When all else fails and we are at the end of our rope, this is where God begins!
MONDAY, AUGUST 23, 2010
The Psalmist wrote, “Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them. They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded”
The Hebrew root word for trust suggests “to fling oneself off a precipice.”
That means being like a child who has climbed up into the rafters and cannot get down. He hears his father say, “Jump!” and he obeys, throwing himself into his father’s arms.
Are you in such a place right now? Are you on the edge, teetering, and have no other option but to fling yourself into the arms of Jesus?
You have simply resigned yourself to your situation, but that is not trust; it is nothing more than fatalism.
Trust is something vastly different from passive resignation. It is active belief!
As we hunger for Jesus more intensely, we will find that our trust in him is well founded.
At some point in our lives we may have thought that we could not really trust him—that he did not really have control over the big picture and that we had to stay in charge.
But growing closer to him and getting to know him better changes that. It means that we do not just come to him for help when we are at the end of our rope; instead, we begin to walk with him so closely that we hear him warning of the trials ahead.
The trusting heart always says, “All my steps are ordered by the Lord. He is my loving Father, and he permits my sufferings, temptations and trials—but never more than I can bear, for he always makes a way of escape.
He has an eternal plan and purpose for me. He has numbered every hair on my head, and he formed all my parts when I was in my mother’s womb.
He knows when I sit, stand or lie down because I am the apple of his eye. He is Lord—not just over me, but over every event and situation that touches me.”
A perfect heart is also a broken heart!
The Psalmist David said, “The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite [crushed] spirit” (Psalm 34:18).
Brokenness means more than sorrow and weeping, more than a crushed spirit, more than humility.
True brokenness releases in the heart the greatest power God can entrust to mankind—greater than power to raise the dead or heal sickness and disease.
When we are truly broken before God, we are given a power that restores ruins, a power that brings a special kind of glory and honor to our Lord.
You see, brokenness has to do with walls—broken down, crumbling walls. David associated the crumbling walls of Jerusalem with the brokenheartedness of God’s people. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart…. Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem. Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness” (Psalm 51:17–19).
Nehemiah was a brokenhearted man, and his example has to do with those broken walls of Jerusalem (see Nehemiah 2:12–15). In the dark of the night, Nehemiah “viewed the wall.” The Hebrew word shabar is used here. It is the same word used in Psalm 51:17 for “broken heart.” In the fullest Hebrew meaning, Nehemiah’s heart was breaking in two ways. It broke first with anguish for the ruin, and second with a hope for rebuilding (bursting with hope).
This is truly a broken heart: one that first sees the church and families in ruin and feels the Lord’s anguish. Such a heart grieves over the reproach cast on the Lord’s name.
It also looks deep inside and sees, as David did, its own shame and failure. But there is a second important element to this brokenness, and that is hope. The truly broken heart has heard from God: “I will heal, restore and build. Get rid of the rubbish, and get to work rebuilding the breaches!”
Kathryn Kuhlman always used to say “God is not looking for golden vessels, and nor is He looking for silver vessels, only yielded vessels!“
Well how are we doing on that score, when it comes to our TRUSTING God?
This is very important, because whether or not God can use us, as He would like, depends on our level of maturity in Him, our intimacy with the Holy Spirit, and our willingness to obey Him; also it depends on our heart relationship with Him (whether we truly love Him, have Him first place in our life, and are truly called according to His purpose).
Even Jesus makes reference to the importance or our trusting Him, and whether or not we have ulterior motives:
The Discerner of Hearts
23 Because of the miraculous signs Jesus did in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration, many began to trust in him.24 But Jesus didn’t trust them, because he knew human nature. 25 No one needed to tell him what mankind is really like.
Question: Can Jesus trust us?
Can He rely on us to obey His Word and not rely on our own understanding?
When we are under pressure how are we apt to react? Do we react according to our flesh, or according the counsel of God’s Word and the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Why do you suppose the military has boot camp and advanced training for SEAL unites and Special Forces?
It is to teach these men how to deal with pressure, and not to be compromised by external forces… to keep their eye on the ball!
This ability to trust and have faith in God in every situation, though it may come easy for children, it is generally a bit harder for most adults, especially if we have been hurt in the past and have been let down by people (such as parents, relatives, friends, and etc) who have used us; or maybe even have abused us (either emotionally or physically, or both).
In order for us to appreciate what God has for us, what His destiny and plans are for us, it helps if we first understand the nature of our relationship with Him, in that we have a Blood Covenant with Him.
This Blood Covenant is a marriage between Christ and His Church, that is not based on emotions or feelings, which vary up and down with each passing day (depending on our circumstances) but it is based on commitment, upon Agape (LOVE), and upon GRACE (unmerited favor), where each party to the covenant vows to dedicate the rest of their life, and give to their covenant partner all they have and the best they have, in order to benefit their Covenant Partner; and even if the other party fails to carry their weight, the other will carry them until they can.
