“There have been many times Lord, when I wondered if you are the True One. I use the title because you identify yourself by that name in this letter. The True One. There’s a lot to consider there. What you open, no one can shut. What you close, no one can open.” (3:7)
Faith is one of those interesting journeys. You step out believing you are to respond in a specific way. Occasionally it brings opposition. More often than not it involves a certain level of struggle. I haven’t found faith to be an easy thing; just a good thing. This letter is written to “the little guy”. Not the person in positions of power. Not the individual with title or wealth. Just the average guy, living out his life in a posture of obedience.
Life throws so many curve balls. I see the blessings and I feel the pressures. If I step out of sync with the intimate times with God, circumstances begin to overwhelm. It is almost as though I am unable to cope in life without first receiving reinforcement in my soul from the Presence of God. For some that may seem abstract. For others, a living reality. Yet there is power in being quiet in God’s presence. Just you and him.
In those times he speaks intimately with you. It is strange to use such language when considering the source of creation. Yet it is also perfectly logical that my creator would love his creation. He seals you with his own name; like signing a painting or autographing a manuscript. It is his work with his seal.
Struggles tempt me to grasp at whatever is closest in order to gain support. The True One says to simply hang on to what I already have. No one can take it away. And what is it that I have? - A promise. His promise. He has given me instruction regarding life. He has guided my steps when I have sought his counsel. He has built walls of protection around me, even though at times I feel pressed down.
While life seems overwhelming, there is no greater strength than knowing you know the One who knows. It is a constant invitation to draw near. In his presence there is wisdom, knowledge, discernment, joy and peace. Not ease necessarily, but contentment.
It is always the invitation to draw near. When you are close to him, it is easier to obey him. Others may disown him. Yet the True One says that those who do not disown him will be honoured by the very ones who attempted to coerce them to abandon their trust in the him. It isn’t my place to attract attention to myself. Simply, when I stand for what I know is true, people will notice. Truth is never defended in a vacuum. Nor is it honoured in private. Yet it provides a solid foundation in every circumstance. God declares his favour and protection on those who remain faithful to him.
This post was originally published on February 5, 2014.