Intimacy With God

walking with God Adversity may or may not always be a direct result of our poor decisions. One of my EBA pastor’s wives said to me this past week that sometimes God puts us in the “School of Patience” whether we ask for patience or not!!! SO TRUE!!! Either way, it affords an opportunity for self-examination and the experiencing of God in a most intimate manner.

What is the ADVERSITY that seems to overwhelm you today??? Family issues, spousal issues, job related issues, marriage issues, just day-to-day trials that come from nowhere unexpectedly, you have tried the spiritual journey and it just doesn’t seem to work for you, the “God is so FAR AWAY” from me syndrome, I’ve lost it all- what’s left for me, etc.???? On and on the list could go, but will just pointing these things out really solve anything??? Blame never HAS, and BLAME NEVER WILL!!! Please, I BEG YOU, get beyond the blame stage and ask God what He is seeking to teach you through your ADVERSITY!!! 

Job is just one of many examples in the scriptures; Joseph is another; David running from Saul is another; Elijah running from Jezebel is another; Abraham forgetting God’s promises and taking things into his own hands is another; Moses doing the same with killing the Egyptian; and the list goes on and on!!! The “School of Hard-Knocks” can be and is on many occasions used by our sovereign Father above to teach us many lessons about life and His absolute sovereignty!!! Some of these are self-induced, some God-induced; nevertheless, God seeks to use them all to bring the HIGHEST GLORY unto Himself and grow us into the image of His dear SON!!!  

Stricken by adversity that he did not bring on himself, we find Job suffering through what he really never understood. He NEVER really received an answer for to his “why” question. He finally flounders, as we all do in these situations, in the way he handles this affliction. God has to deal with that just as He does with us. Job repents, as we all should, and in 42:5 he emphatically states, “My ears had heard of you but now my eyes seen you”. What does it take for us TO SEE GOD???

We all have an opportunity to experience the Lord at an intimate level during difficulty. Yesterday, someone texted me and referred to our intimacy with the Father and that there could be no substitutes for it just as there can be no substitutes for it in our marriages. You can’t use someone else to create intimacy with your spouse and neither can you use someone else to have intimacy with God; NO, not the Pastor, the TV preacher, the Sunday School teacher, the Bible Scholar, etc. It has to be you and Him and the only way that can happen is for you and me to get in His WORD and hear what He has to say to us on a daily basis. To know Him and not just know about Him is paramount to us growing in His graces. That’s why we do what you do as a church but it is NEVER intended or meant to replace your intimacy with the Father after Sunday Moring worship, as great as that is!!! Be the one to point others who are hurting to an intimate relationship with Christ, but don’t try to be their substitute for Christ. They will deeply appreciate it one day! God bless your week.

Remember, you are of intrinsic valve to the Father. He chose you and ordained that to be so for His great and awesome glory!!!

Loving thoughts of each of you,

Pastor Johnny

Health Update:

Will see the Dr. Libbey again on Thursday at 1:45 pm. At this point, drainage is down to 20 mLs a day!!! Must be down to less than 5 mLs before they will consider removing the drainage tube. Still running low grade fever around 100.4. My normal range is around 97.5. No schedule yet as to when my aneurysm surgery will be done!!! Still taking a powerful antibiotic as well. I am walking a mile a day and have lost about 23lbs so far. Feel great, think I’m looking great too, HA! HA!, and am getting my strength back slowly. Please keep those powerful prayers going for me/us!!! God is so, so good to me!!! I feel so honored and especially humbled and extra blessed to serve with such a great church like DFBC and my Edisto Baptist Association churches, pastors, leadership and each of you.

Pastor Johnny