Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Don't Forget Who You Are!

Now therefore, if you will indeed hear my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is mine; and you shall be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.[1]

 We are so used to hearing the message of Grace preached fully and completely that it may be difficult to hear Yahweh God putting conditions on how we come to be treasured and holy. The “if” statement bothers us tremendously. However, if you would, take a moment to look at it with me.

 What is it that God is asking of the Israelites? The “hear my voice” statement carries a meaning beyond just being able to replicate a message that has entered our ear canal. Yes, this one does carry the double sense of obedience (hear & keep).

 What do we get in return? God is a poor negotiator. Our gift for listening to his pleas to turn from death and accept life is to get exactly what he promises and more! You will be treasured among all people. You will be a kingdom of priests. You will be declared holy. We always get far more than God asks us to give.

 We are the wayward child bent on self-destruction. Our Heavenly Father pleads with us to stop killing ourselves one piece at a time. He wants to restore us to life and health and wholeness, but he cannot do it when we stuff our fingers in our ears as soon as we hear his invitation.

 “Listen to me!” God pleads with you and me. So often, we run the other way, our hands over our ears blabbering nonsense syllables. All the time we are running away from and denying our treasured status.

 The good news is that God runs really fast, faster than you or ever can. He catches us, passes us, and puts himself directly in our path, face at our level and repeats the message louder.

We dodge him! The good news is that God is persistent. He will try again. Fortunately, so will he. In fact, I would say that God will even station himself ahead of our flight path and stick out his foot to trip us, waiting for us to take our hands away from our ears to stop our fall so he can repeat his message to us again. He will never give up. Listen to him and be blessed.

Pastor Craig

[1] Exodus 19: 5ff