August 16, 2010

Today, Tomorrow and Forever

"Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever." ~Hebrews 13:8 KJV

My Lord is always the same, isn't that wonderful news?! We, on the other hand, change our ways, our attitudes, and our manners almost constantly. It is difficult to find a steadfast person these days. I love this word, steadfast; and I use it to describe myself to the Lord. I ask Him to create within me the desire to be steadfast, to be faithful, to remain in solidarity to Him and His plans. I think God wants His people to be this way, and His Spirit works hard within us to create this God-like characteristic. The problem is that our world and all that is around us is the opposite -- nothing is stationary, nothing is continuous, nothing stays the same -- not even for a moment. The dictionary defines steadfast as "unwavering, as resolution, faith, adherence, etc." The opposite being "capricious, variable."

Some Bible verses that teach on steadfast include (ESV):

"My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody!" ~Psalm 57:7

"A Song. A Psalm of David. My heart is steadfast, O God! I will sing and make melody with all my being!" ~Psalm 108:1

"You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you." ~Isaiah 26:3

"Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain." ~1 Corinthians 15:58

"We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain,..." ~Hebrews 6:9

Do you see a pattern here? According to God, we are to be steadfast in our ways, we are to remain steadfast in our beliefs and in our attitudes and mindset. In doing so, we become fixed upon God's purposes, God's plans -- and not just His plans for the redemption of mankind, but His personal plans for our lives. Steadfastness, therefore, is to be highly desired, to be pursued, and to be practiced.

Our Lord was steadfast here on earth, and He is steadfast now. He has remained faithful and true to His word. In fact, in Revelation 19:11, John says this:

"Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war."

Jesus Christ is described in Heaven as being Faithful and True -- this is the Name given to Him. We are also called to be like Him, and that means that our witness is to be the same: we are to be faithful to the One who called us, and remain true (devoted) to Him in all things.

As I ponder this thought today, I am encouraged in my being. You see, whenever I remain steadfast and true to the Lord, my life seems to be filled with His Spirit and I am contented, I am at peace. Whenever I doubt or waver in my belief of something, then I feel uneasy and out of sorts. I feel like I am "off the mark" so to speak. The key for me, at the least the key for contentment, is to abide in Him, and remain faithful and true to the One who called me to serve Him and Glorify His Name. When I do what I have been called to do, then my life seems to make sense, and it all fits into its proper place and position.

I have struggled lately, struggled to understand why certain things are happening and why other things seem to be far off and distant. I have felt alone, felt uncertain, and felt so out of sorts. I have experienced some internal turmoil as well as external pressure, and frankly, I have felt off for a while now. The more I struggle, the more I try and figure it out, the more it seems to slip from my grasp. I am reminded of Carrie Fisher's words to Lord Tarkin in the original Star Wars movie:

"The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin, the more star systems will slip through your fingers."

It is the same way with me. The more I tighten my grip on anything, the more it seems like the thing I desire slips through my fingers. Oh, that it wouldn't be so; but it is.

God is Gracious to provide help when I need it most, and He reminds me via His Powerful and Blessed Spirit, that I must abide in Him, I must remain steadfast in Him -- in His Life, in His Grace, in His Power, and in His Presence -- to achieve anything of eternal value. Sure, you can accomplish much in this life through your own efforts, but the Word says that it will not stand the test of fire.

"Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw—each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done." ~1 Corinthians 3:12-13 ESV

My work, therefore, will be tested by fire and what remains is what I will stand for in His Presence. My desire is for my work to come through this test and remain as "gold, silver, and precious stones;" and not be consumed by God's Holy Fire.

Dearest Lord Jesus,

It is in your Name that I pray this day. You know my heart, my mind, and my soul; and, you know that I love you deeply. I am wholly devoted to you, seeking your Face continually, and relying upon you for my every need. Come to me today, rescue me from the pit of despair, and enable me to see your will come to pass in my life. I long to create works that will survive your Holy test of fire, and I am ready and willing to do your work -- unto your Name and for your Glory. Annoit me this day with the power to do your will, to remain steadfast in my calling, and to keep on being faithful -- just as you are Faithful to me. May you be praised today, tomorrow and forever more. Amen, so be it, thy will be done. Selah! (Pause, and calmly think about it.)

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