 (a passage I teach often) was written in the present tense. God says, " that you may know what is that...will of God." Second, God is the God of the present. His very name, "I AM" proclaims this reality throughout Scripture. And thirdly, by experience, I know that what God wills for me today may not be what He wills tomorrow. God's will is so much more than what He wants me to do. It is how He wants me to do it that is so unique and personal and real and dynamic.

I am still a prophet, still called to be a prophet, still crying out to the Church through the written word. But that can all change. Someday God may want to gift me in a different way. One of the things my wife are considering right now is opening up our home to host small group fellowships. To make that successful we need to ensure that we do it in accordance with God's will.

Prophets are not the most welcoming people. Folks tend not to be comfortable around us. We do and say strange things. At least that's the way it seems to folks who are far from God and His truth. When the world seems normal to Christians instead of the things of God, then God and His Word seem strange. I'm just the messenger. So to open my home to folks who may be near or far requires someone with a more delicate touch initially. That would be my wife. She is gifted to do these things.

Our church is praying for God to raise up a senior pastor. I told our youth pastor the other day that we need to pray for God to raise up the other gifted members of the body as well. That is how God makes a whole body. A single pastor does not complete the body of Christ.

Likewise, we need that body in the home small group.

There are only a few permanent things about God in this context. Salvation is one of them. We never lose it. And in this life we never lose the presence of sin. We must always overcome it. Everything else is pretty much dynamic. That is why we must remain rooted and grounded in the permanent things of God in the midst of the dynamics of daily life.

I find myself counting on His lovingkindness, His mercy that endures forever, and his longsuffering. I count on Him calling out to me, listening to me, and welcoming me into His throneroom by the blood of Jesus. I love to spend time with Him as David did.

Psalm 27:4, "One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple."

I love to worship in the beauty of holiness. His holiness. As I think on the things of Philippians 4:8, they all lead me back to Jesus. Nothing of this world fits them. Only Jesus. These are the permanent things of God.

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