Sunday, September 11, 2011


David became angry because of the LORD’S outburst against Uzzah, and that place is called Perez-uzzah to this day. So David was afraid of the LORD that day; and he said, “How can the ark of the LORD come to me?” 2 Samuel 6:8-9

Emotional responses are very telling. What I get emotional about – or don’t get emotional about, for that matter – can reveal a great deal about the spiritual condition of my heart. Am I walking in intimacy with my Savior? Am I abiding? Am I seeking His wisdom and guidance? Am I walking in unrepentance? Have I distanced myself from my Lord in some way? Am I acting out of disobedience and sin?

David wanted to do something good by bringing the ark to Jerusalem. But, he was not careful to do it in the right way. He and the Levites both should have known better, but they proceeded to follow the example of the Philistines in transporting the ark rather than following the commands of God. And, as tends to happen when we are walking in disobedience, things went badly and Uzzah suffered the consequences.

David’s anger, fear, and abandoning of the ark are all emotional responses resulting from not walking in the fear of the Lord. He was trying to do a good thing his way instead of God’s. And when God disciplined, David grew angry. Only three months later did David straighten all of this out and decide to do it God’s way instead.

Reading this story again, and observing the tenth anniversary of a horrific event in my own lifetime, I am struck by the realization of just how telling my emotional responses are. God gave them to me to reveal much about my heart. I know that I cannot trust in my emotions, but I can frequently discern much if I truly stop to consider my emotions.

So, my challenge? To listen. My God-given emotions tell a story. They tell me many things about how I stand before God. I am challenged to consider them, evaluate them, and bring them humbly before my Creator. I am challenged to freely allow Him to use them to teach and grow me, making me more into who He created me to be.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

He Sees

Then He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what the elders of the house of Israel are committing in the dark, each man in the room of his carved images? For they say, ‘The LORD does not see us; the LORD has forsaken the land.’” Ezekiel 8:12

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to please people. My biggest stress when doing something wrong as a child was not the wrong I had done, but the fear of being found out. It wasn’t the punishment I dreaded nearly as much as the reality of disappointing someone. What would they think of me? Would they still trust me? Would they still even like me?

That mentality sticks with me today. What if they really knew what I was like and the things I have done and still do?

I do know that God sees. Truly I do. But, one of my biggest struggles is the fight against caring more about what people see.

The priests and leaders of Judah were hiding their sin in hopes that people wouldn’t see. But people weren’t who they needed to be worrying about. God was. And they didn’t care about God.

I do care about God. Immensely. I hunger to please Him. I long to bring delight to His heart. And yet my worry about what people think still plagues me. I still struggle with it, even though I’ve fought against it for years.

My challenge today is to take one more step away from people-pleasing and toward God-pleasing. I must keep in the forefront of my mind that God always sees. I can’t just know this as a fact. I must know it as an experience. I must live it in every moment of every day. He sees! Not only does He see, but He still forgives and He still hungers for intimacy with me! What joy! If the Almighty God, Creator of all things sees me and still desires my presence, then what does it matter what others see or think?

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Unseen

The men of David said to him, “Behold, this is the day of which the LORD said to you, ‘Behold; I am about to give your enemy into your hand, and you shall do to him as it seems good to you.’” Then David arose and cut off the edge of Saul’s robe secretly. 1 Samuel 24:4

The trick to living a godly life is to see the unseen. To remember that we don’t know all of the details. Just because something looks obvious doesn’t always mean it is. This is where David found himself. In his sensitivity to the Holy Spirit’s nudges, David realized that not all was as it seemed. It was not within his authority to take Saul’s life into his own hands. That was God’s business. So, instead of taking logical advantage of the moment, he submitted to the wisdom and direction of his God and persuaded his men to let Saul live.

Scripture is replete with stories of people who made logical decisions based on appearances without stopping to seek the Lord first. And typically they suffered negative consequences for their choices. I fall into that same trap so many times. I sacrifice wisdom on the altar of my assumptions. I jump to conclusions based on the obvious without seeking God’s face for direction and wisdom.

I am challenged to remember that, no matter how many logical facts I see before me, I do not have the whole picture! Only God does. If I am continually abiding in His presence, the Spirit will convict me as He did David. But, if I am not, I can so easily miss His plan in favor of my logical conclusions. No matter how obvious the next step is, may I always pause – even if for the briefest moment – to prayerfully seek the Lord’s wisdom.