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So much of life is waiting. . .

As a Christian, I am waiting for a lot--for God to do His refining work in me, for Jesus to return, for me to GET how much God loves me and for me to see what He is doing . . .

What to do in the meantime? I have learned much about what the Lord is trying to teach me, tell me and show me through the discipline of daily time spent reading the Bible. So often we make this time harder than it has to be.

This blog was born out of wanting to share what God is showing me and wanting to be an example that daily time with God is not a deep or mysterious thing (well, every once in a while it can be), but simply a time to read scripture and note what jumps out at you that day. We don't have to be scholars or super-holy or ministry leaders to do this. Some days I hit the jackpot and others I come up empty--but only by persevering do I give God the space in which to speak and myself the stillness in which to hear and obey.

As of June of 2017, I've now decided to include parts of our adoption journey, which is, so far, yet another chapter of waiting.

Monday, July 12, 2010

With the Blessings, Risk

Reading 1 Chronicles right now, and have finally gotten through the geneologies and on to the accounts of David's kingship. Today's portion told of when David decided to move the ark of the covenant, but did not follow the rules set forth by the Lord in how to do so (the ark was considered to be the presence of the Lord). 1 Chronicles 13:10-14 tell what happened:

And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzziah, and he struck him downbecause he put out his hand to the ark, and he died there before God. And David was angry because the LORD had broken out against Uzzah. . . And David was afraid of God that day, and he said, "How can I bring the ark of God home to me?" So David did not take the ark home into the city of David, but took it aside to the house of Obed-edom the Gittite. And the ark of God remained with the household of Obed-edom in his house three months. And the LORD blessed the household of Obed-edom and all that he had.

I had never noticed that David was angry with the Lord, and afraid of Him as well. I can relate to David's emotions. He might have been thinking, "Hey, I'm just trying to return the ark to its rightful place, and now this man is dead." Followed by, "Uh-oh. Maybe I don't really want to mess with the ark if death could be a result." So David sends the ark away, and the people who receive it also receive blessings.

I think there are parallels to our lives. We want the presence of the Lord, so we seek Him and try to obey Him. However, this seeking and obedience will sometimes result in death (of a vision, of a desire, of a plan) and pain, as we unexpectedly see the power of God and realize that, though He is our loving Savior, He is also the Great I Am who will not share His glory. That realization, that the Lord is not just the great grandpa in the sky, and that following Him requires sacrifice, may make us fear Him, and choose to "send Him away" by not talking to Him or spending time with Him.

Yet, we then start to notice that others who are following God are receiving blessings. Eventually, as with David, our desire for the blessing and connection to the Lord will outweigh our fear (2 Samuel 6:12):

And it was told King David, "The LORD has blessed the household of Obed-edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God."So David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom to the city of David with rejoicing.

I realize we cannot draw a perfect parallel from the Old Testament world of the law to the New Testament world of grace, but I do think that I in my life have had moments of pulling away from the Lord--sending the ark away--because of anger and fear, and then realized the blessings I was missing, and chosen to try again to walk in the presence of the Lord. The choice is to risk the often painful character refinement and disappointment of "no" in exchange for communion and blessings. As a Christian, God will never leave me, and I cannot really send Him away, but I can chose to live without consulting Him or including Him in my plans. May all of us see that the blessings of walking with God are worth the risk.

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