1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 - Relationship of Friends
1 Thessalonians 5:9-10 "For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with Him." (NASB)
I've always been notoriously slow on picking up on hints......innuendos.....suggestions. It is not that I don't receive them, I do, but I don't know if my interpretation of what I'm picking up is the same as the message that's being sent.
I have become better over time at sharpening the skills of interpretation, but I still prefer, in most cases, that the message is delivered in a straightforward fashion. The trouble is...........it seldom is in my opinion.
Very early on in my walk with the Lord, I brought with me those perceptions that the world of conversation.....or message sending.....and message receiving..........was not black and white, but gray so I missed some very important messages the Lord was trying to send me in a language that was very specific...............very concrete.
In hindsight I can look back on these attempts by the Lord to reach me and see quite clearly what He was trying to tell me, and I can also remember the feelings of how I felt when I either ignored what He told me (and did it my way) or decided He really meant something other than what I was picking up (which ended up being another version of "my way".) When I had my way I usually ended up not feeling too good because I ended up in a place I didn't want to be.
And this is where tonight's scripture comes in.................Jesus was always there after everything fell to pick me up, dust me off, and put His arm around me. I learned what He wanted me to learn, alright, but I had to learn it the hard way. And He knew I need from Him His Love........not "I told you so."..............or a sharp reprove of some sort.
He's been on my side from the very beginning...........before there were any of the beautiful things of His Creation........He knew He loved me so much that one day He would die for me on the Cross so that I could spend eternity with Him.
And He also knew because He became flesh................what the weaknesses of the flesh felt like............how tough it is to read something when you have no sense of direction.............so He gave me His Word to guide me...........He gave me communion in prayer to establish a dialogue with me so that I could choose correctly when it came to that.
It took a deeper relationship with Him for me to see this..............a relationship of both discipline and tolerance........(more discipline on *my* side and tolerance on His). But now that I have it, I will fight hard to keep from losing it because I have a sense of the excitement of what eternal life with Him will be like.................not as I might perceive it (a relationship of God with one of His Creation), but as a relationship of friends.
Love in Jesus,
"But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired." (1 Corinthians 12:18 NASB)
"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission."
This devotional was originally posted on CCI-Devo - Daily Group Devotionals on January 1, 2004 in post #443. It was written by Jim Ross, a former United Pentecostal Church member, who attends Christian Challenge International, the sponsor of the devotional group. The devotional is the copyright of Jim Ross and is reprinted on this site by permission.
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August 23, 1997
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