Friday, July 14, 2017

July 14, 2017 …Connected … REALLY?!

Berry Patch Devotions in 2017 - Day 195 

Devotional Song:  … GO TO THIS LINK …  Please take the time to take in a YouTube video of images and lyrics from Alan Jackson singing the old hymn … What A Friend We Have in Jesus … poignantly singing of the closeness we can have with our Savior.

Highlight Verse[s]: Exodus 33:11a [NLT] … 
11 Inside the Tent of Meeting, the Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. 
… Moses spent intimate friendship time with God … just as we can do now because of what Jesus did to break thru to God for us.
Highlight Passage [context]: Exodus 33:7-14 [NLT] … USE THIS LINK
… Moses had a face-to-face connection with God.

Reference Passage #1 [NKJV] : … John 14:21 [NLT] … 
21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” 
… Jesus is revealed in those who intimately are connected to Him thru obedience.

Reference Passage #2 [NKJV] : … John 15:12-15 [NLT] … 
12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 
… To those who are intimately connected with Jesus, He is our friend.

Reference Passage #3 [NKJV] : … Revelation 3:20 [NLT] … 20 “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends. 
… Jesus offers His close friendship with us … IF … we’re willing to open the door of our relationship with Him.

My Devotional Journal: Today's ODB author, Amy Boucher Pye, referred to the relationship Moses had with God to point us to a deeper, more intimate, connection with our Savior - and each other! The ODB author wrote: Although the world is connected electronically like never before, nothing beats time together in person. As we share and laugh together, we can often sense—almost unconsciously—the other person’s emotions by watching their facial movements. Those who love each other, whether family or friends, like to share with each other face to face. 
We see this face-to-face relationship between the Lord and Moses, the man God chose to lead His people. Moses grew in confidence over the years of following God, and he continued to follow Him despite the people’s rebelliousness and idolatry. 

Today’s reference to the closeness Moses had with God (see highlight passage) and how, thru Jesus’ love for us, we can now be His friends and have intimate communication with Him (see John 14&15 passages above), reminded me how our electronically hyper-connected world is becoming so disconnected (depicted in the photo).

I think Satan has devised a super-weapon (i.e., the cell phone) to promote a connected-disconnect world. And we see it all around us with people paying more and more attention to their cell-phone screens; … yes, even when we are physically close with one another. And I’m afraid it’s also a devilish device to take the attention of Christians away from a deep and abiding relationship with our Lord.

We need to ask ourselves if we’re letting our “devices” take us away from a deep/abiding communion with our God.
 … Are we spending close/intimate time with God every day?
 … Is Jesus the friend He wants to be with us [see John 15:15] and offers to us [see Rev. 3:20]?
 … And are we letting our electronic connection with the world get in the way of “facetime” with God today and all days?

Personally, that’s why you find me here each day, choosing to get up close and personal with my Savior; and then trying to share that closeness with any who might read with me. … But I pray we all choose to be with God today and relate to Him as Alan Jackson sings in the linked song … as a close and loving FRIEND.

My Prayer Today: Abba Father, … King Jesus, … thank You for being my Friend. … Amen

Blogger Note:  Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries.  If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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