NEW PERSPECTIVE, 26.03.20
Carrying on from yesterday’s STUDY TOPIC, “ISOLATION, A POSITIVE SPIN,” STUDY CORNER will go forward on the assumption that you will have already determined to make an adjustment in your mindset, that you have developed a new perspective on how to use this unplanned-for open window of time, and have decided to make your period of social isolation a positive, productive experience, ready to tackle your spiritual walk.
Starting with the first suggestion, getting to know God, let us begin by looking at some starting points for doing that.
If you want to get to know anyone, what is usually your first move?
There has to be communication; you have to initiate, to reach out: “Now set your heart and your soul to seek the Lord your God” (1Chron.22:19); “but when in their trouble they turned to the Lord God of Israel, and sought Him, He was found by them” (2 Chron.15:4).
You must want to know Him: “Then they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers with all their heart and with all their soul(2Chron.15:12). He doesn’t force Himself on anyone; but “The Lord is with you while you are with Him. If you seek Him, He will be found by you; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you” (2 Chron.15:2).
If you want to learn about someone’s personality/ways/behaviour, you can look to the relationships that person has with others. How someone relates, whether they are caring, loyal, trustworthy is often reflected through those patterns.
One of the early relationships was that between Abraham and Yahweh, who said to Him: “I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward” (Gen.15:1); and He promised Abraham: “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you” (Gen.28:15). God is a faithful God Who keeps His Word; His promises are sure.
Yahweh revealed Himself to Moses: “I AM WHO I AM . . . say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you . . . say to the children of Israel: ‘The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever” (Ex.3:14,15).
One of the most effective ways to get to know the Lord our God is to study the Book of the Psalms. Because King David had such a close relationship with his God, he models communication with the Lord, which is a key component; and it also provides amazing information about God Himself, through His responses to David. Psalm 18 exemplifies many aspects of this:
By studying King David’s experience of his relationship with God, you can learn much about Who God is. Study all the Psalms and there will be much to glean from them.
When you seek Him sincerely, with your whole heart, He will be there for you, and you will have every opportunity to come to know Him, for “With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!” (Ps.119:10). In response, God says: “you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart” (Jer.29:13). It’s a matter of the heart . . .
Then there’s Jesus Christ/Yeshua Messiah, in Whom we have the ultimate model for discovering the Father. He told us Who He was and how He’d come to earth to represent His Father in Heaven. He said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him” (John 14:6,7). What does this tell you? How can you understand who God the Father is? Study the life of Jesus/Yeshua and you will develop an understanding of God the Father. Just before Christ’s crucifixion, while praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus/Yeshua looked up to Heaven and prayed, “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3).
How do you get to know God?
It starts with a true heart’s desire, a holy hunger.
It requires time – regular time spent in communion with the Father/Son/Holy Spirit.
It includes prayer, as part of that communication.
It takes commitment, and involves self-discipline.
It requires stillness, meditation, and
LISTENING – the other component of communication.
Paul is exemplary in his desire to know and serve the Lord. When he said:
“that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death” (Phil.3:10), he was making a full-scale investment.This was someone who was “all sold out.”
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Heb.11:6).
© 2020 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.
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