Monday, January 16, 2017

Delayed Obedience


This reply came when Abraham’s servant, who had traveled to his master’s homeland to find a wife for his son, Isaac.  The question at hand was not if Rebekah should go, but when.  Delayed obedience is always disobedience.

George Verwer, the founder of Operation Mobilization, once said, “One of the greatest hindrances to world evangelization may be Christian parents.”  This may be a little strong, but there may be some truth to this quote.  In the narrative of our story in Genesis, we see well-meaning family members, trying to delay God’s plan.  Natural affections in families are right and good, but if they take precedent over the purposes and will of God, they become hindrances to fulfilling our God given call.  The Bible says, “there is a time for everything” (Ecc 3:1a NIV).  The family did not say no to Rebekah becoming the wife of Isaac; they just said wait. Sometimes waiting to consider things is necessary, but at other times it is an excuse for disobedience.  It could be allowing family ties to take priority over the will of God.  So many have missed their calling because they listened to a voice that said don’t worry about it now, you have plenty of time.


In this story the family made a wise choice, they let Rebekah make the decision when she would leave.  As Christian parents, there comes a time where we need to let go of our sons and daughters.  We must remember that God can take care of our loved ones better than we can.  Delay can be disguised disobedience.

Image used with permission by Microsoft.

Ken Barnes the author of “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places”  YWAM Publishing
Email: 
kenbarnes737@gmail.com
website:
https://sites.google.com/site/kenbarnesbooksite/
            http://gleanings757.blogspot.com

Friday, January 13, 2017

Reaching Canaan


Abram, who would become Abraham, the father of many nations, set out with his father, Terah, to travel to Canaan.  They settled in Harran, about halfway to Canaan.  A delay in your calling that God has given you does not necessarily mean that the Lord has changed his mind.

The scripture does not say why they stopped at Harran instead of completing their journey.  Some commentators have suggested that due to Terah’s age, he could no longer travel. There are times where circumstances are beyond our control. Our spiritual journey is often traveled in segments that involve delay and even diversions from our intended course. In God’s Kingdom the shortest distance between two points in not always a straight line.

Unlike Abraham, who proceeded to Canaan, through delay, we often lose site of our spiritual goal.  Our promised land is not just a place where we arrive on this earth or even something that we do; it’s an intimate relationship with the Creator God.  God is calling us to ascend the mountain of delights to the knowledge of the Holy One.  This is our Canaan land.

Often when we arrive at the valley at the foot of the mountain, we become prosperous and comfortable, and little by little, we lose our desire to climb the peak.  God will allow us to do this if we so choose, but we must remember that the view of the Lord from the valley will never be as spectacular as the one from the mountaintop.

Image used with permission by Microsoft.

Ken Barnes the author of “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places”  YWAM Publishing
Email: 
kenbarnes737@gmail.com
website:
https://sites.google.com/site/kenbarnesbooksite/
            http://gleanings757.blogspot.com
                http://gleaningspodcast.blogspot.com






Saturday, January 7, 2017

Reputation

Mary, the mother of Jesus
And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. (Matthew 1:19 NASB)

Our reputation, in many cases, can be a result of our wrong choices, but not always.  In other instances, like Mary the mother of our Lord, her reputation was the result of embracing the will of God.

Reputation is what people think about us.  Character is what God knows about us.  Being the recipient of the virgin birth caused Mary to lose her good reputation.  Loren Cunningham, the founder of Youth With A Mission, once said, “There never has been anyone who has done anything significant for God, who has not first lost their reputation.”  The bigger that Mary became in her pregnancy, the more people talked, and that is how in works in the world. The more that you do for the Lord, the more people will try to discredit you.  Why does God allow this to happen?  Possibly, it smashes the great hindrance for being useful to the Master, our pride.   It forces us to perform our service to please our heavenly Father, not for the recognition of man.  Moral purity is reflected by what we do when no one is watching.  Godly character develops when our actions are motivated by what God thinks and not just what people see.  At times it is easy to imitate righteousness.  Hypocrisy promotes a status without the corresponding virtue.  Mary, to the contrary, exercised faith and obedience in spite of the consequences to her reputation.

Mary knew the truth about how she conceived her baby, and so did God, and that was enough.  Mary feared God and not the people.  Therefore, she lost her reputation, but we gained the Savior of this world.

Image used with permission by Microsoft.

Ken Barnes the author of “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places”  YWAM Publishing
Email: 
kenbarnes737@gmail.com
website:
https://sites.google.com/site/kenbarnesbooksite/
            http://gleanings757.blogspot.com
                http://gleaningspodcast.blogspot.com