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Friday, March 4, 2011

Directionally challenged

The revelation of God is whole and pulls our lives together.
   The signposts of God are clear and point out the right road.
   The life-maps of God are right, showing the way to joy.
   The directions of God are plain and easy on the eyes. 
(Psalm 19:7-8)

To many, the revelation of God is a foreign thing - they just don't see him, or acknowledge him in their day-to-day existence.  Yet, the revelation of God "pulls" at the heart-strings of our lives - because each of us is made to have God in our lives.  So, why do so many reject God when he is right in front of them and when they have a unique part of their being that was designed to be filled up with him?  It is kind of like having a clothes closet and then choosing to buy dressers to contain the clothing, leaving the closet empty.  The closet never serves the purpose for which it was designed.  It exists - but it is totally empty or devoid of what it has a potential of being.  We also can exist - but are also quite empty in the living when we exclude God from our lives!

Our psalmist reminds us that God's revelation of himself is not piece-meal.  It is whole - with that very wholeness of God making us each whole in turn.  Let's break the passage down a little:
  • The revelation of God is WHOLE - there is no exception in how God reveals himself - his revelation is total, complete, without reserve.  There might be an exception in when he reveals himself - like to a ready heart or a listening ear. 
  • The revelation of God PULLS our lives together - without God's revelation, we live pretty scattered lives.  We may "look like" we have it all together, but we actually are quite "disjointed" in our living.  I was amazed this week at how many places in scripture really define God's work in bringing us to himself, keeping us consistent in our walk, and in creating the change in our lives that bring us to a place where we reveal Christ fully.  It is his work of "pulling" us that caught my eye - it is not even our effort - it is his!  He moves us from one point in our growth (a place of revelation) to the next.
  • The signposts of God are CLEAR and POINT out the right road - without the revelation of God in our lives, we really don't possess the clarity we need to interpret what we perceive with accuracy.  His purpose in bringing clarity into a situation is to give us direction - pointing us in the right direction.  We often receive much advice in circumstances beyond our immediate understanding - but nothing brings clarity like the ability to see the circumstance through the eyes of God.  It is often in this moment of revelation that we begin to process the circumstances through the eyes of those around us - not just through our own.  We look at how it is affecting us all - in turn, we begin to evaluate the direction that is not constantly directed at meeting just our needs alone.
  • The life-maps of God are right, showing the way to JOY - someone once told me that happiness was something that carried a price tag, but joy was priceless.  I think they were truthful in that estimate.  We often find moments, experiences in time, when we feel "happy".  Yet, happiness differs so much from joy.  Joy is not situational - you don't need the circumstances to be perfect to know joy.  Joy is condition that is a direct result of revelation - God in us produces joy.  We may still experience hard times - those things that affect our "happiness" level - but we go through them with joy unspeakable.
  • The directions of God are PLAIN and easy on the eyes - we complicate the revelation of God by trying to make his ways more difficult to understand. His ways are PLAIN - they are transparent.  
God delights in revealing himself, his plans, and his purposes - to watchful eyes, hungry hearts, and open spirits.  When we give him access, he fills us to overflowing.  When we invite his revelation, we are met with that which may not have been evident at first, but in the inviting of his revelation becomes totally apparent.  It is not wise to live in the dark when light is so nearby.  It is not a sign of wisdom to reject truth, but embrace a lie.  Comprehension is just around the corner - we only need to invite in the one who is the revealer of all things.