Monday, February 23, 2009

A moment with Ashley


"In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. And the Lord delivered Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand" (Daniel 1:1-2). We were looking at this verse in my Daniel class and we took a moment to really focus on the part where it says, "And the Lord delivered Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand." What does this mean? The Lord gave His chosen people over into the hands of their enemies? How can this be an expression of love? 

God gives us over into the hands of our enemies as a way of waking us up. We get a taste of what it's like to be without God. The problem is that we forget God is still in control. He has control over our enemies and He knows what needs to be done for us to turn wholeheartedly back to Him. We know that we're supposed to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, but we forget that He loves us with EVERYTHING in Him. He isn't just asking us to love us in an extravagant way, but He is asking us to love Him in the same way that He loves us. This is good news for us! He loves us so extravagantly that He will go to all lengths in order to win us over in love. Imagine you have a friend who is addicted to drugs. Are you going to just let them go on living their life as you sit by and watch them slowly kill themselves? No, you're going to tie them down to the cot and even though they scream, and curse, and say they hate you you won't let them up. Why? Because you love them and you see the value of their life even when they don't. The same is true for us. We may not be doing drugs, but sin can be more addictive than any drug. God is doing for us what at the times seems terrible, but it's out of His love because He sees the value of our life even when we don't. 

We serve a holy God and He deserves a holy bride. We wouldn't expect a man to give his wife to another man, but we expect God to allow us to go and be with other lovers. God is jealous for us not just because He wants all of us, but because He sees that NONE of the other lovers care for all! He is the only one that truly cares for us, loves us, and values our lives. If it means giving us over into the hands of our enemies in order to win us back over in love then that is what He'll do. 

It's out of His great mercy that He gives us over into the hands of our enemies. I feel like many of us have looked at His mercy in the wrong light. We look at it as His judgement instead of His mercy. So I'm praying that the Lord will reveal that situation to you in a way....that you will no longer look at it as His judgement but rather His mercy because He so desires you. 

God Bless

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