For The Beloved

02/07/2010 § 2 Comments

Beloved,
So, I’m on the social networking site Facebook and I start seeing all of these displays of the American flag and status updates talking about patriotism and prayers asking God to bless America on the anniversary of the founding of this nation and I start smiling. I consider myself to be patriotic. I support our military. I am grateful for the Lord’s providential hand on the history of the country that I call home. I enjoy spending time with family, eating great food and I really like fireworks too. (Thank you China!) Then I start thinking, which turns into contemplating which turns into deep meditation (which for me has been turning into a normal pattern for my incessant thought life).

I believe I have come up with a sort of work in progress thought that summarizes my pondering. Here goes:

“*Patriotism is great, but forgiveness in Jesus Christ and being right with God is greater.”
 
What do you think? I hope you noticed I put an asterisk by the word ‘patriotism’ because I feel this statement is very versatile and you can insert just about any ‘ism’ or idea or popular thought/lifestyle/career/etc into this word equation and it would still hold its value. Such as: conservatism, soccer, work, toys, politics, religion, having a family, being a parent, knowing all the words to a favorite song or movie, being wealthy, etc. You get the picture right?

Nothing, not one thing, compares to and should draw our undying, devoted ‘allegiance’ more than knowing and loving our Savior and making Him the object of our efforts and affections. Anything other than complete surrender and unwavering worship of Christ is a slippery slope toward idolatry. Idolatry separates us from God and grieves His heart. He is a jealous God and wants all of us, every last part for Himself. Our Beloved Bridegroom does not want to share His Precious Bride and He wants His Bride to have that very same steadfast devotion toward Him.

We need to keep our hearts in check brothers and sisters. I am guilty as charged. Knowing this, I run to the cross and throw myself at the mercy of my loving and gracious Savior. I agree with His assessment of my sin. He washes me with His cleansing blood and I am restored to intimate fellowship with Him. All is well. I press on.
 “…Thou art my portion, O LORD: I have said that I would keep thy words. I intreated thy favour with my whole heart: be merciful unto me according to thy word.
 I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy testimonies.
 I made haste, and delayed not to keep thy commandments.
 The bands of the wicked have robbed me: but I have not forgotten thy law.
 At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee because of thy righteous judgments.
 I am a companion of all them that fear thee, and of them that keep thy precepts.
 The earth, O LORD, is full of thy mercy: teach me thy statutes…”

~Psalm 119 (57-64)


Enjoying the holiday but enjoying Christ more,
Traci
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