"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God's messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn't let me.” ~Matthew 23:37
Whose voice do you listen to? If you are a Christian, you have the Holy Spirit in your life. He is your guide, and He speaks to you with gentle nudges that let you know when something isn’t right. He isn’t rude; however, He will not shout to be heard. If you push him away or ignore him, He will not force his opinion on you.
The more you push him away, the easier He is to ignore. Soon, you will cease to hear his voice at all. After all, He will not stay where He is not wanted.
Recently I was trying to find something to watch. I started one program that looked interesting and was several episodes in before I noticed a certain author’s name in the credits. This particular author is famous for writing strange and horrific tales that are downright demonic at times. I avoid his work like the plague. I tried to reason with my conscience, telling myself that what I had watched so far had only been a little on the strange side (O.K., a lot on the strange side.). Maybe I could continue watching until I saw something blatantly evil. I caught myself. I realized that if I have to find reasons that it’s O.K., it’s probably not. If I’m arguing with my conscience, then my conscience has already spoken up to tell me that it is wrong. I stopped mid-episode. I still don’t know how it ends.
When you have that gentle prick in your conscience, listen to it. The more you argue with it, the quieter it will become. If your conscience has become quiet, pray that God will awaken the Holy Spirit in your heart and life once again or for the first time.
“So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that these pleasures are from the hand of God.” ~Ecclesiastes 2:24
Enjoying yourself is sometimes frowned upon in certain Christian circles. If you’re having fun, something surely must be wrong, right? Not according to this verse.
In fact, if you look, you will find verse after verse instructing us to be joyful. There are even many verses that prompt us to not only work hard but find satisfaction in what we do. God never intended for us to be Gloomy Guses, depriving ourselves of the good things that He’s put here for us.
So, relish that morning cup of coffee. Enjoy the occasional cookie. Find satisfaction in a job well done. God put these things here just for you.
"16 for through him God created everything
in the heavenly realms and on earth.
He made the things we can see
and the things we can’t see--
such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world.
Everything was created through him and for him.
17 He existed before anything else,
and he holds all creation together."~ Colossians 1:16-17
Trials. Sorrows. We all have them. They are a part of the human condition. The trick is to remember that we are admonished to 'consider it all joy.' ~ James 1:2 How can we find joy in the midst of our trials? It is because through the testing of our faith we have the opportunity to develop grit,determination, staying power, call it what you will. We are being given a spiritual workout.
As with our physical well being, our spiritual well being is greatly dependent on what we take in. If we want to be able to endure, we need to make sure that we have the right fuel. We need to have God's word hidden in our heart so that when our times of hardship come, we will have a well to draw upon.