Have you pondered the Power of our God?
Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death.Psalm 68:19-20 NIV
Proclaim the power of God, whose majesty is over Israel, whose power is in the heavens. You, God, are awesome in your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be to God!Psalm 68:34-35 NIV
All of that in four verses of one Psalm. Have you thanked Him for pouring out this power on your behalf? In your darkest hour do you know His light? He bears our burdens. He keeps us from dying in our heart, our innermost being. He gives power and strength to His people. When we feel most vulnerable and acutely know the very weakness of ourselves, He gives us power and strength. Who couldn’t use more strength?
Repeatedly I come back to
If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.Romans 8:11 NRSV
The same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in you. I have found that the power that raised Jesus goes dormant when I choose to live by my flesh, pushing the Spirit of Christ aside in preference to my will and my ways. My thinking becomes corrupted with thoughts such as, “Why shouldn’t I be thanked?” or “What am I, chopped okra?”
The only way I know to begin again starts with seeing my sin and confessing it to my Lord.
If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.1 John 1:9 RSV
I cannot cleanse myself. I can recognize and confess though. Just as an addict cannot stop using until they want to, until they are ready, I cannot even see my sin until I am miserable and recognize how far removed I am from walking in righteousness with my Lord.
He daily bears our burdens and provides us an escape from death. He gives us life and strength and power. He indwells us with the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. He knows we have the ability to shut off that power source by stubbornly returning to our ways of flesh. When the ‘Hound of Heaven’ shows us we are way off, He can also disarm us with His love and lead us to repentance.
I fled Him down the nights and down the daysThe Hound of Heaven by Francis Thompson
I fled Him down the arches of the years
I fled Him down the labyrinthine ways
Of my own mind, and in the midst of tears
I hid from him . . .
We serve an amazing God who never leaves us or forsakes us. Even when we are stinky brats, He stays close by. Come to Him, all who are weary and heavy laden. He will give you rest and life and love unmerited.
The Father will not make us obey. He waits for us to turn to Him and ask forgiveness. We give access to Him by confessing our shortcomings. We then turn towards Him and walk away from the sin habits. I would love to say we never return there. Sadly we are like dogs in Proverbs 26:11:
As a dog returns to its vomit, so fools repeat their folly.
Lord, help us to follow You with joyful, peaceful, constant, yielded obedience. Thank you for pardoning us when we step off Your path and choose our own way. Please continue to lead us always in Your paths of righteousness. We will be ever so careful to give You the glory. Amen.