“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6)
In these days of distress among nations and turmoil everywhere I find myself being so thankful that I am a Christian and have put my faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is hard for me to imagine living without my faith in this world. We have abandoned many of the values and the laws of our lands which were based on the Bible and God’s laws. We may not have always followed them completely, but they were the standards by which we lived our lives. We were at least trying to live the way of God. This is not so today and the standards by which people largely live are by the way of the world. We can see where this is leading us. More violence, drug and alcohol abuse, divorce, anger, abuse of children, teenage suicide increases, etc. The way of the world does not make us feel safe and secure. The way to feel safe and secure is to live the way of God. He is our lifeline. I was walking my dog this morning and thinking about what I would write in this article and the song “Leaning On The Everlasting Arms” came to my mind. The words seem to really fit for us today. Here is the first verse of the song:
What a fellowship, what a joy divine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
Safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
When we are young, we often feel we have to go along with the worldly ways and for the most part in our Israel lands we have been relatively safe doing this but, in today’s world, these values and customs can lead us astray and cause us great harm. Over time most of us realize this and we have gone back to our Heavenly Father and His saving grace and through this have found comfort and healing. It does not mean that we do not have problems and tribulations but through our walk with the Lord we realize that He is always there to forgive us and protect us and guide us. “Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go. O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea:”(Isa. 48:17-18) Our burdens become so much easier when we have our loving Father in Heaven watching over us and knowing that our Saviour is always there to help us. When this becomes a reality in our lives it gives us such peace. It does not mean of course that we don’t worry or fret or get upset about things but we can give these things to the Lord in prayer, knowing that He will help us through whatever it is that is upsetting us and making us anxious. He is always there. I said this to a dear older lady friend of mine, and she said, “Oh I’m sure God has more important things to do than listen to us”, but that is not true. When we are His and we pray with the right heart, a heart that is given to God, He definitely listens and helps us. It may not always be the way we think it should be, but in the end we realize how He helped us. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.” (Isa. 55:8).
I guess the challenge we have today is to live in the world but not of the world. There are many good things in the world and many good people in the world. We just have to make sure that the worldly things and the worldly people do not lead us astray. What has the world really got to offer us anyway? Their values and way of life are temporary and, in the end, unfulfilling. God and His way offer us comfort and immense joy and peace, the peace that passes understanding to the rest of the world. Following Him and His way also offers us eternal life. The worldly way is blindly searching for this gift that only God can give us. We are truly blessed who have the Lord in our lives. In James 5 there is a dire warning to the worldly and a warning to the righteous to be patient. “Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you. Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.” (James 5:1-11)
“And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” (1Pet. 3:13-15)