Friday, 11 September 2015

God's Plan for Us

Scripture: Jeremiah 29 v 11:

"For I know the thoughts that I think towards you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end."

This word was spoken by Jeremiah to the Israelites, who were captured by the Babylonians, to encourage them in their 70 year captivity. Whenever the people of God were severely disobedient they would be punished by slavery followed by a time of blessing and revival.

As Christians we know that God loves us but in Deuteronomy 8 v 2 - 6, the Lord says He chastens every son to see if they will obey Him. The ultimate plan of God is to bless, comfort and give peace to His children. We are no different. We want the best for our children too, but sometimes they need firm discipline to correct rebellious behaviour.

Our Lord never thinks of doing evil to His people. Everything is measured according to what we need. If we are trapped on a mountain in a rockfall and our only escape is by amputating a limb, or dying, we will find a way to remove the trapped limb. So it is with Jesus. Sometimes in order to rescue us from a dire situation we have to lose something we are very attached to.

It will always hurt to give up something we crave but the alternative is unthinkable. We need to take responsibility and be mature and ready to relinquish something that is holding us back. You cannot serve God and Mammon. Mammon is the things of the world like parties, porn, drugs, alcohol, politics, power, love of money, free sex, false religions, idols, anything that controls you and distracts you from doing God's will. Anything that makes you say I can't serve God now because....!

The answer you give to that statement will be your stumbling block that will lead you into some form of captivity. Addictions are slavery. You are not free to be yourself because every time God needs you, Satan yanks the chain around you. So then Jesus will allow that problem to become a crisis - financial; health; marriage; death so you will have an opportunity to repent and do His will so that His blessings will be poured out upon you. And Satan's chain will be broken. 

A good but scary chapter to read is Deuteronomy 28. The first 14 verses are the Blessings of Obedience; from 15 to 68 are the Curses for Disobedience. They apply to us today.

Prayer: Father God, You only want the best for us but sometimes You have to discipline us when we get out of hand. Please help me to trust and obey You in everything so I avoid Your displeasure and the captivity it brings. In Jesus' name. Amen.