Monday, September 22, 2008
TIME ALONE WITH GOD
The Bible has much to say about time. Certain significant numerical references in the form of days, months, and years make for interesting Scriptural studies. The Word of God mentions the creation of the heavens and the earth and all living things in six days (Genesis 1:31). Noah preached righteousness for one hundred and twenty years in the antedeluvian world (Genesis 6:3; 2 Peter 2:5). We are also told that the average life span of men on earth is limited to around seven decades: “For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told. The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labor and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away” (Psalm 90:9-10). In light of that stark reality, the Christian’s responsibility as a good steward is to redeem the time for the glory of God (Ephesians 5:16), diligently praying for the Savior’s return and the establishment of His Kingdom on earth, the time of which no man knows the day or the hour (Matthew 25:13). “Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20).
We could advance many more ideas about the relevance of time to the Christian, but none are as important in this life as personal time in fellowship with God. For some, the very thought of time alone with God is an intrusion into an already busy schedule. The life of the worldly-minded Christian runs at a fast pace: Day follows day with little room for even the most basic spiritual activity, let alone the lofty pursuit of knowing God more intimately. It may not be that such ones are cold-hearted toward God; they simply cannot, in their thinking, prioritize communion with someone so distant and seemingly uninvolved in their daily affairs. Time for God is reserved for Sunday, if they manage to make it to church. What they fail to understand is that their very lack of desire for God is the cause of the great gulf between them and God, for He will not draw near on man’s terms: “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you” (James 4:8). A.W. Tozer said, “We Christians must simplify our lives or lose untold treasures on earth and in eternity. Modern civilization is so complex as to make devotional life all but impossible.” Many of us know that Tozer’s insight is true. We scurry around like little mice in a maze, pursuing things which add nothing of lasting value to our lives. Few resist the current of the day, which takes them further and further away from God. We admire those godly saints who do seek after God but seldom emulate them. Brethren, the time for such indifference must end. Let us make the pursuit of God our greatest pleasure and reap the rewards. Prayer is the path that takes us into His presence. Do not forsake it any longer. You will never find time to pray; you must make time to pray! “And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away. And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone” (Matthew 14:22, 23).
Set aside all your excuses and enter into the court of His Majesty. There you will find rest for your weary soul, strength for every trial, and “bright hope for tomorrow.” Surely, if the Christian’s hope is in God alone, then to God alone we must go. The challenge may seem daunting, but do not let it deter you. Call to mind the familiar saying, "Begin small but start promptly.” Impossible goals usually end in failure. With your Bible in hand, find a quiet place, a quiet time, and God will meet with you there. That is His promise. “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:15, 16). May your fellowship with the Lord be as sweet as honey and as delightful as manna from heaven.
Seek the Lord all ye saints,
Posted by Tom Chesko at 11:44 AM