Wednesday, December 05, 2018

“In vain you rise early and stay late, toiling for food to eat -- for He grants sleep to those He loves.” (Psalm 127:2)

We offend God when we think we do not need Him for anything; that we are mature to run and manage our own affairs. When we come to the realisation that God knows “... when I sit and when I rise; You perceive our thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; You are familiar with all my ways.” (Psalm 139:2-4) Nothing is hidden from God, not even the minute details. “And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” (Matthew 10:30) He is the very source of wisdom. It is time therefore that we come to our senses, retract and begin to take part in what He has so freely given.

For so long we have been carrying our heavy loads that have weighed on our shoulders day after day unnecessarily. If we could only listen to Him speak to us; “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

God is not competing with us for anything. Everything He made He declared good and handed it over to us – His treasured possession-- to manage. “The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.” (Genesis 2:11) He has withheld nothing from us and there is no measure of wisdom and intelligence we can boast of that does not come from Him.

If we want wisdom, we have only to ask: “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault.’ and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5) Wanting to run our lives ourselves is recipe for heading into more intricate and serious problems from which we will have difficulty trying to extricate ourselves. The fact is that this world is ruled by Satan whose motives are “only to steal and kill and destroy.” (John 10:10) The devil is on a rampage “prowling like a lion looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)

Our Lord Jesus has conquered Satan making him a public spectacle, “... triumphing over them by the cross.” (Colossians 2:15) God is not an enemy who wants us dead. He sent us His Son Jesus that we “may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) Outside of God, the Creator of the world, there is no wisdom; that is the domain of God Almighty. He gives freely to those who ask. ”Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Matthew 7:7)

Do not judge your success by the strides you have made in your career, you owe it to God. Do not boast about your achievements either because you do not know what tomorrow holds. Tomorrow is not in your hands, but in that of our Creator.

It is at the height of your success that you need God the most. For the more you are in the limelight, the more likely you are to make mistakes and fall prey to the traps the evil one has put in your way. The Psalmist warns that “Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labour in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city the watchmen stand guard in vain.” (Psalm 127:1) Nothing we own or have worked for was done merely by our own effort. However highly we think of ourselves and of our achievements all of it can be razed to the ground overnight and we will be helpless in our bid to raise it back ‘on its feet,’ if not for God.

To buttress this point, our Lord Jesus told His audience a parable about the foolish builder who built his house on sand. “The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” (Matthew 7:27) The comparison the Lord was making was intended for those who do not listen to His words or His teachings--those who think they know it all. To those who listen to Him He likened to “a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24-25)

Actually, our Lord Jesus was comparing Himself to the Rock, a source of stability. Nothing can shake Him; He is as solid as a rock. He has always been in existence – He is incomparable, immutable, irresistible, everlasting in nature and His words cannot be broken. (John 11:35) He has never changed; He is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

Be ready for your answer - unexpected though it could be – for our Lord Jesus can discern the motive that has brought you to Him. A rich young ruler went to consult with our Lord Jesus. The question he asked Him was, ‘What must I do to inherit eternal life?’ He had all the credentials: he knew the law and had observed them since he was a boy. But something was fundamentally missing. Our Lord Jesus could discern that he was enslaved by his wealth and would not want to part with it. So He told him; “Only one thing you lack. Go sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then, come follow me.” (Mark 10:21)

The account closes with, “At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.” (Mark 10:22) The answer is clear; no one can buy his or her way to heaven. Heaven is not for sale! So when you consult the Lord come to Him with an open heart. Remember nothing, absolutely nothing,  is hidden from Him.

Author: Galandou Gorre-Ndiaye