January 14, 2010

rest assured

Isaiah 51:9-16
Awake, awake, put on strength...
Was it not you who dried up the sea, the waters of the great deep,
who made the depths of the sea a way for the redeemed to pass over?
The ransomed of the Lord shall return and come... with singing.
Everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy,
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
"I, I am he who comforts you; who are you that you are afraid of man who dies...
...and have forgotten the Lord, your Maker; I am the Lord you God... the Lord of hosts.
And I have put my words in your mouth
and covered you in the shadow of my hand,
establishing the heavens and laying the foundations of the earth,
and saying to Zion, 'You are my people.' "

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God has gone to amazing lengths to save the ones who are His own. It's amazing to claim God's gifts for us and bask in His goodness to us!

Imagine working with God like Moses did! After Moses has taken off his sandals and listened to the messages coming from none other than a burning bush... he's got his task... lead God's people in a mass exodus from Egypt! God wasn't interested in sitting back as His people suffered in slavery to the Egyptians. God speaks to His people through Moses: 'I am the Lord, and I will bring you out form under the burdens... I will deliver you from slavery... I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts... I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God, and you shall know that I am the Lord your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens...' (Exodus 6:6-7). God deals in liberation. He wins battles ("Jesus is da winna man", anyone?). He conquers all. He's our Protector.

God comes to our aid. We have just to seek Him out. Sit. Be still. Listen. Obey.

hide me... cover me... protect me... love me

The question is not "will He come?", but "have I stopped to invite Him to join me here?"...

Psalm 145:13-19 "The Lord is faithful in all his words and kind in all his works. The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing... The Lord is near to all who call on him... he also hears their cry and saves them."

rest, my soul
(GOD IS THE LOVE THAT WILL BRING REST)
Henri Nouwen, everybody...
"... stop wandering around. Instead, come home and trust that God will bring you what you need. Your whole life you have been running about, seeking the love you desire. Now it is time to end that search. Trust that God will give you that all-fulfilling love and will give it in a human way... Just stop running and start trusting and receiving."
- The Inner Voice of Love, pg.12

know His power in quietness and trust
Have you ever felt like you needed to defend someone who's going down with the ship and you know it's wrong? Sometimes when I'm in a situation like that I think, "This can't be happening... this isn't how it's supposed to go...". I'm rocked when I have just to believe that my God is bigger than whatever the situation!

Psalm 46:10-11 "Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!" The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

soar with You
We were created to be in community with God. Friends with Him. When we call to Him, we are giving up our oh-so-natural "I can do this" efforts and saying "I'll let you be God on this one. I need you to fill me, meet me, and work through me here" instead. God just knows better. We need him.

Also of note... who doesn't want to SOAR!? Just a small example of how His ways are so much greater than ours.

Beth Moore: "Why does God allow us to spend so much of life in the heat of battle? Because He never meant for us to sip His Spirit like a proper cup of tea. He meant for us to hold our sweating heads over the fountain and lap up His life with unquenchable thirst."

King over the flood (or the earthquake, or family falling apart, or being laid off work...)
This verse has been a comfort to me at camp for the last couple summers, in particular, where knowing that God's sovereign in His infinite wisdom and His promise of peace can satisfy.
Also, my dear friend Jacqueline shared this verse today in reference to the catastrophe in Haiti...

Isaiah 54:10
"For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart form you,
and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,"
says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

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Still (by: Reuben Morgan)

Hide me now under Your wings
Cover me within Your mighty hand

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with You above the storm
Father, You are King over the flood
I will be still and know You are God

Find rest my soul in Christ alone
Know His power in quietness and trust