Sunday, 1 January 2012

What has God taught me this week...

Now first I must start by saying I am not a theologian... I have just decided to share some of the things that God has been leading me to think about during my morning bible times :)

I have always struggled to get into a regular routine with my Bible. I seem to establish a great routine and then for some reason I lose it!! Whether it be interruptions or busyness.. I find it really frustrating! I love having a great routine and learning from God. But when I lose the routine I find it really hard to re-establish! I don't know if any of you experience this also.

I was given some great advice recently in regards to reading my bible. This advice was just read and when something jumps out...stop. Re-read it. Memorise it. Look deeper into it. Pray. Listen to God. As when something jumps out then it may be the Holy Spirit at work, teaching us something.

So I slowly began to do this. The first thing that jumped out was the 10 Commandments and Exodus34 where God describes His character to Moses (see post - Who is God?).

It has taken me a couple of weeks to start memorising scripture. I have started with the 10 Commandments. I will then move onto Exodus 34. And then onto Leviticus 19 (where God has stopped me now).

Here is what I am learning:

1) Who God is.
2) How we can be Holy as God commands.
3) I am reminded that He has saved from slavery and punishment from our sins.
4)I am reminded that we create other 'gods' which steal our affections from the one true God.
5) I am reminded to honour the Sabbath day - but how?

I will now explain...

God has shown me that the dictionary is a valuable tool when you don't own a concordance :). Recently as I have been reading I have felt lead to discover the definitions of words found in scripture, to give me a deeper understanding about what I am reading. I have been finding this most helpful.

This week for example I was reading Leviticus 19:1 - Be Holy, because I, the Lord your God am Holy. Be Holy? How? What does that mean? This is what I discovered so far... To be Holy means to be dedicated or devoted to the service of God.

But how do we do this?

First we need to commit our whole selves to Christ. It is a choice, we do or we don't.

But how does this look?

We need to study His word. Just as the lady adviced me to do, with an open heart to God. Learn how He wants us to live. And then start to pray (talk) to God about what you have discovered and ask Him to help you to begin to live in His ways. We can't do it alone! In your own strength - you will fail. It is only through His strength that we can live for Him. In our weaknesses He is strong. He will help. Just pray to God for help. He will hear your prayer.

Be open and willing to take His lead (we all fail at this, but He is patient with us). Be dedicated to His service. How can you glorify God? A kind word...a prayer...through our actions...telling someone else the Good News...serving others...there are many ways. Just trust Him and He will lead.

Other 'gods' in our lives :(

We all have it sport, computer, tv, food....whatever pulls our affections from God. Whatever distracts you from spending time with God. Whatever distracts you from being committed to God's service.

For me it can be cooking or computer. we need to be open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit here, when He convicts us. This happened this week for me. I had just found Pinterest and I love new recipes!! So I spent hours being distracted by this new toy of mine :(. I couldn't concentrate on praying or reading my Bible because it was like Pinterest was calling me away!

I knew it was wrong, but the desire was so strong! I heard the promptings and half listened. It took a week of promptings and this verse for me to stop. Leviticus 19: 4 Do not turn to idols or make metal gods for yourselves, I am the Lord your God. I felt immediately convicted! A metal god!!! My computer!

My time on the computer was making me tired, as I was going to bed late! I was not spending time with the kids. It was not good for me or my family. And I was not spending time with God. God convicts us of things that are bad for us. He is for us.

I am so thankful that He has helped me to kick my bad habit. I am thankful that He made me listen and gave me the ability to overcome this trap. He is awesome and always saves me from myself!

Honouring the Sabbath

This had me thinking. God creates directions and instruction for us in His word because it is good for us. And one of those instructions is to honour the Sabbath - a day of rest. God knows what is good for us. So a day of rest is a good thing for a family.

Also when resting from work, I felt it would be a good time to reflect and share God with the family and others. I feel that my family need to honour God with our time on Sunday when we are resting from work. But how?

Here are some of my thoughts. After church on a Sunday we could take off with a picnic to a park. We could share a meal and reflect on Gods' goodness through family devotional surrounded by Gods' glorious creation. Some weeks I would like to share this time with another family as well. To share our time and glorify God.

I think this will encourage our family (and others) and give us time to spend with one another whilst honouring God.

God is wise and knows what is best for us.

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