Sunday, January 12, 2014

(40 Days of Focus) Day EIGHT: "Enduring Truth"

Read: “Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear” (Matthew 24:35, NLT).
Think About It: “Back in my day…” Those were the words of warning and advance notice that an unexpected trip down memory lane was fast approaching. It would be a journey that would overflow with reminders that the world in which was to be described from "days gone by" was not the same world I recognize as the reality of today. For example, I can remember growing up channel-surfing and catching what has now become “classic television.” Now seemingly archaic, it was black and white television production where profanity was non-existent, positive messages gushed way passed the point of “cheesy,” and all problems faced were solved before the half-hour would conclude. Old episodes of “The Dick Van Dyke Show” and “I Love Lucy” depicted bedrooms of the married couples with two separate twin beds. It made the concept of the stork bringing children wrapped up in a sheet appear less like fiction and more like fact! Times, they have changed. Television, it is more of a time-warp than a media for entertainment. Morality, it has been influenced by a culture rather than the other way around. With so much change glaring in the face of those who seek the face of a faithful and unchanging God, how do grow within the evolving culture while maintaining a love for God, a love for each other, and still stand for what has never changed?
Going Deeper: We live in a world where truth has been interpreted as relative.  Is it absolute that what is truth for one may or may not be truth for another? Our society has assumed some level of moral authority, determining what version of “truth” they desire to adopt for their lives, allowing them to live in a manner of their own choosing.  We have become more permissive in justifying our actions and less purposed to learn, love, and live by every morsel of truth that God has given us in His Word. Jesus spoke to a hopeful, yet questioning group of those who believed, but struggled to hang on to that belief. Jesus spoke of what was to come. It was fanciful, fearful, and even fanatical to hear the prophecies and promises of Jesus. He summed up every word with a promise that still holds true both now and for eternity. Everything that we have ever seen or heard in this world will one day pass away. That which we have held on to for fulfillment, positions we have argued for accomplishment and accolade, status and recognition that we gave our lives to obtain will all pass away. It will disappear, vanish, and cease to exist. But every word of God and every promise delivered from the very mouth of the Creator will endure forever. His truth will endure. His promise for your purpose will endure. His commitment to walk along side you, to guide you, to comfort and to pick you up when you fall, will never cease to be true. His truth endures.
Next Step: You don’t have understand everything about God the moment you hear or read. You don’t have to believe everything you hear out of the mouths of those who say they believe in or follow Christ. In fact, don’t, at least not on their word alone. The Bible was written, not by people, but rather through people who surrendered to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to convey the heart of God to those who would receive it. Look at Jeremiah 29:11 and see that God has a purpose for you. Flip back to Genesis 50:20 and know that God can use anything that has felt like the beginning of internal destruction for your benefit. Fast-forward to John 16:33 and be encouraged by Jesus’ own heart in reminding you that though you will undoubtedly face hard times in this life, He has already undeniably conquered every opposing force. Search and find a verse that means something to you. Use a concordance or an internet search engine. Type in “What does the Bible say about...” and fill in the blank with “purpose,” “love,” “forgiveness,” “depression,” “guilt,” or whatever may be weighing on your mind today. Let Him speak through His unchanging Word. It’s His truth. It’s His promise. It endures.

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