Trauma, pain, and grief are part of life’s journey for everyone and can hold us back from God’s best. He cannot help us address the source of these issues until we allow them to come out where they can be seen, and felt. People all around us are living with the weight of guilt, shame, confusion, and hurt. When they speak it is like a mist that comes up from inside confusing their thoughts and language. The source of it is often not even clear to those of us who are carrying it, and it needs to be healed before we can move to the next dimension of life.
Jesus disciple’s believed that everything they wanted to happen as a result of His coming died with Him at the cross. They hoped that He would lead a revolt against Rome, bringing judgment on them for the way they had treated God’s people and setting Israel free from their rule. His followers wanted to be part of bringing judgment on their enemies, but Jesus is not even interested in judging our worst enemy. Because of this hope Christ’s death was traumatic for His followers. They struggled to understand that with the coming of Jesus there came a new age, one of grace and truth, not of judgment and burning. He came to light fires on the inside of His followers not burn sinners around them.
We may know who God is, holy, righteous, just, and true, but do we know how to approach Him in order to live in His power, presence, and love? Are we walking in wisdom in our relationship with Him? The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord. When our children are young we teach them to fear certain things that are actually very good when used appropriately, like the oven. Not until they grow to a place of understanding and are able to appreciate how it works and what it does can we set them free to use it.
The life of God is likened to a river of living water so powerful that it becomes a fountain. This life increases in us internally providing us with all the power and everything necessary to walk in the character of God. Unlike the early disciples, we do not have to spend forty days waiting for it. It’s inside us now, and is meant to continually increase and flow from us reproducing life wherever we go.
We will apprehend our future by listening to and following God’s instructions. Like the Shunammite woman, when everyone around us is dying of famine, our future in God will still look good. She did what He asked of her in spite of any obstacles or fear.
God has made Himself known to us through Christ. As believers He is with us, His Spirit in us and we have constant fellowship with Him. It is our responsibility to keep our lives on track by listening to and obeying His word.
When we come to God for salvation we receive His abundant life, but He has much more for us beyond that initial event. He has set us apart for a purpose and made plans to enable us to fulfill it. He has given us everything we need to succeed in our hands and in our hearts and arranged for us to find what may be lacking in someone near us. He is always watching over us for our good and seeking to bless us! What we need to do is invest in the gifts, and abilities that He has invested in us. In the parable of the talents the man who had one decided to exercise his faith and energy in a negative way by hiding it instead of using it so it could grow.
Life should be flowing out of us wherever we are, at home, at work, or at play. When someone spends time with us they should know that no matter what they have done they are loved. After we talk to them they should feel better because they have come in contact with the life of God, and since what comes out of our mouths reveals what is in our hearts we should be able to tell if we are full of His life or not.
Jesus came to put His word in us and that word contains life. We are called to be ministers of this life wherever we go, whatever we are doing, and whether we are quoting a Bible verse or not. One way the Lord got people interested in this life was by telling stories. Another reason people were willing to learn from Him was because they could see that He was truly human and had needs like them. He got physically tired like we do. His body had to be taken care of so that He could do the will of God, just like ours does. Jesus had to make right choices in order to live the way God wanted Him to, and when He was “thirsty” He needed a drink of life like we do too. When He decided to do God’s will and needed help to carry it out Jesus depended on the supply of the Holy Spirit. Like us He was a human man with real needs who had to depend on His heavenly Father.
The vision that God gives us for our lives also affects our relationships with other people. How we share it matters; Joseph was not wise about sharing his vision with his brothers and their response revealed the lack of security they had in the love of their father. Jacob loved all his children but Joseph wore what His father gave him with pride. Many believers don’t “wear” what God has given them because they are not secure in His love and don’t want to take off the old clothes of heaviness that need to be replaced with the garments of love and righteousness that He has purchased for them with the blood of Jesus.