Thought for the Day
"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee." Isaiah 26:3
In these days of anxiety, as the world more and more surrounds you with its ways and you find ourselves turning to whoever you can to find strength and support, only to find no one for the day. It is an important time to realize that you are turning in the wrong direction, that you need to be turning to the Lord instead, finding in Him that which no man can provide, peace for your soul. It is not that you do not need others to encourage you in your walk in the Lord (and to reprove, correct and rebuke you when you turn another way). It is that anxiety reveals to you that your thoughts are in the 'moment,' upon yourself and the world, and not upon Him. "Be careful [anxious] for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ." Philippians 4:6-7 It is a time to know where you are in Him, for no man can take His place. No man can satisfy your soul. No man can give you perfect peace. But Him only.
Unlike Cain, who was full of pride, but as Abel, who was humble before the Lord, only the Lord is the keeper of your soul. "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you." 1 Peter 6:6, 7 The believer will not be exalted (approved of) in the world, for the world will only exalt (approve of) its own, negating, as Cain did, any who humble themselves before the Lord, casting all their cares upon Him. Being anxious only reveals your love of (your desire for) the approval of the world.
When the Lord God turns to you does He see a "hand wringer," a brother, sister, mother worried about what is happening to them and the world around them, i.e. letting the things of the world control their thoughts and their actions, or does he see a soul at peace (even in the midst of the storm, even when no one is listening to them or caring about them, attacking them instead). Are you a delight unto the Lord, with your mind "stayed on Him." It is not that you are to isolate yourself from the world, but that while you are in the world, you are to be doing what the Lord directs you to do (doing your Heavenly Father's will as the Lord leads, standing in His armour, not running from pain or to pleasure, placing your hands on the plow pressing forward, not turning to the left or to the right), i.e. in your home, in government, in your neighborhood, in your fellowshipping with the saints. In all your "doings" you are not to be of the world, i.e. living according to its standards, i.e. living a life of compromise (a life of sin, i.e. thinking and acting according the flesh) but in Him, i.e. living according to His word, living a life without compromise, walking by the Spirit, in His righteousness. "We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;" 2 Corinthians 4:8, 9 You may find yourself as a POW in your own land but you need to remind yourself (from time to time) that when you came to Christ and He became your Lord you became a pilgrim, a stranger, an alien in your home land. You need to remind yourself that you are only passing through, living in His kingdom, according to His power, for His glory alone (forever), that all the rest is passing away.
"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." John 14:23-27 "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33 "... for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:11b-13, 19
Cognitive dissonance is a state of tension and turmoil (internal torture) where you are caught between your belief and your desires, with your desires (that which is of the world) attempting to lead the way. The only way out of this tension is to choose which head, yours (the world's) or the Lord's, you are going to trust in and follow.
"Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul." Proverbs 29:17 No man is called to save the world, i.e. you can not save your friends and your family or a nation. You are only called to plant and water (share the truth, i.e. He is truth, in love, i.e. in His love), letting Him give the increase. You can not always see the results, maybe seeing none. If you are anxious, it is because you are attending to the wrong things, looking for the results in the world (for your own sake), when the true result is His work in you, i.e. in His changing of your heart, as you daily die to yourself, i.e. setting aside, i.e. giving up on your carnal desires (asking Him to forgive you your sins), putting your trust in Him alone instead, letting Him direct your steps (in your asking Him to "lead you not into temptation, but deliver you from the evil one," doing His will instead). It is only in the Lord God and the Lord Jesus Christ that you can find direction in which to set your thoughts and actions in the 'moment.' If you want to stop "wringing" your hands (being anxious) "Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth." Colossians 3:2.
For true and everlasting hope is not found in the things of this life, in the things of the world, but in Him, in the hope of glory. "And this is the record, that God hath given to you eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life." 1 John 5:11, 12 The question is; "Why are you concerned about what others will (or are) doing to (or are saying about) you?" when you should be concerned with what God is going to do to them. Are you anxious, i.e. concerning about what you will lose (have lost or are losing) in this life, i.e. concerned about your flesh or are you concerned where others will spend eternity, i.e. concerned about their soul. Do you have the compassion of the rich man in hell (Luke 16:20-31) who was concerned about his brothers, i.e. about where they would spend eternity? It is from his "ground" that you can understand God's love for you and those around you (who are living like the rich man, "lusting" after the things of this life), while the Lord desires that they turn to Him instead and have eternal life, with His peace, love, and joy instead (which the world can not provide).
What is coming out of your mouth, anxiety or peace? If it is anxiety, it is not of the Lord. Give it (your cares, i.e. those things of pleasure you are desiring or holding on to for your own gain, i.e. including the approval of men) to the Lord and receive His peace instead. Do it now. "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Proverb. 3: 5-6
"Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God." "But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them." "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us." "We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh." 2 Corinthians 4:1-11
© Institution for Authority Research, Dean Gotcher 2013-2015