This is what every marriage is to be like, and we each can thank God for this is exactly God’s commitment to us, in that truly (and this is true of all of us), in that we each blow our end of our covenant with Him every day; nevertheless, Jesus is faithful to carry us (as His covenant partners) every single day, or else we all would be up the creek without a paddle!
This Blood Covenant is a life long contract, that lasts until death do you part, and it is so sacred that under many cultures, even today, and this was certainly true in ancient Israel, that to break this Blood Covenant was a capitol offense.
The model and often the training ground in learning to trust, to love, and to extend grace and forgiveness, is found in the marriage relationship, between a husband and wife, as this is a model of the same covenant relationship which we have with God.
However, for those who have been abused in the past, God understands that it takes some time to get them to trust again; and the way God does this, is first by letting us know that whatever has happened in our past, whether by family or friends, and however we have been hurt or let down, God is NOT like that!
Secondly, God will enter into our circumstances, our trials and tribulations, if we let Him (and this includes situations and problems within family and marriage relationships as well), in order to teach us how to not be anxious (regardless of what we face); to petition God, and to trust Him, according to His Word, and to pray and supplicate before Him, even while in the midst of the fire and adverse circumstances, and to cast the whole of our lives upon Him, die to ourselves, and our understanding, and believe only what God says and has promised… this is what faith is. And the Bible says that unless we have this kind of faith we cannot please God (Hebrews 11:6).
So again, I ask the question, look at yourself in the mirror (which is a metaphor for the Bible) and ask yourself how are you doing?
God will allow challenges in our life, where you live, and also (for those who are married) even in your marriage, in order that we might learn that in spite of what comes against us in the natural, God is faithful to His Word; and that if we would but TRUST Him, and have FAITH in Him, that we can truly cast the whole of our lives and ALL our circumstances upon Him, and jump into His arms, all the while knowing that He will never let us down!
How do we get there? We need to start today, with today’s problems, and begin to apply these principles to how we deal with our every day problems; and above all, we need to do this regardless of our circumstances or what we may feel or think, in the natural.
The point is, we don’t give up on Him (Jesus), and even when we stumble and fall (as will happen often), we have but to repent, confess to God our mistake, as the Blood of Jesus covers ALL our sins (past, present, and future), and then we just get back up and put ourselves back in the race. Because you see, to win this race (called life) you needed cross the finish line first, to win this race all you need to do is just don’t quit, and remain in faith!
Let’s now take a look at this subject of trust, as it relates to God’s Word and our confession.
What does the Bible have to say about the POWER of words and the confession of our tongue?
- Matthew 15:18, “But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person.”
- Matthew 12:36, “I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak.”
- Ephesians 4:29, “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear”
- Colossians 3:8, “But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.”
- Proverbs 16:24, “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”
- Proverbs 13:3, “Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.”
- Proverbs 21:23, “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”
- James 1:26, “If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.”
- Proverbs 10:19, “When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.”
- Matthew 12:37, “For by your words you will be justified and by your words you will be condemned.”
- Proverbs 17:9, “Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.”
- Proverbs 15:4, “A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.”
- Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.”
- Matthew 12:34, “You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”
- John 8:31, “So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples.”
- John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
- Proverbs 17:27, “Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.”
- Proverbs 15:1, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
- Ephesians 6:17, “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
- Romans 10:8, “But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim).”
- John 8:31-32, “So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.'”
- John 1:14, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
- Matthew 5:1-48, “Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth…”
- Proverbs 29:20, “Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.”
- Proverbs 17:28, “Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.”
- Proverbs 15:2, “The tongue of the wise commends knowledge, but the mouths of fools pour out folly.”
- Proverbs 14:1, “The wisest of women builds her house, but folly with her own hands (and with her mouth) tears it down.”
- Proverbs 16:23-24, “The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips. Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.”
- Psalm 118:17, “I shall not die, but I shall live, and recount the deeds of the Lord.”
- Romans 4:1-25, “What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.” Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness…”
- Proverbs 18:20-21, “A man is filled with what comes from his mouth and is nourished by what his lips provide. The tongue has power over life and death, those who like speaking will eat its fruit”
Romans 10:10 says, “By believing from the heart, you obtain true righteousness; by confessing the faith with your lips you are saved” – After you have believed in your heart, it is necessary to engage your mouth to confess your salvation or else you will forfeit it. The leper in Mark 1:40-45 only needed the Lord to make one pronunciation. All Jesus needed to say was “You will, be clean,” and if he had refrained from saying it, the man would have died a leper.
In Mathew 8:5-13 the centurion wanted Jesus to say just a word for his servant to receive his healing.
Listen up folks, if God used His words to create the world and all the planets, the vast expanse of space, and all that is in it; and if we are created in His image and after His likeness, then our words also create the world that we live in… so use them wisely!!! Selah