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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Uncontainable horizons

If your revelation hadn't delighted me so, I would have given up when the hard times came.  But I'll never forget the advice you gave me; you saved my life with those wise words.  Save me! I'm all yours.  I look high and low for your words of wisdom.  The wicked lie in ambush to destroy me, but I'm only concerned with your plans for me.   I see the limits to everything human, but the horizons can't contain your commands!
(Psalm 119:92-96)

If your revelation hadn't delighted me so....I would have given up when the hard times came.  These words speak volumes.  How many times we would love to throw in the towel, give up the fight, and then we get just a glimpse of hope from the Word of God, the counsel of a wise friend, or the unsuspecting message of a total stranger.  God's faithfulness comes through - in that glimpse of truth, the word of hope, the reminder of his care.  

Everything serves God's plans - even the worst of things.  Nothing escapes his attention.  Nothing happens by chance.  The most amazing thing someone told me once was that misery was optional.  The bad times come, but what I make of them is what counts.  I can choose to wallow in my self-pity, or I can choose to be stretched to new capacity.  When I choose the latter, I need the words of wise counsel to sustain me in the midst of the trouble or trial.

One thing is very clear to me - obedience is not by accident.  It is purposeful.  It is a matter of choice - application of truth.  There are certain things that we can expect from God as we make the decision to live obediently:
  • He makes us wiser than our enemies!  Yeah, rah!  Ever want to outwit your enemy?  You can - through obedience to God's counsel.  
  • He becomes a guide for us to help us navigate even the most difficult stuff.  It is important to remember here that the process of navigation is actually to ascertain the course.  In that "plotting" of course, the one navigating takes over control and then brings us to the desired destination.  If we only followed half of the directions of the GPS in our cars, we'd still be lost!
  • He gives us more might and wisdom than our teachers.  How can that be? When a student begins to grasp truth, it is possible for truth to expand because it is seen through fresh eyes.  
  • He will make us wiser than our elders.  If you've ever heard the saying, "She is wiser than her years", this is what that is referring to.  God's wisdom outshines all other.
Probably the most valuable outcome of obedience is the certainty of our path.  Embracing obedience begins to help us with the decisions of what to do with the evil around us - rather than being caught up in it, we reject it.  We have looked a lot at what the "longings" of our hearts might be.  If they are more and more frequently the things revealed in the Word of God, we can be sure that our way will be made "plain" - easier for us to see, grasp, and understand.

God promises to make our path straight (plain) - but this comes out of our choice to make him the center of our path!