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Remember Who You Serve

July 25, 2012

God is our refuge and strength,  always ready to help in times of trouble.  So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. -- Psalm 46: 1-2 (NLT)

Who is He; this God that we serve? Do we often forget amidst the clamor of this life? Among all of the problems we magnify in our lives. The world pulls us away from Him. The flesh counts for nothing. The enemy seeks to push us further and further away from Him. There we can often find ourselves, knowing in whom we have believed but forgetting exactly who He is. Thankfully we have His written Word to remind us not only of the mighty promises He has made but to remind us of exactly who we serve. We need reminding beloved. I know I do. I know when I am walking through the valley of the shadow of death I need to remember who I serve.   When I sit in solitude and wonder why the desert season seems so long -- I know I need to remember who it is that I serve. I do not serve some incapable God of wood and stone. I do not serve some abstract being sitting in the clouds hurling lightning bolts down to earth in His displeasure. I serve God Almighty. The maker of the heavens and the earth. The one true God. My all in all. The only one.

The Psalmist reminds us in the start of Psalm 46 exactly who it is that we serve. Write these verses down. Hide them in your heart. Reflect on them in the wilderness. Reflect on them when it doesn't seem like tomorrow is coming. When you do not know what it will bring. Remember who it is that you serve. First of all, God is our refuge. The dictionary defines refuge as a place of shelter, protection and safety. Place? Yes, sometimes it helps to consider God as a place. Where you can go to. Where you can run to. Where you can live:

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High   will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord : He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. -- Psalm 91: 1-2 (NLT)

What is the condition that has to be met? Those who live in the shelter of the Most High. The truth is that we do not abide much in God anymore. We are good at visiting. Sure we are still good at running to Him. We are still good at seeking Him out when all hell has broken loose in our lives; but abiding? Not so much. Regular Bible reading? Developing a God consciousness of prayer? Truth is that too often we try to fit Jesus into our lives instead of making our lives about Christ. We schedule Him in for our Sunday service of course; maybe throw in a Friday prayer meeting. We can squeeze Him in for an outreach ministry event once per month but hey, I got a life I have to deal with right? Wrong. That is why so many of us walk without any power as Christians. It is why we constantly seek revival. My pastor once preached that if we ever got it right to begin with, we wouldn't need to be revived!

Besides being our refuge, God is our strength. Among the definitions for strength we find this: " power by reason  of influence, authority, resources, numbers ." The Bible tells us to not rely upon our own strength but that is exactly what we do far too often. When we rely upon our own strength then we are only drawing power from ourselves. Maybe we get some for the short term but it is always fleeting and never lasts. Only God has the power we need to destroy the works of the enemy in our lives and live the victorious Christian life. We will have the power of influence. That is what God designed. That people would see us living life the way God intended it. Happy in our calamity. Basing our joy upon God and not this world. People would see it and they would want it. Our lives in Christ would have the influential power of God. We would also have the power of authority. One of the greatest points of annoyance for the unsaved is that we as Christians believe in absolute truth. That we believe what the Bible says over everything else. Over the man made theories that reduce our existence to being relative to pond scum or baboons.   We believe the Bible over fanciful man made stories about the big bang or whatever today's guess is. While there is annoyance with that, the truth is that they want it as well. The world sells shades of grey but it wants black and white. There is great power in knowing what you know and believing what you believe and that knowledge and those beliefs have not changed for thousands of years. There are no new theories of God and the Bible. No alterations. No need to change it for cultural differences or generational issues. To a world that once believed the earth was flat, that power is strongly desired. Besides authority and influence, we also have power in resources and numbers. We serve a God that has unlimited resources because He created them all! We believe the dead can be raised. The sick can be healed. The lame can walk again. More importantly, we believe that the man who is destined to spend an eternity in hell can be saved into the marvelous kingdom of light. There is no greater power!

Continuing in the key verses we see that we serve a God who is always ready to help in times of trouble. Let's face it, we are either coming out of trouble or heading into it. Jesus Himself warned us that we would face trouble in this world. It is a fallen world that is moving on each day towards the end. It is dying and decaying. Yet in the middle of all of this uncertainty and chaos we serve a God who is not an absentee landlord. We do not have to go looking for Him. He does not need to be convinced to help us. This verse says He is always ready to help. Always. Sometimes we turn God into a part time God. We bring Him the really bad things that are happening instead of bringing Him those things before they become bad. God prefers that we make Him the God of our decisions instead of the God of the results of our decisions. Regardless however, we serve a God that does not pick and choose when He will help us. He always will.

Lastly, verse 2 has two statements of faith we need to internalize today. We will not fear when the earthquakes come. What does an earthquake do? It challenges the foundation of what you have been building upon. It tests its sincerity and depth. It tests its value and strength. We do not fear because we know upon what we have built. God is the foundation you want your life to be built upon when the earthquakes come because nothing can shake God. Nothing will change God. If you have been paying lip service to God but building your life upon the things of this world you will be sorely disappointed when the earthquakes come and your foundation crumbles. Nothing can crack the life that is founded and built upon the Rock of Ages.

The other statement from verse 2 is that we will not fear though the mountains crumble into the sea. The mountains represent what we believe to be unmovable in this world. The Psalmist is saying here that the things in this life that we think are the most secure and unshakable could collapse into the sea before my eyes and I will not fear because I know that I know that I know -- who I serve. It is boasting in the Lord as Paul taught. Bring it on! It doesn't matter how deep my valley goes because God goes before me. It doesn't matter how hot my desert gets because God will always refresh me. It doesn't matter how dense my wilderness seems because I know that the God I serve is working all things out for my good. I know that He is the God of the mountaintop and the valley. That He created the desert and the oasis. He leads us through the wilderness. I just might need to be reminded every now and again"

Rev. Anthony

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Credentialed Minister of the Gospel for the Assemblies of God. Owner and founder of 828 ministries. Vice President for Goodwill Industries. Always remember that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him and are called according to (more...)
 
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