Being awakened to the love of God and the sacrifice of His Son creates a vacuum in our spirit that wants to take in all that has been missing. The void left from earthy provision leaves the believer famished and desperate to fill themselves with the goodness of God and the love of Jesus. Then begins the stage of learning. Attending church and reading the bible become exciting and the spike in curiosity feels like an unquenchable thirst. Nothing can fill all of the places that have been left empty fast enough. They are now aware that God is able to meet the needs that nothing else could. They delight in the possibilities in this unknown love and grace. They are accepted in their brokenness and the world is bright because their focus now includes the light in Jesus Christ. What does it look like to fall deeper into God? What can I do to get closer? There is a hunger for substance and a thirst for more.
I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. (Psalm 81:10)
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. (Matthew 5:6)
O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. (Psalm 63:1)
We are all aware that there is something more. It may get shoved down to a place where it can be temporarily ignored but it resurfaces when the panic arises. Our desire to fall into God is at its greatest when we are at the end of ourselves and realize that our need/ desperation just outgrew our pride. God puts eternity in the hearts of all men. Some come to the One who transcends time and is larger than eternity. Others fall into the snares of this world be trying to fill the void of their lives with things that will perish. They don’t see that only the eternal God can fill the void He made for Him to rest. How many people do you know that are lost in the darkness of this sinful world? They need the light of Jesus to brighten their life but are in too much turmoil to turn and seek the light. It’s comparable to a child who is in fighting to keep their head above water. The fear of drowning causes panic and they flail about trying anything to sooth that panic and find comfort. All of the terror of their heart keeps them from seeing that the water is only four foot deep and they can stand up at any time. The light of Jesus is always within reach. God and the Son are only a submitted prayer away. Your Heavenly Father is seeking to deliver you from the darkness. Jesus has overcome this world and He seeks for the lost to join Him. Being aware He exists and calls to you is the first step to beginning a walk that leads to things so great only God knows what He has for those you love Him.
“What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” the things God has prepared for those who love him (1 Corinthians 2:9)
He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)
In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. (John 16:33b)
How many times have you wondered as a believer how people who deny and defy God seem to somehow never fall? We see wealthy people who go to any means to increase their financial position. We see bosses who treat people terribly and still get promoted. This should never detour us. We should focus on what the Lord has for us and not compare ourselves to others. They are meant to walk a path far different from ours. The thought does leave us curious though. I was always of the opinion that some people need a bigger fall in order to submit to God. They needed to take a bigger loss to lose dependence on earthly things and seek the eternal. I still believe that is true for many but another thought came to me. What if the deceiver bestows earthly gifts to create the sense of dependence that drives people from God? What if the deceiver provides so many earthly things that people accept idols over God? Maybe an atheist billionaire is the deceiver’s way of convincing those who are weak in faith that they don’t need God, that this world is enough to satisfy the yearnings of our hearts. God leaves the emptiness in our hearts in order that it might be filled by Him. It makes sense that the deceiver would use this common trait to attack with false fulfillment. Is the deceiver clever enough to try and use the finite things of this earth to draw us away from the eternal fulfillment of God? Is it possible that satan would try and bless us away from our Savior? When we examine the extent at which he tempts man in defiance of the true God I don’t see why this clever tactic wouldn’t also be used. Don’t be drawn away by earthly idols and this darkened world. Let the light of God light the path that He created for you before the beginning of time and find your life in the eternal things that will last as sin and the gifts of the devil fade into nothingness when Christ comes to take us home.
As I sat in a group discussing the spiritual gifts that existed between us, I had a tug at my heart. I saw men light up as they described the gifts God had bestowed upon them and how they put those gifts into practice in their kingdom service. I realized how easy it is to talk about God moving in the presence of other believers, while on the other hand the same conversation with non-believers is met with confusion or skepticism. I then realized that every spiritual gift comes with a worldly stigma that faces criticism from those who cannot recognize God’s work in a person. A few examples:
The gift of Knowledge can be seen as arrogance to someone who is offended by the revelation found in that gift. The humility to be lead is a sign of wisdom and a trait of God.
The gift of Teaching can seem over bearing when the subject matter becomes eternal and spiritual. The believer is looked at as a ‘know it all’ and the words fall on deaf ears.
The gift of Encouragement makes people feel like their problem isn’t taken seriously because they don’t share the same confidence as the believer. They want a reaction that mirrors their own such as anger or fear.
The gift of Giving offends people who are too proud to receive that kind of love.
The gift of Prophecy makes people withdraw as they sit in denial about a truth that becomes clear far later than need be. They fight truth that they are not ready to receive.
The gift of Evangelism rubs anybody wrong who refuses to submit to The Creator and insists on a self-reliance that never succeeds. Just the name of God causes the sinful heart to withdraw.
Finally, the gift of Faith which looks like indifference when the world won’t approve of the lack of reaction found in Christ. They don’t find peace in reliance on a God they deny.
Growth in Christ (spirit) is viewed as a flaw to the world (flesh). Every gift come with a perceived flaw when the lost don’t understand the true power of the Holy Spirit in a believer. Part of the deceiver’s work is to create a skewed view of God and His faithful by turning the lost away from the power of God as it works through the gifted. We should all take the time to examine our hearts and the gifts God has placed in them. That realization helps you see where God desires to use you in His kingdom. The difficult part is the perseverance we face in the light of those gifts. Ask God to give you strength and know that God has blessed you with those gifts and will continue to do so as you allow His Spirit to move through you with His gifts.