It [is] the LORD:
let Him do what seemeth Him good
1 Samuel 3:18
Today, the Lord taught me a valuable and painful lesson; my biggest fear concerning it is that in a week, a month, two months, a year, I will have forgotten it (or at least forgotten the strength and impact of it). I hope that will not be the case; I hope I never forget, but knowing myself…
God taught me experimentally today that I need to love more; as in agape love. Not in wishy-washy sentiment or feigned affection as manifested by those false brethren who pretend to have deep affection for everyone when they know that they do not. But I need to have that self-denying love that seeks the welfare of others.
By His grace, and only by His grace, I need to walk in, and follow after, His commandments concerning others (for that is the essence of agape love). I need to see clearly, to see what is important. I get so caught up in a task or goal, that I miss the eternal things. I need to witness more, pray more, inquire more as to the well-being of others. I need to sit down and ask “how are things going; are you alright?” I need to focus on others and seek their best. Simply put, “I” need to mortify “I” and deny self. “I need” to focus less on my needs and more on the needs of others. I know this, have known it for some time; but I so often fail to find the strength, desire, and inclination to do this (God knows).
This morning, I learned of the death of a young man who appeared to have so much for which to live. He was passionate about photography and music, enjoyed travel, had a sense of humour, and seemed to be a popular guy. For whatever reason, this wasn’t enough for him. Perhaps he needed more; the Lord knows he needed more. Whatever pain, wanting, lacking; whatever hardships and difficulties he had, it appears to have gotten the best of him.
I want to say that I wish him the best; I want to say that I am praying for him; I want to travel back in time and instead of getting annoyed at this thing or that, sit down and actually talk to him — but he is no longer here. He is now facing eternity – before God he must stand. I’ve known quite a few people who died — but not like this. Would to God that I learn from this, and retain what I have learned, as He enables. God is good.
God is in control, He does all things good; good in that He is God and cannot do less than perfectly good; but also good, as in bringing about that which is good for His elect. But I do not understand His ways; I can intellectualise and give you a good theological reason for why He ordained what He ordained… but in my heart, I simply do not understand. I try to; I know I shouldn’t, but I try to… and I fail. I will never understand what happened to him, why it happened. I just know that there is one Jehovah God, “and [there is] none else; [He is] God, and [there is] none like Him, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times [the things] that are not [yet] done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.” God is a God who “worketh all things after the counsel of his own will (Ephesians 1:11);” O to have grace to be content with that.
If you are reading this; I pray to God that you take some time out to try and get to know those around you. I’m a major introvert (at least at first introduction; it takes months to change that sometimes — especially outside of my work environment); but what a lousy excuse it is to allow shyness to keep me from getting to know someone — possibly being of help to someone. Quite frankly, I often feel burnt out (worn out) and often do not want to talk to, meet, or develop relationships with anyone outside of my small little circle. But what if someone out there needs help? I know that the foreordination of God takes such things out of my hands and everyone elses — but our nation, our society, ourselves (myself being the chiefest) — we seemed to have lost that human connection. Our world today is so scattered, so disconnected, flippant, and cold-hearted. How easy it is to mimic the world.
Nonetheless, knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, I pray for boldness to witness and to strive to persuade men (2 Corinthians 5:11) as He grants or denies them understanding. Knowing the great need of mankind, I pray for strength to look not on my own things, but on the things of others (Philippians 2:5). Knowing myself to be but an empty, leaking vessel, utterly unable to naturally retain anything spiritual, I pray that the Lord will never allow me to forget. May the Lord make love, true agape love, love for the Triune Godhead, His people, and for the needy in this world — the foremost objective of our lives.
To God be the glory,