Saturday, 28 April 2012
That question should evoke a passionate answer, should result in my heart singing praises to Him because He has always only given love to my heart. Problem is, I'm way to busy trying to get my heart 'ready for God' to realize the kindness He has embraced me with, I'm so focused on myself that I don't ever hear the question.
There is a story in the old testament when David and his men were on the pursuit of the Amalekites who had raided their homes and kidnapped their families. In their journey two hundred of David's men reached a point of exhaustion and could no longer travel, they stayed behind while David and the remaining four hundred men went on to find the Amelekites and rescued their families along with all the stolen goods that had been taken.
On their way back they met up with those left behind, David's first words to them are - How are you doing? - A few of the men who battled and rescued the families were angry with those who stayed behind and said that because they did not go with them, they would not receive any of goods they retrieved from the Amalekites. David steps in and says "My brethren, you shall not do so with what the Lord has given us, who has preserved us and delivered into our hand the troop that came against us." 1 Samuel 30:23. From that day on, the share was the same for the man who went to battle and the man who stayed with the supplies.
David stopped the humiliation that was going on to those guys, when they were weak he cared and protected them. When we are low, we don't forget how people above us treated us, when our faith is weak we remember how important that note of encouragement was, when lonely how precious that phone call from a friend was, how loud is a simple 'thank you' when you can't remember the last time you heard it. Kindness shown to us in our time of weakness is heaven sent, yet it's so easy for us to not imitate it. We have daily reminders of God's kindness to us, how dare any of us deny kindness to another? How we treat the weak speaks louder than any word, you see God's heart in the way David treated those left behind.
David first words are -How are you doing? - David is the one that just traveled, battled and rescued their families, yet David wants to know how his men are doing. Ever notice how God sometimes uses other saints to asks us that question? When the few trouble makers start up with the whole "you guys were not real men because you stayed behind" fiasco, David steps in and puts everything in perspective, that this was not our victory, it was God's, His glory not ours.
Something that has taken me a while to "unlearn" is that God's victory has nothing to do with me, God will be God with or without my acknowledgement, God always wins, even the battles I'm not aware of. Siting down to worship God by myself or in a bible study is always filled with distractions, even more at church, from this noise to that person, whatever excuse is found to keep me from being honest with God, there seems to always be a least one. Before I know it the church is over and i have spent the entire time struggling with some excuse. God will be praised with or without me, I just missed the chance to spend time with Him. We tend to forget that if we fail to praise Him, even the rocks will cry out (Luke 19).
Learning that my heart should always be in a worship position is complicated at times, maybe because when I fail, I am the one that failed, I am the one who sinned and when I succeed in trying not to sin, it was God's strength not mine, oh yeah that pride for succeeding? That's me failing again. This heart, the thing that I want to worship God with is such a broken mess! I can't make it sing, much less get the words right, maybe, just maybe I spend way too much time trying to worship perfectly when I should just simply worship.
How does God treat your heart? How hard is it to worship God with your whole heart during times of trouble?