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Friday, June 27, 2014

Returning to God's Will for You

Fresh Manna
by Pastor Tim Burt

Ever get lost when you’re driving somewhere? There is something so “dark” about the feeling that comes when you are lost. That’s one reason GPS has become such a part of our lives. People will pay to avoid getting lost. There is getting lost naturally—like when you are in your car. But there’s also getting lost spiritually—like you feel when you've wandered from God.

When I've spiritually wandered off course, it’s accompanied by an uncomfortable inner feeling. It may not initially be that “dark” feeling of being totally lost, but it’s like you know you are headed more in the wrong direction than toward God’s will and what He wants for you. When this happens I only know I don’t like it and want to get back to that right place with Him. Ever feel that way? My guess would be yes!

What have I done in times like this? I've started out doing what David often did. I've been honest with God about it. Psalm 119:176 (NLT) says, “I have wandered away like a lost sheep; come and find me, for I have not forgotten your commands.” I then cry out to God, Help me Father, I feel like I am astray from where you want me to be. Because I know Him and know that He loves me, I know He doesn't want me to remain a lost sheep. I know that He, by His Holy Spirit, will lead me back to where I need to be if I am sincere about wanting to be in the right place with Him.

Some simply want to get out of the consequences of the mess they have been caught up in. If their only regret is the consequences they are experiencing and not the sincere desire to repent for their wrong actions, God knows that and their prayers probably won't go higher than the ceiling. The Bibles says that "God resists the prideful but gives grace (His help) to the humble." He is listening to those who know and want to return to walking in His ways and His will.  An insincere heart will not lead them out of their troubles and from the state of being lost. A repentant heart will bring God's direction, grace, and strength to make changes that lead one back to the right place with Him.

When I've been in that place and prayed, I have, by faith, received God’s forgiveness and again, in faith, believed He was infusing me with spiritual strength to make needed changes. I've written them down. I've talked about them. I've confessed to others that God was helping me and I've followed through with a plan to get back to where I needed to be. The troubles created by wandering from God may not instantly be gone, but the sense of being on the right path with God will come. The troubled waters of the mess created will eventually calm.

That is such a glorious feeling! I've not only felt it, I've counseled others and watched them come out of a lost place. I've seen them begin to read their Bible again. I've seen them renew their prayer life. I've seen them join a discipleship group or some kind of small group to help them gain a sense of accountability. I've seen them start attending church regularly again. I've seen them commit to helping others. I've seen them treat their spouse and children better. I've seen them back on the path of God’s will again.

I've heard it said, "Prideful men will wander around lost to the point of ridiculous." I say, godly men (and women) will stop and ask for help and directions (from God) quickly and get back on the right path! It's His will and He is lovingly waiting to help you do so!

Psalm 119:105 (Message Translation) “By your words I can see where I'm going; they throw a beam of light on my dark path. I've committed myself and I'll never turn back from living by your righteous order. Everything's falling apart on me, God; put me together again with your Word. Festoon me with your finest sayings, God; teach me your holy rules…

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt 

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