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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

How Do I Remain Faithful to My Lord?

I have seen many people who started a day without any faith in the Lord and ended the day with a full blown faith. I have never seen someone begin a day totally committed to the Lord and end it with no faith. Faith may come like a tidal wave but it leaves like a slow drizzle. This is why we must guard our hearts from the erosion of our faith.

Solomon had great faith. He built God's Temple. It was magnificent. He asked for wisdom rather than riches or power and God blessed him. No one would have predicted who Solomon would be at the end of his life. His prayer for the Temple represents a man committed to his Lord without reserve. The end of his life represents an old an who doesn't know right from wrong. How did this happen?

Solomon disobeyed the Lord by importing horses from Egypt. It seems like a small thing. God had said that His people should not do this in Deuteronomy 17:17. I am sure Egypt had the best horses. Solomon only had the best of everything. I am sure that it made sense to import these horses. Afterall, this has to make his army more powerful. I am also sure that you don't do what God tells you not to do.

It is much harder to evict a person than to keep him on the outside. Your heart is much easier to possess when any part of it unfaithful. All that Satan needed was a foothold and he could move where he wanted. The demons came in at will as soon as the door was unguarded. His disobedience to the Lord in this ostensibly small area allowed him to marry the many foreign women who would turn his heart away from the Lord.

Please realize this. Satan especially wants those who can make tremendous differences for the sake of their Lord. He leaves many people alone. He will be after you if you are one of these people. He will want to bring you down. He will do so by tempting you to compromise on something that seems harmless. That is why we must guard our hearts so diligently. We won't see what we have done as so bad until we have gotten very far away from the Lord. Satan will have done more than neutralize us. He will have enlisted us in his army.

Now the really amazing thing is that perfection is just another way of getting far away from the Lord. Once we have focused on perfection we have taken our focus off the Lord. Peter took his eyes off of Jesus when he attempted to walk on the water. He sunk. He would have sunk just as quickly if he concentrated on walking on the water rather than keeping his eyes on Jesus. Perfection is not the answer.

The questions we must ask are: Where am I in my relationship with the Lord? Am I moving closer to Him or farther away? Am I completely focused on Him? Where am I failing? Have I turned everything over to Him? Have I confessed? Am I really His today? It is much easier to make slight corrections each day.

Do you have someone to whom you are accountible? A speaker once told a group that he monitors his son's internet surfing. I asked if his son could also see his. He responded emphatically that he didn't need to be accountible to a teenager. Why act like this? Shouldn't a man be able to show his son that he is just as faithful? Or is this a case of "do like I say rather than what I do?" If I can hold the deacons in my church accountible, shouldn't they be able to hold me accountible? Why should it ever be a one-way street?

This is why you should be intimately involved in church. You should have people close enough to you that they can see where you are with the Lord. They should love you enough to confront you when you are out of line. They should also submit themselves to your scrutiny. This is not merely church attendance but church intimacy. This is what fellowship is truly designed for.

No one is perfect. These words have often been said to excuse a fault. However, these words should be used to help us hold each other up.

Guard your heart.

Proverbs 4:23 (NIV)
23 Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.

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