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Connect with God
Through Jeremiah, God gave us a glorious promise. He said, “When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29.13).
King David knew the truth of this magnificent gift from God. He encouraged people to seek God with all their heart, because he knew they would enter into a close relationship with him.
Therefore let all who are faithful
offer prayer to you;
at a time of distress, the rush of mighty waters
shall not reach them.
You are a hiding place for me;
you preserve me from trouble;
you surround me with glad cries of deliverance. Selah (Psalm 32.6-7)
Faithful people live in a friendship relationship with God. Just as Jesus made it a practice to get alone with God and pray (Mark 1.35), God’s people should do the same.
We are living in distressing times, where we feel like we are drowning in a sea of troubles. Our response to the stress and distress should be to pray.
Prayer is God’s gift to us, but prayer is also our responsibility. David counseled people to find protection from the bombardment of troubles in prayer.
The Bible is clear that we should join the intercession of Jesus and the Holy Spirit (Hebrews 7.25 and Romans 8.26) for God’s perfect will to be done in our world.
In my prayer time this morning, I remembered the work of Glenn Clark and his friends, whose prayers were powerfully used during World War II.
We can be certain that there were German Christians who were praying for victory for the German forces. On the other side, there were French, British and American Christians who were praying for victory for their side.
Glenn Clark and the people who prayed with him didn’t take sides when they prayed. Instead, they first sought a strong connection with God.
When they sensed a closeness with God, they prayed for God’s love to be experienced by both Allied and Axis powers. Then, they left the results of their prayers in the hands of God.
Today in America there are Christians who are praying with allegiance to either Mr. Trump or Mr. Biden. Please consider the idea that God doesn’t want you to take sides, but to pray for his love to be experienced by both Mr. Trump and Mr. Biden and their followers.
The Voice of God Heard by the Forgiven
Once we are forgiven, how does God want us to maintain our relationship with him? King David knew the answer and taught this profound truth.
I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
Do not be like a horse or a mule, without understanding,
whose temper must be curbed with bit and bridle,
else it will not stay near you. (Psalm 32.8-9)
God does not want to jerk us around to get our attention. He takes no joy in seeing us suffer, because our pride prevents us from accepting his direction.
God prefers a close relationship, where we humbly take his guidance and quickly follow him.
When we have removed the pride of our own opinions and self-will from the equation, we will receive guidance from God. Here’s God’s word to us: “I will instruct . . . teach . . . and counsel you.”
Let’s strive for a relationship with God where we allow him to do what these verses teach.
A Message Different People
God doesn’t “gate crash” his way into our hearts. We have the option of dropping the pride of self-will, so that we can live in a relationship with him as our Lord. Or, we can resist him like a wild horse or mule.
Many are the torments of the wicked,
but steadfast love surrounds those who trust in the Lord.
Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous,
and shout for joy, all you upright in heart. (Psalm 32.10-11)
I know many people who at one time in their lives had no use for God. As the program of Alcoholics Anonymous might say that they tried “outside” solutions to solve an “inside” problem.
Many of my friends have entered into a relationship with Jesus through their experience with AA. They trust God and know how his love surrounds them on a daily basis.
I saw friends of God rejoice in him, during the Sunday worship service at Maywood Baptist Church this last week. There was genuine joy and gladness among the people. There was even an occasional shout for joy. These are the voices of people who have become friends of God.
The difference between the wicked and the righteous involves a choice that we make. The arrogance and pride of self-will and self-seeking will keep us among the population of people who have no use for God.
Humility and surrender will open the door to a relationship with God, where all of the promises of this Psalm become reality in our lives.
May We Pray for You
We are happy to pray for any request you may have. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on Facebook. I will pray for you and the prayer team at Maywood Baptist Church will pray, too.