Monday, February 04, 2013

February 4, 2013 … God’s Lesson in Tough Love

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 35

Passage of the Day: Exodus 5: 22-23 [NLT] …  
22 So Moses went back to the LORD and protested, “Why have you mistreated your own people like this, Lord? Why did you send me? 23Since I gave Pharaoh your message, he has been even more brutal to your people. You have not even begun to rescue them!” 

Contextual Study of today’s passage: Exodus, Chapter 5 [NLT] … Go to this link

Reference Passage #1: John 14: 21 : [NLT] … {True … but tough!!} …  
21 “… Those who obey My commandments are the ones who love Me. And because they love Me, My Father will love them, and I will love them. And I will reveal myself to each one of them.” 

Reference Passage #2: Hebrews 5: 7-8 : [NLT] … {Imagine! Jesus also learned God’s tough love from obedience. } …  
7 While Jesus was here on earth, He offered prayers and pleadings, with a loud cry and tears, to the One who could deliver Him out of death. And God heard His prayers because of His reverence for God. 8 So, even though Jesus was God’s Son, He learned obedience from the things He suffered. 

My Journal for Today: Have you ever done the “God thing,” … dutifully following what you believed to be God’s will as you felt called to do so; and the result seemed way different from what you imagined or felt would be God’s outcome in the matter at hand? Well, that was Moses in today’s highlight passage of Scripture, … obediently carrying God’s message to Pharaoh; and getting slapped in the face with nothing that seemed like God’s deliverance of His people from Egypt.

Yes, Moses was obedient in going out-on-a-limb for God by taking God’s message to the Pharaoh; but God didn’t promise WHEN He would deliver His people. He only promised that He would deliver them. And this, quite often, is God’s M.O. when He calls us to task. He calls us to be obedient; but the Lord quite often doesn’t give us HIS timeline on HIS results.

When God called me to reach out to other men who had fallen prey to habitual sexual sin and to help them with my testimony of deliverance from this scourge, His call was for me to share the story that Jesus’ truth and love delivers men, like me, from habitual sexual sin into the freedom of walking in purity. And I’ve seem scores of men do just that. But all of them, like me, had to learn the lesson of John 14: 21, copied above. Yes, God’s tough love of obedience will ALWAYS result in God showing His love to the obedient; but it very often – in fact, I’d say most often – comes in a timeline that the obedient find very difficult, sometimes almost impossible, to follow.

 Heck! Even Jesus found the obedience gig to His Heavenly Father hard to follow (in His humanity). Reading Hebrews 5: 7-8 above, reminds us that even Jesus, the God-Man, had to learn to follow the very tough time-line of His Heavenly Father in order to become the Heavenly High Priest Who would deliver God’s children from their sin. And if Jesus had to follow God’s tough-love time line, would we expect it would be any different from us?

Simple truth: ... Obedience to God will produce Godly results; but it will happen in God’s timing, … not ours! Oh, so often I say it here in my morning blogs; but I just have to keep learning it over and over and over again - God is God; and I am not! And we all need to believe and internalize the truth of John 14: 21. God wants us to feel His love; and more often than we want, … it takes time – HIS TIME – to follow His will and carry out His way in this world of hurt in which we live.

 So, my friend, as we are called to do HIS will in HIS way from HIS word, let us KEEP ON KEEPING ON IN CHRIST; and remember His promises in 1st Cor. 10: 13 and 2nd Cor. 12: 9. And if you haven’t memorized those truths, in the Nike way, … JUST DO IT!!

And if you need encouragement to keep on keeping on, GO TO THIS LINK ; and listen the wonderful song written and performed by Sara Groves, … It’s Going To Be Alright; … and read the powerful quotes on the You Tube piece accompanied by Groves’ song. Take 6 minutes to do this and you’ll be alright when you keep on believing God’s way and following His will … no matter how long it takes.

My Prayer for Today … Yes, Lord, I believe it’s going to be alright … in YOU. … Amen

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