Hello. I hope you all had a very relaxing Labor Day!
Today is Tuesday & I'll confess, I was tempted ALREADY to skip out on a post. BUT... I'm really trying to be consistent. TRYING.
For those of you who don't attend my church (which is most of you!), we have a Bible reading plan that is available. I really REALLY love it. It's taking us through the New Testament in one year by reading 1 chapter a day. ONE CHAPTER people. It's awesome. For those of us who struggle with consistency (ahem... me), this is perfect because it has us reading Mon-Fri and then praying/reflecting (or catching up) on Sat/Sun. It's perfect for new moms who like to read a quick chapter on their phone while nursing or while you're sitting in your car waiting to pick up the littles from school. It's also perfect for the busy professional who only has a few minutes but wants to start to develop the discipline of reading the Bible. This is an excellent baby step into reading the Bible daily. And for those of you who like to bite off a bit more than a chapter, this is also a GREAT plan to pair with an in-depth study of an OT book. It's nice to be reading both at the same time, and it's nice to know that you'll finish it in a year!
My church isn't paying me to plug their plan. :) So I'll stop with the promo here, BUT I did want to share with you what's driving a lot of these posts.
Yesterday's portion was 1 Corinthians 6.
Verses 16-18 say:
"For we are the temple of the living God; as God said. 'I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst and be separate from them,' says the Lord, 'and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me says the Lord Almighty.'"
This passage is discussing our relationship with God and how that affects how we live. The previous verses are very clear instructions on how we are to live, but that's not what this post is about.
It's really easy to list out things to do and not do. I think it's a lot easier to draw lines in the sand and create behavioral boundaries than it is to recognize HOW God views me. After all, it should be our relationship with the Lord that drives our actions. Yet more often than not, the roles are reversed (at least they are in my life). I think this is why Paul ends this chapter with quotes from the Old Testament to remind us that YAHWEH will uphold His covenant with His people.
So in light of that, I want to point out 2 relational truths about your relationship with YAHWEH. If you're a believer in Jesus Christ, let these truths FUEL your love for God and your actions today.
- We are HIS. I know this sounds trivial, but let this sink in. If you're a believer in Jesus Christ, you belong to Him. He chooses to identify WITH YOU. Listen to these words, "I will make my dwelling among them and I will walk among them, AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD and THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE." That last phrase holds a lot of weight. It is YAHWEH's promise to the Israelites and is used a ton in the OT, and yet Paul found it appropriate to use that same phrase when talking with the Corinthians. Does that sound like a distant God? Does this sound like a God who doesn't want to identify with His creation? Isn't it amazing that over centuries, YAHWEH continued to speak of His covenant to His people? He is OUR God and we are HIS people. Today, as you go about your day, rest knowing that you are HIS & His covenant with us still exists today... You are His. You are His. You are His.
- You are His SONS & DAUGHTERS. This blows my mind. The God of the universe, who can calm the wind and walk on water, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, The God who overcame death and sin and is making all things new... That God, well... He will welcome you, and it is so much more than that. How will He welcome us? Not as a stranger welcomes a guest, but as a Father welcomes his sons and daughters. Bam. Mind blown. The familial language is a strong depiction of what God wants us to see. We are HIS children. He is our Father. Again, let this relational position sink in and influence our practice. Let it drive us today in all that we do. It doesn't matter if that guy isn't crushing on you like you had hoped. You are His beloved daughter and He delights in you. For you mamas out there grieving the loss of your children, your FATHER is grieving alongside His daughter. You are His. For the woman who is battling cancer, You are His. For the marriage on the rocks, YOU ARE HIS. For the person in the boring job, or the person who is jobless. You are HIS & He is our Jehovah Jireh. Friends, this is crucial, don't let your circumstances define who you are. Let your identity be found in the one whose character and covenant is unchanging. You are his sons and daughters, relish in that and let it grow in you an unwavering love for your God.
Today, I'm preaching these truths to myself. I'm telling myself over and over and over... I am his. I am HIs. I AM HIS. And I'm praying that as I focus on the kind Father, I will slowly be molded into the daughter that would make her heavenly dad proud. I'm praying the same for you today. Except for you men... I'm not praying that you'll turn into daughters... I promise. ;) But you get the idea...
Happy Tuesday Yall!