Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Our need, His provision

I absolutely love the tiniest of words that seem to join ideas together. Take the word "but" for a moment and you might just find this tiny word actually negates or puts a condition into play. For example, when you say 'I wanted a taco, but I ate a salad', you are putting the condition into play of choosing the healthiest of the two options. The tiny word "and" joins two idea together. There is much to be explored when "and" is put into play in a sentence, for it often joins two things that are required in order to make something whole. For example, when you join 'peanut butter and jelly', you get a mighty enjoyable sandwich! When you join 'black and blue' in describing a recent bruise, you are letting others know of the severity of damage done when you struck yourself against that hard object. When God tells us we must believe that he exists AND that he cares enough to respond to us when we seek him, he is describing two very coexistent conditions which must be evident in our lives. One just doesn't exist without the other.

By an act of faith, Enoch skipped death completely. “They looked all over and couldn’t find him because God had taken him.” We know on the basis of reliable testimony that before he was taken “he pleased God.” It’s impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him.  (Hebrews 11:6 MSG)

If we want to have a relationship with God, we must believe two things - that he exists and that he cares for us. How futile it would be to just imagine someone exists and then not ever believe they will respond to us when we seek them out. If a child is separated from his parents for even a while, he would seek them out because he believes they exist. He somehow knows that even though he cannot see them, they are still there somewhere - so he makes his intention to be rejoined to them known by crying out from his crib. There is a deep trust, even though the object of his seeking remains unseen. In the seeking, he hopes to discover they are still near and want to relate to him as much as he wants to relate to them. When the parent returns to the crib in response to the crying child, the parent is affirming his trust.

God isn't going to respond to our seeking with any less concern or care. He exist AND because he exists, we can be assured he loves us enough to care for us in a deeply loving manner. We only seek what we believe exists. I have on more than one occasion put something away 'so carefully', only to discover I cannot find it when I want it! Yet, I believe it still exists - so I seek even harder to discover that spot I so cleverly placed it in! I believe - therefore I seek. The same is true in relationship with Jesus - I believe he exists AND therefore I seek. In my seeking, I believe he will be found AND he will respond to my seeking heart in a way that tells me my seeking has not been in vain.

Seek AND find. Come AND eat. Knock AND it shall be opened. Confess AND be forgiven. Surrender AND be made new. There are a lot of ways AND is bringing together our need with is provision, aren't there? Just sayin!

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