Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Where is God found?

Since the second generation from creation, men have needed to call on the name of the Lord (Genesis 4:26). Since then we've needed to pursue him to find him. "God's presence is everywhere, but why can I not find him, and stand in his presence?" Because our paths wandered away from him. Our hearts turned away from worshiping a God who is creator, warrior, lover, and many other attributes. Our hearts turned to worshiping ourselves and seeking to satisfy our own desires.

We became so consumed with ourselves that God grieved even making us. He flooded the earth, wiping the slate clean, save for a few who followed his heart (Genesis 6-9). Men began to multiply again and we chose to build a tower to place ourselves in the heavens as high as God (Genesis 11:1-9), the desire that caused the first rebellion with Satan when he chose to rebel as God's holy angel (Isaiah 14:12-15).

Finding God requires setting aside ourselves.

"Why have we fasted, they say, and you have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you have not noticed?" Isaiah 58:3

Isaiah goes on to explain the words of the Lord. The people fast and seek God, but they turn on themselves. They seek him for their own means. Fasting is more than a discipline of setting something aside to spend time with God. Fasting is setting aside self, of placing God and his heart over anything else in our lives.

Isaiah 58 outlines that true fasting is caring for people the way God cares. Enough to take action. People like to remain ignorant of the downtrodden. I don't believe this is out of greed so much as it is to avoid the uncomfortableness of facing those less fortunate and being faced with a choice to change our agendas, to give up something so that others might have.

Truly finding God requires setting aside self. The friends I think of who are more filled with God's presence are those who have committed themselves to those less fortunate. Who allowed God to change their entire lives, their dreams, their careers, who follow Christ when he walks down a back alley, into the homeless shelters, to other countries where only bottled water is drinkable, electricity a rare commodity.

God is on the move, but if we set out to carry everything we currently own with us, continue to have our desires filled, well there's only so many places a Uhaul can go. God requires us to travel more lightly, promising to reward our hearts in due time if we will wait upon him.

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