Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Passion of Patience

I will stand on my guard post
And station myself on the rampart;
And I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, ...
"For the vision is yet for the appointed time;
It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail
Though it tarries, wait for it;
For it will certainly come, it will not delay."
- Habakkuk 2:1,3 (NAS)

I will climb up to my watchtower
and stand at my guardpost.
There I will wait to see what the Lord says...
This vision is for a future time.
It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled.
If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently,
for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed.
- Habakkuk 2:1,3 (Living)

Today's reading from My Utmost For His Highest - titled "The Passion of Patience" - was based on Habakkuk 2:3. Chambers said, "The vision of God is the source of patience... . Moses endured ... because he had a vision of God." Moses had a vision. God had appeared to Moses and spoken to him. Moses believed and acted on that faith. He acted on his vision.

Oswald Chambers pointed out that there is a difference between being "patient" and being "spiritually satisfied" (i.e. no longer having a hunger or thirst, the idea that we have "made it"). The reading ended with the sentence, "Beware of the danger of relaxation spiritually." Beware of relaxing, yes, but do not strive on your own.

Refusing to turn our burdens over to the Lord, acting as if we are an "army of one" and can make it on our own, will result in spiritual burnout. Why? Because Christianity is about relationship, the relationship between God and us. When we act as if we are self-sufficient, God is faithful to bring us back to Himself, bring us back into intimate communion with Him.

Weak and wounded sinner
Lost and left to die
O, raise your head, for love is passing by
Come to Jesus
Come to Jesus
Come to Jesus and live!

Now your burden's lifted
And carried far away
And precious blood has washed away the stain, so
Sing to Jesus
Sing to Jesus
Sing to Jesus and live!

And like a newborn baby
Don't be afraid to crawl
And remember when you walk
Sometimes we
Fall on Jesus
Fall on Jesus
Fall on Jesus and live!

Sometimes the way is lonely
And steep and filled with pain
So if your sky is dark and pours the rain, then
Cry to Jesus
Cry to Jesus
Cry to Jesus and live!

O, and when the love spills over
And music fills the night
And when you can't contain your joy inside, then
Dance for Jesus
Dance for Jesus
Dance for Jesus and live!

And with your final heartbeat
Kiss the world goodbye
Then go in peace, and laugh on Glory's side, and
Fly to Jesus
Fly to Jesus
Fly to Jesus and live!
- Chris Rice, "(Untitled Hymn)"

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