Monday, January 7, 2013

Life on Fire - This is Just the Beginning

Living on fire - that's what each of us wishes we could do. To do the great things we read about. It seems unattainable, but is it really?

It's often that I have feelings of inadequacy; that my life isn't worth much. I'm not doing those amazing things that characterize those I look up to. I don't have many books published and give seminars all over the states. I'm not on the mission field in the face of danger each day. I'm not the most patient person who never seems to get irritated.

I'm not like any of those people that come to mind. At the same time, we are exactly the same. We each experience choices each moment. We each overcome our own "giants". We trust the same God. There is nothing different between us is there? We're both just humans making our journey to heaven. Then I realized there is something different. They are on FIRE.

What is it like to be on fire? What's it like to have that kind of joy? What does it take to stand your ground against hell unleashed? It takes God. It takes real encounters with him. And it gives you JOY.

The times I've encountered God have set me on fire. I want to feel that again. We have to not settle for less. Don't settle for knowing God only in word. Beg him to show you himself. Cry out to experience his presence. Don't live for less.

I can not find happiness anywhere else. You won't be able to either. I know I'm suppose to be at this job. That should give me great joy. But it's not enough. It's not enough to just go to work because that's what God has for me. I need him to go with me. I need to experience him at home. I will not settle for "knowing" he's there. Tell me you don't want more than what you have right now. Tell me that living without having an intimate daily experience of his presence is ok with you! Do you feel fulfilled? Is there no longing in your spirit?

I know for a fact that God wants us to experience him. James 4:8 says to draw near to him and he WILL draw near to you. It's time to draw near to God, and then plead with him to come near. He will not reject us. It is his greatest joy for us to desire him.

Don't settle for knowing his characteristics. Experience them. Come face to face with them. Don't settle for his names. Allow him to lead you, provide for you, be your shepherd, your comforter. Know that when you cry out to El Roy that he does in fact hear and answer you. Allow Jehovah Rohi to lead you through the challenges that you are facing.

I want to really know God personally, to experience him. I'm trying do draw close to him. I'm looking for his work all around me. I'm taking time to revel in his artistry around me. I'm remembering what he's done for me, praying for him to show me how he's used things in my life to bring me closer. And that's just what I got last night.

As I sat in church last night, I became aware of work that God had been doing in me. He was bringing everything together to prepare me for this journey. We are going to be studying Philippians. If you know anything of the writer Paul, you know that he's been through so many trials. But also through experiences with God. He's been beat, stoned ( they thought he was dead! ), imprisoned, shipwrecked - in fact he writes this letter from a jail. You might also recall that he makes many references about the church understanding what he's gone through, because there was much resistance and persecution with the forming of this church. Yet what is the topic of this book? Why is he writing to them? He wants them to have joy. Wow, what a thing to write from prison!

 I've been wanting to know how to live a life on fire - having great purpose in life.

I've been wanting to experience him. This Christmas my parents gave me The One Year Experiencing God's Presence Devotional. It's been incredible.

If you've read any of my posts of late, you might recall I've struggled with joy. But I've wanted it desperately.

These things have all come together. How do we live on fire? We live that way be experiencing God. And what does experiencing God give you? Joy. All the things I've been struggling and wrestling with come together and God is providing me a path towards being in a more intimate relationship with him. Which is the goal of our lives. To know him.

In effect, he's given me the desires to bring me back to him. And he's provided the path, he has given a light to my path. Just as he promised.

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