Stay in the Stillness of His Presence:
"Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!" (Psalms 46:10)
Only a wondrous and mighty God can speak serenity into the most disrupted of circumstances. Only the God of miraculous mercy can make still a world of worry with just one little taste of His sweet Presence of perfect peace. Perfect... Peace...
Lay it down, O my soul, lay down the fear. Let go, my wearied soul, let go of all the trailing terrors in your head. Those ropes only lead you down the road of ravage. Don't allow the enemy to grip you in his gruelling fear tactics; don't allow His lies to take up residence in your mind.
Can't you see? Your adversary has already used these tired old temptations on you before. This is no different. This weed of worry and destruction is rooted the same as the ones of old, enemy territory of death-centred desire.
"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy." (John 10:10)
And the blinders come crashing down... Eyes are opened, God's Truth is spoken: your enemy wants to ruin, ruin, ruin. He's intimidated. He wants the joy I offer to you alone, My child. He is a jealous beast, jealous of all the goodness I plant inside your very own heart. He is angry, angry because I've given you a sure-fire promise of eternal, abundant life which he has no place in enjoying. He's perplexed and bitter over the unshakable truth that I am your Good Shepherd, and I am the One who protects you, leads you, comforts you, and holds you close.
There's more to John 10:10 than just the enemy's malicious motives...
"I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)
"The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)." (John 10:10 AMP)
Take hold of His promises! He's fought the ultimate battle for us, and guess what? He won the most triumphant victory of all time!
I was thinking just today how much of an incredible gift and glorious reality it is to be counted as a child of God. When I dwell on how much He intimately loves and desires us, I just get overwhelmed with peace and true, unsinkable joy. Don't let the enemy rob you of that joy. Instead, let the Holy Spirit into the garden of your heart so He can tend to that divinely lovely tree of life-giving joy.
Think about this. The most spectacular, world changing, destiny determining, internationally renowned, and hope securing event that has ever taken place in all of history? Jesus. Immanuel. God coming to be... Where? With us! Right here in the thick of our neediness. He came to us. In all of our need, He came to redeem.
Then what? What completed that miraculous, all-surpassing splendour of God's mission named Jesus? His atoning crucifixion and His heroically majestic resurrection.
Why did God plan all this? Why did Jesus go through with all the hatred, all the ridiculing disdain, and humiliating mockery? All for love. God's love for us is pure and unconditional. The foundation of His greatest feat of all eternity? Love.
No war waged has ever accomplished or settled what was purchased and promised there on that Cross and in that grave. No ruler holds the powerful authority which now belongs to our Saviour and King, Jesus Christ. His mercy mission is what set all things right.
And what was on His mind as He hung on that Cross? We were. He paid the price with nail-pierced hands, the hands that are now stretched out to us, yearning to hold us and care for our every concern. Will you say yes, yes to this infallible, undeniably sovereign and divinely potent Love force named Immanuel? He died so that you might live, and live life in perfect peace and unsurpassable, ever-increasing ecstasy.
His nail-scarred hands want to put all the fragments of your brokenness together into a beautiful soul-masterpiece.
And what do we say to a Love so purely bright and beautiful as this?
"Moses spoke to the people: “Don’t be afraid. Stand firm and watch GOD do his work of salvation for you today. Take a good look at the Egyptians today for you’re never going to see them again." (Exodus 14:13 MSG)
What is it that's browbeating you today? For Moses and the Israelites, the Egyptians hot on their tail appeared to be an unavoidable detriment. But as always, God orchestrated an impeccable deliverance that still testifies to His saving grace.
"The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace and remain at rest." (Exodus 14:14)
It's amazing what God can accomplish for our seemingly hopeless situations and oh so desperate souls when we release the reigns into His mightily capable hands.
Would you join me this day my friends? As we ring in this brand new year, may we not forget that the One who was, who is, and who is to come is still working marvellous miracles for our own good and His great glory all around us. This new year presents us all with a choice. We can either make tired old resolutions and tediously toil ourselves into the ground in an attempt to accomplish them, or we can lift up all the passionate dreams which crash so longingly on the shores of our soul to our Mighty God. After all, He is the One who planted them inside our hearts in the first place. Rather than becoming burnt out by February, His promises offer us a prosperous peace: rest in His abundance.
He will provide. He will make a way, even where there appears to be no hope. He has quite a history of doing just that. In this new year, let us live out trust and true rest. Be still, and allow God's ocean of mercy to come rushing over your soul and flooding into your every place of need. Amen.
-The Introverted Evangelist