George MacDonald wrote:
"God will help us when we can not walk...
and He will help us when we find it hard to walk...
but He can NOT help us if we will not walk!"
A little child asked his Dad to fix his toy and the father replied:
"I can't...until you let go."
Our motto should be the words of an old song:
"Let go and let God have His wonderful way:
Let go and let God have His way.
Your burdens will vanish...your night turn to day,
Let go and let God have His way."
I Peter 5:7: "Casting all your cares upon God for He cares for you."
When I was pastoring Kona Baptist Church on the Big Island of Hawaii, the Sunday School Director was a fine man who owns a charter boat. While discussing our desire to reach more people for Christ, Tim Cox said, "It's like in my business. I take people out to fish every day, but in order to CATCH any fish, one has to do a lot of CASTING."
It is the same when trying to live a successful Christian life, we must do a lot of casting on the Lord.
Do you remember how anxious you were for your children to walk?
Then when they did...and got into everything, we wondered why we were so anxious for them to walk! But it was a great day when they let go and walked into our arms!
I'm sure that God feels the same way about us!
Proverbs 3:5-6 is a favorite:
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding.
In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path."
A great New Testament Scripture is I Cor. 3:9: "We are laborers together with God."
Hebrews 11 is a great chapter about those who walked with God.
The theme of their lives must have been 'Have faith in the faithfulness of God'.
They trusted and obeyed and sought to do the Will of God and to walk with Him.
Following this great Hall of Faith is the Scripture: "Therefore seeing all of these, let us lay aside every weight and the sins that do so easily beset us. And let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith Who set our main example at the cross."
For our walk of life, we need the following:
1) THE DIETY FOR OUR WALK:
God is in charge and He will lead if we will follow. He has shown us the way.
"To do justice and to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God". (Micah 6:8)
The Trinity is involved throughout the Scriptures, but Ephesians 1 is the best:
God the Father selects us....we are chosen ones.
God the Son saves us.....we are redeemed ones.
God the Holy Spirit sustains and seals us....we are the strengthened and secure ones.
Don't worry about explaining the Trinity....the Three in One.
I am three in one....as a son, a husband and as a father.
I relate differently in all three and so God relates to us in three ways....
as Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
2) THE DIRECTIONS OF...AND THE DELIGHTS FROM....OUR WALK WITH GOD:
God not only selects, saves, and sustains us, but over and over He tells us:
"This is the way....walk in it and it pleases God." (Proverbs 16:7)
Beware however, for Proverbs 14:12 and 16:25 plead with us:
"There is a way that seems right unto man, but it is the way of destruction/death".
The writer of Proverbs used the word 'fool' often and Proverbs 12:15 says:
"The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who listens to God's counsel is wise."
Psalms 119:111 emphasizes that the Scriptures are our best guide.
(A lamp unto our feet and a light for our paths)
An old song says:
"When we walk with the Lord in the light of His word,
What a glory He sheds on our way".
The key here is 'trust and obey'.
At Bethel Baptist Church here in Norman, Oklahoma, we were 'locked in' on a corner with no room to expand. We prayed about whether to move out...or to stay... and God led us to stay.
We needed an old gas station on the corner to give us egress from the West.
We had an outlet to the South on Lindsey St. (a VERY busy street leading into the University of Oklahoma located here)
Two Deacons and I went to San Antonio, Texas to visit with the Corporation that owned the old station.
At the motel that night, I picked up the Gideon Bible and God led to Psalms 138:8.
"The Lord will perfect that which concerns you. Thy mercy O Lord endures forever
and you will not forsake the work of your hands."
The next morning when we walked into the office and met the representative of the corporation, he said....
"Travis, didn't you play for the pro baseball team in Amarillo in 1953?"
When I replied "Yes sir, I did", he said, "So did I!"
Only God could have orchestrated that 'miracle meeting' for the purchase of that property!
Over the years, God has blessed Bethel to acquire other properties to the East, North and West. Today, it is one of the one of the largest churches in Norman and we say....
"To God be the Glory!"
3) THE DETERMINATION OF OUR WALK WITH GOD:
II Corinthians 5:7: "We walk by faith and not by sight."
So much of what we see on TV news of world events, can cause us to lose hope and falter in our determination.
Faith causes us to look ABOVE these things and see that God is still on His Throne and "Greater is the power in us than any power in the world". (I John 4:4)
God will have 'the last word'.
9/11 helped us to see again the determination of Americans.
Why else would 343 firefighters and police die in rescue attempts?
Also, a determined group of passengers on Flight #93 rushed the terrorists and though they lost their lives, they prevented even more destruction, as the destination of the terrorists seemed to be Washington DC.
An unknown poet wrote:
"So I go on not knowing, I would not if I might...
I'd rather walk with God in the dark, than to walk alone in the light.
I had rather walk with Him by faith than to walk alone by sight."
4) OUR WALK WITH GOD NEEDS TO BE DAILY
Yesterday does not suffice for today! It can help to equip you and encourage you,
but each day will be lived....or just existed. Jesus is The Way, The Truth and The Life.
Hebrews 13:8 assures us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.
He can help us to be consistent and faithful, day by day.
Psalms 37 is our son Craig's favorite....
and it has become one of my favorites also as it outlines the disciplines that we need for our walk with God.
a) Fret not over evil doers and workers of iniquity.
b) Trust in the Lord
c) Delight in Him
d) Commit to your ways unto Him
e) Rest in Him (letting the weight of your life down on Him and His Promises)
f) Cease from anger
g) Wait on Him as a good servant waits on directions from his master
h) Be meek like Moses (Numbers 12:3) and Jesus (Matt. 11:29)
Meekness is NOT weakness!
Verse 23: "The steps of a good person are ordered by the Lord."
5) THE DESTINATION OF OUR WALK WITH GOD IS HEAVEN:
It will be worth it all when we hear Jesus say:
"Well done, thou good and faithful servant....enter into your reward."
I read in Daily Bread devotional book this week, the following:
"Until then, our Heavenly Father stands before us, with outstretched arms...
encouraging us toward Holiness, eager to catch us when we stumble.
He picks us up when we fall.
He is never discouraged with our progress, as long as we are trying and trusting.
He does not give up on us.
The more difficult our walk, the more care and kindness He extends."
Next to Jesus and the Holy Spirit, my Gr'parents, parents and my 3 brothers helped 'my walk' the most in my early years. Friendship Baptist Church and Friendship School were great helps in my salvation, spiritual growth and my education.
The best part since then, has been my marriage to La Moyne Harris which took place 53 years ago yesterday.
Our first meeting was a miracle....and our lives together have been miracles.
There have been 'bumps on the road', but they have just bumped us closer to God....
(and each other).
When we lean, we lean on each other.....and on our Lord.
(I love to hear her sing, "Learning to Lean"!)
We shared this poem with you a year or so ago, but would like to share it again.
~My Father's Way~
My Father's way may twist and turn,
My heart may throb and ache,
But in my soul I'm glad to know,
He maketh no mistake.
My cherished plans may go astray,
My hopes may fade away,
But I'll trust my Lord to lead
For He doth know the way.
Though night be dark and it may seem
That day will never break,
I'll pin my faith my all in Him
He maketh no mistake.
There's so much now I cannot see,
My eyesight is far too dim.
But come what may, I'll simply trust
And leave it all to Him.
For by and by the mist will lift
And plain it all He'll make,
Through all the way, though dark to me
He made not one mistake.
(by A. M. Overton)
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