Friday, April 23, 2010

Revere His Name

You shall not misuse the name of the Lord, you God,

for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who

misuses His name. Exodus 20:7 (NIV)

Revere, to regard with deep respect, love, and awe; venerate. (Webster’s New World Dictionary.)

Do we sometimes become flippant with God’s name? We hear people speak His name casually, in an effort to impress others, or even in anger.

The Hebrew people didn’t use a name for God. When they wrote about Him they used the designation *YHWY* (pronounced Yah Way) but they never spoke His actual name. This practice stemmed from their respect for their creator.

Our Drama Ministry at church presented a skit depicting three situations where people misuse God’s name. The head of the ministry asked me to take the concept from another member’s script and create these four scenes. I struggled through the inputting of the situations. Some of the actors helped me get the scenes chosen but the typing of the script was difficult. I planned to place a disclaimer at the beginning. My reason for this was I didn’t want people to think we disrespected God.

This has been a time of learning and growth for us all. We all have had to learn how to speak God’s name. The Hebrew people spoke their name for God as a whisper, as a sign of respect. Maybe we can learn to do the same

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Trust in His Name

Some trust in chariots and some in horses,

but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.

Psalm 20:7 (NIV)

We hear a lot about trust in these times. Usually we hear of someone letting another person or group down. When we have certain issues come to light, we get all defensive and react harshly. Then sometimes we regret what we have verbalized.

The issue as Christians is, who do we trust? We see people who put forth a lot of time, money and effort in things that, in the scheme of things, seem silly. Sometimes what we see people pouring out a lot of work to the point that what they do and the object they work toward becomes their god.

The scripture above tells us that people trusting in possessions is not a new thing. It’s a human frailty. Cars have need of gasoline, and new plug wires, or the tires have to be rotated or replaced. Yes, even these possessions require looking after. They are not always going to be in topnotch shape. They do let us down.

A former pastor told us that Christian ministry is hard. People will let us down, we might let others down. These things happen because of humanity.

But, God doesn’t let us down. He may not answer our prayers as we want but He does that because He believes 1.) We aren’t ready for what we ask, or 2.) He has something better in mind for us or for whom we intercede, 3.) He has some lesson we have to learn before He can allow our request to be answered.

We learn to trust Jesus and the name of God when we go through the valleys of life. God teaches us to exercise our faith in Him each time He works out an issue we may have.

This issue of trust reminds me of the hymn, Trust and Obey.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Abide In Him

“If you remain in me and my words remain in

You, ask whatever you wish and it will be given you.”

(John 15:7 NIV)

Jesus tells us we can ask things of Him in several places throughout the Gospels. One of my favorite passages is the one above. In the King James Version, the word “abide” appears for the verb “remain”. I find comfort in both words.

When our son was young, I worked in another city. I had about an hour trip home in the evenings. Some nights, I had a meeting to attend. When I arrived home at 5:00, I had to pick him up from the sitter’s. Do something about suppereither cook or drive through a restaurant and leave home to get to either prayer meeting, women’s missionary meeting, or a committee meeting for a board I sat on. Looking back, I felt as if I was ‘touching base’ when I came through the front door and quickly left again.

Sometimes, we approach God in the same way. We mentally run up to His throne and say a few words and turn around and run onto the next item on our agenda. He wants us to spend time in our places of prayer. The time we spend with the Father energizes us, strengthens us for what lies ahead, and gives us peace about the issues of our lives

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...