Saturday, 01 September 2012 00:00
God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. And the path to freedom from all this pushing and striving involves both repentance and healing so that we can be made whole and holy by his love.
Whole and holy. The two go together hand in hand. This is so important. You can’t find that holiness you want without deep wholeness. And you can’t find the wholeness you want without deep holiness.
You can’t simply tell a raging man to stop losing his temper. He would love to stop but he does not know how. He doesn’t know all the forces within him that swell up and overwhelm him with anger.
Likewise, you can’t just say to a wealthy ambitious person ,to quit especially if he is a politician who is so engrossed to cross boundaries to built and establish a political empire. He does need to stop. But you can’t simply tell him that. Like a man who is so intense with anger, he too needs to know all the forces within him that swell up and overwhelm him with so much hunger and greed for power. Besides, “gold” does not make a man, it only reveals him.
The Bible tells us that we all need profound healing to be able to stop and quit the ways of our hardened hearts. Jesus said: “For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see ,with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them” (Matthew 13:15).
Heal them. Jesus yearned for his people to turn back to him so that he could heal them! Healed!. As in fixed. Restored. Made whole. The “otherwise” means that if they were not so hardheaded, they would turn to him and he could heal them.
God wants to restore us. Our part is to “Turn”, to repent as best we can. But we also need his healing. As Ephesians 1:4 teaches, God chose us to make us whole and holy through his love. God will make known to us the path of life if we will follow him. And as we do, we will find along the path our need for wholeness and holiness.
Today, as God’s message is revealed to us through the instrumentality of John Eldredge, Viable Option humbly request its readers to join and say the prayer hereunder:
Jesus, forgive me. I ask your forgiveness of this commitment to make life work on my own - for all my striving and pushing and for all the unbelief that propels me. Forgive me. And I ask you to heal me of this. Heal the places of my soul that have so long felt alone, felt that life was up to me.
Yes! We can’t resolve to live as though life is up to us. Our driveness and compulsion will ruin us if they continue. God knows that. He also knows what we need. And Jesus declared: “I am the vine and you are the branches. Apart from me you are nothing” (John 15:5). And Psalm 24:1 reads: “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in the world, and all who live in it”. So now what’s there that it’s all up to you alone?
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