Draw Near

Are you staying warm on this cold day in January?  Is the cold able to seep through your doors and windows only?  Or, is the cold a matter of your heart?  I must admit at times the cold is as much in my heart as it is outside.  Negativity, a critical spirit, and a broken and contrite heart, I bring before our Father, and in Psalm 51:17, His Words say, "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise."  

Oh, what grace He gives to the very least, me, even me, He gives grace.  What promises we have in His Word to encourage us, to uphold us, and to continue on for Him.  His Word holds the promises, the commands; everything we need to know are in His Word, and His Word does not change.  It has not changed from the beginning of time until now, we have changed; we change when we know what's best, when we know the answers, when we fail to listen.  Yes, if only we would continually look to His Word. 

                      "Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need."  Heb. 4:1

Elyse Fitzpatrick in Idols of the Heart: Learning to Long for God Alone, says, The worship of idols is the reason we're discontented, and it's why we disobey God.  Idolatry lies at the heart of every besetting sin we struggle with.  
Honoring God means that the Lord's pleasure and glory come first.  
Trusting God means having confidence in Him and obeying His commands, no matter what the cost."

Do we obey no matter the cost?  Do I obey no matter the cost?  When I read His Words, and know what He says, can I obey when the culture around me says the opposite?  Does it mean I stand alone?  Sometimes, yes.  Does our family stand alone?  Sometimes, yes.  Do we strive to live out fully His Words and what He has said to do and to be?  I pray our answer is yes, but so many times we fall prey to this world we live in, this earthly world that has no regard for the Christ who died for us, who came to give a life of eternal glory, who sacrificed His all for me, for us.

"We can rest today knowing that as we, by His grace, respond to our heavenly Father's command to surrender our idols, He'll bury them under a tree, the one at Golgotha's mount."  Idols of the Heart

The 1st commandment in Ex 20:3 says,
             "You shall have no other gods before me."

The Westminster Catechism gives the full intent of this commandment here:
"The duties required in the first commandment are, the knowing and acknowledging of God to be the only true God and our God; and to worship and glorify Him accordingly, by thinking, meditating, remembering, highly esteeming, honoring, adoring, choosing, loving, desiring, fearing of Him; believing him; trusting, hoping, delighting, rejoicing in Him; being zealous for Him; calling upon Him, giving all praise and thanks, and yielding all obedience and submission to Him with the whole man; being careful in all things to please Him, and sorrowful when in anything He is offended; and walking humbly with Him."

Thinking about God.  Do I think of God continually or only infrequently?
Meditating on God.  Do I meditate on His character--His holiness, His goodness, His love?
Remembering God.  Do I remember Him in everything I do and say?
Esteeming God.  Am I highly esteeming Him, or do I highly esteem or value other things?
Idols of the Heart

As you meditate on the Lord this day, search your heart to see if there is anything you are setting before the Lord our God, Jesus Christ, Jehovah, Messiah, Yahweh.  All you do should first be for Him, and everything that follows comes from your love and obedience to Him.  SEEK Christ this day, and let Him search your heart, soul, and mind for any idols you are placing before Him.

Always Experiencing Him,

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