Chosen, Now What?
Do you love surprises as much as I do? I think that Jesus is an expert on that since every day He does something different in my life. A little over a year ago, Jesus introduced Himself to me, a 23-year-old journalist with a desire to learn who was working on a recording set surrounded by lights, microphones, and people with enormous hearts, not only for their work but for their work for Jesus. My job title could have been “God’s production assistant.”
God can also do something different or surprising in your job or church ministry—wherever He has chosen to place you. God chose us and gave us a name and a life for His service. He sits down and takes control he describes in the prophecy about Ethiopia.
This is what the LORD says to me: “I will remain quiet and will look on from my dwelling place, like shimmering heat in the sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest” (Isaiah 18:4 NIV).
Imagine Someone with His gaze fixed on our day-to-day life. Sometimes it seems strange, although it is beautiful to know that there is such a great covering over us. And yet, our role simply begins when we first open our eyes to Him. As with an edited piece of video, opening our eyes is only the first scene, followed by the acts that God wants to perform in our lives.
As human beings we carry fears and sometimes those fears are magnified when we forget who walks in front of us. If you still don’t know your purpose, I recommend that you start by accepting that you are chosen by God, then abandon your fears, and start the movie of your own life.
In Isaiah, the people of Egypt were warned that they would be struck down and their strength would be exhausted, but when they cried out to God, He would be there to defend them. The same thing happens when you or I give in to fear.
It will be a sign and witness to the LORD Almighty in the land of Egypt. When they cry out to the LORD because of their oppressors, he will send them a savior and defender, and he will rescue them (Isaiah 19:20).
The world offers us temptations and there are hundreds of voices around waiting for us to deviate from our divine purpose. Perhaps thoughts like, I can’t, I’m not qualified, I’m too young, or I’m too old are part of the fears that can knock on your door but recognizing that God walks hand in hand with you is the key to defeating doubts and overcoming fears.
Now, your job is to create the rest of the scenes that God planned for your life. Ask Him to help you do that today. He chose you; now what? He will watch over you to fulfill the beautiful purpose He has for your life. Know with confidence that He walks before you and will be a shield against any fear.
Psalms 27:1, 4 1The LORD is my light and my salvation– whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life– of whom shall I be afraid?
4One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.
David declared the LORD to be his light and his salvation. It was the presence of the LORD in his life that enabled him to see things as they really were, that kept him from stumbling in the darkness. It was the presence of the LORD in his life that saved him out of all his difficulties. The LORD was his salvation. He didn’t lean on self to understand or to get him out of danger. He recognized that his help came from the LORD.
He goes on to say that men cannot make him afraid. If God is sovereign, and He has become my light and my salvation, what can man do to me? With the LORD as his stronghold, he always knew where to run for safety. Do you turn to God first in all your fears and concerns? Is He your light and salvation, the stronghold of your life? Without that, men will cause you to fear. Situations will overwhelm you. With that assurance, you will always know that the will of the God who loves you will be done. He will see you through anything men or demons can dish out.
And if you are called home, you will be in His presence forever. What is the worst man can do -kill me? Then I will end up where I long to be, gazing upon the beauty of the LORD and seeking Him in His heavenly dwelling place. David may have been referring to the tabernacle, but I think his mind moved from the earthly to the reality in heaven. His great desire was to spend eternity gazing upon God. Somewhere in those years of shepherding or training under Saul, he must have had a vision of the beauty of God. That became the one thing his soul sought after. We need a vision like that so that He becomes our singular focus. Then, if illness strikes, or men threaten, like the Apostle Paul, we can say, “To die is gain” (Philippians 1:21).
Consider: Make the LORD your singular focus.
Streams in the Desert – October 3
- 20223 Oct
And after the earthquake a fire; and after the fire a sound of gentle stillness” (1 Kings 19:12, RV margin.)
A soul, who made rapid progress in her understanding of the Lord, was once asked the secret of her easy advancement. She replied tersely, “Mind the checks.”
And the reason that many of us do not know and better understand Him is, we do not give heed to His gentle checks, His delicate restraints and constraints. His is a still, small voice. A still voice can hardly be heard. It must be felt. A steady, gentle pressure upon the heart and mind like the touch of a morning zephyr to your face. A small voice, quietly, almost timidly spoken in your heart, but if heeded growing noiselessly clearer to your inner ear.
His voice is for the ear of love, and love is intent upon hearing even faintest whispers. There comes a time also when love ceases to speak if not responded to, or believed in. He is love, and if you would know Him and His voice, give constant ear to His gentle touches. In conversation, when about to utter some word, give heed to that gentle voice, mind the check and refrain from speech.
When about to pursue some course that seems all clear and right and there comes quietly to your spirit a suggestion that has in it the force almost of a conviction, give heed, even if changed plans seem highest folly from standpoint of human wisdom.
Learn also to wait on God for the unfolding of His will. Let God form your plans about everything in your mind and heart and then let Him execute them. Do not possess any wisdom of your own. For many times His execution will seem so contradictory to the plan He gave. He will seem to work against Himself. Simply listen, obey and trust God even when it seems highest folly so to do. He will in the end make “all things work together,” but so many times in the first appearance of the outworking of His plans,
“In His own world He is content
To play a losing game.”
So if you would know His voice, never consider results or possible effects. Obey even when He asks you to move in the dark. He Himself will be gloriously light in you. And there will spring up rapidly in your heart an acquaintanceship and a fellowship with God which will be overpowering in itself to hold you and Him together, even in severest testings and under most terrible pressures.
–Way of Faith
The Holiness of God
God is perfectly just and merciful.
The scene in today’s passage gives us a glimpse of a holy God who is worthy of mankind’s worship. He’s perfectly pure in His thoughts, motives, choices, and actions, and His holiness is also revealed in His separateness from all evil and transgression. Since God cannot tolerate or ignore sin, every wrong must be punished—with the penalty paid either by the offender or by an adequate substitute. And Jesus Christ is the fully sufficient substitute who paid what every one of us owed. What’s more, He’s the only one who can reconcile sinful mankind to God.
The Son of God took on human flesh and lived a sinless life. Then, as 1 Peter 2:24 (NIV) tells us, Jesus “bore our sins in his body on the cross” to pay the penalty of divine wrath. His resurrection is the proof that the sacrifice was acceptable to His heavenly Father. All who trust in Christ as their substitute are reconciled to God, but those who reject the Savior must themselves bear God’s wrath for their sin.
If we’ll acknowledge our unworthiness, confess our sins, and trust in Christ and His sacrifice on our behalf, our sins will be forgiven. The Judge of all humanity declares us not guilty. What’s more, He also credits us with Christ’s righteousness. And someday we’ll join the saints in heaven praising our gracious, holy God.