Be still and know that I am God – Psalm 46:10

This passage brings great comfort to God’s children. Sometimes in the business of our lives it is good to sit and reflect on this passage and what it means to us personally. It is so easy to become busy with work, school, family, and friends that we forget about God or don’t think of Him as often as we should. Those earthly things become big and important to us, and God becomes smaller and less important. Then God gives us a passage like this. Be still. Stop what you are doing. Stop thinking about earthly things, earthly pleasures, worries, or cares. And know that I am God! God gave. He sends us everything in our lives, and we can’t take credit for any of it. If it’s money, He gave it. If it’s a job loss, He took that. He orders our lives and performs His will for our good. And in everything, He is good, and He is God. Never can we question the wisdom of our God in giving or in taking. Never can we think that we are wiser or that if things had gone a different way it would have been better. God knows what we need, and He gives just that. So be still. Ponder the greatness of our God. Think of His love for you and for me! And know that He will remain our God.

LK

Living on an Earth Where the Clock Keeps Ticking

Time is one of the earth’s most precious resources. It slips through our fingers like sand, and once it’s spent we cannot snatch it up again. Similar to the wind, it comes and goes; we have to enjoy it in the present, because it won’t stop for us.

Time is one of our greatest gifts. We may have any sort of thing accumulated–money, “toys”, great friends, or whatever we may–but without the time in which to use or enjoy it, we might just as well do without.

This concept seems to be fully grasped by the world around us. People look for health that they might have greater longevity on this world. Technology is being developed increasingly faster and more efficient, in order to keep up with the fast pace of society. Even the music and slang of the younger generations bear evidence. How many of you, for instance, have not heard the phrase ‘YOLO?’ “We only live once,” says the world. “We only have the time of one life to do and experience everything that we want to do, so we better do it now.”

We live in a world that is servile to the restrictions of time, because God has made it so. The Psalmist exclaims this very idea in Psalm 39:4 and 5 where we read, “LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is: that I may know how frail I am. Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.” God has, in His supreme power and providence, numbered our days.

Because time is so precious, how we spend our time too is undeniably important. God has only given us so much time on this earth. As faithful stewards and servants we cannot let that go to waste! Unlike the world we aren’t to try and fit all the pleasures and wants of the world in, but rather to work to use every moment (yes, EVERY moment!) of every single day of our lives to glorify our Lord and Savior (Gal. 5:13-26; I Cor. 10:31; Matt. 16:25; Matt. 6:33).

The clocks aren’t stopping. Young people and young adults, watch your time!

ADV

Contentment “at home in the body”

We are on this earth. That is a fact. We will be here until the Lord calls us home. We long for our heavenly home, but for right now we are “at home in the body” (2 Corinthians 5:6). We must be content with this. The Holy Spirit through the witness of Paul gives excellent insight into this. “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour: yet what I shall choose I wot not. For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better: Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you” (Philippians 1:21-24).   Paul is in a dilemma here, “in a strait betwixt two”. He longs for his eternal home, but he realizes that the Lord has put him in a place that is “needful” for the saints. If he had the choice between the two, he wouldn’t be able to choose one over the other. Reading through Paul’s epistles you will notice that his eyes are fixed on heaven, but he realizes the need to remain and has much of value to say addressing the practical life of the church.

Notice the preceding context of the passage describing Paul’s dilemma: “…Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death” (v. 20). This is also brought out in 2 Corinthians 5:8,9: “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.” Christ must be glorified in all that we do here on this ball of dirt. We may and must long for our eternal home, but we must remember that we have a calling here in the flesh, whatever it may be. In this calling we must be content.

Contentment while we are “at home in the body” does not mean immersing ourselves in the pleasures this world has to offer. Christ instructs us in Luke 21:34: “And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting [overindulgence of food], and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.” We must not deceive ourselves into thinking that we can balance a carnal life and a holy life. There is no such thing as a “carnal Christian,” as many today wish to think. “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils” (1 Cor. 10:21). In Philippians 3:18–19 Paul describes those with whom we must neither be walking, nor emulating: “(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)” When you read this passage, think of the sinful entertainment the world so eagerly offers us. It is a stinking cesspool of wickedness boiling and frothing with the lust of the flesh, the pride of man, desecration of the Sabbath day and the defamation of God’s holy name. When we watch men and women act in contempt of every single command of God, we are glorying with them in their shame and are no better than they.

We must not content ourselves with “minding” the pleasures of this world. We must content ourselves in our hope for heaven and therefore bring glory to God’s name as we strive to put off the old man and put on the new man and be renewed in the spirit of our mind (Ephesians 4:22-24). God has placed us in our bodies here on this earth to serve him in whatever situation we are in and we are to be content with this.

RK