Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Call To Worship

Last night. I made a mistake. I started digging through my mom's medical records to see exactly what kind of breast cancer she had. Then I read my records very closely and started researching "Triple negative breast cancer". By the time I was finished I was not only exhausted physically but mentally as well.
Of course when I woke up the heaviness from the night before was still there. I tried to start my morning talk with God but kept being distracted. After an hour or so of walking around in a "funk" I opened my devotional e-mail. It spoke volumes to me and so I post it below.

A Call To Worship
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Friday, January 30 2009

...but they did not listen to him because of their discouragement and cruel bondage. - Exodus 6:9
It is very difficult to lead when those you are leading believe they have been mistreated and have lost all hope. Such was the case when God called Moses to bring the people of Israel out of Egypt. They had lived under many years of oppression and slavery. Yet God heard their cry. He sent someone to bring them out of slavery "so that they might worship God" (see Ex. 8:1). Interesting that God didn't say, "to serve Him." Above all else, God desires our worship. A person cannot enter into true worship of God while still in slavery and bondage.
In Proverbs, the writer tells us "hope deferred makes the heart sick" (Prov. 13:12a). There is a place in life where life becomes so discouraging and hopeless that we lose all hope, and it can actually make us sick. I have been at this place; it is a scary condition. It brings you to the edge of despair.
The people would not listen to Moses. Yet God did not deliver immediately. In fact, it would be many plagues later before ultimate deliverance would take place. Why does God withhold deliverance at times? It is in order to bring greater glory from the situation. It isn't because He doesn't care. It is because His plan for mankind is resting in these events. It is a finely tuned plan that involves many people and situations - all operating at the same time. It can seem cruel at times. But God knows that His children cannot worship Him if they are in bondage and lose all hope. He won't allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear, so He has a plan of deliverance for each of us. This plan is not always the kind of deliverance we might think is best. It sometimes has pain surrounding the deliverance. When a mother gives birth, that child is delivered into this world through much pain. But with that pain comes great joy on the other side. Every mother will say the pain was worth it because of the exceeding joy that child brought in the midst of the pain.
What are you in bondage to today? What keeps you from entering true worship? Today, ask God to show you the areas of bondage that you are living in so that you may worship Him.

God showed me that this researching, reading and trying to figure things out on my own was keeping me in bondage. It was keeping me from truly worshipping Him. I immediately asked for forgiveness and thanked Him for His never ending patience with me. The rest of the day was great. I worked on gifts for all the girls having babies at work. Carl and I went out to Sea World and walked around and looked at all the beautiful flowers. (How do the theme parks get their flowers to always look like spring, when ours are a perfect picture of winter in Florida, wilted and brown?) Just another question I have :) After Sea World we enjoyed a nice dinner together and came home and fell asleep in our chairs. Are we getting old? I don't know, but I do know I wouldn't choose any other man to grow old together with.