Friday, June 20, 2014

weakness. promises. power.

"the enemy of your heart doesn't have to actually defeat you, he just has to convince you he already has." 

the enemy of your heart.  
when i first read this quote i was kind of disheartened
it reveals my weakness.
the enemy has so much pull on my heart that he doesn't actually have to win me over. he just has to whisper in my ear. 
and in me abiding in those whispers i am giving him--without a fight--first place over my heart and mind. 

i have felt this happening in my heart and mind quite often. and i was just sitting in those thoughts. sitting. and the sitting made me anxious. over and over satan would bring past mistakes and regrets to my mind and made me believe i am unworthy
running for me is a good release. i can think about things or not think about things. i can just run. i was running one night after work this week and saw a rainbow. so i stopped, took a picture, and kept running. i wanted to post the picture on instagram but i didn't know what to say about it. "look a rainbow!" isn't very intriguing. so while i was thinking of something clever to say, i was thinking about this rainbow. the story of noah came into my mind [ not by accident i am sure ]. 

noah: a man who lived for 950 years [ genesis 9:29 ].
can you even begin to imagine what changes you would see in people and your community in 950 years? 
the Word of The Lord says noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. and that he walked with God. God was upset at the wickedness of the people on the earth and he planned to wipe them out. all but noah and his family. 

genesis 6:18 says, "But I will establish my covenant with you..." 
that's pretty impressive. 
so God tells noah to build an ark. he gives him specifics instructions like how high and wide to make it. to bring two of every animal. to bring all different kinds of good. and his family. 

genesis 6:22 says, "noah did this; he did all that God commanded him."

not some. but all that God commanded him. could someone say that about me? that i did all that God commanded of me? [ just something to think about. ] 

but he went. he and his family and all the animals. 
and rained. for forty days.

[ now, i live in southeast alaska. let me tell you: it rains ALL the time. some people like and some people don't. i am sure that has had to have been a time where it rained for forty days straight in southeast alaska. that wouldn't bother me. what would bother me? being on a boat for forty days. forty. days. i ride a boat to work, due to the fact that i work on an island, four days a week and twice a day. and that nearly does me in. so forty days? no thanks. ] 

if i was noah [ praise the Lord i'm not ] around day lets say day two i would probably start complaining [ because that's what i do ]. did noah complain? i don't know. did he ask God why? maybe, but he already knew why. because God was sad at the wickedness.

chapter 8 of genesis starts by saying "God remembered noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark." 1.) i think it is important to recognize that God remembered noah 2.) i think it is important to recognize that God remembered the creatures he created [ another something interesting to think about ].

he remembered them. noah built an alter to the Lord. and God made a promise:
"'i establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the whole earth.' and God said, 'this is the sign of the covenant that i make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: i have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. when i bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, i will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh....when the bow is in the clouds, i will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature..."

i bet noah had whispers. the enemy of his heart whispered. when he was building the ark, when he was loading the ark, and when he was in the ark. i am sure the enemy whispered. maybe the whispers were from people and maybe they were in his heart but i am sure they were there. but noah was faithful, because the Lord was establishing an everlasting covenant with him.  

we go through situations daily when those whispers are in our heads and hearts. maybe they are from people and maybe they are just inside us. maybe we fall into the trap of resting in those whispers but we are not defined by the whispers we hear. we are defined by the One who cares enough to build covenants and set beautiful reminders. even though my mind is weak, i am made strong by the perfect power of the One who saves [ 2 corinthians 12:9 ]. 
now, when i read this quote i can rejoice knowing that we are strong and have the power to overcome whispers. 

rejoice in that fact today!

until next time,