Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The Committed Life

A very wise man once wrote,
Trust in the Lord, and do good 
so you will dwell in the land, and enjoy security.

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.

He will bring forth your vindication as the light, and your right as the noonday” (Psalm 37:3-5).

David says trust or bust.
The committed life frees one to trust. God loves to be trusted and he is trustworthy. Being worthy of our trust, he deserves to be trusted. We can say, “I will trust the Lord at all times,” but trusting means putting our faith into action. Trust is faith in action, so trust and do good. David discovered that when trusting God and doing all the good he could do, God never failed him. God always worked with purposeful love in David’s life.

The committed life frees one from worry.
Have you ever experienced being blindfolded, spun around, and lifted into the air by your friends who then pass you around? It was a harrowing, wasn’t it? It was, until you relaxed and began enjoying the beauty of knowing you were in the good hands of trusted friends. Paul described trust this way: When he lived, he lived unto the Lord, and if he died, he died unto the Lord; so then, whether he lived or died, he was the Lord’s (cf. Romans 14:8).

Commitment to him in whom “we live and move and have our being” makes for trust that minimizes worry (Acts 17:28). Thus, Jesus reminded us that our heaven Father feeds the fowls of the air. Since we are better than they, why should we worry? The root meaning of worry suggests wearing away by friction. The Bible forbids worry; avoid being worn away by the friction of anxiety. Thus, David concludes “fret not yourself; it tends only to evil” (v. 7).

The Committed life guards one from envy.
“Let not your heart envy sinners,” or workers of iniquity, suggested the wise man (Proverbs 23:17). Comfort comes in being satisfied with one’s portion. Envy creates rottenness in the bones. Rather; take delight in the Lord, for he will give you the desire of your heart.

Describing this as heavenly wisdom, James describes it as “first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insecurity” (James 3:17). This suggests satisfaction of soul that money and possessions cannot purchase. Trust in God. He will act in our behalf. He will protect us from the envy that causes us to be dissatisfied with life unless we have as much as our neighbor has.

The committed life produces joy!
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you…” (Psalm 37:4). Life becomes a delight, a joy, a satisfaction. The Apostle James described the chrome plated chaos many of us live in and wondered, What causes wars, and what causes fightings among you? Is it not your passions that are at war in your members. You desire but do not have, so you covet but cannot obtain.

You desire and do not have; so you kill. You covet and cannot obtain; so you fight and wage war. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions (James 4:1-43).  Those who find real delight in the lord God have this promise: “He will give you the desires of your heart!”
The Psalmist well remembered a time in his life when he went into the sanctuary with what he called slippery feet. He was, he said, envious of the arrogant and prosperous. He felt bitterness of soul that he described in detail (Psalm 73).

In the sanctuary; however, he found new perspective! His negative doubts and hostile feelings fell away, replaced by positive feelings that enabled him to witness “Thou hast put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound. In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for thou, O Lord, makest me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:7-8).

Doubt becomes wrong when we refuse to commit ourselves to him. Paul admonished believers to allow God to transform their lives through the renewal of a committed mind; therefore, commit yourself a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1-2).

Note the order in the Psalmist’s experience:
1. Trust in the Lord.
2. Delight yourself in the Lord.
3. Commit your way to the Lord.
4. Rest in the Lord (Action words emphasized).
Recognize his power and presence. Trust yourself to him. Trust in his ways, Abide in him always. Unbelief gives direction to no man but an honest doubt, pursued by a committed heart, will discover a truthful and loving God along the way (Action words highlighted).

H. F. Lyte discovered he was in the best hands when in God’s care and keeping:

               Abide with me: fast falls the eventide;
               The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide:
               When other helpers fail, and comforts flee,

               Help of the helpless, O Abide with me!

I am walkingwithwarner.blogspot.com, 
abiding in Him . . .

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