Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 April 2016 Exodus 33:14

Exodus 33:14.   And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.

And then it was Saturday, and the next couple days in my area are supposed to be cold and snowy and wet and rainy. Steups! Whatever happened to that thing called spring eh? In winter we didn’t get any snow, and now in what’s supposed to be spring, it’s too often cold and snowy! Chuh! And yet they insist that climate change is not real. 

But anyway, whether it is real or not, we believers in Jesus Christ don’t have to let it worry us. Oh yes, the weather will become irascible like many of us, (smile) but we can’t afford to allow that to dictate our lives, that ought to be done by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  

So to help us handle all the unwanted stuff we have to handle, let’s pray this prayer taken from a Devotional titled ‘A Journey of LOVE. Walking with St. Therese of Liseux’ – The Saint of the Little Flower. I’ve shared it before, but in these troubled times, times of hate and anger and doubt and all the negative stuff that’s predominant in our world, we need something to counteract that negativity. 

And the only thing able to do that is LOVE, and we have been assigned the vocation of LOVE. So let’s pray for help in our vocation. Please pray with me: ‘Jesus, I desire above all else to centre my life in you. Only you can give me the courage to face up to my responsibilities, to be compassionate and forgiving, to let go of what is not important and to embrace what is important. 

I am called to accept and to cherish your LOVE for me and to allow your LOVE to go out from me to all your people, Help me to walk in your steps without compromise and to be open to your presence in all of the people I meet. I make my prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen.’ 

Yes friends, the irony of it all is that we cannot do God’s work without God’s help! And the most effective way to receive that help is through prayer.  The Lord has promised that when we diligently and sincerely seek Him, He will be found by us. That’s why prayer is so important in a believer’s life. 

That’s also why Bruh Paul told the Ephesians to pray ALWAYS; (Eph.6:18) the Thessalonians to pray WITHOUT CEASING; (1 Thess.5:17) and his young protégé Timothy to pray EVERYWHERE. (1 Tim:2:8) So to all intents and purposes, prayer MUST BE an integral part of a believer’s life, because in doing so we will always be in the presence of God, which is ever so important for our earthly journey. 

Moses, one of God’s greatest prophets was adamant about not continuing the journey through the wilderness if the Lord’s presence was not going to be with him. That is even after God promised in our Bit: And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.’ 

Ah mih people, without God’s wonderful presence in our lives, innumerable trials and tribulations will come our way, from which we’ll have little or no leeway to escape. However, when we are basking in the Father’s presence, we are assured of His help to get through the difficulties, though not necessarily complete escape. 

That’s because He has promised to work everything out for the good of those who LOVE Him and are called according to His purpose. (Rom.8:28) And if there’s one thing we can rest comfortably on, is that our ever-faithful God NEVER reneges on His promises. 

Now let’s look at some scripture that exalts the glory and wisdom of being in God’s presence. And we can’t talk about that without including words from Bruh David’s heartfelt declarations. This comes from Psalm 31 – In thee, O Lord, do I put my trust. 

‘Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men! Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence (secret place) from the pride (plots) of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion (shelter) from the strife of tongues. Blessed be the Lord: for he hath showed me his marvellous kindness in a strong city. 

For I said in my haste, I am cut off from before thine eyes: nevertheless thou heardest the voice of my supplications when I cried unto thee. O LOVE the Lord, all ye his saints: for the Lord preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer. Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart.’ (Ps.31:19-24) 

And we can’t argue with Bruh David because in spite of his mistakes, he was still considered a man after God’s own heart, so intense was His longing for Him. 

Meanwhile, in Jeremiah, when the Lord is dealing with the false prophets, He promises: ‘Therefore, behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you, and I will forsake you, and the city that I gave you and your fathers, and cast you out of my presence. And I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.’(Jer.23:39-40) 

Yes friends, that’s the kind of thing that happens when we are cast out of God’s presence. Please pray that it never happens to us. And we’ll end with this great example from the prophet Jonah. 

The Lord had said to Jonah: ‘Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry (out) against it: for their wickedness is come up before me. But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.’ (Jon.1:2-3) 

Now how foolish was that eh my brethren? As a prophet, a man of God, Jonah should have known better than that. And we all know the story of the terrible storm that arose, due to Jonah’s disobedience, and how he was thrown overboard and spent three days and nights in the belly of a great fish, before coming to his senses and repenting. And the Lord in His great mercy and LOVING-kindness forgave him and gave him a second chance. 

Oh my fellow believers, fleeing from the Lord is not easy if He doesn’t want us to flee. But why should we want to flee from Him anyhow eh, when He is the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, the Creator and Provider of all? That’s certainly not wisdom. So please, let’s be wise today and seek the Lord’s presence rather than try to flee from it. Much LOVE!

…the Christian’s desire ought to be…to continually seek God’s face…and to continually bask in His presence…  

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